Escaped emu remains on the loose in North Carolina

If you happen to find yourself in central North Carolina and an unidentifiable animal enters your field of vision, it could be an emu. For three weeks now, an elusive emu has been evading capture in a 12-mile area between Orange County and Chatham County, NC. The bird weighs 100 pounds, stands 5 feet tall and is native to Australia. Though it has been spotted at least five times since June 26, wildlife officials have been unable to capture it—it can run up to 30 miles an hour– and the owners of the flightless bird have not yet been identified. 

Wildlife officials are warning citizens not to approach the emu, because it can be dangerous if scared or provoked. Anyone who spots the runaway should call animal services or the authorities. 

Governor Northam to create new Office of Outdoor Recreation

Virginia Governor Northam has announced the creation of a new Office of Outdoor Recreation. The office will lead efforts to promote the outdoor recreation industry in the state and work on attracting new outdoor businesses. According to a press release issued by Governor Northam’s office, the outdoor recreation industry contributes $22 billion each year to the Virginia economy and employs more than 197,000 Virginians. 

Deputy Secretary of Commerce and Trade, Cassidy Rasnick, will lead the office. The first order of business is to spearhead an initiative to recruit manufacturers of outdoor products like kayaks, bikes and gear. “In establishing a statewide Office of Outdoor Recreation, we are taking significant steps to recognize the importance of this industry as a true driver of economic development in the Commonwealth, and demonstrate why Virginia is the natural fit for outdoor business,” said Governor Northam. 

Nearly 1.8 million Americans speak out in oppositions of Trump’s proposal to remove gray wolves from Endangered Species Act

The public comment period of the Trump Administration’s proposal to remove gray wolves from protections under the Endangered Species Act closed on July 15, and nearly 2 million members of the public stated their opposition to the proposal. Additionally, the Sierra Club reports that 86 members of Congress, 100 scientists, 230 businesses and 367 veterinary professionals submitted letters to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service opposing the delisting. 

The Trump administration’s current proposal would remove gray wolves from the endangered species act everywhere in the continental United States except for Arizona and New Mexico, where wolves are struggling to survive. It would remove protection for wolves in places in the country where wolves are just beginning to recover, such as up and down the west coast.