Suicide Squad stars act nothing like their characters while visiting a little …

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Aug 28, 2015 in Rat News
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While not busy tattooing each other and taking care of pet rats, the Suicide Squad stars try to lead relatively normal lives, as evidenced by a recent CTV News video.

Margot Robbie and Jai Courtney, who were in Toronto for filming on the upcoming DC Comics adaptation, took time to visit 5-year-old Na’ama Uzan’s lemonade stand, which she started in 2014 to help support her brother Nadav. Nadav has been diagnosed with Angelman Syndrome, which, among other medical issues, causes him to have difficulty walking, speaking, and endure seizures.

According to CTV News, Na’ama has raised over $64,000 for the Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics.

Robbie and Courtney did not show up in costume or character, thankfully saving Na’ama from having to question why Robbie would be carrying a baseball bat or wearing a choker that says “PUDDIN” or why Courtney would need such an oversized coat.

Watch the video below to see the stars prove you don’t need to be a villainous antihero with your life under mortal threat to do something good for the community.

 

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Article source: http://www.ew.com/article/2015/08/24/suicide-squad-margot-robbie-jai-courtney-lemonade-stand

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Suicide Squad stars act nothing like their characters while visiting a little …

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Aug 28, 2015 in Rat News
Closed


While not busy tattooing each other and taking care of pet rats, the Suicide Squad stars try to lead relatively normal lives, as evidenced by a recent CTV News video.

Margot Robbie and Jai Courtney, who were in Toronto for filming on the upcoming DC Comics adaptation, took time to visit 5-year-old Na’ama Uzan’s lemonade stand, which she started in 2014 to help support her brother Nadav. Nadav has been diagnosed with Angelman Syndrome, which, among other medical issues, causes him to have difficulty walking, speaking, and endure seizures.

According to CTV News, Na’ama has raised over $64,000 for the Foundation for Angelman Syndrome Therapeutics.

Robbie and Courtney did not show up in costume or character, thankfully saving Na’ama from having to question why Robbie would be carrying a baseball bat or wearing a choker that says “PUDDIN” or why Courtney would need such an oversized coat.

Watch the video below to see the stars prove you don’t need to be a villainous antihero with your life under mortal threat to do something good for the community.

 

Related Stories
Suicide Squad tops Batman v Superman as most-watched trailer
The Suicide Squad cast gave each other matching tattoos
5 best Harley Quinn moments from the Suicide Squadtrailer

Article source: http://www.ew.com/article/2015/08/24/suicide-squad-margot-robbie-jai-courtney-lemonade-stand

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Watch the Suicide Squad Stars Visit a Little Girl’s Lemonade Stand

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Aug 25, 2015 in Rat News
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Twitter Declares Surprising Winner in Zayn Malik vs. Calvin Harris Feud …

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Aug 18, 2015 in Rat News
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Zayn Malik, Calvin Harris, Louis Tomlinson
Zayn Malik, Calvin Harris, Louis TomlinsonGetty Images

If you truly want to interpret a celebrity feud, leave it to the devoted fans of the parties in question.

Calvin Harris lost no time today in defending Taylor Swift ‘s honor when Zayn Malik decided that an otherwise uneventful Monday was a good time to critique Taylor’s stance on streaming royalties. If that’s what he was indeed doing.

The One Direction heartthrob turned solo heartthrob started the whole thing by retweeting someone else’s comparison between Taylor’s artists-should-be-paid-always position and what can be interpreted as Miley Cyrus‘ more relaxed, free-the-music approach, and after Calvin spoke up in defense of Taylor (without naming names), things quickly escalated.

But while there was plenty of gushing about Calvin going to bat for Taylor, because that’s what good boyfriends do, we’ve re-learned one thing.

PHOTOS: Celebrity tweets better left unsent

You do not get into a Twitter war with either a current or former member of One Direction and expect a win in the court of tweeted opinion.

Sure enough, the Zayniacs were not having it.

Taylor’s got some of the most devoted fans around, and therefore there are plenty of people out there who now think Calvin Harris is the greatest man ever, but taking the high road didn’t help the producer-DJ in this particular case and, despite being kind of a jerk about the whole thing, Zayn totally won the by-proxy Twitter war.

