Earth Changes


Monkey attack terror: Tears testicle off baby, eats it

A horrific zoo attack saw a monkey rip off a small boy's testicle, run off and eat it.

The eight-month-old was reportedly having his dirty diaper changed by his mom at Guiyang Qianling Wildlife Park, in south west China, when the animal attacked.

State media reports that the monkey pounced on the youngster and hacked off a chunk of his genitals.

It dropped the flesh on the ground, allowing an elderly passerby to pick it up.

But the aggressive ape quickly snatched it back, bounded off and ate it before he could be caught.

The boy was rushed to hospital. He received treatment and his condition is described as "not life-threatening."

Cloud Precipitation

California storm drops 3 inches of rain in an hour

© Randee Deason
Hwy 37-W near Novato, the connector to Hwy 101 North and South shutdown by flooded roadway
The storm dubbed the Pineapple Express by some media outlets hit wide areas of northern and central California yesterday, 11 December 2014.

US National Weather Service (NWS) say that 2.91 inches (73 mm) of rain was recorded in just one hour on the Big Sur coast yesterday. During the 24 hours of 11 December, 3.55 inches (90 mm) of rain fell in the San Francisco Bay Area. For San Francisco, it was the second wettest 11 December on record:

#SF calendar day rainfall Dec 11th was 3.40" & now 2nd wettest daily total ever for the 11th. Dec 11th '95 daily record 3.61" holds. #CAwx


Similar to Sao Paulo, Brazil, California had been suffering from extreme drought. In both, cases extreme rains have arrived within the past week causing severe flooding. These changes in weather seems to be indicative of worldwide weather swings that will in all likelihood continue to become more extreme in the future.

Brazil drought crisis deepens in Sao Paulo and other areas

Extreme flooding in Sao Paulo, Brazil

New study finds California drought worst in 1,200 years

Cloud Lightning

Dead geese drop out of the sky in Denmark during lightning storm

Thursday night a farmer in southern Denmark had an unusual experience, though these events in recent years are happening on a frequent basis. During a storm he suddenly saw something come through the air as reported by Jyllandsposten:
Dead geese in Denmark
© Brian Rostgaard Andersen
Farm manager Frank Berndt (left) og farmer Peter Rostgaard Andersen with some of the dead geese, that yesterday rained down on the farm
The second after a big crash, followed by several more crashing sounds. After a few sesonds he had counted 10 crashing noises.

"I thought it was roof tiles, that had blown off during the storm, but when it cleared up and we went outside, we saw that it was barnacle geese. Dead barnacle geese," says Brian Rostgaard Andersen.

The farmer and his manager Frank Berndt, found within a diameter of 150 to 200 meter 24 dead barnacle geese. Some of them were lying on the roof of the farm and some of them had penetrated the roof tiles.

Comment: See also:

Cloud Lightning

Rare Tornado Rips Through Los Angeles

A rare tornado ripped through South Los Angeles on Friday, causing damage over nearly 20 blocks.

Roofs were torn off an apartment complex and two homes, according to the National Weather Service, which verified the tornado was a category EF0.

"We looked outside and everything was flying down the sidewalk," one resident said. "It was really wild."

Cloud Lightning

Extreme flooding in Sao Paulo, Brazil

Sao Paulo, Brazil Flooding
© Thaddeus Pawlowski
Aerial view of Sao Paulo flooding
Violent storms and heavy rainfall hit Sao Paulo in Brazil on December 10, 2014, causing flooding and traffic chaos as authorities announced a state of alert in some parts of the city.

Comment: Sao Paulo has gone from one extreme to the other.

See: Brazil drought crisis deepens in Sao Paulo and other areas


Bangladeshi villagers struggle to clean up after huge oil spill threatens rare dolphin preserve

oil spill bangladesh
© World Conservation Society
Bangladeshi villagers try to collect oil that spread in the river after an oil tanker sank in the Shela River in Mongla, in a photo taken on December 11, 2014
Bangladeshi villagers using sponges, shovels and even spoons worked Friday to clean up a huge oil spill in a protected area that is home to rare dolphins, after environmentalists warned of an ecological "catastrophe".

Thousands of litres of oil have spilt into the protected Sundarbans mangrove area, home to rare Irrawaddy and Ganges dolphins, after a tanker collided with another vessel on Tuesday.

The government has sent a ship carrying oil dispersants to the area, which is inside one of three sanctuaries set up for the dolphins.

But environmentalists say the chemicals could harm the delicate ecology of the Sundarbans, a UNESCO world heritage site.

