Skip to main content

Heroes and villains

Badgers | Marble Arch Mound | Caffeine

Hulton Archive/Getty Images


A colony of badgers, which is digging up graves at a cemetery in Berwick-upon-Tweed, Northumberland. The locals are furious and the bereaved have taken to patrolling the graveyard at dusk to protect their loved ones’ graves. But badgers are a protected species, so they can’t be removed.


Fleur de Passion, a scientific research ship that ran aground on one of the coral reefs it was hoping to study. The ship was sailing through the Red Sea when it got wedged on Thomas Reef, a popular diving spot near Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt. The expedition faces a fine for any damage.


Sky the parrot, who was stolen in a house burglary, but kicked up such a fuss that the thieves took her back. Her owner, Sarah White, warned that the grumpy 20-year-old bird was “not to be messed with” Sky bites, hates men and shrieks “Come on” constantly, she said in an appeal, adding: “I hope whoever has her lost all their fingers from her biting them.” Sky was returned to her Oxfordshire home last weekend after a month away.


Tolga Akmen/AFP/Getty Images

The Marble Arch Mound, which was shut just two days after opening following a public outcry. The £2m artificial hill, commissioned by Westminster council, has been ridiculed as a hideous “slag heap” and “the worst attraction in London”. It’s an “insult to Britain’s many great follies”, which require a touch of romance and madness, says Harry Mount in the Telegraph.


Caffeine, which helps bumble bees work faster. A study suggests that caffeinated bees have better memories and are more efficient pollinators. The findings may be used to boost the efficiency of commercial bees in crop production.