Here’s a sampling of the stones, arrows and mud that was flying in both directions, along with the mild hysteria caused when Zayn’s former group mate Louis Tomlinson started following Pringles chips amid all the hubbub:

PHOTOS: Taylor Swift’s famous friends

One point for common sense.

PHOTOS: “Bad Blood” 2.0?

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Article source: http://www.eonline.com/news/687242/twitter-declares-surprising-winner-in-zayn-malik-vs-calvin-harris-feud-despite-being-distracted-by-louis-tomlinson-following-pringles

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The rat could become man’s newest best friend

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Aug 17, 2015 in Rat News
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In many places in the world, rats are regarded as a vile nuisance and a menace to society. But the truth is that scientists, researchers and even police and health care workers are discovering how useful our ancient foe, the common brown rat, can actually be.

This story is based on a radio interview. Listen to the full interview.

Aaron Blaisdell, a professor of comparative psychology at the University of California in Los Angeles, has found that rats are a lot smarter than we give them credit for.

“They’ve always been really good in basic learning experiments, like Pavlovian conditioning, Skinnerian conditioning and things like that,” Blaisdell says. “But we increasingly understand that some of the core elements of what we think of as human-like cognition are present in rats”.

Monique Hammerslag, an inspector with the Dutch National Police, is training rats to discriminate between certain brands of cigarettes and counterfeits — and they are already quite good at it.

Rats are great for this kind of work, Blaisdell says, because they’re “very olfactory driven. … Rodents in general have a really good sense of smell, which makes them very useful for detecting things based on the chemical signature that’s unique to that substance,” he explains.

Training them is quite easy. They are very intelligent, Blaisdell says, not just in learning, but also in reasoning processes. Beyond that, they live in large groups and so they are very social.

“They have a lot of the social mechanisms of behavior that are present in, for example, primates or pack hunting dogs and wolves,” Blaisdell says. “So, they actually form a good bond with a human. If they are raised in captivity or domesticated, they will come to you if you call them. … I kind of think of them as cuddly cats or puppy dogs.”

Hammerslag says rats will never replace dogs in police work, but they can supplement them. “Because a dog is a hunter, you can take a dog to new places and they go search for you. They don’t mind if they go to a place they’ve never been before,” she explains. “A rat will often freeze in a new place, so that’s not very practical for police work. But what rats can do very well is smell samples, which is a bit of boring job and not very interesting for dogs.”

Workers in Africa are using rats’ olfactory abilities for a different kind of task: clearing land-mines. These so-called “giant” Gambian pouched rats are a different species from the common brown rat, probably more closely related to the hamster, Hammerslag says.

“My rat is the Rattus norvegicus, the brown rat, and the other one is the Cricetomys gambianus,” she explains. “It’s a different species. It’s also much bigger.”

The giant rats have another advantage: They store their food, which is payment for their work, in their cheeks and put off eating until their task is completed. “This is very practical, because when you train them, they don’t get full,” Hammerslag says. “Whereas my rats immediately eat their reward, the pouched rats just store it and they start eating after the work.”

Like dogs, rats can be trained to understand vocal cues, though it’s not clear to what extent. “Based on my understanding, rats can learn lots of associations between other stimulae, such as odor and visual cues, so I imagine they can learn dozens [of vocal cues], at least,” Blaisdell says.

Hammerslag concurs. She names her rats after people who helped her in her first projects with rats, and they respond to their names. “When I call, for example, “Ed,” Ed comes out,” she says.

HammersIag feels sentimental about her rats — an unfamiliar feeling to many of us. “I really love the guys and I feel attached to them,” she says. “They are very, very nice animals, very friendly [and] they never bite. They never do bad things.”

She has no pet rats at the moment, but when this group retires, she will likely take them home. Unfortunately, she says, rats don’t live very long, typically only two to three years. “That’s the hard thing about training rats and working with them,” Hammerlsag says. “You have to say goodbye rather fast.”

This article is based on an interview that aired on PRI’s Science Friday with Ira Flatow

Article source: http://www.pri.org/stories/2015-08-17/rat-could-become-mans-newest-best-friend

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Meet the Class of 2019

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Aug 16, 2015 in Rat News
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Bucknell’s Class of 2019 is getting ready to arrive from as close as Lewisburg, Pa., and as far away as Los Angeles, Calif., and Rose Belle, Mauritius, an East African island nation located in the Indian Ocean.

