Thursday, October 28, 2010

Fortean / Oddball News: Supernatural Abduction, Woman Picks Up Her Head and Corpse Poaching Bears

Malaysian Family Claims Girl Abducted by Supernatural Beings

thestar - The strange tale of 22-year-old Siti Balqis Mohd Nor, who was said to sleepwalk and go missing for hours only to reappear on treetops and cemeteries, has taken an intriguing turn.

She is missing again and family members are claiming she is being held captive by a group of orang bunian (supernatural beings) at Gunung Jerai, 300km from her home here.

Her family said she went missing from the family home at Kampung Gong Nangka in Apal, near here, on Sunday.

They lodged a missing persons report at the Jerteh police station yesterday after attempts to find her failed.

An uncle, Derawai Said, 43, said he received an SMS from his niece on Tuesday informing him that she was now atop the mountain in Kedah, guarded by two orang bunian princesses named Maisrah and Mastura.

The mountain, now a holiday destination, was considered sacred by ancient Malays and was used as a navigational point by South Indian seafarers 1,500 years ago.

The mountain, also called Kedah Peak, is visible from Penang island.

Siti Balqis had “disappeared” previously and re-emerged at the house within a day or two but this was the first time she had gone missing for several days.

“Previously, when she disappeared, we found her in tree tops or at cemeteries.

“This is really making us jittery. Even experienced bomohs cannot solve this mystery,” he said.

Derawai said that on Sunday, when the family gathered in the kitchen, a sudden sound of a falling object made them rush to the living room.

They allegedly saw a crystal marble, the size of a 20 sen coin, rolling past Siti Balqis, who suddenly bolted from the house.

A neighbour claimed the girl was driven away in her mother’s Perodua Kancil, with Siti Balqis in the passenger seat.

Derawai claimed the car had been locked and the keys were still held by the girl’s mother, Norisan Said, 47, who later received an SMS from her daughter that the car had been left at the Jerteh bus station.

Siti Balqis also sent other SMSes, where she talked about her encounter with the orang bunian, how she struggled to free herself from them and how she was being treated for her wounds by the two princesses.

Last week, the Malay media reported that seven precious stones, including a ruby, had fallen from the ceiling of her house.

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Woman Literally Picks Up Own Head After Horse-Riding Accident!

watoday - A British woman had to pick her own head up off the ground after badly breaking her neck in a horrific fall from a horse, according to reports.

The Daily Express newspaper reports that 26-year-old Thea Maxfield suffered a horrific "hangman's fracture" - a clean break of her upper cervical vertebra - after she was bucked six metres into the air in the accident.

After she fell off the horse Ms Maxfield tried to get out of the animal's way, but found that when she moved her head stayed where it was.
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She was forced to cup her hands around her head and lift it back into place to avoid damaging her spinal cord after her vertebrae shattered.

"I had to literally pick my head up and carry it in my hands. I didn't have much hope of a recovery," she told the newspaper.

Doctors initially warned she would be paralysed and have to spend the rest of her life in a wheelchair.

But seven months after the fall she is back in the saddle, thanks to revolutionary technology developed for Formula 1 racing.

Ms Maxfield was fitted with a special head brace connected to a computer, which used sensors to assess the strength and weakness of her neck.

The same technology is used to monitor elite racing cars to assess steering, suspension and air-flow factors affecting performance.

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Hungry Russian Bears Poaching Human Graves

guardian - From a distance it resembled a rather large man in a fur coat, leaning tenderly over the grave of a loved one. But when the two women in the Russian village of Vezhnya Tchova came closer they realised there was a bear in the cemetery eating a body.

Russian bears have grown so desperate after a scorching summer they have started digging up and eating corpses in municipal cemetries, alarmed officials said today. Bears' traditional food – mushrooms, berries and the odd frog – has disappeared, they added.

