wildlife, biodiversity, NYC, Flaco the owl, bird safety, legislation
Photo credit: © Bianca Otero/ZUMA Press Wire

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Flaco the Owl’s Death Renews Push for Laws to Protect Birds (Maria)

The author writes, “The death of Flaco, a Eurasian eagle-owl that captivated New Yorkers after escaping from a zoo last year, has sparked calls to combat bird [and building] strikes. Former Central Park Zoo resident Flaco is among an estimated one billion birds that die in the US every year from skyscraper and building collisions. … In the wake of Flaco’s death, New York lawmakers renewed a push for legislation protecting birds. The Bird Safe Building Act, which has been renamed [the] FLACO Act, would require all new or altered state buildings to use designs and materials that reduce such collisions. The measure, introduced last year, would have to pass through the state Senate before garnering the signature of the governor to become law. Buildings are particularly dangerous for migratory birds, as most of them fly by night and are often attracted to artificial light, like office buildings.”

Trump Found To Have Fraudulently Boosted Scots Homes Value by up to £200M (DonkeyHotey)

From The Herald: “Donald Trump, his companies and some executives have been found to have fraudulently inflated the valuations of non-existent Scottish golf club properties by up to £200m (~$252 million) as part of a scheme to dupe banks and others and borrow more at lower rates, it can be revealed. It comes as it emerged the Aberdeen club’s operating company has run at a deficit since it opened in 2012, and has amassed total losses in the ensuing 11 years of £13.025m (~$16.44 million).”

Laugh Riot (Gerry)

From The New York Review of Books: “To understand Trump’s continuing hold over his fans, we have to ask: Why do they find him so funny?”

Holocaust Education Bill Fails in Washington State After Debate Over Jewish Refugees, Genocide and the Gaza War (Reader Steve)

From the Jewish Telegraphic Agency: “A bill to mandate Holocaust education in Washington state’s middle and high schools died last week after debate over whether an amendment alluded to Israel’s war with Hamas. H.B. 2037, introduced by a Republican state representative, would have built on a 2019 state law that suggested but did not mandate teaching the Holocaust in public schools. The bill passed the House unanimously in Olympia but failed to advance out of a Senate education committee after Democrats added language that would require teaching about the experiences of ‘diasporic communities with lived experiences of surviving, being made refugee by, or otherwise being directly impacted by genocide.’”

Sixth Person Charged With Spying for Russia in UK (Mili)

The author writes, “A sixth person has been charged with being part of a suspected Russian spy ring operating in the UK. Tihomir Ivanov Ivanchev, a 38-year-old Bulgarian national, from Acton, west London, was arrested earlier this month and will appear in court on Wednesday. He is accused of ‘conspiring to collect information intended to be directly or indirectly useful to an enemy.’ Five other Bulgarian nationals are due to go on trial in October after being charged with the same offense.”

Indonesia Revives $10.5B Jakarta Sea Wall Plan (Reader Jim)

From the Bangkok Post: “Indonesia is reviving plans to construct a giant sea wall in the latest of a series of measures to prevent its capital city Jakarta from sinking at a faster rate. The project will require three phases of construction extending past 2040 with the first two stages requiring 164 trillion rupiah ($10.5 billion) in funding.”

How To Look at Art — And Really See It (Laura)

The author writes, “Art is for everyone. Here’s how to approach your next trip to a gallery or museum.”

Abraham Lincoln Pardoned Joe Biden’s Great-Great-Grandfather, 160-Year-Old Records Reveal (Al)

The author writes, “Abraham Lincoln pardoned Joe Biden’s great-great-grandfather 160 years ago, according to the Washington Post’s David J. Gerleman. Gerleman, a historian at George Mason University, discovered the connection between the two presidents in a 22-page document at the National Archives. Biden’s family tree has long been public knowledge — but until now, no one seems to have linked his great-great-grandfather Moses J. Robinette with the nation’s 16th president.”


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