Earth Changes
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Cloud Precipitation

Huge hail storm in Pecos, Texas

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Large hailstones
Large hail fell from a tornado warned storm near the town of Pecos, Texas covering the roads and damaging vehicles in the area.


Snowflake

Snowfall in Italy in late May

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Snow in Italy
While the center and south of the peninsula is very sunny and warm, in the north it snows. Even for our latitude snow in late May is not common.

Spring snow in Alto Adige. On the A22 motorway on the Austrian border movement of vehicles partially restricted. Huge traffic jams and many accidents.

Snows from early in the morning at the Brenner Pass: as shown in the photo taken by the webcam Site A22 snow is creating heavy traffic disruption in both carriageways between Sterzing and the state border. Especially heavy vehicles proceeding slowly slowing down the entire flow of vehicles.

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Snow in Italy

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Snow settles in Italy

Snowflake

Winter returns in late May with 18 inches of snow in German Alps

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© Jörg Heisig
Winter return to the Alps
Heavy Snow on May 21!!

Up to half a meter (18 inches) of snow hit higher elevations yesterday Snow covers the landscape around the Herzogstand in the Bavarian Alps at around 1730 meters altitude.

Not far away is the Walchensee, a popular destination for the residents of Munich.

Thanks to Loher for this link
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Winter returns
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Winter returns

Attention

Wild elephant kills one in Assam, India

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Upset elephant
One person was trampled to death by an elephant which got isolated from its herd. The jumbo also destroyed houses and standing crops at Kakripara village under Mankachar PS in Dhubri district on Monday, sources said.

The deceased, Monir Jamal, was guarding his paddy field when the elephant attacked him. After destroying some thatched houses and rice fields at Kakripara village, the jumbo retreated to the forest, the sources added.

Fire

Photographs of rare red 'lightning' sprites taken in New Mexico and Europe

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© Martin Popek
Lightning sprites captured in the Czech Republic on May 13, 2015.

Rarely seen brilliant red sprites were captured by photographers during thunderstorms last week in the Czech Republic and New Mexico.

Sprites are associated with lightning strikes but aren't actually lightning. Instead, sprites occur in the very high levels of the atmosphere above very strong thunderstorms, in the region called the mesosphere between 30 and 60 miles high. Sprites are triggered by positive cloud-to-ground lightning strikes in the storm — which is why they are most common during thunderstorm season — and typically only last a few seconds. They are usually shaped like jelly fish, columns or carrots.

"Sprites are a true space weather phenomenon," lightning scientist Oscar van der Velde of the Technical University of Catalonia, Spain, told spaceweather.com. "They develop in mid-air around 80 km [50 miles] altitude, growing in both directions, first down, then up. This happens when a fierce lightning bolt draws lots of charge from a cloud near Earth's surface. Electric fields [shoot] to the top of Earth's atmosphere - and the result is a sprite. The entire process takes about 20 milliseconds."

Bizarro Earth

A 4.2 magnitude earthquake 'causes homes to shake' in Kent, UK

© British Geological survey
The British Geological survey's monitoring stations showed seismic activity on Friday morning
A 4.2 magnitude earthquake has been recorded in Kent, the British Geological Survey (BGS) has said.

The tremor originated near Sandwich at a depth of 15km (9.5 miles) underground at 02:52 BST, it reported.

Residents in areas including Margate, Canterbury and Southend-on-Sea in Essex felt the tremor, with some saying they thought it was a plane crash or a bomb.

Kent Police said a number of calls had been received but no injuries or structural damage had been reported.

But Herbert Smith tweeted that he and his wife Doreen were taking refuge in their caravan after being evacuated from their damaged home in Flete.

Bizarro Earth

Strange skys, strange times: Another solar halo in mexico

People in Mexico's capital were captivated by a circular solar halo in the skies above the city's most famous monument, Angel of Independence.



Wolf

Family dog attacks and seriously injures toddler in Alanson, Michigan

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A pit bull terrier
A 20-month-old girl was seriously injured today, Thursday, when a dog living at her home attacked her, Emmet County Sheriff Pete Wallin said.

Wallin said the incident was reported at a home in the village of Alanson around 7:30 a.m. today. Along with deputies, Alanson-Littlefield Fire Department first responders and Emmet County EMS responded to the scene to provide medical care and transported the girl to McLaren Northern Michigan hospital.

Wallin did not have specific details on the girl's injuries or medical status, but described the injuries as serious, and noted that she has since been airlifted to Devos Children's Hospital in Grand Rapids.

Wallin said the dog, which he described as a "pit bull-type," has been detained by authorities.

He did not yet know if there had been previous incidents with the dog being aggressive and said the investigation into today's incident is still ongoing.

Wallin said his office will likely at some point seek a court order to have the dog euthanized.

Eye 2

Snake filmed on moving car windscreen

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© newsflare
Snake hitches a lift in windscreen wipers
An oblivious motorist had no idea they had an extra passenger on board their car - until a huge snake suddenly appeared on their windscreen.

The slippery customer had been nesting in the windshield washer reservoir tank when its peaceful sleep was brought to an abrupt end by the car's engine starting.

Disturbed from its unique hiding place, the snake slowly appeared through the car's outside vents and found itself trapped on the windscreen as the driver was cruising down a motorway.


Attention

California declares emergency as oil spill fouls sea and beaches near Santa Barbara

© www.sillyid.com
Workers begin cleanup process of oil spill into the Pacific Ocean near Santa Barbara, CA
California Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency for Santa Barbara County late Wednesday after an onshore pipeline burst, spewing thousands of gallons of crude oil into the Pacific Ocean — blackening beaches and endangering West Coast wildlife. The area, a popular camping spot some 20 miles from Santa Barbara, known for its palm-tree-lined seashore and pristine surf, has been "closed indefinitely." The extent of the damage is not known.

A pipeline that carries oil from an onshore facility to refineries ruptured Tuesday, leaking for hours into a culvert under a highway and into a storm drain that led to the ocean near the Refugio State Beach. A control room operator noticed "abnormalities" in the line and shut it down, according to the Los Angeles Times. Firefighters responded to reports of a gasoline smell.

Texas-based oil company Plains All American Pipeline said up to 105,000 gallons of crude oil may have leaked out — up to 21,000 gallons of which may have spilled into the sea.

"It's important to remember this stretch of California coastline is unique to the world. It's beautiful and pristine," Santa Barbara County Supervisor Doreen Farr said, according to NBC Los Angeles. "This is more than an inconvenience. This is just a disaster. We are taking it very seriously."

Officials in California have begun cleanup and damage assessment operations after a ruptured pipeline spread some 21,000 gallons of oil onto beaches and into the ocean near Santa Barbara.

Comment: This kind of preventable negligence is unconscionable and the cleanup will take years. California's 6,000 miles of oil pipelines are regulated by the U.S. Department of Transportation and the state fire marshal. Before 2013, the fire marshal's office managed the 2,000 miles of interstate pipelines for the federal department, monitoring, inspecting and reviewing company records. Now, the federal government oversees those pipelines, including the one that failed this week. Great job of monitoring. The habitat thanks you.