Lions disappeared from the Karoo in the 19th century, but have now returned,thanks to a Sanparks project that aims to re-establish the predator-prey balance.(Image: Luke Harwood) MEDIA CONTACTS • Megan Taplin, Sanparksregional communications manager+27 83 650 8649 RELATED ARTICLES • Black rhinos return to Serengeti • 10-year plan to save Africa’s chimps • Wildlife poachers to be taken down • Call of the wild at Sabi Sand• SA gets new coastal conservancyJanine ErasmusEarlier in November 2010 a pride of eight lions was released into the Karoo National Park, marking the return of the free-ranging big cats to the area after an absence of 170 years.The four adults – two males and two females – and four cubs gained their freedom after a two-month stay in an enclosure in the park, where they adapted to their new environment.The 90 000ha Karoo National Park is managed by South African National Parks (Sanparks), the national parks authority. Sanparks introduced lions back into the park with the aim of re-establishing the large predator-based ecosystem that once existed.The lions will also boost tourism to the area and are expected to add some excitement to the usual atmosphere of tranquillity.According to Sanparks’ regional GM Lucius Moolman, the lions, as well as other activities such as 4×4 trails, will tempt visitors to extend their stay in the Karoo National Park from the usual one-night stopover to a two- or three-night holiday. Sanparks reports that lions were once widespread in the area, and that the last of the magnificent beasts was shot and killed at the nearby small town of Leeu-Gamka in 1842.Sanparks also suggests that the number of farm and river names based on the word “lion” is further evidence that the cats once roamed free across the land.The names of the area’s two main rivers, the Leeu and Gamka, are derived from the Afrikaans and ǀXam words respectively for lion. ǀXam is an extinct Khoisan language, also used for the South African national motto ǃke e: ǀxarra ǁke (diverse people unite).The new Karoo lions come from the Addo Elephant National Park in the Eastern Cape, where the predators were successfully introduced in 2003. Those animals, in turn, were taken from Kgalagadi Transfrontier Park stock and were selected for the Karoo because of their genetic similarity to the Cape lions of old, and because they are free of disease.Visitors need not fear for their safety – low-level electric fences now surround the rest camp, its reception area, swimming pool and camp site, and the popular fossil trail. A lion-proof fence has been installed around the entire perimeter of the park to prevent the predators from wandering into neighbouring farms.Tracking collars around the animals’ necks will allow Sanparks to monitor their movements closely and observe their choice of habitat and prey.Great plainsThe Karoo National Park is located in the Great Karoo, the vast arid region of South Africa that extends over an area of 400 000 square kilometres in the interior of the country. The Karoo proper, South Africa’s largest ecosystem, is sub-divided into the Little Karoo in the south and the Great Karoo in the north, which was at one time in the distant past covered by a glacier.The San Bushmen wandered the great plains for hundreds of years, along with herds of antelope, zebra and other large mammals, and it wasn’t until the beginning of the 19th century that Europeans ventured into the interior. Once the Westerners had taken over, sheep and cattle eventually replaced the wild animals, which led to a drastic depletion of grass cover.The Karoo was also the setting for violent clashes between the forces of the English and the Afrikaners during the second Anglo-Boer War of 1899 – 1902. Remnants of the conflict are still visible, mainly in the form of blockhouses scattered throughout the region.Today sheep farming is still the region’s primary economic driver, but tourism is on the rise.Diversity of wildlifeProclaimed in 1979, the Karoo National Park is situated on the N1 route between Cape Town and the interior, near the town of Beaufort West. Visitors travel to see not only the park’s spectacular scenery, but also the variety of creatures which have adapted to the harsh environment.Many of the animals found here today, such as the vulnerable Cape mountain zebra and the critically endangered black rhino, are those which were once driven out by farmers and have made their way back to their original habitats.The park boasts a diverse range of birdlife, such as the booted and black eagles, rock kestrel, and Namaqua sandgrouse. It’s also home to a rich variety of reptiles, including tortoises, chameleons, geckos, skinks, snakes and one species of monitor lizard.The Karoo lions will not go hungry, with some 1 500 gemsbok, 1 400 red hartebeest, 400 eland, 700 kudu and 600 ostrich resident in the park. Sanparks estimates that the park will currently be able to sustain up to 20 lions.Since 1987 the Karoo National Park has been the scene of the Quagga selective breeding project, which attempts to bring back the extinct quagga, a sub-species of the plains zebra, by selective breeding with plains zebra stock. Quaggas – unusual brownish, partly striped zebras – were wiped out by hunters during the 19th century, and the last mare died in 1883 at the Amsterdam Zoo.
