Move over murder hornets: Thanks to the coronavirus, we now have to worry about cannibal rats.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has warned of “unusual or aggressive” behavior in American rats as a consequence of more than two months of human lockdown for city-dwelling rodents who now find themselves unable to dine out on restaurant waste, street garbage and other food sources.

Last month, according to the national health body, dumpster-diving rats were observed resorting to eating their young in the wake of urban shutdowns.

“Community-wide closures have led to a decrease in food available to rodents, especially in dense commercial areas,” the CDC said in recently updated rodent-control guidelines.

“Some jurisdictions have reported an increase in rodent activity as rodents search for new sources of food. Environmental health and rodent control programs may see an increase in service requests related to rodents and reports of unusual or aggressive rodent behavior.”

Gov. Gavin Newsom OK’s reopen of hair salons and barbershops

Governor Gavin Newsom has approved the Stage 3 reopen of hair salons and barbershops.

With cases on track to nearly double in the month of May, the governor has pointed to steady hospitalizations and other metrics as proof that the state is bending the curve.

Los Angeles County, which accounts for the bulk of the state’s COVID-19 cases and more than half of its reported deaths, is one of 11 counties not yet allowed to push further in reopening.

Newsom’s move to resume salon services, under a county-by-county approach, adds to a growing list of activities, including in-person shopping and eating at restaurants, that Newsom has permitted at a regional or statewide level over the last month.

China Rules Out Animal Market and Lab as Coronavirus Origin

Perhaps the coronavirus fairy caused the pandemic?

Chinese scientists in recent days said they had ruled out both a laboratory and an animal market in the city of Wuhan as possible origins of the coronavirus pandemic, in their most detailed pushback to date against allegations from U.S. officials and others over what might have sparked it.

The director of the Wuhan Institute of Virology, at the center of allegations around a potential laboratory accident, Wang Yanyi, over the weekend told China Central Television that the coronavirus was significantly different from any live pathogen that has been studied at the institute and that there therefore was no chance it could have leaked from there.

Separately, China’s top epidemiologist said Tuesday that testing of samples from a Wuhan food market, initially suspected as a path for the virus’s spread to humans, failed to show links between animals being sold there and the pathogen. Gao Fu, director of the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention, said in comments carried in Chinese state media, “It now turns out that the market is one of the victims.”

Apple data from Memorial Day weekend shows driving is back to pre-pandemic levels

America is reopening, despite media and progressive attempts to keep it shut.

The number of Americans venturing out over the Memorial Day weekend has spiked to levels not seen since the coronavirus pandemic brought the United States to a grinding halt more than two months ago.

Cellphone data from Apple’s COVID-19 mobility trends report shows that the number of people out driving across the US increased by more than 25 percent on Saturday alone.

The number of people out walking also increased on Saturday to levels not seen since mid-March when stay-at-home orders were put in place across most of the country.

In some states – like Missouri and Mississippi – the levels of driving at the weekend increased to levels not seen this year.

In comparison, the number of people driving and walking around dropped nearly 70 percent at the peak of the pandemic in early April. The data shows a gradual increase of people moving around since then.

The young join the rich in ditching the Big Apple as the coronavirus economic downturn drives professionals out

The young and the rich are fleeing New York after the coronavirus lockdown has left them permanently adopting work-from-home models.

As COVID-19 gripped the country in mid March, residents of New York City’s wealthiest neighborhoods fled to ride out the lockdown at their vacation homes, while many young people hunkered down in the suburbs with their parents.

Some were forced to break their leases and move back to their hometowns because they could no longer afford the city’s exorbitant rent prices after losing their jobs, while others have continued paying for their cramped city apartments while they shelter elsewhere.

The majority intend to return at the end of the lockdown period, but the economic impact of the pandemic as well as the shift to remote working has led some people to ditch the city for good.

Among them is Shelby Gutleber, who lost her job as a waitress in the Upper East Side in March and moved to Keansburg, in central New Jersey – a move she described as the best decision she ever made.

Nobel Prize winner: Coronavirus lockdowns cost lives instead of saving them

A Nobel laureate who accurately predicted when China would peak in the crisis says that the lockdowns actually cost lives.

Stanford University biophysicist Michael Levitt, a British American Israeli who won the 2013 Nobel Prize in chemistry, said he believed other health precautions, such as enforcing the use of masks, would have been more effective in combating the pandemic, the Telegraph reported.

“I think lockdown saved no lives. I think it may have cost lives,” Levitt, who is not an epidemiologist, told the publication.

“There is no doubt that you can stop an epidemic with lockdown, but it’s a very blunt and very medieval weapon and the epidemic could have been stopped just as effectively with other sensible measures (such as masks and other forms of social distancing),” he added.

Levitt attributed the additional lives lost to other dangers from the fallout of the lockdowns, such as domestic abuse and fewer people seeking health care for ailments other than the virus.

 

 
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