Earth ChangesS

Bizarro Earth

Earthquake Magnitude 6.5 - South Sandwich Islands Region

South Sandwich Islds Quake_060311
© USGSEarthquake Location
Sunday, March 06, 2011 at 14:32:36 UTC

Sunday, March 06, 2011 at 12:32:36 PM at epicenter

Time of Earthquake in other Time Zones

56.406°S, 27.029°W

86.9 km (54.0 miles) set by location program


33 km (20 miles) NNE of Visokoi Island, South Sandwich Islands

293 km (182 miles) N of Bristol Island, South Sandwich Islands

2066 km (1283 miles) ESE of STANLEY, Falkland Islands

3408 km (2117 miles) SE of BUENOS AIRES, D.F., Argentina

Bizarro Earth

Chile: Earthquake Magnitude 6.2 - Tarapaca

Tarapaca Quake_060311
© USGSEarthquake Location
Sunday, March 06, 2011 at 12:31:57 UTC

Sunday, March 06, 2011 at 09:31:57 AM at epicenter

Time of Earthquake in other Time Zones

18.115°S, 69.391°W

101.3 km (62.9 miles) set by location program


92 km (57 miles) E of Tacna, Peru

108 km (67 miles) ENE of Arica, Tarapaca, Chile

193 km (119 miles) ESE of Moquegua, Peru

1704 km (1058 miles) N of SANTIAGO, Region Metropolitana, Chile

Bizarro Earth

Hawaii Volcano Sudden Change: Pu'u O'o Collapse, New Eruption Site

Pu‘u ‘O‘o Volcano
© USGSPu‘u ‘O‘o
At 1:42 p.m. HST this afternoon, USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory (HVO) monitoring network detected the onset of rapid deflation at Pu'u 'O'o and increased tremor along Kilauea Volcano's middle east rift zone. At 2:00 p.m., Kilauea's summit also began to deflate.

Between 2:16 and 2:21 p.m., the floor of the Pu'u 'O'o crater began to collapse, and within 10 minutes, incandescent ring fractures opened on the crater floor a few tens of meters away from the crater wall. As the floor continued to drop, lava appeared in the center of the crater floor, the northeast spatter cone within Pu'u 'O'o collapsed, and an obvious scarp developed on the west side of the crater floor, with lava cascading over the scarp toward the center of the crater.

At 2:41 p.m., the scarp on the west side of the crater floor appeared to disintegrate, exposing incandescent rubble. Five minutes later, the collapse of a large block along the east crater wall produced a dust plume.

Webcam images showed that the Pu'u 'O'o crater floor continued to drop through 4:26 p.m., when fume obscured the camera view. HVO Webcam images can be accessed here.

Bizarro Earth

Bumblebees: Gone with the Wind? A Major Disappearance

Bumble Bees
© Earth Times

Bumblebees, also known as Bombus terristris, are the pollinating cousins of wasps and hornets. They are the number one pollinator for wild growing plants as well as commercial agriculture; you may have seen them flitting around your Gran's tomato plants on summer evenings, busy at work. However, these popular and beloved buzzing insects that help bring us all kinds of food-- from coffee beans to fresh apples -- bring alarming news.

In the past few decades scientific studies have found that increasing numbers of bumblebee colonies are disappearing. It's possible that Bombus affinis, one of the many bumblebee subspecies native to North America, have all but died out. Between 1976 and 2006, there was a huge loss in the number of wild bumblebee colonies; they are now almost completely gone. Not only North America is suffering from this bumblebee disappearance; in the UK, over the past 70 years 3 out of 24 native bumblebee species have gone extinct.

Why are bumblebees suddenly taking leave of their duties as master pollinators? Well, it appears that no one person can agree on a single cause. Scientific evidence strongly suggests that the combination of insecticides and disease from imported bees, bred in greenhouses, are two main causes of bee deaths. One highly dangerous group of insecticides, called neonicotinoids, have been used since the 90s in North America on a wide variety of crops.

Bizarro Earth

S. Korea Confirms Additional Bird Flu Outbreak

South Korea confirmed an additional bird flu case at a duck farm in the central part of the country on Saturday.

Tests showed that the 12,400 birds at a poultry farm in Cheonan, 92 kilometers south of Seoul, were infected with the virulent H5N1 strain of the avian influenza (AI), the National Veterinary Research and Quarantine Service (NVRQS) said.

This is the second case of the highly pathogenic avian influenza reported in the country this month as the number of AI cases has started to fall off in recent weeks. It is also the first AI confirmation in Cheonan in 33 days.

All ducks on the farm will be culled with quarantine authorities asking nearby farms to be vigilant on protecting their birds.

