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WATCH: Japanese otters cool off during heat wave – National

WATCH ABOVE: Otters ride a water slide to beat the heat.

TORONTO – For the past few weeks, much of Japan has been enduring sweltering heat. People and animals alike – like these playful otters – have been finding ways to beat the heat.

Two years ago, the Ichikawa Zoological and Botanical Garden in Ichikawa, east of Tokyo, built a slide for these little guys, and over the past few days they’ve been making the most of it.

According to the Japan Meteorological Agency, temperatures in some some parts of Japan could reach upwards of 35 C. And the heat shows no signs of abating any time soon. Forecasts for the week are expected to remain around 30 C to 35 C. Nighttime lows are expected to be 25 C.

And it’s not just Japan: in China, temperatures have been in the 30s as well and look to continue over the next week.

Much of Asia has been enduring sweltering heat over the past week, and it doesn’t look like it will let up any time soon.

Global News

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De Santis out as Impact sporting director – Montreal

MONTREAL – Nick De Santis has been removed from his job as sporting director of the struggling Montreal Impact.

Team president Joey Saputo said De Santis will stay with the team in an administrative role but would not be involved in decisions on
players or the team.

READ MORE: Montreal Impact contend with tight schedule

Coach and director of player personnel Frank Klopas will take over De Santis’s duties at least through next season.

Saputo said the team is looking into ways it can reorganize its management structure.

READ MORE:  Garcia scores 2 goals, Real Salt Lake beats Montreal 3-1

De Santis, 46, has been with the Impact organization for 20 years as a player, coach and manager.

Saputo urged the team to play hard for the rest of the MLS season and the CONCACAF champions league.

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©2014The Canadian Press

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Trump willing to buy the Buffalo Bills but won’t be ‘totally stupid’ – Toronto

Watch above:  Could Toronto be the future home of the Bills? Carey Marsden reports. 

BUFFALO, N.Y. – Donald Trump says he is unlikely to be the next owner of the Buffalo Bills because he’s “not going to do something totally stupid” to make the team his.

“I’ll be bidding, but many other people will be bidding,” the billionaire businessman said on Fox News ahead of a Tuesday deadline for prospective owners to submit initial offers.

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The National Football League franchise is for sale following the death in March of owner Ralph Wilson.

“I would say the chances are very, very unlikely, because I’m not going to do something totally stupid,” Trump said, “Maybe just a little bit stupid, but not totally stupid.”

Others who have shown interest in buying the Bills include Buffalo Sabres owners Terry and Kim Pegula, former Sabres owner B. Thomas Golisano and a group that includes rocker Jon Bon Jovi and Canadian partners Larry Tanenbaum, chairman of Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, and the Rogers family of Toronto-based Rogers Communications.

Trump’s lawyer Michael Cohen told The Associated Press the mogul’s bid package would be submitted Tuesday afternoon.

The Pegulas also submitted a bid, according to a person familiar with the sale process who spoke to the AP on the condition of anonymity because the sale is private.

WATCH: Donald Trump tells Fox News that he will bid on Bills but won’t do anything “totally stupid”

The Bills most recently were valued by Forbes at $870 million but are expected to sell for at least $1 billion, partly because NFL teams rarely go on the market.

“I’m … somebody that likes to buy for the right price,” Trump said. “Right now you see pricing of certain types of assets – including real estate assets – they’re going through the roof.”

Kyle Arrington #25 of the New England Patriots deflects a pass in front of Robert Woods #10 of the Buffalo Bills in the second half during the game at Gillette Stadium on December 29, 2013 in Foxboro, Massachusetts.

Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

About 10 prospective ownership groups submitted nondisclosure agreements to Morgan Stanley, the banking firm overseeing the Bills sale on behalf of Wilson’s estate. Not all will necessarily follow up with a bid.

Because the sale process is private, Morgan Stanley will not make names of would-be buyers public. The firm will review the initial non-binding bids and is expected within the next week to determine which groups may progress to the next stage of bidding.

The new owner could be identified by Labor Day and be presented to NFL owners for approval during league meetings in early October.

