Earth Changes


Dead fin whale carcass to be left to decompose near Harwich, UK


The whale was dragged in on the front of a cargo vessel, a strandings investigator said
A dead whale thought to have been hit by a ship is to be left to decompose off the Essex coast, experts have said.

Two thirds of the fin whale's carcass, measuring 10m (33ft), was found on RSPB land near Harwich.

It was dragged in on the front of a cargo vessel but experts believe it may have been hit by another ship.

The decision has been taken between scientists and landowners to leave the remains in place as it is not considered a public health hazard.

The body was found last week on private land with no public access, said Rick Vonk, site manager of the RSPB Stour Estuary site.


Baby girl undergoing facial surgery after being mauled by family dog in Sydney, Australia


The baby was bitten on the face in a horrific dog attack by the family's Alaskan Malamute (pictured) in Campbelltown
A seven-day-old girl is undergoing surgery for 'significant' facial injuries after she was mauled by her parents' pet dog as she slept in her bassinet at the end of their bed.

First-time parents Aaron and Jessica Graham were sleeping when they heard their baby cry out just before 3.30am on Monday and woke to find their Alaskan Malamute biting their daughter on the face in their Hoddle Avenue home in Campbelltown, in Sydney's south-west.

Outside the young family's home, a chilling warning - 'beware dog on premises' - is seen fastened on their letterbox as two dogs are seen running around the backyard.

Paramedics were called to the home and the baby girl was taken to Campbelltown Hospital for treatment to facial wounds before being moved to The Sydney Children's Hospital in Randwick, in Sydney's east, with her parents by her side.

Inspector Jason Insker said the first-time parents are very distraught over the incident.

Her injuries are not believed to be life threatening and she is undergoing facial surgery, 9News reported.


Waterspout seen near Kalbarri, Australia

© Petro Van Niekerk
The waterspout touched down at around 3pm yesterday.
A tornado-like water spout that formed off the coast of a Western Australian town has made landfall, according to a local fisherman.

The spout startled seaside residents in Kalbarri, about 580km north of Perth, when it appeared on Sunday afternoon.

Local fisherman Dean Robins was in his driveway when he spotted the funnel-like weather feature.

"I've seen this unusual cloud that was sort of funnelling down," he said.

"We sort of weren't too sure whether to run inside or not because it was ... heading our way, but it sort of crossed a little way to the north of us."

Bizarro Earth

Chile declares environmental emergency from smog due to driest weather in over 40 years

Santiago is covered by smog despite contingency measures taken by the authorities
Chilean authorities declared an environmental emergency for the Santiago metropolitan region for Monday, forcing more than 900 industries to temporarily shut down and about 40 percent of the capital's 1.7 million cars off the roads.

"We're currently facing unusual conditions, with one of the driest Junes in over 40 years as well as really bad air circulation conditions in the Santiago valley in recent days, which boosts the concentration of contamination," the Environment Ministry said in a statement.

The emergency, the first since 1999, will be in place for 24 hours and can be extended further if authorities deem conditions have not improved.

The Environment Ministry could not immediately provide Reuters with a list of what industries will be forced to suspend operations on Monday.

Arrow Up

Heat wave kills over 130 in Pakistan

Edhi Welfare Organisation, Pakistan's largest charity, said their mortuary had been packed to capacity due to heatwave-related deaths.
A heatwave in Pakistan's largest city Karachi and other districts of southern Sindh province has killed at least 130 people, health officials have said.

Sindh province's Health Secretary Saeed Mangnejo told AFP news agency that the provincial government had imposed a state of emergency at all hospitals, cancelling leave for doctors and other medical staff and increasing stocks of medical supplies.

The southern port city of Karachi saw temperatures reach as high as 45 degrees Celsius on Saturday, just short of an all-time high of 47C in June 1979.

Dr Seemin Jamali, the head of the emergency department at state-run Jinnah Hospital said more than 100 people had died at the hospital.


Capitol Hill abuzz after 15,000 honey bees gather at Senate entrance


A swarm of bees took to the main Senate entrance of the U.S. Capitol Building on Friday, frightening onlookers before they were captured.
In an unusual sight on Capitol Hill Friday afternoon, beekeepers were called in to capture and remove about 15,000 honey bees that had swarmed around the main Senate entrance of the U.S. Capitol Building, frightening onlookers before landing in a tree.