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The Treasury Department on October 4 issued a report on its plans to change or repeal eight regulations identified as imposing undue burdens on U.S. taxpayers. The Treasury also announced that it’s review has already identified over 200 regulations that should be repealed. According to the Treasury Department, the repeal effort will begin in the fourth quarter of 2017.Reduce Burden“This is only the beginning of our efforts to reduce the burden of tax regulations,” said Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin. “Our tax code has been broken for too long, and this retrospective review … will ensure that we have a tax system that fosters economic growth.”Withdraw Proposed RegulationsIn its report, Treasury announced plans to withdraw proposed regulations under Code Sec. 2704 that limit valuation discounts. According to the report, the regulations would have made it difficult and costly for a family to transfer their business to the next generation.The Treasury also plans to withdraw proposed regulations under Code Sec. 103 that define “political subdivision.” The proposed regulations would have added enhanced standards to show a governmental purpose and government control in order to issue tax-exempt municipal bonds.Revoke 385 Documentation RulesThe Treasury also plans to revoke the current documentation regulations under Code Sec. 385 and replace them with streamlined documentation rules. The proposed streamlined documentation rules are expected to modify the requirements related to a reasonable expectation of ability to pay indebtedness and treatment of ordinary trade payables.However, the Treasury plans to retain the Code Sec. 385 distribution regulations pending enactment of tax reform because they are necessary to safeguard against earnings stripping. However, the Treasury is also considering ways to simplify the distribution regulations and ease compliance if tax reform does not eliminate the need for these regulations.Partial RevocationsThe Treasury is also considering partially revoking the following regulations:Code Sec. 7602 regulations. Under the proposed changes, attorneys who are private contractors would not be allowed to assist in IRS audits, including the interview process. A revised regulation would continue to allow outside subject-matter experts to participate in summons proceedings.Code Sec. 752 regulations. The temporary regulations relating to disguised sales would be revoked and the prior regulations reinstated. The Treasury would continue to study the issue and consider comments related to bottom-dollar guarantees.Other ChangesFinally, the Treasury is considering substantial revisions to the following:Code Sec. 337(d) regulations. The Treasury and the IRS will propose replacing the temporary regulations, which related to certain transfers of property to RICs and REITs, with revised regulations designed to narrow their application.Code Sec. 367 regulations. The Treasury plans to continue to implement these regulations, which eliminate the ability to transfer certain property to foreign corporations without immediate or future U.S. tax. However, the Treasury also plans to develop exceptions to the regulations.Code Sec. 987 regulations. The Treasury plans to substantially revise these regulations, which pertain to foreign currency translations and other foreign currency transactions. The IRS has already announced guidance allowing taxpayers to postpone the application of these rules. The Treasury plans changes to further simplify the regulation. In addition, the Treasury may consider more fundamental changes to address taxpayer concerns.Treasury Department News Release, TDNR SM-0172Treasury Second Report to the President on Identifying and Reducing Tax Regulatory Burdens Executive Order 13789 Login to read more tax news on CCH® AnswerConnect or CCH® Intelliconnect®.Not a subscriber? Sign up for a free trial or contact us for a representative.
Newcastle denied extra away tickets for Checkatrade Trophy Sunderland clashby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveNewcastle United have been denied extra away tickets for the U21 Checkatrade Trophy clash with Sunderland.The Magpies asked for an increase after the initial allocation of 2,800 for the third round tie at the 48,000-capacity Stadium of Light on January 8 sold out.However, after considering written submissions from Northumbria Police and other key stakeholders, the English Football League decided to turn down the request.An EFL statement said: “It has been determined that Newcastle United supporters will be allocated 2,800 tickets for their upcoming Checkatrade Trophy Round Three tie with Sunderland.”The EFL reviewed written representations made by Northumbria Police and other key stakeholders in relation to supporter safety following a request from Newcastle United for an increased provision, in line with competition rules, and a recommendation was made to maintain an allocation of 2,800, which is consistent with the Club’s previous visits to the Stadium of Light.”The EFL would like to thank Newcastle United for respecting the recommendation.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
COLUMBUS, OH – NOVEMBER 24: The Ohio State Marching Band performs the Script Ohio before the game against the Michigan Wolverines at Ohio Stadium on November 24, 2012 in Columbus, Ohio. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)Pretzels are a popular gameday snack nationwide, but a script Ohio pretzel? Now that is a delicacy.It’s also a reality for suiteholders at Ohio Stadium, starting this fall. According to ESPN’s Darren Rovell, a gigantic (and delicious-looking) script Ohio pretzel is now available at luxury suites at the horseshoe.Suiteholders at Ohio State this season can order this “Script O” pretzel. The dotted “I” is a stuffed buckeye! pic.twitter.com/luvCVmhNL5— Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell) August 23, 2016For those of you wondering what the dotted “i” is stuffed with, it’s a delicious combination of peanut butter and chocolate made to resemble a real-life buckeye. Yeah, it’s good.Just the sight of that pretzel is making our mouths water. If we were an OSU suiteholder, they would be a must-get for the team’s opening game.