As pre-orientation programs and New Student Orientation begin, the 947 members of the class prepare to bring what they need to live in a residence hall, dress for changing seasons and connect with their family and friends back home. They’ll also bring their intellectual curiosity, commitment to community and varied life experiences from 32 states, the District of Columbia and 39 countries.  

The class comprises more than 250 students who were chosen to receive Bucknell merit scholarships for their outstanding academic performance, talent and potential to contribute to the campus community, including  Arts Merit Scholars, B-WISE Scholars, Campus Enrichment Scholars, Dean’s Scholars, Mathematics Scholars, Posse Scholars, Presidential Fellows and STEM Scholars, among others. First-generation college students comprise 11.6 percent of the class, which is also the most racially diverse class in Bucknell’s history, with 23.4 percent students of color. From a student who built his own log cabin to a student who studied sustainable development in Maldives and those who won scholarships for everything from vocal performance to volunteer work, their accomplishments are impressive. Members of the class include:  

  • Natalya Carpenter from Lebanon, Pa., who works to bring light to the plight of orphans around the world. Adopted from Russia, her mild cerebral palsy was seen as a disability, but she defied stereotypes and was named one of the best and brightest in her high school. She plans to pursue a double major in English and Russian Studies and a minor in Jewish Studies.
  • Jonathan Coleman from Long Beach, Calif., who is an all-league water polo player who combined scholarship and leadership in his school to win a Pursuit of Excellence award every year. He participated in the National Forum for Youth Violence Prevention in Washington, D.C. He plans to pursue a major in the College of Arts Sciences.
  • Jake Malavsky from Yardley, Pa., who explores how trust, humility and passion might inspire students to become more receptive to education, both inside and outside the classroom in his own TEDxGeorgeSchool talk. He plans to pursue a major in the College of Arts Sciences.
  • Yash Mittal from Bihwani, India, who was declared the Student of the Year, 2013 by Times of India, a national daily newspaper. He plans to pursue a major in computer science engineering.
  • Abbey Roeser from Philadelphia, Pa., who trains her pet rats using clicker training and positive reinforcement and spent part of last summer working at a wolf sanctuary. She plans to pursue a major in animal behavior.
  • Emily Shapiro from Caldwell, N.J., who won a Spirit of a Hero Scholarship from N.J. first lady Mary Pat Christie for her work as founder and volunteer for the Northern New Jersey Chapter of Kids Serving Kids. She plans to pursue a major in early childhood education.
  • Sha-Asia Taylor from Worcester, Mass., who placed first in the state DECA-Emerging Leaders Entrepreneurs competition for developing a Financial Literacy Promotion Project. She also founded the Black Legacy Youth Program, where she works with students to facilitate the Undoing Racism curriculum with the goal of empowering others to make change in their communities. She plans to pursue a major in management and a minor in music.  

The Class of 2019 was chosen from a record pool of 10,967 applicants, an increase of over 3,000 applicants from the previous year and a welcome challenge for the Office of Admissions, who approached application reading with the same careful, holistic review they always have, said Rob Springall, dean of admissions. “The point of recruiting a larger applicant pool is to reach into communities and groups where Bucknell is not as well-known, not just to have more applications,” he said. “If we do it well, that process encourages more students from a diversity of backgrounds to consider Bucknell and apply.”  

He added that this year the Office of Admissions refined their mission, which now simply states: Every year, we will enroll the most diverse, talented, and interesting class in Bucknell’s history. “The Class of 2019 has already set a new standard for Bucknell,” said Springall. “Our goal is to try to top it.”

Article source: http://www.bucknell.edu/x104529.xml

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These Rats Are Doing Tricks Your Dog Couldn’t Do

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Aug 15, 2015 in Rat News
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Many would consider rats as pests and intruders, many would even scream if they saw one in their house. But what about three rats?

In a recent video uploaded by Abby Roeser, she shows us just how smart these animals are. Pepper, Blue and Puffin are her pet rats. In one clip Pepper is seen running back and forth from the tissue box and Roeser every time she sneezes. Most people don’t have a friend to take care of them when they’re sick, let alone a rat.

