WebClawer: Baby bear burn victim released, dog fosters tiger cubs, mammoths in San Diego?

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From baby bears to prehistoric mammoths, from Northern California to South Africa, these are some of the animal stories that grabbed us today:

  • Li’l Smokey, the orphaned black bear cub who was rescued by a firefighter during last year’s Moon fire near Redding, required extensive veterinary care and rehabilitation (provided by Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care, which even created a blog documenting his progress). Yesterday marked the end of the successful rehabilitation attempt, as the 11-month-old cub was released in the Klamath National Forest. ‘This is a second chance at survival for a cub that would certainly have died,’ said Department of Fish and Game staff environmental scientist Doug Updike. Outposts
  • The peanut processing plant deemed the source of the salmonella outbreak knowingly shipped tainted products, the FDA said today -- a change from its earlier position. Peanut Corp. of America has denied any wrongdoing, but the government has opened a criminal investigation. Several companies have issued recalls on pet products containing peanut butter or peanut paste from the affected Peanut Corp. plant, and the ASPCA advised dog owners to avoid feeding their pets any products containing peanut butter in light of the outbreak. Associated Press
  • A Labrador retriever has become a foster ‘mom’ to three month-old tiger cubs whose mother abandoned them. The dog, named Lisha, is a resident of South Africa’s Cango Wildlife Reserve, at which her owner Rob Hall is the director. Lisha has played foster parent to more than 30 animals, including a porcupine and a baby hippo. But the tigers are especially tricky, explains owner Nadine Hall: ‘Lisha will spend only a small amount of time with them in case she gets too friendly. Remember these are tigers after all.’ Daily Mail
  • Construction workers building a new law school in downtown San Diego unearthed a skull, tusk and foot bones of a Colombian mammoth that lived about 500,000 years ago. ‘It shows that the county was teeming with mammoths and that it had a savannah environment.... It was a lot wetter than it is today,’ said Pat Sena, a paleontologist at the San Diego Natural History Museum. San Diego Union-Tribune

-- Lindsay Barnett