Do we need predators to prevent Lyme disease?

From the New York Times: A Natural Cure for Lyme Disease.

If humans have inadvertently increased the chances of contracting Lyme disease, the good news is that there’s a potential fix: allow large predators, particularly wolves and cougars, to return.

They would help keep down the number of deer, which, although they don’t carry the Lyme-causing bacterium, probably encourage its transmission. [continue]

If you missed it a couple of weeks ago, take a detour over to the how wolves change rivers thing I pointed out. The four-minute video is stunning.

(Link to the NTY article found here at Microfishing.)

One-Horned ‘Unicorn’ Deer Born in Italy

From One-Horned ‘Unicorn’ Deer Born in Italy.

A deer with a single horn in the center of its head — much like the fabled, mythical unicorn — has been spotted in a nature preserve in Italy, park officials said Wednesday.

"This is fantasy becoming reality," Gilberto Tozzi, director of the Center of Natural Sciences in Prato, said. "The unicorn has always been a mythological animal."

The one-year-old Roe Deer — nicknamed "Unicorn" — was born in captivity in the research center’s park in the Tuscan town of Prato, near Florence, Tozzi said.

He is believed to have been born with a genetic flaw; his twin has two horns.

Calling it the first time he has seen such a case, Tozzi said such anomalies among deer may have inspired the myth of the unicorn. [continue, see photo]