Man continues 40-year search for extinct Japanese wolf
News On Japan via Asahi -- Jan 23
A mysterious howling marked the start of Hiroshi Yagi's 40-year search for an animal that has not been seen in Japan for more than a century.
He has switched jobs, set up sophisticated monitoring equipment, climbed mountains and trekked through forests all in hopes of finding the Japanese wolf.
The Japanese wolf, described as having a sharp face and a curled tail tip, is an extinct species on the Japanese Red List of the Environment Ministry. It was hunted mercilessly by humans, fell victim to infectious diseases and saw its habitat wiped out by development.
The Japanese wolf is still worshipped as a guardian god in some regions of Japan because they attacked deer and wild boars that were ruining farmland.
Until the Meiji Era (1868-1912), the Japanese wolf inhabited wide areas of Japan's mainland, as well as the Shikoku and Kyushu regions.
But the Meiji government regarded the Japanese wolf as a threat to livestock, and ordered its extermination, according to experts.
The last time a Japanese wolf was caught was in 1905 in Higashi-Yoshino, Nara Prefecture. There have been no confirmed sightings since then.
At 2:46pm every Japanese television channel paused to remember the dead, cancelling their regularly scheduled programming to show the prayers of Japanese people around the country.
That is, every channel except one. One decided to air Alien: Resurrection instead. (ibtimes.co.uk )
Kochi prefectural police are investigating an incident involving a man who sustained severe injuries after being stabbed several times in the abdomen. Police said they believe the attack is linked to a dispute the victim was having with another man over their children dating. (Japan Today )
Police in Niihama, Ehime Prefecture, are investigating the mutilation deaths of three cats whose bodies were left in a park. Two were found dead in February, and the third was found on Saturday. (Japan Today )
Banging on drums and waving "Sayonara nukes" signs, thousands of people rallied in a Tokyo park and marched to Parliament on Sunday to demand an end to nuclear power ahead of the third anniversary of the Fukushima disaster. (scmp.com )
Fewer than 40 pct of residents and commuters in Tokyo take specific measures to prepare for a possible huge earthquake beneath the Japanese capital, despite high awareness on disaster prevention, a Metropolitan Police Department survey showed Friday. (Jiji Press )