NEWSCAST - Tuesday, May 14th, 2019
- What’s the most Canadian thing you can think of? If beavers were one of the first things you thought of, then a study from Western University will make you love beavers just a little more.
- Former Western graduate student Tessa Plint has been working with Fred Longstaffe who is a part of Canada’s research chair, and they have found out the most likely reason as to why beavers the size of bears died out in the ice age alongside woolly mammoths and mastodons.
- The giant rodents, estimated to weigh about 100 kilograms, would have had a diet consisting of mostly submerged aquatic plants as opposed to wood like the beavers we know and love today. That particular diet is likely the reason the giant beavers went extinct.
- They relied on wetlands and did not build dams either, making them dependant on wetland habitats that would have dried out during the ice age. The modern beaver did coexist with the giant variety, or castoroides, in the Pleistocene epoch.
- Fossils of the giant beaver have been found across North America from Florida, all the way up to the Yukon and Alaska.
- They would have lived around the Great Lakes region around 10,000 years ago according to carbon dating.
- The discovery of what caused the extinction of giant beavers is just a small piece of the puzzle when investigating the mass-extinction of the ice age.
- Many plant and animal species were wiped out in a short time, and researchers like Plint work hard to try and figure out what life was like at that time.
- London’s leading health care network could be expanding rapidly thanks to a new proposal from the provincial government that would allow for the Middlesex London Health Unit to branch out from Woodstock all the way down to Windsor.
- The new administration would take in the territory covered by the Windsor-Essex County health unit, the Chatham-Kent public health unit, the Lambton health unit and the already-merged Southwestern public health, which serves Elgin and Oxford counties. The Huron County and Perth District health units are excluded from the proposed regional boundaries.
- Health units are the lead agencies for a wide range of public health services in the province, handling everything from infectious diseases and disease-prevention to programs that ensure new mothers have the resources they need to raise healthy babies.
- In its inaugural budget, the Tory government unveiled its plan to combine the province’s 35 public health authorities into 10 larger regional entities by 2020-2021. There are nine public health units in Southwestern Ontario alone.
- Spokespeople for the health unit are stressing that this is not a merger, but rather an expanding of the boundaries for the unit. The project is expected to be completed by the end of the summer.
- The London Jr. Mustangs football club kicked their season off this past weekend with six games being played on Mother’s Day Sunday.
- London emerged victorious in four out of the six games, with the atom, peewee orange, Junior Varsity and Senior Varsity teams all pulling out wins.
- The peewee orange team was perhaps most impressive, taking down the Hamilton Jr. Tiger-Cats 72-0.
- The most exciting game of the day was the bantam game, where the Jr. Mustangs lost a back-and-forth battle against the Essex Ravens with a 34-27, with the game coming down to the wire.
- The Jr. Mustangs will be back in action this Saturday at TD Stadium, with the bantam, JV and Varsity teams all facing off against the Cambridge Lions.
- It’s gonna be nice out there today with mostly sunny skies and a high of 15 degrees.
- It will stay clear overnight dropping down to 6.
- Tomorrow has a high of 18 expected with some showers anticipated in the afternoon.
- Then Thursday has a high of 16 with mostly sunny skies but maybe a rain shower in there too.