Ming of Harlem

Ming was a tiger that became notable when he was found living in an apartment in Harlem, New York City, United States, in October 2003. Ming, approximately three years old at the time of his capture, lived semi-openly with his owner, Antoine Yates, in a room of his five-bedroom apartment on the fifth floor of a large public housing complex in Harlem. Several other normal and exotic pets were found in Yates’ apartment, including an alligator named Al in another bedroom.

Ming spent the rest of his life at Noah’s Lost Ark Animal Sanctuary in Berlin Center, Ohio. Ming died from natural causes in February 2019 and was buried at the Hartsdale Pet Cemetery in Hartsdale, New York.

Ming’s resting place in Hartsdale Pet Cemetery, Hartsdale NY.

In April 2000, Antoine Yates, a 31-year-old part-time taxicab driver and resident of Harlem, New York City, purchased Ming, an 8-week-old male Siberian–Bengal tiger hybrid, from the BEARCAT Hollow Animal Park in Racine, Minnesota. Records indicated that BEARCAT Hollow had previously sold a lion cub to Yates, but he had found another home for the lion shortly after purchasing Ming. Yates lived with the animals in Apartment 5E of the Drew-Hamilton Houses, a public housing complex; for five years, Yates left the apartment only once a day for an hour to purchase food.

In an interview published in 2020, Yates clarified that he first had purchased Jabba, a lion cub which passed away at a young age, and then he purchased Ming and Nemo, another lion cub, as a pair. Nemo was included with the sale because he was ill and unlikely to live long. At the time he acquired Ming, Yates already owned an alligator named Al, which he had purchased legally in New Jersey.

Ming’s existence became known and reported in the media after Yates was taken to the Harlem Hospital Center emergency room on September 30, 2003 with bites on the arm and leg. At the time of treatment, Yates claimed that his pet pit bull had bitten him; however, the medical personnel were suspicious, because the width of the bite marks suggested an animal with a much larger jaw. Later, Yates said he had been bitten while trying to keep Ming away from Shadow, a cat he had recently adopted. That day was the first time Ming had met Shadow; according to Yates, after Ming began chasing Shadow, Yates jumped in front of Ming, who bit and clawed Yates multiple times as he wrestled with the tiger. After Ming finally closed his jaws on Yates’s knee, Yates recalled “That had me going through flashes of life. I was like, ‘Oh my god, guess this is where I die at.'” Yates declined to call it an attack, saying it was a natural reaction of Ming’s frustration: “I’m walking around. I’m still alive. I haven’t lost a limb. You couldn’t even tell I got bit by a tiger, unless I told you and showed you the mark.”

On Thursday, October 2, the police received an anonymous tip that “there was a large wild animal that was biting people”; the same anonymous person followed up the next day by providing the animal’s location, at Yates’s apartment.[9] Yates checked out of the hospital that same day, and following up on the tips, an officer of New York City Police Department was sent to his home address to investigate on October 3. Loud growling noises could be heard through the door of the apartment and the officer declined to enter. The NYPD Technical Assistance Response Unit drilled holes through a neighbor’s walls and used a camera on a pole to locate Ming. Martin Duffy, another police officer, was sent to the roof, from which he abseiled on a rope sling to view through the apartment’s windows. Ming roared at Duffy, who then anaesthetized Ming by firing a rifle with a tranquilizer dart prepared by Dr. Robert Cook, then the Chief Veterinarian of the Wildlife Conservation Society, which manages the city’s zoos.

After being darted, Ming charged at the window from which Duffy had fired, breaking it, then retreated further into the apartment. Authorities waited several minutes for the sedative to take effect before an animal control team was sent into Yates’ apartment. Dr. Cook used a catchpole and gave Ming another sedative injection to ensure he would remain asleep during transport. It took more than six men to carry Ming down via elevator to a waiting truck. The team also discovered Al, a five-and-a-half-foot alligator that Yates had been raising in one of the other bedrooms. Yates was later located at a hospital in Philadelphia and placed under guard.