APTN National NewsThis week’s political panel discusses Sisters in Spirit.
CARACAS, Venezuela — Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro is boosting the minimum wage again amid the country’s relentless battle against hyperinflation.Maduro presented his economic plans Monday at the start to his second disputed term, with increasing calls for him to give up power in the crisis-wracked country.Though rich in oil, Venezuela is enduring a historic crisis as citizens struggle to afford basic goods and masses flee the country.Maduro is raising the minimum wage by 300 per cent, bringing monthly salaries to roughly $6.50. It’s a step he has taken a dozen times in the last two years.Maduro says he also intends to dramatically boost oil production.The president is under heightened pressure from opposition politicians and foreign leaders urging him to step down and return Venezuela to democratic rule.The Associated Press
McNeil said that the work is taking place Monday – Friday, and is planned to conclude on September 28th.Motorists are advised to expect delays of up to 20 minutes in each direction while travelling on the Alaska Highway between Taylor and Dawson Creek while the maintenance is occurring. TAYLOR, B.C. – With the first week of the new school year also comes the need to get local highway infrastructure in shape for the winter months.Yellowhead Road & Bridge North Peace crews will begin the annual tradition of closing one lane of the Taylor Bridge during the overnight hours to conduct scheduled maintenance of the metal bridge deck on Tuesday evening.YRB North Peace Quality Manager Greg McNeil says that starting at 7:00 p.m., the bridge will be reduced to single-lane alternating traffic in both directions, with the closure running until 3:30 a.m.
Los Angeles: Actor Mandy Moore was honoured with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. The 34-year-old actor received the star in the presence of her ‘This Is Us’ castmates and her ‘A Walk to Remember’ co-star, Shane West recently. ‘This is Us’ creator, Dan Fogelman, shared a few sweet words about Moore, following which West took to the podium and surprised her with a picture of the two of them when they wrapped their beloved 2002 film. Director Adam Shankman was also present. Also Read – I have personal ambitions now: PriyankaCalling the film “wonderful experience”, West said the Nicholas Sparks adaptation gave him a “chance to fall for this fantastic woman”. “Mandy, you are an absolute gem, your smile is absolutely ridiculous – seriously, it’s ridiculous, and it lights up the room when you walk in – your energy is irresistible, and your heart is second to none. I couldn’t be more proud of you, I couldn’t be more happy for you. Love ya,” he said in the address. Moore later shared some photographs with West from the ceremony on Twitter. “Stars have always sort of been our thing. Thankful to @shanewest for his kind words on this very special day, one which I will never forget. It was a walk (of fame) to remember,” she captioned the post. From her ‘This Is Us’ family, Milo Ventimiglia, Sterling K Brown, Justin Hartley, Chrissy Metz and Susan Kelechi Watson were present.
