Saturday, January 31, 2015

Marine debris, plush pets, radiopaedia and vet taking own xrays

Next time you head for the beach, Take Three.

I recently attended a wedding celebration in a beach town. On the day of the wedding I woke up and went for a walk on the beach, hoping to see some local wildlife. I did, but not in the circumstances I’d have liked. A beautiful sea bird was on the shore crying out, limping, with some sort of marine debris around its leg. I attempted to catch the bird but couldn’t. Certainly it was in pain.

It was a very sad reminder of the harm humans can cause. But there is something we can all do about it. If everyone took something from the beach – plastics, fishing line, general rubbish – every time we went, we’d reduce the impact of marine debris on wildlife. Not eliminate it, but reduce it. And that’s a worthy goal.

In fact, the “Take 3” campaign, supported by the Taronga Conservation Society, encourages people to take at least 3 things from the beach and dispose of them appropriately. Check out

In other news, my friend Steve pointed out this website via which you can commission a plush version of your best friend. The photos are impressive. People have commissioned dogs, cats, guinea pigs, rats, a fish (how great is the name “Swimmington” for a fish?), birds, horses – just about any species. Check out the gallery.

Have you ever heard of Radiopaedia? What a fantastic resource. You can read more about it (and see some incredible x-rays) here. I'm signing up. 

On the topic of x-rays, a UK veterinarian was conditionally discharged and fined after advising an injured colleague to radiograph her own foot. Read the article here.