As authorities debated whether to deploy the dispersants, the company that owns the stricken oil tanker said it would buy up the oil that local villagers have collected.

Comment: This is the third catastrophic oil spill this month causing untold devastation to the environment.

Courtesy of Shell Oil: One of the worst oil spills in years causes environmental disaster in Niger Delta

Oil spill in Israeli nature preserve causes one of country's worst environmental disasters

'Catastrophic' Bangladesh oil spill threatens rare dolphins


Symbolic? Two-headed fire salamander born in Israel

© Prof. Shai Levy, University of Haifa
A two-headed Near Eastern fire salamander tadpole born from a wild mother in a laboratory in Israel
Just call them "Arne" and "Sebastian." Those are the monikers given to the two separate heads of one baby salamander that was born last week in a lab in Israel.

Two heads are likely not better than one for the Near Eastern fire salamander (Salamandra infraimmaculata), which was born, alive, in a laboratory at the University of Haifa in Israel. Researchers aren't sure why the salamander tadpole has two noggins, but say random mutations or environmental pollution could be culprits.

"I could speculate, but it would be pure speculation," Leon Blaustein, an ecologist whose lab discovered the salamander, told Live Science.


400,000 dead fish found at Lake Bryant, Florida

Florida wildlife officials say thousands of fish in a popular Marion County lake are dead, and more could die in the next few days.

Residents say the dead fish in Lake Bryant near Levy Hammock Road are creating a terrible smell.

"About three days ago fish started washing up on shore," said Angela Rivers. "It was pretty sad though, all of the fish were at the top of the water, and you could see they were trying to get air."

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission officials estimate more than 400,000 fish have died so far. Unusually large numbers of birds are showing up at the lake, eager to feed on the dead fish.

"The whole entire lake, including the canal, just looked like it was raining, but it was fish coming to the top," said Rivera.

Tuesday afternoon, Channel 9's Myrt Price was at Lake Bryant as fisherman, unaware of the problem, showed up to fish.

"There is no sense in going fishing, the fish are dying already. (I) can't take them home to eat or anything like that," said fisherman Larry Godfrey.


More animal lunacy: White-tailed deer breaks through 2 doors at New Jersey home

© AP
A deer stands in the bathroom of a house in Galloway, N.J
The deer apparently worked its way through a storm door and the home's main door to get into the Galloway home, where a woman living there locked it in a bathroom before it was freed by police. The bathroom suffered significant damage.

Police say a deer burst through the front doors of a New Jersey home, darted through the residence and ransacked the master bathroom.

Galloway police received a 911 call at around 3:30 p.m. Saturday from a woman reporting that a deer ran through her house while she was putting sweet potatoes in the oven. The woman said she followed the deer into the back of the house and locked it in a bathroom.

Responding officers found the glass on the front storm door shattered. They also found the frame on the main door damaged, indicating that the deer muscled its way through two doors to enter the home.

After a brief standoff, police escorted the deer from the home and released it into the wild.

The bathroom was significantly damaged.

Source: AP
Arrow Down

'Catastrophic' Bangladesh oil spill threatens rare dolphins

Oil Spill Bangladesh
© Agence France-Presse
The oil tanker was carrying an estimated 357,000 litres (77,000 gallons) of oil when it sank in the Sundarbans’s Shela river, home to rare Irrawaddy and Ganges dolphins.
Dhaka: An oil spill from a crashed tanker in Bangladesh is threatening endangered dolphins and other wildlife in the vast Sundarbans delta, officials warned on Thursday, branding the leak an ecological "catastrophe".

The tanker was carrying an estimated 357,000 litres (77,000 gallons) of oil when it sank in the Sundarbans' Shela river, home to rare Irrawaddy and Ganges dolphins, after colliding with another vessel on Tuesday.

Rescue vessels have now salvaged the tanker, but officials said the damage had already been done as the slick had spread to a second river and a network of canals in the Sundarbans, the world's largest mangrove forest, which straddles India and Bangladesh.

"It's a catastrophe for the delicate ecology of the Sundarbans," the area's chief forest official Amir Hossain said. "The oil spill has already blackened the shoreline, threatening trees, plankton, vast populations of small fishes and dolphins."

Hossain said the oil had already spread over a 60-km-long area of the Sundarbans. Spread over 10,000 square kilometres, the Sundarbans is a Unesco-listed World Heritage Site and home to hundreds of Bengal tigers. The delta comprises a network of rivers and canals.