Washington: Eyeing India’s multi-billion dollar fighter jet market, Boeing has offered to build a 21st century aerospace ecosystem in India for co-developing F/A-18 Super Hornet upgrades as part of the country’s advanced medium combat aircraft (AMCA) programme. Two major American fighter jets manufacturers – Boeing and Lockheed Martin – are in the race for the Indian fighter jet market. Lockheed Martin has offered to shift its entire F-16 manufacturing base from US to India. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from US “What we’re talking about is a complete ecosystem of capability it’s building up supply chain, it’s building up engineering capacity, technical mechanical capacity. It is bringing the build, not the kit, to India,” Marc Allen, president of Boeing International and a member of the Boeing Executive Council, told PTI. Last month, Allen was named senior vice president of Boeing and president of Embraer Partnership and Group Operations. Boeing has offered that future F/A-18 Super Hornet upgrades can be co-developed with India, maximising performance, affordability, indigenisation for decades. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential polls The McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet is a twin-engine, supersonic, all-weather, carrier-capable, multirole combat jet, designed as both a fighter and attack aircraft. As a result, Allen argued, the impact will be transformational – building a next gen warfighter in India and a 21st century aerospace ecosystem with Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and Mahindra along with Boeing industry’s partners (GE Aviation, GKN Aero, Northrop Grumman and Raytheon). “And that’s why the idea of being able to service, both the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force requirements together is so vital because it creates a volume that supports industrial development at a massive scale,” Allen said in response to a question. Boeing says that the ‘Make in India’ programme for the Super Hornet has been envisioned for aircraft made in India for India. The Super Hornet production line will exist in the US to meet the immediate needs of its American and international customers. India is to build an entirely new line, leveraging Boeing’s commercial and defence experience, Allen said. The Super Hornet is the airplane that fits the requirement of both the Indian Navy and Airforce, he asserted. Boeing says that the Super Hornet offering for India co-opts the expertise of a public-private partnership with HAL and Mahindra to make the F/A-18 Super Hornet in an advanced Factory-of-the-Future in India. The partnership, it asserts, will harness productivity opportunities in India to deliver more-for-less (more capability for less cost) to its Indian customers and worldwide. Noting that its current F/A-18 production involves 60,000 jobs and 800 suppliers in 44 US States, Boeing officials say that this can be replicated in India. This partnership will create jobs and industrial capacity in India and also helps Boeing stay globally competitive. The future production with Indian partners will involve maximising indigenous content and producing the F/A-18 in India thereby creating a 21st century aerospace ecosystem, Allen said as he refuted giving a direct answer to the question of minimum number of fighter jet orders it needs from India to develop that ecosystem. “We have not framed up our responses to the government’s request for information around a minimum order now, but what we’ve done is that show us your requirements and we’ll show you what’s possible inside your requirements. But certainly, the government recognises the programmatic constraints that the more it’s able invest in a broader program that can cover multiple services, the more capacity for industrial development it will get, he said. “We will shape our bid to the number. There’s less we can do at a lower number in terms of what’s Made in India. And to get to the full up ecosystem, the more the purchases, the more that can be done. It’s a sliding scale. And remember it’s also a sliding timescale,” he said. But at the same time, Allen said that Boeing is not waiting for the competition to begin building the ecosystem. Boeing, Allen said will continue to invest millions of dollars in supplier development, training, tooling and quality systems and skill development at its Indian suppliers. Allen said Boeing plans to expand its footprint in India from 3,000 engineers to 5,000 in the next couple of years. “We’re on our incredible trajectory of that growth. We’ve also opened up the Apache fuselage manufacturing operation. It’s a joint venture – Boeing and Tata that works out of Hyderabad,” he said.
Expecting mothers, take note. As smoking during pregnancy is linked with negative health outcomes, a team of researchers has found that smoking cessation during pregnancy may reduce the risk of pre-term birth. The findings, published in the JAMA Network Open journal, showed that the probability of pre-term birth decreased with earlier smoking cessation in pregnancy – up to a 20 per cent relative decrease if cessation occurred at the beginning of pregnancy. Also Read – An income drop can harm brain”Of concern, though, given the substantial benefits of smoking cessation during pregnancy is that the proportion of pre-pregnancy smokers who quit smoking during pregnancy has remained essentially stagnant since 2011,” said lead author Samir Soneji from The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice in the US. For the study, the researchers conducted a cross-sectional study of more than 25 million pregnant women who gave birth to live neonates during a six-year period – measuring their smoking frequency three months prior to pregnancy and for each trimester during pregnancy. Also Read – Shallu Jindal honoured with Mahatma AwardThe negative health impacts of cigarette smoking during pregnancy, including low birth weight, delayed intrauterine development, pre-term birth, infant mortality, and long-term developmental delays, are well known. But the good news is that the proportion of women who start their pregnancy as smokers has been declining in recent years, the researchers said. However, the study also found that only about 25 per cent of women who smoked prior to pregnancy were able to quit throughout their pregnancy, and approximately 50 per cent of women who smoked during their pregnancy did so with high frequency (more than 10 cigarettes per day). The researcher plans to look at quit rates and smoking intensity and their impact on the risk of infant mortality. “Thankfully most premature babies end up doing well,” he said. “But premature birth is strongly linked to infant mortality. If we determine quitting, and quitting early, reduces the risk of infant mortality, then that may speak to mothers even more saliently about the importance of smoking cessation,” he added.