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(MENAFN - AFP) Thousands of parrots, monkeys, iguanas, toucans, turtles and other rainforest animals are kept as exotic pets in Costa Rica, a practice putting some species at risk, according to experts.

The Central American country, famous for its rich biodiversity, won plaudits from conservationists two years ago for banning sport hunting in a pioneering move to protect ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) Raise your game, skip the queues and scale the world's highest peak in 42 days: that's British guide Adrian Ballinger's ambitious pitch to climbers preparing to summit Mount Everest.

Ballinger's "Rapid Ascent" programme, which at around $79,000 is roughly double the cost of other Everest expeditions, aims to overturn the conventional wisdom that it takes 10 ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) The Ebola epidemic that has killed more than 1,500 people across West Africa spread to a fifth country in the region on Friday with the first confirmed case of the deadly virus in Senegal.

The case marks the first time a new country has been hit by the outbreak since July and comes a day after the World Health Organization warned the number of infections was ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) When he was nine, Michal Trzajna jumped off a second-floor balcony at the prompting of his brother - and broke both his legs.

Thirteen years later, he still can't explain what drives him to leap from 200-metre (650-foot) cliffs at the end of a rope.

"I used to live near an airport, and dreamt of jumping from planes," the 22-year-old tells AFP.

"When ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) Playing Icarus as they leap off sheer cliffs and fly at eye-watering speeds along mountainsides, thrill-seekers dressed like flamboyant bats have become an increasingly common sight in the Alps. But the incredible rush of wingsuits can come at the ultimate price.

On a plateau of the Brevent mountain in Chamonix, France, a group of men and women in winged bodysuits ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) India said Friday its economy grew by 5.7 percent in the first financial quarter, its fastest pace in over two years, as the election of a new right-wing government spurred business confidence.

The strong expansion in the three months to June beat a consensus market forecast of 5.5-percent growth and marked the clearest sign yet that Asia's third-largest economy ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) The Ebola epidemic that has killed more than 1,500 people across West Africa spread to a fifth country in the region on Friday with the first confirmed case of the deadly virus in Senegal.

The case marks the first time a new country has been hit by the outbreak since July and comes a day after the World Health Organization warned the number of infections was ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) A prototype drug that has been urgently given to a handful of patients with Ebola has cleared an important test hurdle, showing that it cured lab monkeys with the disease, scientists said Friday.

Normally, experimental drugs are tested first on animals and then on progressively larger groups of humans to ensure they are safe and effective.

But, in an ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) Japan's Panasonic will develop a water purification system together with India's Tata Group, tapping into a fast-growing market in Asia, a media report said Saturday.

The electronics giant has developed a prototype of a device that will detoxify harmful substances in groundwater, making it potentially safe to drink, the Japanese economic daily Nikkei said.

The ...

 
(MENAFN - AFP) A US appeals court on Friday ruled that Oracle be given a choice between $356.7 million or a new trial for its copyright lawsuit against German rival SAP.

The settlement amount would be less than a third of the $1.3 billion SAP was ordered to pay the Silicon Valley giant by a jury in November 2010.

The ruling Friday by a panel of three judges in the Ninth ...

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