Mr. Toe Thumb

A father-of-one has shown off his unusual new thumb after he lost his original in a carpentry accident. James Byrne, 29, had his big toe grafted on to his hand after he severed his left thumb while sawing through a piece of wood last December. Surgeons had first tried to sew his original thumb back on but the blood would not start flowing again despite months of treatment, including using leeches. That’s when the surgeons made their unusual suggestion of using his dominant toe. They said losing a toe would only affect his balance in the short term – therefore outweighing the loss to his foot. His consultant Umraz Khan at Frenchay Hospital in Bristol carried out the operation in September. Now, two months after the operation, the paver from Bristol has a working ‘thumb’ – which he has nicknamed ‘Toby.” w/ photos + videos

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Half A Beetle!

“This is how Willy Wonka gets to work in the morning.” — nightfly016

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Albino Snail

A rare white-bodied giant snail has been found by members of the Waimea Tramping Club in Kahurangi National Park. The rare albino giant Powelliphanta hochstetteri hochstetteri snail, a ‘fascinating find’, was spotted in the Flora Stream area during a tramping club party’s recent trip, a Department of Conservation spokesperson said today. The snail had its characteristic golden brown-spiralled shell but with a body that was a glowing white rather than the usual deep black color. Motueka resident Bill Brough, who has seen quite a number of Powelliphanta snails in his tramps, was one of three people to see the remarkable snail, he said. “Our group had seen three or four snails already that morning as it had rained and they’d come out in the wet conditions. Then I saw the white snail and went ‘wow’. We were excited to see it, knowing how extraordinary it was.” w/ photo

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Jet-Powered Minivan

“John meets Chris Krug, a South Carolina inventor who put a helicopter engine in his minivan — and then drag raced down Main Street.”

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Dog Shoots Hunter In Buttocks

A US hunter was rushed to hospital after being shot in the buttocks by his dog. The 46-year-old man was hit after his ‘excited’ pet stepped on a shotgun in his boat, reports the Daily Telegraph. He escaped serious injury, receiving only minor wounds to his buttocks and probably a bigger one to his pride. Police said the man had been duck hunting with a friend on the Great Salt Lake, Utah, when the bizarre accident happened. The hunter, from Brigham City, was shot as he climbed out of the boat to move decoys in an area of shallow marsh. Deputy chief sheriff Kevin Potter said: “The dog got excited, was jumping around inside the boat and then it jumped on the gun. “It went off, shooting the decoy setter in the buttocks. I don’t know if the safety device was on. It’s not impossible the dog could have taken it off safety.” w/ photo

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