Monday, October 24, 2011

World's oldest animals.

ther 6:4. New World vs. Old World Animal Species
The Jaredites, who lived in the region before the Nephites and Lamanites, brought with them on their ocean-going barges “food for their flocks and herds, and whatsoever beast or animal or fowl that they should carry with them” (Ether 6:4). Yet the animal species known from the New World are not the same as those known in the Old World from which the Jaredites supposedly came.
Noah Animals Ark MormonIt is possible that the Jaredites brought animals on board the barges only for food during their lengthy ocean voyage. We do not know if any of them survived to arrive in the New World, nor do we know if they were domestic fowl or a mixture of domestic and wild fowl. The Book of Mormon does not claim that American animal species descended from animals imported by the Jaredites or any other people, and we should be careful not to read this into the text. Once settled in the New World, the Jaredites had a number of domesticated animals (Ether 9:18-19; see also Ether 9:3110:12), but we cannot be sure which of these, if any, came on the barges and which were domesticated from native American stock.
If the Jaredites imported animals, they could have been destroyed by predators after the people turned from agriculture and husbandry to a war of extermination. Imported animal species do not always survive in their new environment, particularly when they become feral, as did Jaredite animals during a severe drought (Ether 9:28-35). Several nineteenth-century attempts to introduce a European quail species into the United States failed.[i] And though scientists believe that camels originated in the New World, camels imported into the United States and Canada during the nineteenth century and later turned out into the wild ultimately died out.[ii]
The Nephite record occasionally mentions “beasts” that were hunted for food (Enos 1:3;3 Nephi 4:2) and “beasts of prey,”[iii]but of the latter only the wolf is actually named (Alma 5:59), though there are also said to have been vultures (Alma 2:38). Abinadi mentioned “beasts” that could tread down stalks in the field, which suggests herd animals of some sort, but whether domesticated or wild is uncertain (Mosiah 12:11). We cannot know if any of these descended from animals brought to the New World by the Jaredites.