Three volunteer beekeepers, including one who is a top congressional aide, worked carefully but without protective suits to capture the queen and her thousands of offspring.

The bees had been out of their nest in search of a new, larger home, according to Rachel Perry of Capitol Bee Care, an organization that works to protect honey bee colonies that, for a variety of reasons, are dying off in large numbers. Wearing just a scarf hanging over her head, Perry sat patiently beneath the tree luring the bees into a hole in a medium-sized cardboard box that was sealed with gaffers tape, gently nudging with a brush the last stragglers inside.


Magnitude 6.0 earthquake hits east of Ndoi Island, Fiji

20.457°S 178.351°W depth=561.4 km (348.8 mi)
  1. 2015-06-21 21:28:16 (UTC)
  2. 2015-06-21 17:28:16 (UTC-04:00) in your timezone
  3. Times in other timezones

Nearby Cities
  1. 42km (26mi) ENE of Ndoi Island, Fiji
  2. 336km (209mi) WNW of Nuku'alofa, Tonga
  3. 423km (263mi) SE of Suva, Fiji
  4. 507km (315mi) SSE of Lambasa, Fiji
  5. 533km (331mi) SE of Nadi, Fiji


Celestial halo captured over Gloucestershire, UK

© Vickie Haines
But.. but.. where's the crock of gold?

These beautiful pictures show a rainbow.

But possibly no rainbow you've ever seen before.

Vicki Haines took a couple of pictures of a rainbow entirely circling the sun form her back garden in Tewkesbury

And nearby in Bishop's Cleeve Lesley Cairns also captured the celestial phenomenon, known as a halo.

It is caused by the presence of high cirrus clouds containing ice crystals which are refracting the sun's light and causing the appearance of the rainbow halo.

Sometimes a halo can also be seen around the moon and the legend is: 'a ring around the moon means rain will come soon.'

Which is all very well, but what about the leprechauns? (Is it leprechauns with rainbows, we might be a bit mixed up.)


Twelve most dangerous volcanoes that could erupt at any time

Volcanoes are one of nature's deadliest and destructive forces, able to maim and destroy within seconds and without warning.

Recently, Chile's Calbuco volcano erupted twice, prompting a large evacuation, and fears were ignited after experts revealed Indonesia's Mount Sinaburg may soon erupt.

Hundreds of volcanoes dot the globe, but only a handful are known for their particularly violent pasts. Some of these infamous peaks have caused mass casualties; others have destroyed whole cities.

Here are 12 of the world's most dangerous volcanoes, which could erupt at any time, and a brief history of their explosive power.

1. Cumbre Vieja Volcano - La Palma, Canary Islands, Spain
© Wikimedia Commons/Image Analysis Laboratory, NASA Johnson Space Center
Satellite photo of Caldera de Taburiente and Cumbre Vieja, La Palma, Canary Islands.
A future eruption of Cumbre Vieja could be catastrophic. Geological evidence revealed failure of the volcano's west flank is possible, according to Volcano Live, and would result in a massive tsunami "which would cover the whole Atlantic Ocean." The mountain is the Canary Islands' most active volcano.

Comment: Are we ready for the next volcanic catastrophe?


'Fire rainbow' spotted over Saint John, New Brunswick

© Misty Dawn/Facebook
Fire rainbow - taken over east Saint John.
A rare weather phenomenon known as "fire rainbow" was spotted over Saint John from several people in the region.

Peter Coade, a CBC meteorologist, said fire rainbow is a rare phenomenon that is formally known as circumhorizontal arc.

Coade said the colourful cloud formation requires very specific conditions to be in place.

"When the sun is very high in the sky, sunlight entering flat, hexagon shaped ice crystals gets split into individual colours just like in a prism," he said.

"The conditions required are very precise - the sun has to be at an elevation of 58° or greater, there must be high altitude cirrus clouds with plate-shaped ice crystals and sunlight has to enter the ice crystals at a specific angle."