Earth Changes

Cloud Lightning

Tropical storm Linfa brings flooding and landslides to Philippines

© Reuters
A father holds his daughter as they wade through waist-deep flooding caused by typhoon Linfa, locally named Egay, at Longos town in Malabon city, north of Manila, on July 6, 2015.
All shipping was ordered to remain in harbor and some flights were canceled in the northern Philippines, while schools were closed in the capital, Manila, on Monday due to flooding and landslides from a tropical storm, disaster officials said.

Storm warnings were issued in at least 14 areas of the main Philippine island of Luzon as tropical storm Linfa moved slowly across the north of the Southeast Asian archipelago. It was carrying maximum wind gusts of 100 km per hour (60 mph).

Alexander Pama, executive director of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, said the storm would bring heavy rain within a 400-km (250 miles) radius. The storm was named Egay in the Philippines.


Snowstorm in Summer? Russian town of Vorkuta hit by July blizzard


Snow in Vorkuta
Whereas many cities feel oppressed with the heat and the bright summer sun, this Russian town would gladly receive some more sunlight instead of snow.

The Russian town of Vorkuta saw a strange but nevertheless mesmerizing combination of green trees and white snow in the middle of summer.

Comment: Snow in Summer? Other regions that have experienced unusual snowfalls this Summer include Norway, which had 5 times more snow in June than normal, and "unprecedented" snowfalls on Scottish mountains.


8th recent shark attack reported along North Carolina coast


According to reports a Marine was injured over the weekend in the eighth shark attack along the North Carolina coast so far this season.

WITN-TV says a spokesman for the Naval Hospital at Camp Lejeune said the victim was brought into the hospital Saturday.

The bite happened in Surf City and the victim was treated and released.

WWAY reported that Pender County Emergency Management and Surf City Police received no calls of shark bites in the area, so the location of the incident is unknown.

Seven other people have been attacked by sharks along the North Carolina coast in the past three weeks. The most recent was Wednesday when a 68-year-old man was injured off Ocracoke Island.


Hippo kills woman in Botswana


Maun police are investigating an incident in which a 56 year old woman was attacked and killed by a hippo at Khwae village on Sunday (July 5).

In an interview with BOPA, Superintendent John Kelebeng of Botswana Police said the woman together with her 32 year-old daughter went to the river to fetch a traditional vegetable, Tswii when she met her fate.

He said the deceased sustained serious injuries on the waist, head and thighs. He said they received a report from a police officer in Khwae who heard someone screaming from the river as he met the daughter running for her life while the mother was attacked.

Superintendent Kelebeng said the deceased was rushed to Letsholathebe Memorial hospital and was certified dead upon arrival. He said the hippo had been killed by wildlife officials.

Source: Botswana Daily News


Elephant kills researcher in Zambia


Elephant looking slightly annoyed
A 29- year-old researcher from the USA has been killed by an elephant in the Kafue National Park in Mumbwa, the police have said.

Margarita Metallinou was in the company of two male American researchers when the animal attacked them and killed her.

Central Province police commissioner Lombe Kamukoshi said in an interview yesterday that the elephant killed Ms Metallinou near Hook Bridge on Tuesday around 13:30 hours when the trio ventured in the park without game rangers.

Ms Kamukoshi said when Ms Metallinou saw the animal, she screamed and it charged at her while her colleagues managed to run away.

She said Jeffrey Weinell, 24, one of the male researchers, gave a statement to the police in Mumbwa about the incident and the death of Ms Metallinou.

Cloud Lightning

Lightning storms hit UK: Map shows the astounding number of strikes

Spectacular lightning storms were witnessed across the UK
If you were kept awake last night by lightning storms, you weren't alone.

Spectacular thunder and lightning shows were witnessed across the UK - by some estimates there were as many as 30,000 lightning strikes.

The image above from shows just some of them from midnight on Friday.

Comment: The storms have claimed three lives after two hill walkers were struck by separate lightning bolts and a boy died after getting into trouble in a river.


Sick pygmy whale dies following stranding on Surfside Beach, Texas


A sick Pygmy whale washed ashore on Surfside Beach Friday morning.
A sick Pygmy whale washed ashore on Surfside Beach Friday morning, much to the surprise of nearby beachgoers.

People rushed to save the whale, but responders determined the whale was too sick to be transported and had to be put down.

Officials with the Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network said that if you encounter a beached whale or dolphin, call 1-800-9-Mammal and follow the instructions of the staff until a rescue team can arrive on scene.


2 waterspouts form near La Union, Philippines

Two waterspouts were caught by a resident in Aringay, La Union during inclement weather there, a report from GMA's "24 Oras" said Saturday.

According to the residents who took the video footage, they first saw one of the waterspouts at sea and was approaching their houses.

They then saw another, larger waterspout building up and seemingly sucking water from the sea nearby.

The waterspouts fortunately did not pass through their houses and no one was reported hurt during the incident.

According to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, waterspouts are tornados that form over water "They are associated with severe thunderstorms, and are often accompanied by high winds and seas, large hail, and frequent dangerous lightning," NOAA also said on its website


Monarch butterfly population drops to dangerously low levels


Monarch butterfly
Monarch butterflies are in decline nationwide, and may be approaching dangerously low levels.

Monarchs have declined nearly 80% in the 21 years researchers have been monitoring their wintering populations, from a high of up to one billion butterflies in the 1990s to roughly 56 million today, according to a recent report from the Xerces Society.

But according to Mark Ferguson, a biologist for the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department, Vermont may play an important role in the continued efforts at monarch conservation.

"Vermont's meadows and old fields provide habitat for milkweed, which is a critical food source for monarchs," said Ferguson. "In contrast, increasing levels of herbicide use in large-scale agriculture in the Midwest appear to have greatly reduced the abundance of milkweed in that part of the country, which historically produced half of the monarchs in eastern North America."

Monarchs lay eggs on milkweed and feed on milkweed as caterpillars. Most eastern monarchs overwinter at a single site in the mountains of central Mexico. According to Ferguson, monarchs need to reproduce several times during their north-bound migration, and require milkweed at each of these sites.


Horse rescued from sinkhole in Washington County, Pennsylvania


Crews in Washington County rescued a horse from a sinkhole on a Scenery Hill farm Friday morning. The retired racehorse, named Chautauqua Worms, was uninjured except for a few cuts, rescuers said.
The Washington County Animal Response Team rescued a horse Friday morning from a 6-foot sinkhole at a Scenery Hill farm.

Responders lifted the 1,000-pound horse, named Chautauqua Worms, from the hole with an A-frame hoist borrowed from the county, said Ed Childers, a firefighter at the North Strabane fire department, which runs the rescue team known as CART.

The response team arrived at the Amos Road property about 6 a.m., pulling the horse from the pit at 9:30 a.m., Childers said.

"All in all, everything went pretty well," Childers said. "No injuries, no damaged equipment."

Neighbors identified the horse as belonging to horse farm owner Lisa Beinhauer. She could not be reached for comment.