In today's round-up we bring you sad news about the humpback whale spotted in The Thames, an interesting study looking into the benefits of canine companions, and plans to create a new forest in Northumberland.
Owning a dog may be the secret to living longer
It seems we have even more reasons to be grateful for man’s best friend, as a study has revealed canine companions promote better health in their owners.
Researchers have found owning a dog can lead to improved cardiovascular outcomes, especially for heart attack and stroke survivors who live alone.
The study combined patient data of 3.8 million people from multiple studies, including England.
Scientists at the American Heart Association said dog owners experienced a 24% reduced risk of mortality and are 65% less likely to die after a heart attack.
A separate recent study carried out by Sweden’s Uppsala University also highlighted the health benefits of dog ownership. It found a 33% reduced risk of death for heart attack patients living alone after being released from hospital if they owned a dog.
‘These two studies provide good, quality data indicating dog ownership is associated with reduced cardiac and all-cause mortality,’ said Glenn N Levine of the American Heart Association.
Humpback whale in River Thames dies
A 30ft humpback whale spotted in the River Thames over the weekend has died.
Volunteers from British Divers Marine Life Rescue said they saw the whale lying motionless at Greenhithe yesterday (Tuesday) afternoon.
The Port of London Authority will attempt to recover the animal’s body for examinations by whale experts.
It was believed is believed to be the first of its kind in the River Thames for 10 years.
On this day…
On 9 October, 1986, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Phantom of the Opera premiered in London, starring Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman. The world-renowned musical continues to captivate audiences at Her Majesty’s Theatre in London’s West End after thousands of performances.
Plans to plant one million trees in Northumberland
The planting of a new forest in Northumberland will begin next year.
Great Northumberland Forest will encompass three new areas of woodland, covering 500 hectares with up to a million new trees by 2024.
The planting scheme is among the government’s efforts to cut net carbon emissions to zero by 2050.
Other measures include providing £1 billion to boost the production of green technologies in the car industry, updating building regulations so that new homes have fewer carbon emissions and building a fusion power plant.
Study finds badger culls risk increased spread of TB
New research has suggested culling badgers drives them further afield, dispersing tuberculosis over a larger area.
Rosie Woodroffe, from the Zoological Society of London, said the results backed the scientific consensus that culling could potentially accelerate infection.
‘There is an expectation from some farmers that the cull will be a silver bullet and it will make everything much better. But these results explain why those expectations are so misplaced,’ Proffessor Woodroffe told BBC News.
And finally… A curious cat
A tabby cat from Helensburgh, Scotland, has gained thousands of followers thanks to his solo escapades on buses and trains.
The friendly feline, named George, has also been spotted in numerous homes in his neighbourhood as well as local businesses.
His owners, Eliazbeth and Dennis Royal, have set up a Facebook page to follow his movements, with fans tracking his adventures with pictures and videos.
We wonder where his next trip will take him…
The Keswick Mountain Rescue Team came to the aid of a Lake District walker and his exhausted canine companion.
Listening to birdsong, rustling leaves and a gentle stream can positively affect our wellbeing, a Natural Trust study has found.
It took two and a half hours for Robert Osborne, from Dumfriesshire, to drag three-week-old Trouble to safety after the