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US: Gulf 'Dead Zone' Still 3rd Largest

The oxygen-poor "dead zone" off the Louisiana and Texas coasts isn't quite as big as predicted this year, but it is still the third-largest ever mapped, a scientist said Saturday.

Crabs, eels and other creatures usually found on the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico are swimming in crowds on the surface because there is too little oxygen in their usual habitat, said Nancy Rabalais, chief scientist for northern Gulf hypoxia studies.

"We very often see swarms of crabs, mostly blue crabs and their close relatives, swimming at the surface when the oxygen is low," she wrote in an e-mail from a research ship as it returned to Cocodrie from its annual measurement trip.

Attention

Thousands flee fires in Spain's Canary Island

Wildfires sweeping across Spain's Canary Islands have forced authorities to evacuate around 11 000 people in the biggest fires on the archipelago in a decade, the head of the regional government said on Tuesday.

The fires, which broke out on Friday, have covered 24 000 hectares on two of the archipelago's seven islands - Gran Canaria and Tenerife - after being fanned by strong winds, Paulino Rivero said.

Bizarro Earth

8 million year old cypress trees found preserved in Hungary

Hungarian scientists said on Tuesday they have discovered a group of fossilized swamp cypress trees preserved from 8 million years ago which could provide clues about the climate of pre-historic times.

Comment: The unstated fact here is that the trees must have been covered rapidly in order to preserve them in such a manner, another example of rapid, perhaps catastrophic climate change.


Cloud Lightning

Tropical Storm Chantal Forms in Atlantic

MIAMI - Tropical Storm Chantal formed Tuesday morning in the Atlantic Ocean between Bermuda and Massachusetts, but it was not expected to threaten the United States, forecasters said.

Cloud Lightning

Lightning kills 12 cattle

The carcasses of 12 cattle were airlifted from a valley in southern Austria after they were killed by a lightning storm.

Bizarro Earth

Mt. Bulusan explodes anew, spews 5-km high ash plume

Bulusan Volcano rumbled to life anew Tuesday, sending an ash plume as high as five kilometers high into the Sorsogon sky.

©AP
A column of ash and volcanic debris shooting up from the Mt. Bulusan volcano in the central Philippines on Tuesday.

©Phivolcs
A Bulusan ash explosion seen at 16:17 on 31 May 2006.

Bizarro Earth

Unnatural sea waves on India coast, cause of concern: Environmentalist

Waves crashing against the shore is nothing new for the inhabitants of two of Orissa's seaside tourist resorts---Puri and Gopalpur.

But what they have been witnessing for the last few months has come as a shock.

"The sea has been behaving in an unnatural manner with high waves lashing against the coast and damaging structures. It seems the sea is inching inside", said Jagannath Bastia, an environmental activist, who is a resident of the pilgrim town since long.

Cloud Lightning

China floods put Three Gorges Dam to the test

BEIJING - Flood waters are testing the safety of China's massive Three Gorges Dam and raising water levels on its longest river, the Yangtze, after weeks of flooding that have killed about 700 people, state media said on Tuesday.

Cloud Lightning

Pennsylvania man survives second lightning strike

Lightning can strike twice. Just ask Don Frick.

Frick says he survived his second lightning strike Friday - 27 years to the day of his first - and emerged a bit shaken, with only a burned zipper and a hole in the back of his jeans.

Bomb

Drip, drip of global warming spells change in northern Russia



©AFP

It is summer in this reindeer-herding village in northern Russia and with not an iceberg in sight, residents are acquiring a taste for bathing in the local river.

"We used to have ice on the river all year round. The warming process is speeding up," said the worried head of the state-controlled reindeer company at Kanchalan, Arkady Makhushkin.

"The reindeers' health is suffering. Their meat isn't so tasty," he said, explaining that the animals had to be herded greater distances to find cooler grazing grounds in upland areas.