The History of Mormonism

The history of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormon Church) is interesting because so much has happened within the two centuries.The following is a simple way of introducing the basic events of Mormon Church history.
The First Vision
Joseph Smith First Vision MormonThis was the beginning of Christ’s Church in this dispensation. Mormons believe Christ’s Church along with the priesthood had been taken from the earth following His death, resurrection, and ascension into heaven. The time when the power of the priesthood and the truth of the gospel was no on the earth is known as the Great Apostasy. In 1820, Joseph Smith, Jr., who later became the first president and Mormonprophet, was concerned about religion and prayed to God to know what to do. He saw Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, who told him not to join any of the various sects of the day. This momentous event began a series of divine instruction and marked the beginning of the return of Christ’s Church, which today is known as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (the Mormon Church) to the earth.
Establishing Foundations of the Church
From the time of the First Vision to 1830, Joseph Smith received numerous revelations that showed him how to establish Christ’s Church correctly. Joseph Smith received and translated the Book of Mormon, learned how to properly perform baptisms, was directed to restore the priesthood through divine authority and power, and officially organized the Mormon Church. In addition, the first Mormon missionaries were sent to spread this exciting Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Kingdom in Kirtland, Ohio
In 1831, Joseph Smith arrived in Kirtland, Ohio. This was now the official headquarters of the Church. The saints began construction on the Kirtland temple, the first temple in this dispensation. Joseph Smith translated the Bible, and arranged for the publication of more than seventy revelations about the true Church of Christ.
Zion in Missouri
During the time that many saints were in Ohio, a few were commanded by the Lord to go to Jackson County, Missouri, the place revealed as being the New Jerusalem or Zion, and establish a settlement. Starting in 1833 the saints were heavily persecuted by their neighbors. Mobs pushed them from their homes and businesses. The Prophet Joseph Smith and other Church leaders were put in jail, and there were numerous confrontations between the saints and their neighbors.
In 1839, the saints escaped from the mobs of Missouri and traveled to Illinois. They worked hard to drain the swampy land and build a city. Within four years the city of Nauvoo rivaled Illinois’ largest city, Chicago. Joseph Smith received revelations on temple work, such as the Mormon temple endowment, and the saints began work on the temple. Joseph Smith also received the revelations now found in the Pearl of Great Price, which is a book of the Mormon scripture. On June 27, 1844 the women’s Relief Society was formed. While the saints were in Nauvoo, Joseph and his brother Hyrum were killed by a mob.
Crossing the Plains
Handcart Pioneers Salt Lake MormonAfter the death of their prophet Joseph Smith, the saints were again persecuted, and leaders began discussing moving west. In February of 1846 many of the saints were forced from their homes and began the journey to Utah. While in Iowa, the U.S. government requested that the Church provide five hundred men for the Mexican War. Over two decades, nearly sixty-two thousand saints crossed the plains to Utah.
Establishing Utah
In the late summer of 1847, the first group of saints arrived in the Salt Lake valley. The group had nearly two thousand people. A late crop was planted and settlements were immediately started. The first year was hard, but by 1849 many small settlements were established and Salt Lake City was growing. Brigham Young asked members to colonize different parts of the West, including Utah, Southern Idaho, Arizona, Wyoming, Nevada and California.
Trials and Testing
After Brigham Young died, persecution again plagued the saints. Much of the persecution was focused on the Church’s practice of polygamy and was based on false rumors that the saints were planning an insurrection. Many missionaries of the Church were persecuted while they preached in other parts of the United States. This was also a time of growth in temple work and missionary work. In 1890, polygamy was officially stopped as a practice in the Church.
The Expanding Church
This period covers 1901–1970, which spans the time of four presidents of the Church; Joseph F. Smith, Heber J. Grant, George Albert Smith, and David O. McKay. Nine temples were built, and membership grew from 300,000 members and fifty stakes in 1901 to 2,800,000 and five hundred stakes in 1970.
The Worldwide Church
This part of the Church’s history covers 1971–1985. The Church saw amazing growth outside of the U.S. The first stakes were established in Asia and Africa. More missionaries were sent out to preach and Missionary Training Centers were set up in Brazil, Chile, Mexico, New Zealand, and Japan. The priesthood was extended to all worthy males of the Church in 1978.
The Present Day Church
The Church is now allowed to preach and build temples in many countries that have previously been closed, such as the German Democratic Republic, Russia, Albania, Romania, Estonia, Hungary, the Ukraine, Latvia and many others. Members living outside of the U.S. finally outnumber members living in the U.S. Temples are being built in as many places as possible to make the ordinances available to all members, and membership continues to grow.

World's oldest animals

Jonathan the tortoise and Mischief the cat may have hit the headlines for their longevity, but there are plenty of other creatures giving them a run for their money in the age stakes.

World's oldest cat celebrates 100th birthday
Image 1 of 2
Mischief, the world's oldest cat, is 100 Photo: SWNS.COM
Rabbit: Fourteen-year-old George, from Tewksbury, Massachusetts in the US, was recognised as the oldest rabbit in the world by the Guinness Book of World Records earlier this year.
The average life expectancy of a rabbit is six to eight years, making George an estimated 160 years old in human terms. His owners met at college and fed their pet Doritos.
Cat: Spike, a ginger and white tom, died two months after his 31st birthday in July 2001 - making him the world's oldest cat.
He was bought for two shillings and sixpence in London's Brick Lane market in 1970 and nearly died at the age of 19 when he was attacked by a dog.
Spike's owners, from Bridport in Devon, used to put aloe vera gel into his cat food.
    Spider: The world's oldest spider is thought to have been a female from the Theraphosidae family, which lived up to the age of 28. The bird-eating arachnid was captured in Mexico in 1935.
    Dog: At 29, black Labrador Bella was thought to be the oldest dog in the UK until her death in September.
    She was bought from an RSPCA sanctuary 26 years ago and lived out her long life in Derbyshire.
    Guinea Pig: The average age for a guinea pig may be between five and eight years, but the official record is 14 years and 10 and a half months.
    Monkey: Bueno, a black spider monkey, died in 2005 at the age of 53 and was thought to be the world's eldest monkey.
    She lived a "stress-free" life at the Japan Monkey Centre in Aichi, 150 miles west of Tokyo. The average black spider monkey lives for between 30 and 33 years.
    Goldfish: Tish beat all the records by living to a ripe old age of 43 after being won a funfair in Doncaster in 1956.
    As he aged, his scales faded from orange to silver but his owner Hilda Hand said the key to his longevity was not feeding him too much and placing him in the sun every now and then.
    Clam: An ocean qahog clam dredged up off the coast of Iceland last year is thought to have been around 410 years old


