Three great stories we found on the internet this week.
Vote of confidence
To people in countries where elections are humdrum affairs, it may seem an odd thing to celebrate. But the largely uneventful, glitch-free US election showed the system still works.
Though it will take days or even weeks for all the ballots to be counted, fears of widespread disruption or confusion proved largely unfounded. In the run up, watchdogs had warned of the potential for voter intimidation, legal challenges and conflict at polling stations, yet aside from a few isolated incidents, few of those fears have been borne out. In fact, the combination of high voter turnout and reasonable wait times suggested a best-of-both-worlds outcome: an unusually large number of people seamlessly exercising their democratic rights.
Born to be wild
A hundred years ago, European bison teetered on the brink of extinction. Now, in a major milestone, conservationists are celebrating the first European bison to be born in the wild in the United Kingdom in thousands of years.
The mother is one of three females that were released into an English forest in July. Biologists didn’t even know she was pregnant until soon before she gave birth in September. The birth was kept secret until they confirmed the calf was healthy. The return of the breed will benefit biodiversity and help mitigate the effects of climate change. (Bison knock over trees, which leads to more diverse woodlands and less forest flooding.)
“Using missing keystone species like bison to restore natural processes to habitats is the key to creating bio-abundance in our landscape,” a conservationist told CNN when the news outlet first reported on the wildlife project in 2020.
Hundreds of thousands of new moms in Kenya are getting free online help with breastfeeding thanks to a new mobile app that helps them learn and regulate the practice.
The World Health Organization estimates that breastfeeding could save the lives of nearly one million babies if more widely adopted. But many parents around the world struggle to breastfeed and regularly pump breast milk to feed their newborns.
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Kenyan journalist Janet Otieno designed the mobile app Nyonyesha (the Swahili word for breastfeed) after having difficulties with breastfeeding as a new mom. Users can set reminders to pump, and find tips on positioning and milk storage.
“It is not just about giving birth and putting the baby on the breast. Mothers need knowledge and support,” the founder of Kenya Association of Breastfeeding said.