Meanwhile, representatives of the Bon Jovi group who have been exploring potential stadium sites scheduled a meeting with upstate New York developer Scott Congel, a person familiar with the meeting told the AP on Tuesday. The person spoke on the condition of anonymity because the group has not disclosed who it is meeting with and the person wasn’t authorized to do so.

Congel, the son of Pyramid Management Group owner Robert Congel, has proposed building a stadium on a former mall site in the Buffalo suburb of West Seneca. Syracuse-based Pyramid is one of the largest shopping mall developers in the northeast.

The AP reported last week that the Bon Jovi group had conducted a feasibility study that included building a stadium in Toronto but also planned to meet with two Buffalo-area developers. A lease agreement essentially locks the Bills into staying in Buffalo through the 2019 season. It is unclear if the group would eventually want to move the team to Toronto.

©2014The Associated Press

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Woman sues Facebook for $123 million over ‘revenge porn’ – National

TORONTO – A Houston, Texas woman has filed a $123 million lawsuit against Facebook and a former friend after a profile page containing fake pornographic images was started in her name.

Meryem Ali said she was the victim of “revenge porn” after a friend photoshopped her face onto pornographic images and posted them to a Facebook page using her full name.

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According to legal documents obtained by The Wrap, the images contained “false, phony, naked body shots” and sexual acts. The report said Ali was alerted to the page after her friends and family received friend requests from the account.

The lawsuit alleges that Ali contacted Facebook several times to have the page taken down, but the social network failed to do so for months.

“Even then, it wasn’t until after Ali had involved the Houston Police Department in the investigation and they subpoenaed Facebook records to try and identify who was behind the site in the first place,” read The Wrap’s report.

According to legal documents, Ali determined the total of the damages by calculating ten cents for each of Facebook’s 1.23 billion subscribers.

The lawsuit intends to seek damages for Ali’s emotional suffering and embarrassment from the incident, as well as “expose the frailties and failures of the falsely advertised, and false promoted privacy mechanisms,” according to The Wrap.

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Two more mysterious giant craters appear at the ‘end of the world’ – National

WATCH: Mysterious hole forms in Siberia

TORONTO – What is swallowing the Earth in Siberia?

Last September, residents living on the remote Yamal Peninsula in Siberia were surprised to find that a giant crater – some 30 metres wide and 70 metres deep – had mysteriously formed.

Now, two more craters have formed, one that is hundreds of kilometres from the first, leaving many people baffled.

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According to media reports out of Russia, the second crater was discovered not too far from the first by reindeer herders on the Yamal Peninsula – which is known to locals as the “end of the world” due to its remoteness.

Yet another crater – that is between 60 and 100 metres deep, with a diameter of less than four metres – was found on the Taymyr Peninsula east of Yamal.

Experts have ventured to the first hole to study its composition, finding an icy lake at its bottom. The scientists believe that it is a natural phenomenon, but say that more study is needed to better understand how these craters form.

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Bike lane pilot project installed in Richmond-Adelaide area – Toronto

TORONTO – The City of Toronto has installed additional bicycle lanes on Richmond Street between Bathurst Street and University Avenue as a pilot project to enhance cycling infrastructure.

“The installation of this cycling infrastructure will provide safer routes and better connectivity for cyclists as they travel in this part of the city,” said Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong, Chair of the Public Works and Infrastructure Committee in a media release.

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READ MORE: Data shows highest number of ‘doorings’ happen on College St.

Minnan-Wong said the city has undertaken a public consultation on the project and there is a belief that the new lane additions will be beneficial to the neighbourhood.

The changes are part of the Richmond-Adelaide Bikeway Environmental Assessment Study to evaluate the feasibility of cycle tracks and other cycling infrastructure in this area.

The results of the pilot project will be a part of the final recommendations submitted to city council in 2015.

READ MORE: Driver charged after councillor Mary-Margaret McMahon hit by car riding bicycle

Minnan-Wong told reporters Wednesday there is still a major concern with regards to vehicles parking in bicycle lanes and that there should be a more heavy-handed approach to by-law enforcement.

Drivers caught parking in the dedicated bike lanes can be fined $150.

READ MORE: ‘I flew over his door and hit my head’: Your dooring horror stories

According to city officials, work on cycle lanes completed in Toronto thus far include:

• cycle tracks on Simcoe Street from Front Street to Queen Street
• contra-flow bike lane (bike lane that allows cyclists to travel in the opposite direction on a one-way street) on the north side of Richmond Street, designed to extend the Richmond-Adelaide route west from Bathurst Street to Niagara Street
• southbound bike lane on the west side of Bathurst Street from Richmond Street to Adelaide Street to connect to the eastbound Adelaide Street cycle track, and
• westbound contra-flow bike lanes on the north side of Phoebe Street from Beverley Street to Soho Street and on the north side of Stephanie Street from John Street to Beverley Street, designed to connect Beverley-St. George bike lanes to Richmond Street and Adelaide Street.

Work is currently undeway in the following areas:

• eastbound cycle track on the south side of Adelaide Street from Bathurst Street to Simcoe Street
• westbound cycle track on the north side of Richmond Street from York Street to Bathurst Street
• bicycle lanes on both sides of Peter Street from King Street to Queen Street, and
• traffic signals at the Queen-Soho-Peter Street intersection are being modified to accommodate cyclists crossing north-south, connecting the Richmond Street and Adelaide Street cycle tracks to the Beverley-St. George bike lanes.

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Fire blight threatens apple crops in Annapolis Valley – Halifax

HALIFAX – Berwick is known as the apple capital of Nova Scotia, but a recent problem is starting to threaten the region’s crops.

Fire blight, a bacterial disease that affects apple and pear trees, has been in Nova Scotia for about 50 years, but never on its current scale.

“This is easily the worst outbreak we’ve ever had,” said Larry Lutz, an apple grower and tree fruit specialist. “Nova Scotia has traditionally been relatively free of the problem.

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“There’s one or two orchards every year that saw some symptoms and it’s quite easily controlled. However, this year what we have is an outbreak that’s spread to almost every orchard in the valley.”

Unlike most viruses that damage fruit, fire blight has the ability to kill the tree itself. The only way to stop the spread is to cut off the affected part — or cut down the entire tree.

The virus is already being called a huge economic loss for the valley.

“This spring we planted 1,000 new trees and we had to take out 200 of them,” said apple grower Rene Penner. “When it hits young trees, it hits them really hard.”

Some apple growers are already out tens of thousands of dollars.

A growing concern is that the disease will not only affect this year’s crops, but future harvests.

“The bacteria will be with us for a long time,” Penner said. “We’re going to take some extreme measures this spring with chemicals and we’ll be watching it really close.

“You can’t just reorder trees and plant them. It takes a while.”

Since fire blight can also affect backyard trees, experts are asking homeowners to check their own apple trees for signs of the disease.

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Europe’s final resupply ship launches to space station – National

Watch the video above: Europe’s final ATV-5 rocket blasts off from French Guiana.

TORONTO – The International Space Station will receive supplies in about two weeks after the successful launch of the European Space Agency’s (ESA) rocket from French Guiana on Tuesday.

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The ATV-5 will dock to the station’s Zvezda service module on Aug. 12 at 9:43 a.m. with more than 6,000 kilograms of supplies, including food and fuel, as well as scientific hardware.

The spacecraft, called the Lemaitre after a Belgian scientist who formulated the Big Bang theory, will also fly around the station to test a laser infrared imaging sensor that will help with future guidance.

The ESA plans to use ATV technology for future spacecraft, possibly as early as 2017.

Next January, the ATV-5 will leave the space station with trash and burn up over the Pacific Ocean.

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How many servings of fruit, vegetables daily? Here’s the magic number

If eating fruits and vegetables feels like a daily chore, Harvard doctors have some good news for you: the magic number you should be aiming for is five servings, which is only half the amount Canadian health officials recommend.

After you’ve hit that “five a day” threshold, the Boston scientists say that loading up on more fruits and veggies doesn’t have any added effect.

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“It is possible that the digestibility of fruits and vegetables and the availability of nutrients and other bioactive compounds of these foods may have reached a plateau at five servings for most people,” Dr. Frank Hu, a Harvard School of Public Health professor, told Health Day.

Keep in mind, Canada’s Food Guide suggests that adults should be eating eight to 10 servings each day.

READ MORE: The 41 most nutrient-dense fruits and vegetables

Hu researches nutrition and lifestyle and their effect on type 2 diabetes and heart disease. In previous work, Hu pointed to a risk of early death if people ate red meat daily. He also linked coffee drinking to longer life expectancy.

This time, he conducted a meta-analysis, which factors in the results of a handful of hand-picked studies, to consider how fruit and vegetable intake affected risk of dying from chronic disease.

The results of 16 studies and a total of 833,000 participants was included in the analysis.

About 56,400 people died during the course of the study. But every daily serving of fruit or vegetables lowered the risk of death by five per cent.

Risk of heart-health-related death was reduced by four per cent.

If study participants ate more than five servings of the fare, the benefit didn’t increase, though.

READ MORE: Some of the worst foods for your heart’s health

While the study looked at fruit and vegetable intake and its effect on death, it can’t concretely say that it’s the fruit and vegetables causing the decreased risk.

And the takeaway message isn’t to stop at five servings either. The research didn’t see any negative health effects in participants who ate more than five servings a day.

It could be a nudge of encouragement — you may not hit the eight serving mark but five is much more attainable.

Canada’s Food Guide advises consumers to reach for one dark green and one orange vegetable each day. It also suggests that you can reach for fresh, frozen of canned vegetables — they’re all nutritious options.

READ MORE: What’s the best way to cook vegetables? Steaming, study says

Last month, American researchers documented the most nutrient-dense vegetables and fruits. Watercress, Chinese cabbage, and chard topped the list.

Hu’s findings were published Tuesday night in the BMJ.

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Microsoft to roll out Cortana digital assistant to Canadian users – National

LOS ANGELES – Microsoft is spreading its Cortana digital assistant abroad, starting with China and the U.K.

The company’s corporate vice-president of operating systems, Joe Belfiore, said Wednesday in Beijing that Chinese and British users of Windows Phones will get the voice-recognizing app in an update to Windows Phone 8.1 that will begin rolling out to developers next week and to users in the coming months.

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In China, the app nicknamed “Xiao Na,” will speak Mandarin and include locally relevant information, like air quality reports in weather updates and information on local TV shows and celebrities.

READ MORE: Microsoft reveals Siri-like Windows Phone feature

In Britain, users will get an app that has a British accent and be up to date about English Premier League soccer and other local matters.

Users in Australia, Canada and India will also be allowed to use a version of Cortana, although the Redmond, Washington-based company said that would be an earlier test mode and tailored to U.S. and U.K. audiences.

The update, described in April at Microsoft Corp.’s developer conference, will also introduce new hardware capabilities as the software giant seeks hardware partners beyond Nokia, whose device unit it purchased in April. Although Nokia has accounted for most of the Windows Phone shipments today, Microsoft has signed up 14 new manufacturing partners in the last six months, including heavyweights like Samsung, HTC, Huawei and ZTE.

WATCH: Microsoft pokes fun at Apple’s Siri in new ad

The update allows for phones to use two SIM cards, supports a better screen resolution for lower-end phones and adds support for so-called “smart covers” that give users brief notifications through a small window in the cover like on Samsung’s S4 and S5.

Additionally, the update adds support for faster charging and improves support for Bluetooth accessories like fitness tracker wristbands.

On the software side, the update will now allow so-called “live tile” icons to be grouped into folders, a functionality that has long been available on Apple iPhones and devices that run Google Inc.’s Android operating system.

In Windows Phone, however, the tiles show snippets of information from the apps. The folders will show snippets from four to 18 apps in the folder at once.

©2014The Canadian Press

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