    Bears are large mammals in the order Carnivora. Although there are only eight living species of bear, they are widespread, appearing in a wide variety of habitats throughout the Northern Hemisphere and partially in the Southern Hemisphere. The IUCN lists six bear species asvulnerable or endangered, and even "least concern" species such as the brown bear are at risk of extirpation in certain countries. The poaching and international trade of these most threatened populations is prohibited, but still ongoing.
    Because of their imposing size, elusiveness, sharp senses, and ferocity, bears are among the most favoured big game animals. Where they are frequently hunted, bears become purely nocturnal. They are hard to kill by fair hunting, as they generally live in dense forests or thick brush. They are however easy to trap.[1]
    Bears have the ability to dramatically lower their heart rate when hibernating, but will readily do so if injured as a defense mechanism against blood loss. Hunters carrying firearms tend to favour calibres large enough to not just inflict as much tissue and bone damage as possible, but to leave a gaping wound that will hemorrhage.[2]
    Once a general area is identified, a bear hunt usually begins by looking for claw marks on trees.[3] Scores in bear hunts are based on the width and length of the skull.[4]

    [edit]Brown bear

    The brown bear (Ursus arctos) is a large species of bear distributed throughout the Northern hemisphere.
    Brown bear tracks have much deeper claw indentations than those made by black bears.[5]

    [edit]Regional variations

    The Grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis) is a North American subspecies. Any brown bear populations inhabiting the interior of Alaska,British ColumbiaAlberta, the Yukon, and Northwest Territories are considered to be grizzlies. Inland grizzlies tend to be much smaller than their coastal brown relatives. Grizzly bear seasons are open in the spring or autumn depending on local regulations and jurisdictions. In the very small area they encompass in the lower 48 states, grizzlies are considered a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. Grizzly bears can still be sport hunted in British Columbia (B.C.), Northwest Territories, Yukon, and Alaska.[6]
    The Syrian brown bear (Ursus arctos syriacus) is a small and pale furred bear subspecies found in TurkeySyriaIran, and the Caucasusmountains of Russia, Georgia and Azerbaijan. These bears are hunted mostly in the Caucasus by stalking, where the harsh terrain offers a greater challenge to the hunter.[7]
    The Eurasian brown bear (Ursus arctos arctos) is most widespread subspecies of brown bear in the old world. It is mainly found today in Russia, Romania and the former Yugoslavia, with smaller numbers being found in Norway, Sweden, Finland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Hungary, Albania, Bulgaria and Greece, and remnant populations are found in Spain, France and Italy. The non-endangered European population of Eurasian bear is mostly hunted in the North-Western part of Russia, while the Asian population is hunted in the Ural mountains and in the Eastern Siberia. Eurasian browns are usually hunted by baiting during the spring or autumn, by chance encounter while hunting other. It is sometimes hunted by breaking into their dens during hibernation.[7]
    The Amur brown bear (Ursus arctos lasiotus) is smaller and darker than the Kamchatka brown bear, with a differently shaped skull and much larger teeth. Its range encompasses far eastern Russia, Northeastern Heilongjiang and Hokkaidō. It is usually hunted in the Khabarovsk andPrimorsk regions by stalking.[7]
    The Kamchatka brown bear (Ursus arctos beringianus) is a large subspecies found in far eastern Siberia. It is similar to the Kodiak bear, though darker in colour. These bears are usually hunted in the Shantar Islands (Okhotsk) and Magadan. In the Spring, bears are hunted in coastal areas where they gather for food. During the Autumn hunting season, bears are hunted while feeding on salmon or on wild berries in the surrounding tundra. The average size of the bears taken is around 7.5-8.0 ft in Magadan and Okhotsk and 8.0-8.5 ft. in Kamchatka.[7]
    The Siberian brown bear (Ursus arctos collaris) is larger than the Eurasian brown bear, with denser bones and a slightly larger and heavier skull, but smaller than the Kamchatka brown bear. It’s fur is considered to be among the most luxuriant, though it is also said to be equal in aggression to an American grizzly. It lives east of the Yenisey River in most of Siberia (though absent in the habitats of the Kamchatka and Amur brown bears.) It is also found in northern Mongolia, far northern Xinjiang, and extreme eastern Kazakhstan. They are usually hunted in the Krasnoyarsk RegionIrkutsk Region and Yakutia in late August and early June. These hunts usually take place in rugged and heavily forested terrain, in the foothills of the mountains, or along the shorelines, where the forest is less dense.[7]

