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Sun, 25 Jul 2021
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Igloo

Goose Eggs May Help Polar Bears Weather Climate Change

sub-adult male polar bear
© Patricia Rockwell
May switch to eggs: sub-adult male polar bear near Churhchill, Manitoba, Canada.
As polar bears adapt to a warming Arctic - a frozen seascape that cleaves earlier each spring - they may find relief in an unlikely source: snow goose eggs. New calculations show that changes in the timing of sea-ice breakup and of snow goose nesting near the western Hudson Bay could provide at least some polar bears with an alternative source of food. This new analysis appears in Polar Biology.

"Over 40 years, six subadult male bears were seen among snow goose nests, and four of them were sighted after the year 2000," says Robert Rockwell, a research associate in Ornithology at the American Museum of Natural History and a Professor of Biology at City College at City University of New York. "I've seen a subadult male eat eider duck eggs whole or press its nose against the shell, break it, and eat the contents. This is similar to a different research group's observations of polar bears eating Barnacle Goose eggs on Svalbard, an island near Norway."

Polar bears, Ursus maritimus, are listed as a threatened species under the United States' Endangered Species Act and are classified as "vulnerable with declining populations" under IUCN's Red List. Polar bears' habitat rings the Arctic south of 88˚ latitude. Most of this area is sea ice from which bears hunt seals, although the breakup of sea ice over the summer forces some bears to move north, to pack ice, or onto land. More often, it is subadult males that are pushed to these less ideal conditions, where they live, in part, off stored fat reserves.

Fish

Disinformation: Squids in acid: What future oceans hold in store

Jumbo squid
© Bruce Robison, MBARI
Jumbo squid will become sluggish as the oceans acidify thanks to CO2 emissions.
Swimming through warmer, more acidic oceans will feel like swimming through molasses for jumbo squid.

Jumbo squid (Dosidicus gigas), also known as Humboldt squid or red devils, are best known for their voracious appetite and for decimating fish stocks. But according to new research, climate change could make them sluggish - and turn the hunter into the hunted.

Rui Rosa of the University of Lisbon in Portugal and Brad Seibel of the University of Rhode Island, put jumbo squid in tanks that mimicked the warmer and more acidic ocean conditions expected for 2100 if industrial emissions of greenhouse gases are not curbed.

The team found that the squid's metabolic levels dropped by one third and the length of time the squid spent contracting their muscles dropped by almost half.

Question

Is the Exxon Valdez spill site finally clean?

Exxon Valdez oil spill in 1989
© Jean Louis Atlan/Sygma/Corbis
Teams of firefighters cleaning the Alaskan coast following the Exxon Valdez oil spill in 1989.
Next year will mark the 20th anniversary of the Exxon Valdez oil spill - perhaps the most notorious human-caused environmental disaster in history.

But, according to the latest survey of Prince William Sound in Alaska - where the oil tanker foundered in 1989 - very little oil remains and most of what does is not in a form or location that can harm animals, plants or humans.

Although scientists funded by Exxon and others working for Greenpeace agree on these facts, they are still at odds over whether the area can be given a clean bill of health.

Paul Boehm of Exponent International, a scientific consultancy that specialises in chemical contamination, led the survey together with colleagues from two other private companies and two US research universities. The study received funding from the Exxon Mobil Corporation.

Compass

Not So Rare Cold Weather

It's December, the season of the year in which we in the northern hemisphere are accustomed to hearing about cold weather. It is, after all, winter.

It is, however, also the end of the first decade of a cooling cycle that began in 1998. Every single piece of legislation the in-coming Obama administration bases on the need to "reduce greenhouse gas emissions" to "stop global warming" will be based on a lie.

What Americans, the British, Europeans and others in the northern climes will soon grow accustomed to are longer, harsher winters. At one point during the Little Ice Age from 1300 to 1850 there literally was no summer!

Comment: The author Alan Caruba seems to be spot on regarding the nonsense of human caused global warming and the fact that it seems highly likely that global cooling is what the future holds. Indeed unusual weather seems to be popping up all over, record cold, record snow fall. Where the author misses the mark is in the last two paragraphs.

The global warming hoax affects everyone. It is not an operation designed to wreck the economies of the United States and other western nations. People of developing nations starve and freeze just like everyone else. The simplest explanation is often the correct one. The global warming hoax is perpetuated to hide the truth. The simple truth that global cooling is on the horizon and it is not in the realm of mankind's power to change it.


Cloud Lightning

Italian storm prompts flooding concerns

Rome -- Civil protection officials in Italy say they are concerned a major storm in the region Monday could prompt dangerous flooding.

The Italian news agency ANSA said as the third major pre-winter storm ravaged parts of Italy Monday, concern over increased flooding along the Aniene River increased.

The Aniene temporarily overflowed during earlier inclement weather, leaving several of Rome's streets flooded.

The river's level dropped during the weekend but the renewed storm had that level rising steadily Monday.

Better Earth

OOPS, We Forgot Siberia!

When you first glance at the chart from my last blog entry it sure looks like Global Warming is for real, after 1990 the bars never go into the blue zone. But how can this be when 1934 is still the hottest year on record, this chart makes it look like 1998 is the hottest?
temp chart
© unknown

Binoculars

'Once-in-100-year-snowfall' photos in Southern Austria

Here's the 'Once-in-100-year-snowfall' in Southern Austria in pictures......that storm I told you about last week ended up going further east - Eastern Italy and SE Austria. Still expecting a big dump in Southern France today and tomorrow - not quite this much, but a metre.

Rhys Jaggar

Igloo

102 cm of snow disrupts rail, traffic in south Austria

Vienna - Record snowfall in parts of southern Austria disrupted traffic and rail services Friday and prompted authorities to declare the highest-level avalanche alert.

In the Gailtal valley, in the southern province of Carinthia, about 102 centimetres of snow fell in just 48 hours, marking an 80-year record, according to the Austrian national weather centre ZAMG.

The Lesachtal valley meanwhile saw between 160 and 200 centimetres of fresh snow, according to unofficial data.

Igloo

Freak Snowstorms Cut Power In France

Tens of thousands of people have been left without power or transport by freak snowstorms in south-central France.

Up to 100,000 were left without electricity in the largely hilly region, with some losing their phone lines, according to regional power company ERDF.

Traffic has been blocked on several highways, while heavy snow in the elevated Massif Central region near the Alps cut train lines between Béziers and Clermont-Ferrand.

Snowman

U.S. hit by blizzards and avalanche (video)

A skier dies after an avalanche and blizzards paralyse towns and cities in parts of the western United States.

The 20-year-old skier died in hospital after she was buried by a rare avalanche at a resort in Utah.

The same storm front that created the avalanche conditions also brought blizzards to major cities, closing roads and halting transport systems.