Earth ChangesS


Wrong place, wrong time: Myrtle warbler from North America turns up in Scotland

The last sighting of a myrtle warbler in the US is thought to have been in 2014
© Stevie Clarke/SWNSThe last sighting of a myrtle warbler in the US is thought to have been in 2014
A tiny rare bird not seen in the British Isles for a decade has caused a flap in the world of birders - after one appeared in an Ayrshire garden.

A myrtle warbler - a relative of the yellow-rumped warbler - has been frequenting a Kilwinning garden for the last week. The bird is native to the US and is only a rare visitor to Britain and Ireland, with the last recorded sighting on mainland UK thought to have been in 2014 - when one was spotted in County Durham.

There are thought to have been less than 30 sightings of the bird in the UK ever, and the species' latest appearance has attracted hundreds of visitors from as far away as Cornwall. Local amateur photographer and bird fan Stevie Clarke told SWNS his birder friend, Jimmy Crawford, first spotted it last Tuesday (February 20).


Snow storm hits the Mediterranean island of Mallorca, Spain in late February

Winter has finally hit Mallorca.
© Alberto DarderWinter has finally hit Mallorca.
In Mallorca news today, see shocking scenes following snow Storm Juillette ripping through the holiday island.

With snow in the Tramuntana Mountains blocking off villages including Valldemossa and mountain access roads to Soller, snow has fallen at sea level on the beaches in Cala d'Or, with rain and high winds bringing widespread flooding, and chaos to the island.

In the South West of the island has escaped from too much damage, however, two sinkholes have also appeared in the capital city Palma. Watch this video to find out more.

Thanks so much to Maria from the Capalina Charter in Cala d'Or for the snowy beach photos and video. You can book her charter here in warmer weather!
And to Lynn from my daughter's school for the pics of Valldemossa.

It's not often we see snow in Mallorca, but we hope that is the last of Winter in Mallorca and we can look forward to Spring!

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Mudslide in Bolivia destroys homes, buries crops

The mudslide covered the entire village of Laquina, in the department of Cochabamba, and buried 30 houses, a farm, vehicles and crops in mud.

The disaster occurred after the dam of a nearby lagoon burst, sending torrents of mud down the mountainside and flooding everything in its path.

Authorities said 40 families lost their homes but no fatalities were reported.

Meanwhile, in the Andean region of Potosi, heavy rains over the weekend caused rivers to burst their banks, leaving streets covered in dirt, stones and mud and more than 400 homes destroyed.


Cloud Precipitation

Streets turn into rivers of ice as severe hailstorm hits Zhejiang, China on February 21

Recently, China has been grappling with a surge in extreme weather occurrences.

On February 21st, 2024, multiple regions across Zhejiang Province were besieged by intense hailstorms, resulting in streets being blanketed with a thick layer of hail.

This was soon followed by torrential downpours, where swift currents of rainwater swept through the streets, carrying the accumulated hailstones and creating a mesmerizing spectacle akin to rivers of ice.


Child dies after being bit by dog in north Alabama, authorities say

dog attack
Original story: A child is in critical condition after they were bitten by a dog Monday in north Alabama, authorities said.

Morgan County sheriff's deputies and EMS personnel responded to Ramblewood Private Drive off of Vaughn Bridge Road in Hartselle, the agency said Monday evening.

The child was set to be evacuated from the area by aircraft, the sheriff's office said.

A "large police and EMS presence" led authorities to urge motorists to avoid the area and "use caution."


15-foot whale shark washed ashore in Andhra Pradesh, India

The image shows the whale shark found at a beach in Srikakulam.
The image shows the whale shark found at a beach in Srikakulam.
Residents along the shores of Srikakulam beach in Andhra Pradesh were greeted with an unexpected sight as a massive whale shark was found to have been washed up on the shore early this morning.

The shark whale measures an impressive 15 feet in length, 6 feet in width, and weighing approximately 2 tons, has left the local community in awe.