Bizarro Earth

West Bank: 2,000 Turkeys Diagnosed with Bird Flu Near Jenin

Bird Flu
© Ma'an News Agency
A flock of 2,000 turkeys has been diagnosed with the H5N1 "bird flu" virus in the northern West Bank village of Silat Al-Harithiya near Jenin, government officials said.

The veterinary department of the Palestinian Authority Agriculture Ministry said it had managed to prevent an epidemic.

Director of the department in Jenin Jamil Makhamra told Ma'an that government and private vets examined the flock on Feb. 27 after many of the birds died.

Samples were examined at the veterinary medicine center in Ramallah, where it was confirmed that the birds had influenza A subtype of H5N1, also known as "bird flu."

Bizarro Earth

Bangladesh: 2,000 Chickens Culled in Gazipur, Noakhali

Dhaka, - Around 2,000 chickens have been culled in Gazipur and Noakhali following the detection of H5N1 virus, commonly known as bird flu.

Gazipur Sadar Upazila livestock officer Mohammad Shamsur Rahman on Saturday told that the bird flu infection was confirmed by the Central Diseases Investigation Laboratory in Dhaka.

Some 1, 137 chickens were executed around 10pm on Friday, when 205 eggs were also destroyed.

Apart from this, in the last two days, over 13,000 chickens were executed in the district.

The official said the district livestock department on Friday sent a sample tissue of a dead chicken to the laboratory for tests after some of the chickens of Bushra Poultry Farm in Taratpara area died on Thursday.

A direction was immediately passed to the Upazila livestock department to cull the infected chickens in a bid to stop the infection spread in the surrounding areas.

Bizarro Earth

India: Mystery Deaths at Sepahijala Zoo

Agartala: The mysterious deaths of two leopards and some birds sent the Sepahijala zoo authorities into a tizzy. In the last four days, two leopards and as many as 11 birds of various species including night herons, pond herons, eagles, owls, kites, small cranes and white and black-necked storks have died in the zoo.

Besides the two leopards, another wild cat was found dead in the zoo area. A vulture was also found sick and immediately shifted to the intensive care unit. Vultures are now considered an extremely endangered species.

The wildlife conservator and director of Sepahijala Wildlife Sanctuary, Ajit Bhowmik, confirmed the deaths of the birds and the cats.

"Today, we found one black-necked stork dead," he said, adding that the cause of the deaths could not be ascertained as yet.

Nevertheless, the zoo administration has already quarantined the aviary and other animal enclosures, putting a complete restriction on visitors.


'Two suns' spotted in China defy explanation

© CTVImage of second sun in China
Weeks after a story shot across the Web claiming that the imminent explosion of a nearby star would result in the appearance of a second sun in the sky - a story that was later debunked - two suns were caught on camera yesterday in China. The suns - one fuzzy and orange, the other a crisp yellow orb - appeared side-by-side, one slightly higher than the other.

What's going on? Life's Little Mysteries, a sister site to, asked Jim Kaler, the University of Illinois astronomer who squelched the excitement over the aforementioned exploding Betelgeuse and who has written books on the day and night sky. The double sun image is an effect of optical refraction, Kaler said, but it's a "pretty darn rare" one, and one not fully explained by science.

"I doubt it's been computer modeled," he said. "There must have been some blob of atmosphere somewhere that caused this truly spectacular phenomenon, which in a sense is a mirage."

Cloud Lightning

US: Tornado Touches Down in Louisiana; 12 Hurt

© Al Behrman/APA high water barricade blocks a public landing along the Ohio River, Thursday in Cincinnati.
Several homes damaged; natural gas leaks prompt evacuations

Rayne - A suspected tornado hit the southwestern Louisiana town of Rayne on Saturday, injuring 12 people, leveling homes and causing natural gas leaks that prompted evacuations.

Of the 12 injuries, one was severe, a spokeswoman for the Rayne sheriff's office told

Donald Jones, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Lake Charles, said Saturday that a crew is headed to the scene to determine if the high winds were a tornado. The destruction hit the Acadia Parish town of about 8,500 around 10 a.m. as a line of violent thunderstorms moved through the area.

State Police Trooper Stephen Hammons said several houses have been destroyed or damaged, and the area has been evacuated because of natural gas leaks. Utility crews were going door-to-door to check for leaks, and residents were sent to a fire station to take shelter.

There were reports of at least two ruptured gas lines, Jones said.

Trees and power lines had been knocked down across about an eighth of a mile, said Acadian Ambulance supervisor Troy Guidry. He said nine people have been taken to area hospitals, one with serious injuries and eight with minor injuries.