After Ming was discovered in Yates’ apartment in October 2003, questioning of the neighbors determined that the existence of the tiger was widely known for at least three years, but as a sort of urban legend. Yates regularly bought large quantities of raw chicken at the local supermarket, and one standing joke in the building was that he could eat so much chicken every day. By 2003, Yates was feeding Ming 20 pounds (9 kg) of chicken, livers, and bones per day. The downstairs neighbor was aware that Yates owned many animals, in contradiction to Housing Authority rules, and her daughter had once seen Ming. The neighbor added it was not a problem until the summer of 2003, when she opened her windows for the first time that year and found her windowsills soaked with urine accompanied by a heavy animal odor. In addition, Yates had taken roommates, who were unaware at first of the animals in the home. According to the New York Daily News,

A woman who shared a Harlem apartment with a 425-pound tiger said yesterday she was terrified at first—but soon got used to living with the man-eater down the hall. Caroline Domingo told the Daily News she couldn’t believe her eyes when she spotted the big cat roaming free in the apartment where she and her husband rented a room from tiger-owner Antoine Yates. […] But eventually, she said, “We all became family.”

Authorities decided to move the seized animals to more appropriate housing: Ming was sent to Noah’s Lost Ark Animal Sanctuary in Berlin Center, Ohio, while Al was given a new home in Indiana. For approximately a decade, human visitors were barred from visiting Ming in Ohio, but the sanctuary later changed their policy in the interest of enrichment. Ming lived in Ohio until he died on February 4, 2019, of kidney and heart failure; his remains were cremated and interred at Hartsdale Pet Cemetery in Hartsdale, New York on April 20. The cemetery donated the site and mausoleum. According to the director of Noah’s Lost Ark, “[Ming] lived a really good life here. He was able to run and play on the grounds. He had tiger friends. He had a swimming pool. He was able to experience the elements.”

Pet Polar Bear

Animal trainer Mark Dumas plays with a polar
bear named Agee

Mark Dumas plays with a 16-year-old polar bear named Agee at his home in Abbotsford, British Columbia, Canada.

Mark has an intimate bond with Agee, and wrestles on the grass with her, kissing
her, and putting his head in her huge jaws.

The fearless 60-year-old bear handler even goes for dip in his swimming pool
where he and Agee enjoy a watery cuddle together.

Mark and his wife Dawn have owned Agee since she was six weeks old and the
colossal mammal even lived in their home as a cub where she played with the
family dogs and was bottle fed.

Mark and Dawn train the 800lb friendly beast – the world’s largest
land predator – to star in TV adverts. She has even performed in movies like
‘Alaska’ in 1995 when she was just a few weeks old.

Mark said: “If anyone else tried this they’d end up as Agee’s dinner. The only
people she likes are me and my wife Dawn.”

Mark has trained various animals for many films, including Best in Show, Alien
vs. Predator: Requiem and Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer.

Watch: Two-Legged Fox Filmed in England

A couple in England could not believe their eyes when they spotted a bizarre two-legged fox frolicking in their backyard. According to a local media report, the curious creature appeared outside the home of Philip and Jane Carter in the community of Ilkeston last month as they were setting up their Christmas tree. “My wife shouted to me to come to the window quick because I wouldn’t believe” what was in their backyard, he recalled, musing that her assertion proved to be correct when he saw a two-legged fox that was remarkably adept at moving in a bipedal fashion.

The peculiar creature remained in their backyard for approximately 45 minutes before it fled the scene when the couple tried to feed it. “It blew my mind,” he said, “it was so strange to just see him go vertical with his tail, just put his head forward and walked off like that.” What was particularly astounding to the Philip was the speed with which the two-legged animal moved. “At one point he ran over to the gate, and I mean run, vertically, straight up,” he marveled, “you wouldn’t believe it unless you’d seen it. It’s absolutely phenomenal.”

Fortunately, the gobsmacked man managed to capture the jaw-dropping creature on film with his cell phone and the video (seen above) has subsequently gone viral. While it is uncertain exactly how the fox wound up with only two legs, a wildlife expert who viewed the footage surmised that whatever caused the condition likely occurred quite some time ago as the animal did not appear to be injured and seems to have adapted to being bipedal.

Japanese firm makes ultra-realistic dog costumes for clients

Now you, too, can be a dog… Image Credit: Facebook / Zeppet Workshop

Ever wanted to be a dog ? Japanese company Zeppet Workshop will turn you into one… for the right price.Taking the idea of roleplaying one step further than anyone thought possible, the company, which specializes in special effects and modeling, hit the headlines back in 2022 when it was revealed that it had created an ultra-realistic Collie costume for a customer who wanted to become a dog.

Footage of the client wearing the costume (see below), which reportedly cost around $15,000, quickly went viral.

More recently, Zeppet was tasked with creating something even more challenging – a wolf costume.