Rats are intelligent, social and loving animals. According to PETA, they’re cleaner than cats. The lovable animals even have a pleasant perfume-like scent if not forced to live in a dirty cage.

If you’re still skeptical of being a pet rat owner, the video above might change your mind.

Article source: http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2015/08/13/rat-trick-video-_n_7984766.html

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The Vancouver Animal Control Centre has been overrun with dozens of pet rats

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Aug 14, 2015 in Rat News
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The Vancouver Animal Control Shelter is currently awash in pet rats after someone anonymously dumped 68 of them off at their building earlier this month.  

And while not everyone might see the appeal of owning a pet rat, the shelter is hoping that a few people who do will come forward to help them out by adopting some of them.

“There is a preconceived notion that rats are vermin-ridden, and disease-causing and disease-carrying,” said Rachel Blyth with the shelter. “There is a difference in the genetics between the fancy rats that we have and your regular street rats that you see out and about in the garbage and such.”

“Fancy rats,” which are the kind the shelter has, are specifically bred as pets, and Blyth says that if you can get over your squeamishness, they make great pets.

Here are three reasons why.

They’re great for apartments

Rachel Blyth

Rachel Blyth holds one of the Shelter’s 68 fancy rats. (Vivian Luk/CBC)

If you aren’t up for taking care of a bigger pet like a cat or dog, rats make for a great alternative, according to Blyth.

They’re low maintenance, and can even be trained to use a litter box just like a cat.

As long as you have the proper enclosure, bedding, food and water, fancy rats are happy in any size of home, Blyth said.

They’re very smart

Fancy rats are quite intelligent, and can even be trained to perform tricks for treats.

But they also require a fair amount of stimulation, either in the form of human interaction, or with enrichment toys which can be found in pet stores.

They’re very friendly

But when they’re not exercising their bodies or brains, Blyth said that fancy rats enjoy human interaction.

They’re comfortable being handled, and when out of their cages, are quite content to cuddle up with people and just relax.

“A lot of the time they’ll just hang out on your shoulder or the hood of your jacket,” Blyth said. “They’re quite endearing little creatures.”

Rats like these tend be social with humans, but also with each other. The shelter prefers to adopt them in pairs so they don’t get lonely in their new homes.


To hear the full story, click the audio labelled: Fancy rats: 3 reasons they make great pets

Article source: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/fancy-rats-3-reasons-they-make-great-pets-1.3189781

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Fancy rats make great pets

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Aug 13, 2015 in Rat News
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When you hear the word “rat,” does the image of a dirty, vicious, disease-bringing pest that invades homes and lives in city sewers, subways and alleys pop into your mind? Some rats aren’t like that. A fancy rat is exactly the opposite.

advertisement | advertise on newsday

Fancy rats are a domesticated version of the common sewer rat. I have two, Thais and Sorcha. Rats can be taught tricks, like “come,” or “stand up.” Pet rats are clean and like to groom themselves often. Fancy rats also like a clean, dry cage. They are curious and like exploring their surroundings. Pet rats love being cuddled and wrestled with, and don’t mind sitting on your shoulder. Fancy rats are good pets because of their low maintenance. When you have to clean the bedding, you can dump it all out and replace it. Rats don’t really make a mess, so having one doesn’t take too much work. Don’t confuse low maintenance with no maintenance though.

If you decide to get a pet rat, you should get two or more because if you have only one it might get depressed. Females are perky and adventurous, and males are calm and cool. If you are getting more than one, make sure they are the same gender because if not you will have a lot more rats than you started out with.

Article source: http://www.newsday.com/lifestyle/family/kidsday/fancy-rats-make-great-pets-1.10732342

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You won’t believe what these what these pet rats can do!

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Aug 12, 2015 in Rat News
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LeBron James ain’t gone nuthin’ on one of these basketball-dunking rats. Check out all the tricks this team of pet rats can do. Abby Roeser says she trains them with a clicker and some good old-fashioned positive reinforcement. Their main incentives?

Article source: http://www.app.com/videos/news/weird/omg/2015/08/10/31427883/

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