    [edit]North American black bear

    The American Black Bear (Ursus americanus) is the most common bear species native to North America. It lives throughout much of the continent, from northern Canada and Alaska south into Mexico, from the Atlantic to the Pacific.
    The largest black bears are usually taken beginning in late May and continuing on through most of June during the breeding season. Springtime is the preferred choice of black bear hunters, when their coats are at their thickest. Heavily timbered forests near agricultural lands often sustain large densities of black bears. They can also be found in close proximity to wheat crops such as oats.[3]



    A bear's fur consists of two types of hair; the underfur and the outer guard hairs. The underfur which is soft and dense, serves primarily as an insulator. The outer guard hairs are much thicker, longer and coarser, and while they also insulate, they primarily serve to protect the body from dirt, debris and insects, as well as to repel water.[8]
    Black bear fur was considered more valuable in the American West than that of grizzly,[1] and was once used to fabricate bearskins, which are tall fur caps worn as part of the ceremonial uniform of several regiments in various armies. The Inuit of Greenland use polar bear fur for clothing in areas where caribou and seals are scarce. Polar bear hide is wiry and bulky making it difficult to turn into comfortable winter garments.[9]


    In the Middle Ages, the eating of bear meat was considered more a symbolic than culinary act. The paws and thigh of the bear were considered the best parts.[10] Polar bears are a primary source of food for Inuit.[citation needed] Polar bear meat is usually baked or boiled in a soup or stew. It is never eaten raw. Polar bear liver is inedible, as it contains large amounts of vitamin A and is highly toxic.[9] Bear meat has tended to receive mixed reviews. Its greasy, coarse texture and sweet flavor requires a certain kind of palate. Bear meat should be thoroughly cooked as it can carry a parasitic infection known as trichinella, a potentially dangerous disease to humans.[3] Flavour is dependent on the age and diet of the bear. The best meat apparently comes from two year old bears which eat more berries than fish.[4]


    Bear fat has historically been used as cooking oil by both American settlers and Native Americans.[11] Bear fat can also be used as lamp fuel, with 40-50 grams being sufficient to last up to an hour.[10] Some Native American tribes used bear fat as a form of medicine. Covering oneself in bear fat was a way of protecting oneself from the cold.[4] It has also been said that bear fat, turned into bear grease, can predict weather.

    [edit]Gall bladder

    According to Traditional Chinese medicine, Urso-deoxycholic acid [UDCA] taken from bear gall bladder, fresh bile liquid, or in dried crystal form, may work for rheumatism, poor eyesight and gall stones. Useful bile is said to be produced by all species of bear except the Giant panda.[12] There is some speculation that Stem cell research could provide an invitro method of generating large quantities of an identical cell mass.


    "En uheldig bjørnejakt" (An Unfortunate Bear Hunt) by Theodor Kittelsen


    Some Gothic and Norse tribes made the hunting of bears with nothing but a knife a rite of passagefor young men.[10]
    In Europe of the late Middle Ages, the eating of bear meat was an aristocratic activity. In Tyrol andPiedmont, the village communities had to hand in a set number of bear paws to the local lord every year.[10]