“Because of my love for animals since childhood and some realistic animal suits appearing on TV, I dreamed of being one someday,” the client was quoted as saying.

“At the final fitting, I was amazed at my transformed self in the mirror. It was a moment when my dream come true.”

The resulting outfit, which cost a whopping $23,000, was even more convincing than the last one, demonstrating, if nothing else, just how skilled the firm’s employees are at making costumes.

The process took around 50 days and involved carefully examining images of real wolves to get all the details right.

Other costume designs built by Zeppet over the years include a bear, a panda and various mascots.

Bear Found High on ‘Mad Honey’ in Turkey

A bear cub in Turkey needed a helping hand after it managed to get its paws on some hallucinogenic honey that left the creature wandering around a forest in a daze. The weird incident reportedly occurred on Thursday in the country’s Duzce province when the creature somehow found a reserve of what is known as ‘deli bal’ or ‘mad honey.’ The substance, which is largely only produced in this particular region of the world as well as in the Himalayas, is derived from the honey produced by bees that have pollinated indigenous rhododendrons which possess a neurotoxin known as grayanotoxin.

While something of a traditional medicinal treatment for a variety of ailments, just a small dose of ‘mad honey’ can produce hallucinations and a feeling of euphoria in mammals. In this particular instance, it is believed that the bear cub consumed a fairly significant amount of the substance as it was found barely able to walk and seemingly in distress. Fortunately, upon being discovered stumbling around the forest, the intoxicated creature was loaded into the back of a truck and taken to a nearby vet, where is subsequently ‘slept off’ its stupor. Authorities say that the bear cub should be released back into the wild soon with what one imagines is a monstrous hangover.

Kangaroo spotted wandering loose on Missouri road

This is a bit incongruous.

Dec. 22 (UPI) — Authorities in a Missouri county confirmed a kangaroo was recently spotted roaming loose around a road.

Jefferson County Services Director Eric Larson confirmed a kangaroo was spotted near a High Ridge road recently, although animal control was not contacted in the incident.

At least one local resident captured the animal on camera during its time on the loose.

Larson said the kangaroo is believed to have escaped from S and S Farms Exotic Petting Zoo in High Ridge.

Officials with the petting zoo confirmed the kangaroo seen on the loose is named Rueben and was safely returned to the facility after only a short time on the loose.

Hippo SWALLOWS a two-year-old boy whole… then spits him back out ALIVE

A two-year-old boy was swallowed and spat out by a hippo while playing near his home in Uganda.  

Paul Iga was clenched in the mouth of the animal around 800 yards away from the edge of Lake Edward.

The hippo had grabbed the toddler from the head and swallowed half of his body when a local man noticed and started throwing stones at the animal.

The hippo seemed taken aback by the attack and vomited up the child — before trudging back to the water. 

Paul Iga was clenched in the mouth of a hippo just a few hundred yards away from the edge of Lake Edward, Uganda

Paul Iga was clenched in the mouth of a hippo just a few hundred yards away from the edge of Lake Edward, Uganda

‘It took the bravery of one Chrispas Bagonza, who was nearby, to save the victim after he stoned the hippo and scared it, causing it to release the victim from its mouth,’ police added. 

While Paul was injured and taken to a clinic for treatment, he miraculously survived. 

It has been reported that the toddler was transferred to a hospital in Bwera but was sent home after taking a rabies vaccine.

In a statement, Ugandan Police said: ‘This is the first such kind of incident where a hippo strayed out of Lake Edward and attacked a young child.’

Police told residents of Katwe Kabatoro Town Council, which is located within Queen Elizabeth National Park on the border between Uganda and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, to remain vigilant around hippos.

The hippopotamus is the world’s deadliest large land mammal, killing an estimated 500 people per year in Africa, according to the BBC.

They are aggressive creatures and have very sharp teeth.

At up to 2,750kg, the animals can easily crush a human to death.

Despite their primarily vegetarian diet, the hippopotamus is extremely aggressive and territorial.

The combination of sheer size, sharp teeth and mobility both in and out of water make for a deadly mammal.

They are agile and aggressive and kill large animals and sometimes humans. 

A yawning hippo, although it might look cute, can be a sign of a threat.

Over the years hippos have been spotted eating impala, kudu, eland, wildebeest and buffalo.

They are very protective of their habitat, normally dwelling in rivers.

In Niger in 2014, 13 people drowned when hippos overturned their boat. 

Daily Mail