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Black Cat

Hunt on for man-eater leopard after 2 killed in Alirajpur, India


Meanwhile, throughout the day rumours about killing by leopard kept forest officials on their toes.
A day after a pregnant woman was mauled by a man-eater leopard at Chhoti Jwari village in Alirajpur district, wildlife rescue team and battery of forest officials have launched a massive hunt to trace the beast.

DFO Alirajpur RS Sikarwar said, "Nearly six teams have been sent to different directions to trap the leopard. The rescue operation is being carried out with two tranquilizer guns and other equipment to catch the beast. Local villagers are also helping us but so far we are unable to trace it. Search operation is expected to intensify from Friday morning."

Meanwhile, throughout the day rumours about killing by leopard kept forest officials on their toes.

"Today no one was killed by leopard and people are spreading rumours," said Sikarwar.

Comment: A total of 10 leopard attacks on humans ( though not all involving fatalities) have now been recently reported from India, all within a relatively short time span (29th July - 14th September).

See also: Eight separate leopard attacks on humans across India within 2 months: Leopard attacks 5 people, beaten to death in Assam, India

Leopard attacks teacher in Doon locality, India (Two reports.)

Leopard attacks 8-year-old girl in Amreli, India

Indian woman kills leopard with sickle after half-hour battle

Leopard attacks and mauls six villagers in West Bengal, India

2 farm workers attacked by leopard in India

Man-eating leopard preys on drunk villagers in the Didihat region, Himalayas

Ice Cube

Low solar activity has German science journalist asking about "Threat of a little Ice Age"

Science journalist Michael Odenwald at the German news weekly FOCUS used to be quite the warmist, and maybe he still is. But his latest article here tells us that he may be opening up to other climate change explanations: natural factors such as solar activity.

© NASA
Solar activity has quieted over the last years.
Odenwald's article focusses on the sun's recent solar activity, noting that the current cycle has only been about as half as active as normal and that the "sun in the second half of the 20th century was unusually active over several cycles." He then notes how the earth's climate has suspiciously stopped warming since the sun went quiet.

"Our planet could cool down"

Before citing the works of geophysicist Ilya Usoskin of the Finnish University Oulu, Odenwald writes:
The current low activity of the cosmic oven has possible dramatic consequences for our planet: Our planet could cool down. Perhaps the quiet sun is hidden behind another phenomenon over which scientists have long been wondering about: At around the year 2000 global warming came to a halt."
Odenwald also informs readers that the high level of solar activity from 1950 bis 2009 indeed had been an outlier and that it is clear that "the global temperature, which has increased for more than 100 years, rose most strongly from 1975 to 2000.According to the IPCC the 30-year period from 1983 to 2012 in the northern hemisphere was the warmest in 1400 years. Roughly calculated it coincides with the most recent Grand Maximum."

Comment: Solar activity is indeed extremely low and our planet has been cooling for some years now, all points to a new ice age. To understand the bigger picture see: Earth Changes and the Human-Cosmic Connection (The Secret History of the World Book 3)

Health

Brooklyn mother says rat bit her young son while he slept


Mauled: Nathaniel was attacked in his sleep by the rats at his mother's, Brooklyn home in August
A Brooklyn mother says she and her 3-year-old son are still traumatized after she found the boy covered in bite marks and blood in his bed from what she believes was a rat attack.

"There was blood all over his pillow," said Marilyn Abreu, who lives in a Bedford-Stuyvesant apartment with her son.

The boy had open wounds across his face, neck and feet. Abreu believes he was bitten by a rat or several rats while he slept on Aug. 21.

"It wasn't no scratches, it was the actual teeth," she said.

Bizarro Earth

More big 'Ring of Fire' quakes likely, say scientists

Earthquakes
© xiefei/istockphoto
The findings are based on a new earthquake risk assessment method.
The Pacific Ocean's volcanic 'Ring of Fire' could produce more earthquakes of magnitude 9 or greater, say researchers.

Their findings, reported in the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, are based on a new way of calculating the probability of an earthquake.

The new research comes in the wake of the 2004 magnitude 9.3 Sumatra-Andaman earthquake which killed over 230,000 people across the Indian Ocean, and the 2011 magnitude 9 Tohoku earthquake which devastated Japan, claiming almost 19,000 lives.

"The strength of both these earthquakes caught many scientists by surprise," says the study's lead author Dr Yufang Rong, a seismologist with insurer FM Global.

"Almost all past methodologies failed to predict the strength of these earthquakes, so we looked at the problem again."

Existing methods of assessing earthquake risk are based on calculating how often earthquakes of a given magnitude happen along a particular fault line.

