- COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (UPI)
-- While the tsunami death toll in Sri Lanka continued to soar, officials
said wild animals seemed to have escaped the disaster, with no dead animals
- Tsunami waves reached two miles inland to the island's
biggest wildlife reserve, home to elephants, deer, jackals and crocodiles,
the BBC reported Friday. Many tourists drowned but, to the surprise of
wildlife officials, apparently none of the animals died.
- Debbie Marter, who works on a wild tiger conservation
program on the Indonesian island of Sumatra, one of the worst-hit areas
in Sunday's disaster, said the news did not surprise her. "Wild animals
in particular are extremely sensitive," she said. "They've got
extremely good hearing and they will probably have heard this flood coming
into the distance.
- The evidence highlights claims that animals may possess
a sixth sense that alerts them to impending danger. The current reports
may add to the understanding of animal behavior and possibly be of use
in the future as an early warning system for humans.