Antarctic ice growing, not shrinking

Antarctic ice growing, not shrinkingSydney, April 18 : New analysis has indicated that contrary to the belief that there is large-scale melting of ice over most of Antarctica, ice is actually expanding in a large portion of the continent.

Antarctica has 90 per cent of the Earth's ice and 80 per cent of its fresh water. Extensive melting of Antarctic ice sheets would be required to raise sea levels substantially, and ice is melting in parts of west Antarctica.

The destabilisation of the Wilkins ice shelf generated international headlines this month.

Fiji's military regime tightens hold on power, media

Fiji's military regime tightens hold on power, mediaSydney - Fiji's military regime strengthened its grip on power Friday with the swearing-in of the interim indigenous affairs minister and former military forces commander as vice president, news reports from the capital, Suva, said.

Ratu Epeli Nailatikau became the first vice president since Fiji's 2006 military coup.

The regime also clamped down on the media, warning foreign journalists in the island nation not to write negative stories.

Three dead after Australia-bound refugee boat catches fire

Three dead after Australia-bound refugee boat catches fireSydney  - Three people are dead, two missing and dozen injured after an explosion on board an asylum-seekers' boat that was being towed to Christmas Island by Australian authorities Thursday.

The boat, which arrived off Australia's west coast from Indonesia, was carrying 49 people believed to be from Afghanistan.

How mongrel is that doggy in the window?

How mongrel is that doggy in the window?Sydney  - Most of us know what stock we were bred from and can even name mums and dads going back generations.

An Australian animal shelter is now offering a genealogy service for dogs.

Lort Smith Animal Hospital in Melbourne is the first provider of DNA testing for dogs outside the United States.

There's been a scramble for the appropriately named BITSA test, which costs around 100 US dollars, is a mail-order service, and can establish breeding going back three generations. All the Lort Smith pet detectives need is a saliva sample.

Australian tots to get career advice

Australian tots to get career adviceSydney  - A ballerina, Spiderman, a vet, a train driver and sometimes even a sea lion: these are the jobs that toddlers see themselves in when they grow up.

Kate Castine, an adviser to Australia 's department of education, isn't happy about this and wants 4-year-olds to be more serious about their career options.

As well as the danger of the nappy-bound hankering after non-existent jobs such as that of a mermaid even, there is a risk that they will just want to copy mum and dad and be farmers or housewives, doctors or welfare dependents.

Snakes on a plane ground Qantas jumbo

Snakes on a plane ground Qantas jumbo Sydney  - Qantas Airways Ltd took