September 17, 2006

sep 06 - 02

[020906] ST Life! feature by Calvin Low on Pearl Bank Apartments by architect Tan Cheng Siong:

Copy of 01 Copy of 02

Pearl Bank Apartments (more pics here) in Outram reminds e cat of e traditional Hakka 土樓/圓屋 tu lou/yuan wu dwellings that it first came across in China stamps.

amazing how e units interlock:


quote from article: An architect who lived in one such unit for a few years confided that he could not figure out which neighbours he shared party walls & floors with.

[040906] just as Pig-Pig was telling Cat-cat that she had kept its dinner in e fridge, Cat-cat found something that didn't need heating up:


one of e resident non-lab rats of Biopolis. hour-plus later would spot a fresher one running in e Marine Parade Road longkang, & e following night another one crossing e road in Biopolis. some are bold enough to run around in daytime.

e cat has been up to e tips of its ears & whiskers in work preparing for its annual PhD supervisory committee meeting, & has not been stepping out of its workplace to hunt for lunch or dinner. no wonder e owners of Biopolis have resorted to hiring pest control to set up cat-snack traps among e plants in Biopolis. e cat checks on one of them every time it walks past Infuzi restaurant in Chromos building, but no luck for e past couple of months.

[070906] CNA article:

No more animals from the Arctic: S'pore Zoo

SINGAPORE: The Singapore Zoo will no longer import animals from the Arctic, following concerns raised by an animal welfare group about the zoo's resident polar bears, Sheba and her son Inuku.

In a media statement on Wednesday, the Animal Research and Education Society (Acres) said it has raised "serious welfare concerns" over the two bears after a four-month undercover operation. The findings were presented to the zoo in June.

In the investigation, Acres found that the bears exhibited severe signs of heat stress, were highly inactive and displayed "abnormal stereotypic" manners in their swimming or pacing during their active periods.

The last two behaviours are psychological indicators that the bears are not coping well with their environment, it said. "There is no doubt that polar bears are poor candidates for captivity. They are extremely wide-ranging, highly intelligent, cold weather carnivores, so they are extremely problematic when housed in captivity," said Acres.

In response to queries, the Singapore Zoo confirmed that it will not bring in anymore Arctic animals. This is because it aims to be a "rainforest zoo", focusing on tropical rainforest animals. It also reiterated that the bears are housed in good conditions, citing the birth of Inuka - the first polar bear born in the tropics - as evidence.

However, as part of an "animal exchange programme", the 16-year-old Inuka will soon be heading for cooler climates.

Then, the zoo's executive director Fanny Lai said that this animal exchange was part of efforts to "contribute to the worldwide captive gene pool and help propagate the species". - TODAY

*YAY* =)) years ago when e cat spent long hours in e zoo over several months tracking & observing a bunch of free-ranging monkeys for this project, it spent quite a bit of time sitting by e polar bear enclosure while watching e monkeys hang around e trees directly above.

how does it feel to be a polar bear spending your life almost equidistant from either pole? might as well call yourself an equator bear, since you're greenish with algae growing in your fur (which had to be bleached off with peroxide) unlike your white 'truly polar' counterparts, which is lousy for blending into e snow no matter how much it might help with camouflage in a tropical evergreen forest? & how does it feel to spend your days in an enclosure when you are built to wander hundreds of miles & cover a range far bigger than e island of Singapore (125,100km2 ± 11,800; n = 93)? & how does it feel to sniff e scent of your favourite snack wafting over from e sealions' (closest thing to seals available here) enclosure, so near yet so far? =|

[080906] 4th annual PhD supervisory committee meeting - cleared =))

somehow ended up talking about XDR (extensively drug resistant) TB, even though e cat's research has zilch to do with it =P excerpts from a CDC report:

During the 1990s, multidrug-resistant (MDR) tuberculosis (TB), defined as resistance to at least isoniazid and rifampin, emerged as a threat to TB control, both in the United States and worldwide. MDR TB treatment requires the use of second-line drugs (SLDs) that are less effective, more toxic, and costlier than first-line isoniazid- and rifampin-based regimens....

While assisting MDR TB treatment programs worldwide, the committee encountered reports of multiple cases of TB with resistance to virtually all SLDs....

This report summarizes the results of that survey, which determined that, during 2000--2004, of 17,690 TB isolates, 20% were MDR and 2% were XDR. In addition, population-based data on drug susceptibility of TB isolates were obtained from the United States (for 1993--2004), Latvia (for 2000--2002), and South Korea (for 2004), where 4%, 19%, and 15% of MDR TB cases, respectively, were XDR....

XDR TB has emerged worldwide as a threat to public health and TB control, raising concerns of a future epidemic of virtually untreatable TB. New anti-TB drug regimens, better diagnostic tests, and international standards for SLD-susceptibility testing are needed for effective detection and treatment of drug-resistant TB.

[090906] newspaper supermarket advert:


no wonder e brand name sounded so 'familiar' =P quite apt anyway.

[ filed under: 9_lives_2006 + thewonderingstraycat + architecture1 + nature1 ]

No comments: