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Health

9 year old boy recovering from otter attack near Kalispell, Montana

Zack Whipple, 9 of Polson was visiting grandma's house when he jumped into the cool water of Lake in the Woods northeast of Kalispell Aug. 4 and felt splashing underneath his feet that felt like fish swimming nearby.

Thinking little of the flipping fins below him, he climbed out of the lake and did a cannon ball off the dock above.

This time when he surfaced Zack spotted two adult otters who swam out from under the dock and began circling.

Zack was amused by the creatures as he watched them form their circle. He'd never seen otters. But amusement transformed into panic quickly when the otters dove under water and bit his legs.
Question

More strange animal behaviour: Cyclist reports attack by badger in Swindon, UK

A cyclist in Swindon called police after he said he was attacked by a badger.

The cyclist told officers that he was cycling along Thamesdown Drive late at night when the incident occurred.

Wiltshire Police's North Swindon team recounted the tale, in a light-hearted fashion, on its Facebook page.

It said: "One of our more unusual reports in the last week has been from someone who had a close shave with a bristly character in North Swindon.
Attention

Dead finback whale washes ashore in Rockport, Maine

© Desi Smith, Daily Times CNHI News Service
A dead whale, estimated to be about 54 feet long, lied sprawled across the beachfront after washing ashore over the weekend.

It will stay there until nature takes its course, officials are saying.

Rockport's Department of Public Works, in conjunction with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, was tasked with disposing of the carcass, after the whale - estimated to have been dead for two to three weeks - rolled onto the rocky, jagged beachfront.

In the past, Rockport officials have buried smaller whales, but this time large equipment would be unable to reach this beach.

DPW Director Joe Parisi said officials have little choice but to let the carcass deteriorate and wash out to sea bit by bit.
Alarm Clock

Summer of extremes: Records broken across the U.S.

US summer weather

Highlights of the summer's weather pattern.
This summer of extremes has seen numerous records broken across the country.

June saw a number of record wet records fall in the Midwest and Plains, while July was one of the coolest months on record for many in the Midwest and South.

August did see a pattern change from July, bringing a taste of the heat. Flooding was also a big story for the month of August.

Summer Records

As the summer of 2014 comes to a close, let's take a look at some of the records that have already been broken, as well as some that are in jeopardy.
Fish

Chinese fisherman catches rare, giant fish


A routine day by the waters soon turned into a memorable afternoon for a fisherman from Hegan City, Heilongjiang Province, recently. The man netted a rare kaluga sturgeon on Monday. The fish weighed nearly 270kg. A day later, he sold the prized catch for a price of 60,000 yuan (approx. $10,000).

Source: CCTV News
Cloud Precipitation

11 dead due to flooding in Chongqing, China

Several days of heavy rain in south west China has caused flooding and landslides which have left at least 11 people dead and 27 still missing.

One of the worst affected areas is Wuxi County in the province of Chongqing.
8 have died and 24 others are missing by early Tuesday after rainstorms brought landslides to Chongqing Municipality. pic.twitter.com/w8JXd2IyxX

- People's Daily,China (@PDChina) September 2, 2014
Newspaper

64,000-acre wildfire threatens Northern California communities

© Karen Crocker Derry via Facebook
Happy Camp Complex
A roughly 64,000-acre wildfire burning along the Northern California-Oregon border for three weeks continues to threaten two communities.

Officials have increased the number of firefighting personnel assigned to the Happy Camp Complex fire by 30% as flames advance in steep terrain, according to the U.S. Forest Service.


Comment: See below for a chart of wildfires over the past year, note the unseasonal peak in January ( the vast majority of all reports are from the Northern hemisphere).




Cloud Grey

Evidence of huge tsunamis hitting Malta - scientists fear that another giant wave could pummel Mediterranean islands again

© Unknown
The researchers found that large boulders had been moved in land by up to 100 metres from the seabed as a result of a massive ocean wave.
A huge wave that lifted 70-tonne boulders as if they were grains of sand hit the island of Malta in the recent past and could do so again with devastating consequences, a study has found.

Scientists have found the first evidence of a highly destructive tsunami in this part of the Mediterranean which was probably caused by an earthquake with an epicentre focused near Sicily or Greece.

The researchers found that large boulders at more than two dozen sites in the north-east of Malta had been moved in land by up to 100 metres from the seabed as a result of a massive ocean wave.

It is the first time that Malta has been directly linked with a Mediterranean tsunami and the scientists have already warned the Maltese authorities about the possibility that a similar event could occur in the future.

"These tsunamis have happened in the past and the tectonic zones that caused the earthquakes are still there now. It could happen again, but the difference this time is that the island is now more densely populated," said Malcolm Bray of the University of Portsmouth.
Phoenix

New study shows how Yellowstone supervolcano eruption would be disastrous for entire US

© Reuters / Jim Urquhart
The Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone National Park
If the massive supervolcano at Yellowstone National Park erupted again, scientists believe it would blanket much of the United States in ash and potentially sever communication as well as travel between the country's coasts.

According to a new study published by the US Geological Survey, cities about 300 miles away from the volcano's location in Wyoming would be covered in up to three feet of ash as a result of a supereruption, the largest kind of volcanic eruption possible. More than 240 cubic miles of material would be expelled into the atmosphere, reaching cities like New York and Los Angeles on both sides of the United States.

In fact, the resulting ash cloud, or "umbrella," as scientists called it, would be so strong that it would overpower normal wind patterns in North America, potentially grounding all air travel throughout the entire continent and radically altering the region's climate. Electronic communication between the US' East and West Coasts could also become complicated, if not hopeless.

Comment: An eruption at Yellowstone supervolcano would have such disastrous consequence that it is worth keeping an eye on, no matter how small the probability. And considering the approach of Nemesis, the Sun's companion star that many scientists have speculated on, and the huge impact it would have on planets in the solar system, the probability of an eruption at Yellowstone may not be as small as thought.

Watch: Nemesis - The Sun's Evil Twin Brother for more information about the Sun's companion star

And read Earth Changes and the Human Cosmic Connection for an exposition on how the companion star's approach would impact everything on Earth.

Wolf

Pack of coyotes chases man and dog through Burbank neighborhood, California

© Source: KTLA/CNN
A security camera caught a pack of coyotes running through a California neighborhood.
Nick Mendoza of Burbank, Calif., was chased by a pack of coyotes as he returned home from walking his dog. Mendoza knew that coyotes regularly prowl his neighborhood, but they had never actively stalked him before.

After getting his dog inside safely, Mendoza grabbed a shovel and tried to scare off the pack. He also tried throwing lemons at the coyotes. He was finally able to scare off the pack by driving down the street in his car with the high beams on. The incident was captured on a security camera outside of his home.

Watch the news coverage of the incident and surveillance footage from Mendoza's security camera:

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