Another video showed children jumping on the carcass of the dead whale as people flocked to see the massive creature.

According to local fishermen, the whale shark was found stranded on the beach near Donkuru village.

Snowflake Cold

2.1 million animals dead as extreme winter weather hits Mongolia

This winter has been more severe than usual in Mongolia, with lower than normal temperatures and very heavy snowfall
© Byambasuren BYAMBA-OCHIR / AFPThis winter has been more severe than usual in Mongolia, with lower than normal temperatures and very heavy snowfall
The landlocked country is no stranger to severe weather from December to March, when temperatures plummet as low as minus 50 degrees Celsius (minus 58 Fahrenheit) in some areas.

But this winter has been more severe than usual, with lower than normal temperatures and very heavy snowfall, the United Nations said in a recent report.

As of Monday, 2.1 million head of livestock had died from starvation and exhaustion, Gantulga Batsaikhan of the country's agriculture ministry said.

Mongolia had 64.7 million such animals, including sheep, goats, horses and cows, at the end of 2023, official statistics show.

Comment: Mongolia experiences largest winter snowfall in 49 years

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Massive avalanche in France kills 4 and injures 3 while 2 skiers remain missing

On Sunday, February 25, a massive avalanche occurred around 12:30 p.m. in the Val d'Enfer valley, in the Sancy Massif in France. Local emergency services were deployed immediately but, unfortunately, four people have been confirmed dead and three others injured, while two are still missing. The seven rescued people were found thanks to several members carrying emergency beacons. One of the three injured was confirmed to have deployed her airbag.

A group of nine members of the Vichy French Alpine Clubs had set out on Sunday and were caught in an avalanche not far from Mont Dore. According to Sébastien Dubourg, mayor of Mont-Dore, the area where the avalanche occurred, known as Val d'Enfer, is known to be dangerous, "It's a funnel... the mountain is unfortunately stronger than us," he stated in a press conference.

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At least four killed by landslide triggered by torrential rain in South Sulawesi, Indonesia

Landslide location
Landslide location.
A landslide has left at least four people dead and six others injured in the Indonesian province of South Sulawesi on February 26 morning.

According to the provincial disaster mitigation agency, the disaster, affecting more than 20 people in Bastem Utara, was triggered by torrential rain that hit the area on February 25 evening. More than 10 motorcycles and two cars were buried, with the roads damaged.

The agency also warned of the possible occurrence of subsequent landslides due to the current weather.

Disasters like floods and landslides often occur in Indonesia during the rainy season.



Florida bird rescuers shocked by rare visitors: Puffins

An Atlantic puffin was rescued from the beach in Ponce Inlet, Florida
© Michael BrothersAn Atlantic puffin was rescued from the beach in Ponce Inlet, Florida and treated at the Volusia County Marine Science Center's Mary Keller Seabird Rehabilitation Sanctuary, but did not survive its emaciated condition.
Atlantic puffins arrive on beaches more than 1,000 miles from home

One question keeps surfacing this month, as reports of a certain quirky and beloved seabird keep popping up along Florida's east coast: A puffin?

The black and white seabirds with the bright orange beaks are almost unheard of anywhere in the Southeast, but at least four puffins have been seen along Florida's east coast beaches since Feb. 8, shocking bird rescuers and others.

Bird watchers know one of the easiest places to see an Atlantic puffin is to head for the islands off the coast of Maine, but something odd has happened this winter.

A flurry of seabirds usually seen most often off the Northeastern coast - including puffins, razorbills and dovekies - have surprised birdwatchers along the Southeastern coast from the Carolinas to Florida. Experts say the birds' wayward path could possibly be linked to offshore storms or winds that stirred up colder water near the coast.

Before February, only five Atlantic puffin sightings had ever been reported in Florida, all weakened birds found stranded on beaches, said Andrew Kratter, collections manager of birds at the Florida Museum of Natural History.