    [edit]North America

    Traditionally, Kodiak Natives (Alutiiqs) hunted bears for food, clothing and tools. Arrows, spears, and a great deal of courage were required hunting equipment. Bear heads were usually left in the field as a sign of respect to the spirit of the bears. Kodiak bears were commercially hunted throughout the 1800s with the price paid for a bear hide being comparable to that paid for a beaver or river otter pelt (about US$10).[13]
    In 1702, bear pelts were considered equal in worth to those of American beavers. 16,512 furs were sent to the French port of Rochelle in 1743, while 8,340 were exported from the east coast of the United States in 1763.[4] In the 19th century, as the settlers began increasingly moving west in pursuit of more land for ranching, bears were becoming increasingly more hunted as threats to livestock. In 1818, a “War of Extermination” against wolves and bears was declared in Ohio.[14] Bear pelts were usually sold for 2-20 dollars in the 1860s.[4] Between 1850 and 1920 grizzly bears were eliminated from 95% of their original range, with extirpation occurring earliest on the Great Plains and later in remote mountainous areas. Unregulated killing of bears continued in most places through the 1950s and resulted in a further 52% decline in their range between 1920 and 1970. Grizzly bears managed to survive this last period of hunting only in remote wilderness areas larger than 26,000 km2 (10,000 mi2). Overall, grizzly bears were eliminated from 98% of their original range in the contiguous United States during a 100-year period.[15]
    Prior to Anglo-American colonization in 1820, black bears were widely distributed throughout all major eco-regions in Texas. The supply of both meat and fat lasted about a century after the first Anglo-American settlers arrived. However, after their value for grease and food had decreased, black bears continued to be pursued and killed for their trophy value. Black bears in East Texas were seriously reduced to scattered remnant populations or eliminated altogether in many areas largely as a result of indiscriminate and unregulated hunting by the time the first organized survey of mammals took place from 1890 to 1904.[11] The last native East Texas black bear was believed to have been killed in the 1950s.[16]


    [edit]Bear spear

    The bear spear was a medieval type of spear used in hunting for bears and other large animals. The sharpened head of a bear spear was enlarged and usually had a form of a bay leaf. Right under the head there was a short crosspiece that helped fixing the spear in the body of an animal. Often it was placed against the ground on its rear point, which make it easier to hold the weight of attacking beast.


    The usage of knives was a common method of bear killing for the Norse people, who viewed the act of killing a bear on a one to one basis with solely a knife a rite of passage for young men. American frontiersmen and modern hunters still carry knives in case their firearms fail, or when the bear has been immobilized.[4]


    Often, bears will be attracted through the use of baits such as a rotting carcass, bakery, or sweets, or even jellies. A hunter will then watch one or more baits from a stand, armed with a rifle, bow or shotgun. Many states within the US, have changed their hunting regulations andbanned baiting as a form of bear hunting.[17][18]


    In the Russian Far East, a lasso-like rope loop is hung across a path which bears are known to frequent; its end is tied to a tree. The bear passes through the rope as it walks by and the lasso tightens around its body as it continues to move. Eventually the bear becomes so entangled within the rope that it can no longer move. After a few days, the hunter arrives to finish off the immobilised animal.[19]


    Bears seem to have very short attention spans and if they are responding to a call and the sound stops, generally the bear will cease following the sound. Two callers are often better than one when calling bear as they can keep up continuous calling for longer periods of time. Bears can hear a call for distances up to a mile and often will take their time in responding.[20]

    [edit]Hunting dogs

    A medieval bear hunt with dogs
    In his book Hunting the Grisly and Other SketchesTheodore Roosevelt wrote that though smallterriers could be used against bears, they usually only worked against bears which had never had the experience of being hunted before. The terriers would irritate and distract the bear with their yapping as the hunter creeped unnoticed. However, once the bear would notice the hunter, it would immediately ignore the dogs and retreat.[1]
    He did however mention big half-breed hounds sometimes used in the Alleghanies of West Virginia, which were trained not merely to nip a bear, but to grip the grizzly by the hock as it ran. A pack of such dogs, trained to dash straight at the head and hold on like a vice, though unable to kill the bear, would hold it in place long enough for the hunter to finish it.[1]
    However, bears were dangerous quarry for the dogs to tackle, and pack losses were not uncommon. Though a large number of dogs could kill sick or very young bears, they could not do so with healthy adults.[1]
    Today, it is more common for hunters to use dogs to track a bear. Often riding in the back of a truck to catch a scent, the dog will start to bark when there is a track. Dogs will then follow the track showing the way for the hunters.[21]

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