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Wed, 05 Oct 2022
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Parrots wreak havoc at New Zealand bird sanctuary

Wellington, New Zealand -- A gang of unruly teenage bush parrots have wrought havoc at a bird sanctuary in New Zealand by using their powerful beaks to destroy nesting boxes.

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©AP/Kakori Sanctuary
Teenage native Kaka parrot

The native Kaka parrots - juvenile birds that haven't reached sexual maturity - have torn off nesting box doors and vandalized the bird homes, sanctuary conservation officer Matt Robertson said Friday.

Twenty-four of 44 new Kaka nest boxes built over the winter have been ripped apart, he said, adding that the birds then gouged out chunks of wood with their strong beaks.

"It may be that the challenge of taking doors off nest boxes is the Kaka equivalent to the Rubik's Cube," said Robertson. "As far as I'm aware, this extent of destruction has never been observed."

Kaka are acutely threatened by loss of habitat, competition from introduced species, and predators like stoats, ferrets and wild cats. They disappeared from the capital Wellington in the late 19th century when forests were cleared for settlement.

After an absence of more than a century, Kaka parrots were reintroduced to the Karori Sanctuary in Wellington in 2002 with six captive-raised birds. Since then, sanctuary staff have counted more than 100 juvenile parrots.

The birds are highly intelligent and extremely resourceful, Robertson said.

Ambulance

One dead, 60 injured in Indonesian quake

One person died and dozens were injured after a moderate 5.6-magnitude earthquake struck Indonesia's Sumatra island, a health ministry official says.

"One elderly person, 70 years old, died and 60 people were injured," Rustam Pakaya, chief of the health ministry's crisis centre, told AFP.

Target

M6.1 earthquake hits sea near Taiwan

Beijing - A 6.1 magnitude earthquake shook the sea near Taiwan at 3:43 p.m. on Tuesday, said the Taiwanese weather bureau.

The quake's epicenter was 24.57 degrees north latitude and 122.71 degrees east longitude, the bureau said.

Magnify

Chlorine fails to kill Australian far north E. coli

Council water authorities say chlorine treatment on a contaminated reservoir in the Port Douglas and Mossman region of far north Queensland has failed to kill the bacteria E. coli.

Bulb

Nature, Not Human Activity, Rules the Climate

This is a review of "Nature, Not Human Activity, Rules the Climate" edited by Dr. S. Fred Singer.

This is an excellent summary for policy makers on many of the technical issues surrounding "global warming".

Those quotation marks are a reminder that the proponents of global warming have recently changed the term to "climate change". This change is largely driven by the fact that while CO2 is been increasing a few percent since 1998, global temperatures have not been increasing, and even declining since 2002.

This undermines their hypothesis that man-made CO2 "causes" global warming. It obviously doesn't. Such a vague term has the added advantage of being invoked during periods of warming, cooling, floods, droughts, hurricanes, calms, heat waves, blizzards, etc. For the users of the term it conveniently explains all of our climate tragedies in terms of abuses from capitalist nations.

Snowman

Global Warming's Kaput; 2008 Coolest in 5 Years

The global warming theory is going into the freezer, some climate experts say.

The first half of this year was the coolest in at least five years, according to the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). And the global warming that has taken place during the past 30 years is over, says geologist Don J. Easterbrook, a professor emeritus at Western Washington University.

Easterbrook, who has written eight books and 150 journal publications, predicts that temperatures will cool between 2065 and 2100 and that global temperatures at the end of the century will be less than 1 degree cooler than now. This is in contrast to other theories saying that temperatures will warm by as much as 10 degrees by 2100.

Bizarro Earth

7.0 magnitude earthquake hits off Vanuatu

WELLINGTON -- A strong earthquake measuring 7.0 on the Richter scale struck off the coast of the South Pacific island nation of Vanuatu early Tuesday, the U.S. Geological Survey reported.

Ambulance

Landslide in China kills 26, destroys warehouse

Beijing - A landslide triggered by heavy rain killed at least 26 people in northern China on Monday, while an unknown number of others remained trapped, a state news agency reported.

The flow of mud and rocks in Shanxi province collapsed a mine warehouse, Xinhua News Agency reported, citing the provincial work safety bureau. It was not known how many of the victims were inside the warehouse when the landslide occurred at about 8 a.m. in Xiangfen county of Linfen city.

More than 300 police and villagers were searching for survivors, Xinhua said.

One person was injured, Xinhua reported. Twenty-two people were rescued, state broadcaster China Central Television said.

Arrow Down

Thousands of Australia's koalas felled by land-clearing

Sydney - Australian koalas are dying by the thousands as a result of land clearing in the country's northeast, while millions of birds and reptiles are also perishing, conservation group World Wildlife Fund (WWF) said Sunday.

The environmental body warned that unless urgent action was taken to stop trees being felled, some species would be pushed to the brink of extinction.

In an annual statement, Queensland state last week revealed that 375,000 hectares of bush were cleared in 2005-06 -- a figure WWF said would have resulted in the deaths of two million mammals.

Among those that perished as a result of loss of habitat would have been 9,000 tree-hugging koalas, WWF Australia spokesman Nick Heath said.

"It's a horrifying figure," Heath told AFP. "Two million mammals and that's all sorts of kangaroos, wallabies. We couldn't come to an exact figure on the birds, but I would say it would be over five million."

Info

50,000 villagers in flooded India refuse to leave

Patna - At least 50,000 people in India have refused to abandon their homes in flood-ravaged northern Indian despite pleas by authorities to evacuate, an official said Sunday.

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©Unknown

Newspaper advertisements also urged thousands of flood survivors Sunday to go to one of 77 state-run camps set up in Saharsa district in impoverished Bihar state, where clean drinking water, food and medical care was available.

At least 50,000 people have refused to leave the district, one of the worst-affected areas in Bihar, said Prataya Amrit, a state disaster management official. Towns and villages in the flooded region are home to about 1.2 million people.