Earth Changes


Even more strange animal behavior: Deer crashes into restaurant in Iowa

Deer breaks window
A deer crashed into the windows of Rebos on Wednesday afternoon, shattering one of the two panes.

There is no significant damage to the restaurant and nobody was injured.

The deer was still breathing when ABC9 crews arrived at the scene.

Customers and staff say they were pretty shaken up about the whole ordeal.

"It was about the noon hour and it sounded like, I don't know what it was. All we heard was a big giant crash, a very loud band and everything in the restaurant stopped," said Ryan Brun, Rebos bartender.

Blue Planet

Papua New Guinea Mount Tavurvur volcano erupts

Mt Tavurvur eruption
© Emma Edwards
The ash cloud is spreading at heights of 60,000 feet.
Residents near an erupting volcano in Papua New Guinea are waiting to see if they need to evacuate, and a giant ash cloud is affecting some flights to and from Australia.

Mt Tavurvur, in East New Britain province, began erupting overnight. The volcano destroyed nearby Rabaul township in 1994, and residents fear a repeat, PNGLoop reported.

Authorities were still considering the situation.

The eruption, which began between around 3.30am local time, caused explosions strong enough to rattle residents' windows.

Ash covered Rabaul and shops were closed, but otherwise life was continuing as normal, PNGLoop reported.


Aggressive dolphin tried to push swimmer underwater off the coast of Ireland

Smiling assassin? A bottlenose dolphin is said to have deliberately pushed a man under water who was swimming in the sea in County Cork, Ireland. A local group said: 'Do not confuse the shape of their jawline with a smile. They can cause serious injury to humans and have killed in the past.' A stock image is pictured
With their friendly faces and playful natures, it may seem that wild dolphins are always friendly.

But a bottlenose dolphin has been reported to have deliberately pushed a man underwater while he was swimming in the sea off County Cork, in the Republic of Ireland.

The animal is said to have 'lashed out' at the swimmer twice with its tail, prompting experts to warn swimmers to keep out of the water near the large predators.

The incident occurred on July 26 off Sherkin Ireland, according to a report made to the Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) which stated that the animal acted 'aggressively'.

Known as Clet, the adult bottlenose dolphin is thought to have come to the area from France, after spending time off the coasts of South Devon, Cornwall and Wales.

The IWDG said that Clet is a non-social solitary dolphin who does not seek out and engage with swimmers.

The group's log book reads: 'We are aware of a report of an adult swimmer nearby in wetsuit and mask, from a yacht at anchor, being aggressively pushed underwater by the dolphin. They got a bit of a shock as a result.'

Comment: See also: Rise of the killer dolphins: 'Alarming' rise in fatal attacks on porpoises leaves experts puzzled in Wales


So it was a planetary impact event? Younger Dryas climate event solved via nanodiamonds

From the University of California at Santa Barbara - By Julie Cohen |

Most of North America's megafauna - mastodons, short-faced bears, giant ground sloths, saber-toothed cats and American camels and horses - disappeared close to 13,000 years ago at the end of the Pleistocene period. The cause of this massive extinction has long been debated by scientists who, until recently, could only speculate as to why.

A group of scientists, including UC Santa Barbara's James Kennett, professor emeritus in the Department of Earth Science, posited that a comet collision with Earth played a major role in the extinction. Their hypothesis suggests that a cosmic-impact event precipitated the Younger Dryas period of global cooling close to 12,800 years ago. This cosmic impact caused abrupt environmental stress and degradation that contributed to the extinction of most large animal species then inhabiting the Americas. According to Kennett, the catastrophic impact and the subsequent climate change also led to the disappearance of the prehistoric Clovis culture, known for its big game hunting, and to human population decline.

In a new study published this week in the Journal of Geology, Kennett and an international group of scientists have focused on the character and distribution of nanodiamonds, one type of material produced during such an extraterrestrial collision. The researchers found an abundance of these tiny diamonds distributed over 50 million square kilometers across the Northern Hemisphere at the Younger Dryas boundary (YDB). This thin, carbon-rich layer is often visible as a thin black line a few meters below the surface.

California drought: East Porterville residents without water as wells go dry

© Chieko Hara, AP
Volunteers Marrisa Zuniga, right, Paul Vigil, and Raul Alatorre, left, load cases of water on a dolly to deliver homes in East Porterville, Calif., Friday, Aug. 22, 2014. Nearly 1,000 people whose wells have gone dry due to drought received an emergency allotment of bottled water Friday.
Hundreds of people in a California town have no water after wells ran dry during the state's drought.The small town of East Porterville in Tulare County has about 7,300 residents, and at least 300 homes have been without water for weeks.

"We can't shower. We're wearing dirty clothes. My kids had to wear dirty clothes to school this morning," said Elizabeth Baker. "I had to go across the street last night to get water for my kids from the fire department."

The county set up a 5,000-gallon water tank for residents to help with flushing toilets and irrigation, but now drinking water is the problem. They had to distribute more than 15,000 gallons of drinking water last week.

There are fears the problem could be even worse as people believe some people aren't reporting their wells have gone dry out of fear their landlords will evict them, or their children will be taken away. In fact, the county didn't know how dire the problem was until they were tipped off by a nonprofit group.