The Vezhnya Tchova incident took place on Saturday in the northern republic of Komi, near the Arctic Circle. The shocked women cried in panic, frightening the bear back into the woods, before they discovered a ghoulish scene with the clothes of the bear's already-dead victim chucked over adjacent tombstones, the Russian newspaper Moskovsky Komsomelets reported.

Local people said that bears had resorted to scavenging in towns and villages - rummaging through bins, stealing garden carrots and raiding tips. A young man had been mauled in the centre of Syktyvkar, Komi's capital. "They are really hungry this year. It's a big problem. Many of them are not going to survive," said Simion Razmislov, the vice-president of Komi's hunting and fishing society.

World Wildlife Fund Russia said there had been a similar case two years ago in the town of Kandalaksha, in the northern Karelia republic. "You have to remember that bears are natural scavengers. In the US and Canada you can't leave any food in tents in national parks," said Masha Vorontsova, Director of the International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW) in Russia.

"In Karelia one bear learned how to do it [open a coffin]. He then taught the others," she added, suggesting: "They are pretty quick learners."

The only way to get rid of the bears would be to frighten them with something noisy like a firework or shoot them, she said.

According to Vorontsova, the omnivorous bears had "plenty to eat" this autumn, with foods such as fish and ants at normal levels. The bears raided graveyards because they offered a supply of easy food, she said, a bit like a giant refrigerator. "The story is horrible. Nobody wants to think about having a much loved member of their family eaten by a bear."

The bear population in Russia is relatively stable with numbers between 120,000 and 140,000. The biggest threat isn't starvation but hunting - with VIP sportsmen and wealthy gun enthusiasts wiping out most of the large male bears in Kamchatka, in Russia's Far East. Chinese poachers have killed many black bears near the border, selling their claws and other parts in markets.

The Russian government is drafting legislation to ban the killing of bears during the winter breeding season.

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New Species of Monkey Sneezes When it Rains

A new species of snub-nosed monkey that sneezes when it rains has been discovered in the remote Himalayan forests of Burma. The monkey, measuring almost two feet high with a tail even longer than its body size, has an extraordinary upturned nose and full lips. It is the largest snub-nosed monkey species in the world.

Little is known about the habits of the black monkey with a white beard, but locals say it is easy to find the animals because it sneezes when it rains. To avoid getting rainwater in their noses they spend rainy days sitting with their heads tucked between their knees, according to locals.

Rhinopithecus Strykeri, that is known in the local dialect as monkey with an upturned face, was found by scientists from Flora and Fauna International investigating gibbons populations in forests up to 10,000ft above sea level. Villagers talked about a monkey that was well known for making a lot of noise when it rained and showed the researchers bodies hunted for meat.

Further investigation revealed an estimated population of 260-330 individuals, meaning that it is classified as critically endangered by the United Nations. The area where the monkeys were found has been closed to the world for decades, which is why the monkey has not been discovered. It is under threat from illegal logging, as well as hunting for food and Chinese medicines.

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Mom Kills Baby For Interrupting Her Game of 'Farmville'

jacksonville - A Jacksonville mother charged with shaking her baby to death has pleaded guilty to second-degree murder.

Alexandra V. Tobias, 22, was arrested after the January death of 3-month-old Dylan Lee Edmondson. She told investigators she became angry because the baby was crying while she was playing a computer game called FarmVille on the Facebook social-networking website.

Tobias entered her plea Wednesday before Circuit Judge Adrian G. Soud. A second-degree murder charge is punishable by up to life in prison.

Prosecutor Richard Mantei said Tobias' sentence could be less because of state guidelines that call for 25 to 50 years. Soud offered no promises on what he'll order during a sentencing hearing scheduled for December.

Outside the courtroom, Mantei said Tobias' plea will help avoid the family reliving the tragedy during a jury trial.

Tobias told investigators that she shook the baby, smoked a cigarette to compose herself and then shook him again. She said the baby may have hit his head during the shaking.

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