All these models are however tied to the limited histories available through earthquake records.
Bizarro Earth

Swedish earthquake shakes parts of Finland

An unusually strong earthquake in central Sweden on Monday was also felt in Finland.
Swedish Earthquake
© Pekka Varis
Neighbouring Sweden is much more mountainous than Finland. Kebnekaise, in the far north, is its highest peak at 2014 metres.
The University of Helsinki's Institute of Seismology says that an earthquake occurred shortly after 4 pm in central Sweden, with a magnitude of 5.2 on the open-ended Richter scale. It says the temblor took place some 10 kilometres under the earth's surface

The institute adds there were a number of observations of the quake in the Pirkanmaa and Satakunta regions of south-western and central Finland. There was also an observation in Vantaa that was likely related to the Swedish quake.
Cloud Precipitation

Rare tornado filmed near Tarragona, Spain

© Niccolò Ubalducci
A type of tornado known as a waterspout surprised bathers on a famous nudist beach near the Catalan city of Tarragona on Sunday when it swirled close to the shore in a spectacular vortex of wind and water.

Visitors to El Torn de l'Hospitalet de l'Infant nudist beach and the surrounding area were stunned to see the rotating column of air connecting the sea and low-hanging storm clouds just metres offshore.

Waterspouts are rare in Spain and form only when especially strong winds are blowing.

Sunday's waterspout came before storm that hit most of the Catalonia region in the afternoon and evening, resulting in 288 calls to emergency services by people affected by torrential downpours.

A number of people photographed the tornado on their mobile phones and posted images and videos to social media.

Cloud Precipitation

Cars washed away as flash flooding tears through Collioure, France


Abandoned: Three vehicles are abandoned as they are submerged by water in the video
This is the moment cars are picked up as though they are weightless and carried along in flash flooding in France. The 41-second video shows up to six partially submerged vehicles being battered by a barrage of water in the city of Collioure, near the Spanish border.

In the footage, cars and jeeps almost disappear from view as they are submerged and dragged along by powerful tidal waves of water.

Cloud Precipitation

Hurricane Odile - 'the strongest hurricane to hit the tip of the Baja California peninsula since the advent of satellite data'

© NOAA
Hurricane Odile whipped through the popular beach resorts of Mexico's Baja California peninsula on Monday, uprooting trees, downing power lines and forcing thousands of tourists to take cover in emergency shelters.

Winds of up to 100 miles per hour (160 km/h) buffeted shelters as one of the worst storms on record hit the luxury retreats of Los Cabos, battering Mexico's northwest coast with heavy rains that left plush hotels badly waterlogged.

Odile has weakened from a category four to category two hurricane since Sunday, but the National Hurricane Center said it would likely cause life-threatening flooding and mudslides on Mexico's northwestern coast during the next day or two.

"The whole place is devastated, San José del Cabo, windows are trashed, trees and electricity poles are down," said Mauricio Balderrama, manager of the Cabo Surf Hotel and Spa. All of the hotel's guests were fine, he added.

The weather service said Odile was expected to slow as it pushed northwest along the desert peninsula and forecast the storm would weaken steadily over the next two days.

Comment: Déjà vu for the U.S. Southwest? Major hurricane Odile could again bring flash floods to Southwestern U.S

Attention

Two dead humpback whales wash up on NSW beaches, Australia

© Dave Armstrong
Dead humpback whale at Wallabi Point on the NSW Mid-North Coast.
Two dead humpback whales have washed up on NSW beaches in recent days, prompting a reminder for swimmers to avoid getting too close to the giant "shark magnets".

One of the giant mammals reportedly washed up at Wallabi Point on the mid north coast on Monday morning, just a couple of kilometres north of Saltwater Beach where a second humpback carcass was found a day earlier.

"The one at Saltwater Beach was probably a juvenile while the other at Wallabi Point was much larger," said Dave Armstrong, who filmed the dead whales.
Attention

Animals getting more uppity? Seventh recent brown bear attack in Alaska, grizzly bites Kodiak biologist's leg

Kodiak fisheries biologist James Jackson had to miss a day of work and he's got a new scar on his leg, but he considers himself lucky after a close call with a Kodiak brown bear along a salmon stream.

"It was an experience to have, that's for sure," Jackson said. "It could have been a lot, lot worse."

A bear last week chomped down on his leg as he and partner Kurt Peterson conducted a salmon survey on Shuyak Island, the Kodiak Daily Mirror reported.

About 6:30 p.m. Sept. 4, Jackson and Peterson were on Hidden Cove Creek near the Big Bay ranger station. As they waded upstream, they tried to warn off bears by making plenty of noise.

In the heavily forested area, it didn't work.
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