Earth ChangesS

Bizarro Earth

Light Earthquake Registered in Southwestern Bulgaria

A light earthquake was registered in southwestern Bulgaria Saturday morning, the Seismology Institute at the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences reports.

The epicenter is 220 km southwest of Sofia, not on Bulgaria territory. It happened at 3:30 am with a 3.5 magnitude on the Richter scale.

The quake was not felt in Bulgaria and there are no reports of fatalities and material damage, Bulgaria's Civil Defense says.

Bizarro Earth

Magnitude-6 quake strikes Indonesia's Papua

Jakarta - A magnitude-6 earthquake struck the eastern Indonesian province of West Papua before midday Saturday, but there were no immediate reports of injury or damage, geophysicists said. The quake took place at a depth of 30 kilometres and was centred about 342 kilometres north-west of the Manokwari district, the Indonesian Meteorology and Geophysics Agency (BMG) said. It occurred at 11:53 am (0253 GMT).

It was the latest in a series of jolts to hit Indonesia in recent weeks, the agency said.

A magnitude-7.6 quake struck off the western coast of Sumatra in late September, killing more than 1,100 people and injuring hundreds of others.

A magnitude-9 earthquake off northern Sumatra and a subsequent tsunami that rolled across the Indian Ocean struck five years ago, killing 230,000 people, more than 170,000 of whom died in Indonesia's Aceh province alone.

Bizarro Earth

Moderate earthquake jolts West Sumatra

Padang, West Sumatra Province - An earthquake measuring 5.0 on the Richter scale jolted Padang, in the wee hours of Saturday, causing panic among local residents.

The temblor's epicenter was located at 0.86 degrees southern latitude, and 99.91 degrees eastern longitude, around 34 Km southwest of Pariaman, at a depth of 34 km below sea level, said Fajar, a staff member of the Padangpanjang meteorological and geophysics office, here on Saturday.

Since early March, West Sumatra has been shaken by four earthquakes, with magnitudes up to 6.5 on the Richter scale.

On September 30, 2009, West Sumatra was devastated by a 7.9-magnitude earthquake which killed over 1,000 people and destroyed thousands of buildings.

Bizarro Earth

Earthquake In Mynamar Causes No Serious Damage, Casualties

Yangon -- An earthquake, which struck Monywa, Myanmar's northwestern Sagaing division, early Saturday morning, caused no serious damage and casualties, local residents told Xinhua in a telephone interview.

The quake was not much felt in the area where population is not dense, said a Monywa resident.

An earthquake measuring a magnitude of 5.4 on the Richter scale jolted Monywa Saturday morning at 5:50 a.m. (Myanmar standard time), according to the Hydrology and Meteorology Department.

The quake's epicenter was about 112 kilometers of Monywa at latitude 23.06 degree north and Longitude 94.65 degree east.

The quake shook at a depth of about 100 kilometers as reported by foreign seismological observatory.

Official report about the quake is so far not available yet.

Bizarro Earth

Minor quake strikes near Northern California town

Almanor - The U.S. Geological Survey says a minor earthquake struck overnight near the Northern California town of Almanor.

The magnitude-3.6 quake struck at 2:23 a.m. Friday. It was centered about nine miles southwest of Almanor and 113 miles north of Sacramento.

A dispatcher with the Plumas County Sheriff's Office in Quincy, about 40 miles southeast of Almanor, said she felt nothing and had received no reports of damage or injuries.

Bizarro Earth

Moderate quake off Japan

Tokyo - A moderate 5.8-magnitude earthquake struck off the east coast of the Japanese island of Honshu early on Saturday, seismologists said, but there were no immediate reports of casualties or damage.

The tremor hit at 02.32 am (1732 GMT on Friday, 1.32am Singapore time) with an epicentre 192 kilometres (119 miles) east-southeast of Tokyo at a relatively shallow depth of 18 kilometres, the US Geological Survey said.

There was no immediate tsunami alert.

Around 20 per cent of the world's most powerful earthquakes strike Japan, which lies near the junction of two tectonic plates.

Geologists warn that Japan is overdue for a massive and potentially devastating earthquake.

Bizarro Earth

Australia: Quake shakes Port Stephens

A small earthquake shook Port Stephens residents out of bed early yesterday morning, but authorities say no damage was caused.

Geoscience Australia said the tremor, measuring 3.3 on the Richter scale, struck at 3.24am yesterday.

The epicentre was about a kilometre from shore at the northern end of Mungo Brush, north of Hawks Nest.

Herald readers reported hearing one or two loud booms, and windows shaking for about 10 seconds.

"Staying in a two-storey house at Hawks Nest and woke to two loud bangs and the bed and windows shaking," a reader told

"[I] thought someone had driven into the side of the house."

A Salamander Bay resident said he was awake when the quake struck.

"Heard a boom in the distance, followed by a few seconds later the bedroom windows shaking for about five to 10 seconds."


Seismic Trends in South Iceland Still Monitored

Volcanic Glacier
© Páll StefánssonEyjafjallajökull.
There was more seismic activity underneath the volcano in Eyjafjallajökull glacier in south Iceland last night than the night before, although it is significantly lower than during last weekend. The Civic Protection Department keeps monitoring the area.

A sharp earthquake measuring three points on the Richter scale occurred underneath the glacier yesterday afternoon. It is among the largest earthquakes measured in the area this year, Fréttabladid reports.

According to, the earthquakes that followed were all weaker. The smaller scale seismic activity remains steady and occurs at a depth of seven to 11 kilometers, the Icelandic Meteorological Office reports.

Alarm Clock

US: Bat disease spreads

White-nose syndrome, a disease that has decimated bat populations across the East Coast, appears to have spread to bats in Maryland, state wildlife officials said Wednesday.

Officials said they found several dead bats in a cave in western Maryland's Allegany County on Friday, as well as more than 200 other bats that appeared "visibly affected" by the disease.

If the diagnosis is confirmed, the state said, this would be the first time white-nose syndrome has been found in Maryland.

Bad Guys

Chinese zoo blamed for death of 11 Siberian tigers

Siberian Tigers
© Associated PressIn this Jan. 8, 2010 file photo, an endangered Siberian tiger runs away with a chicken tossed by tourists at the Harbin Tiger Park in Harbin.
Beijing - Eleven rare Siberian tigers kept in small cages and fed only chicken bones have died of malnutrition at a cash-strapped zoo in China's frigid northeast, state media said Friday.

A manager at the Shenyang Forest Wild Animal Zoo in Liaoning province, however, said the animals had died of disease.

Siberian tigers are one of the world's rarest species, with just 300 believed remaining in the wild.

Liu Xiaoqiang, vice chief of the Shenyang Wild Animal Protection Station, a local animal protection agency, was quoted by the China Daily as saying 11 of the zoo's tigers died of malnutrition in the last three months after subsisting on a meager diet of chicken bones.

Two others were shot dead by police in November after the hungry animals attacked a zookeeper, the report said.

The Liaoshen Evening Post, a local Shenyang newspaper, reported on its Web site that the company that owns the zoo was trying unsuccessfully to auction the zoo property, and many staffers complained they hadn't been paid in 18 months.