Donna Johnson has been delivering water to those in need for months. She's even taken out a loan to pay for the water.

Comment: This situation is continuing to widen and is getting worse.


Hurricane Marie could swallow smaller storm Karina

© Credit: NASA/NOAA GOES Project
Hurricane Marie, at right, is about to devour an ex-tropical cyclone named Karina to the west
Images from space show the massive Hurricane Marie poised to swallow another tiny storm off the Pacific coast of Mexico.

Newly released photos from NASA show the big and little storms swirling side by side. The images were taken by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Earth-watching GOES-West satellite yesterday (Aug. 26) at around 8 a.m. EDT (5 a.m. PDT).

But Karina may not be such a substantial snack by the time Marie devours her. With winds that slowed to 30 miles per hour (48 km/h), Karina weakened from a tropical depression into a remnant low-pressure system last night, after roaming the Pacific for two weeks, the National Hurricane Center (NHC) announced.
Ice Cube

Driver dies after freak summer hail storm turned road into 'sheet of ice' in UK

© Solent
Tragic: Aaron Frost, 25, was travelling home from work when he was caught in a freak ice storm
Aaron Frost, 25, was travelling home from work when he was caught in a freak ice storm which caused him to lose control of his BMW and crash into a concrete barrier

A motorist died when a hail storm turned a busy road into a thick sheet of ice, an inquest heard.

Aaron Frost, 25, was travelling home from work when he was caught in a freak ice storm.

He lost control of his BMW saloon and crashed into a concrete barrier at the side of the road.

The car then hit a lamp post and overturned before coming to rest on its side in a ditch.

The inquest heard the kitchen fitter was travelling back home to Bognor Regis, West Sussex on the on the A27 near Emsworth, Hampshire.

Iceland lowers alert for erupting volcano and reopens airspace

Iceland Bardarbunga volcano
The Icelandic Met Office has lowered its aviation warning from red to orange near the Bardarbunga volcano, which saw an eruption begin overnight.

The new alert, the second-highest, means that aviation authorities can now decide if planes may travel over the volcano's airspace.

Scientists said a fissure eruption 1km (0.6 miles) long started in a lava field north of the Vatnajokull glacier.

The volcano has been hit by several recent tremors.

The Icelandic Met Office confirmed to the BBC that since no ash was detected in emissions from the volcano's eruption, it was now possible to downgrade the earlier alert level.

Civil protection officials said Icelandic Air Traffic Control had closed the airspace above the eruption up to a height of 5,000ft (1,500m), but now some aircraft will be able to pass over the volcano if aviation authorities give airliners the go-ahead.

The fissure eruption took place between Dyngjujokull Glacier and the Askja caldera, according to a statement from the Department of Civil Protection.

Dead fish continue to wash up on shores of south-west England

Stranded whitebait have been turning up off the south coast of Cornwall, Devon and Dorset. Hundreds of dead fish were found in Mullion harbour.
Hundreds of tiny dead fish have been found washed up in Mullion harbour.

The beach was left littered with the small whitebait at low tide after they became stranded.

The same phenomenon has been reported all along the south coast as far as Dorset over the past two weeks.

The fish get driven into shore after they are chased by predators - in this case mackerel.

Bob Felce, who has written a book on the history of the cove, said it was an extremely rare sight.

"It is a rare occurrence. One fisherman who has lived here for over 60 years says he can only remember this happening on two or three previous occasions," he said.

"Mullion is an enclosed, small harbour so the trap was laid when they chased them in. The coast around the Lizard has been full of mackerel for a couple of weeks; I had a few hours in a boat off Coverack last week and you could almost walk on them.

Comment: See also: Casualties of seafloor methane gas release? Hundreds of thousands more fish found dead in Plymouth tidal pool, UK

Millions of dead herring wash up on Isle of Man coast, UK

Hundreds of methane plumes erupting along U.S. Atlantic coast

Eye 2

More unusual animal behaviour: Crocodile attack earns Florida swimmers dubious distinction

© The Image Bank/Getty Images
Southern Florida is the only place in the world where crocodiles, pictured, co-exist with American alligators
Miami pair Alejandro Jimenez and Lisset Rendon become first people to be bitten by American crocodile, wildlife officials say

Two swimmers taking an early morning dip in a Florida canal have earned the dubious distinction of becoming the first humans in the United States to be bitten by an American crocodile, wildlife officials say.

Alejandro Jimenez, 26, and Lisset Rendon, 23, came face to face with the 9ft reptile at 2.30am on Sunday, after taking to the water during a house party in Gables by the Sea, an upscale neighbourhood of South Miami where saltwater crocodiles are prevalent.

As Jimenez recovered in hospital Tuesday from bite wounds to his torso and hands, and his girlfriend, who was bitten on her shoulder, rested at home, trappers continued to scour the canal for the giant critter.

Residents say there are at least three large crocodiles living in the water behind their homes and have given them the nicknames Pancho, Snaggletooth and Streetwalker, the last apparently noted for taking late-night strolls across roads in the neighbourhood.