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Mon, 30 Mar 2020
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Earth Changes


Breathtaking circumhorizontal arc rainbow captured above Lake Sammamish, Washington

circumhorizontal rainbow
© Cessna Kutz
As if 2020 couldn't turn more upside-down, we now have nature playing tricks on us as well.

An image shared by amateur photographer Cessna Kutz shows the quick moment a "horizontal rainbow" appeared to almost cover the whole span of Lake Sammamish in Washington State.

"I've seen lots of rainbows over Lake Sammamish, but never a flat one," Kutz told IFLScience in an interview.

The first, wider image shows the rainbow from her window around 2 pm local time and lasted for less than five minutes. A second zoomed-in photograph was taken using her Canon Rebel t5 camera at 300mm, ISO 100 /f11 1/250sec. None of the three images had a filter applied to them, though Kutz says that she did "just a tad bit of adjusting with the contrast."

Comment: As noted above, circumhorizontal arcs appear to be a rarity at Lake Sammamish but it is quite the spot for rainbows - the below is from Sept 2019:

And it's evident that rare, strange and stunning sights in the sky are on the increase everywhere: Also check out SOTT radio's: As well as SOTT's monthly Earth Changes Summary - February 2020: Extreme Weather, Planetary Upheaval, Meteor Fireballs:


Winter returns to Germany as snow falls across the country

Heavy snowfall in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Bavaria.

Heavy snowfall in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Bavaria.
As if 2020 wasn't weird enough, winter came back with a bang to Germany on Monday as parts of the country were hit with snow, hailstones and freezing temperatures.

With the growing coronavirus pandemic and strict social distancing measures, the year has not got off to a great start.

So just to top it all off, we've had flurries of snow and hailstones at the beginning of spring. Perhaps this was an early April Fool's?

Cloud Precipitation

7 killed by floods in northern Syria

The emergency medical teams, affiliated to the
© Raqqa Civil Council
The emergency medical teams, affiliated to the Kurdish Autonomous Administration trying to rescue civilians in the southern countryside of Raqqa, who were washed away by the torrential floods triggered by the heavy rains - 27 March 2020
Heavy rain last week caused damaging flash floods and mudslides in the Governorate of Raqqa in northern Syria.

According to the Civil Council of Raqqa, 7 people died and several were rescued during flooding and heavy rain between 25 and 28 March, 2020. Images shared on Social Media showed flood-damaged roads and bridges.

The city of Raqqa is located on the northeast bank of the Euphrates River, about 160 km east of Aleppo.


About 100 starlings found dead on road in Switzerland

At the end of February over 100 starlings in the Thurgau village of Triboltingen are suddenly on the main road. The Tagblatt media reports the birds injuries.

"A third was moving its wings, the rest of the birds were dead," said an eyewitness, according to a report in the newspaper media. On a relatively small area on the street and the adjacent Meadow around 120 starlings were found. The hunting and fishing management in Frauenfeld, the news Agency Keystone-SDA confirmed on inquiry of the incident.

An examination of several of the starlings at the centre for fish and wildlife medicine at the University of Bern, showed lung injuries, and skull trauma . "Such violations indicate a collision back," said Livio Rey, spokesman of the Swiss ornithological Institute in Sempach LU, opposite Keystone-SDA. The injury came about during the impact after the crash of the birds, he said this was unlikely. "It looks more likely that they are colliding in flight with something."


At least 17 reported tornadoes hit Central US during severe weather outbreak

storm damage
There have been at least 190 reports of severe weather in the last 24 hours.

A major storm moving through the central U.S. brought at least 17 reported tornadoes to parts of the central U.S., eight in Iowa, three in Arkansas, one in Missouri, four in Illinois and one in Wisconsin.

In Jonesboro, Arkansas, a violent tornado did damage in the town with six reported injuries. In total there have been at least 190 reports of severe weather in the last 24 hours from the Midwest to the South to the Ohio Valley. The same powerful storm system was responsible for a 90 mph wind gust in Henderson County, Kentucky.

The storm also brought very heavy rain with widespread rainfall totals of 1 to just over 2 inches of rain from Iowa to Pennsylvania.

Cloud Precipitation

Hundreds of families displaced by flooding due to ongoing heavy rains in western Kenya

Floods in western Kenya, March 2020
© Kenya Red Cross
Floods in western Kenya, March 2020
One person has died and hundreds of families have been displaced after flooding in western Kenya.

Kenya Red Cross reports that ongoing heavy rains in western Kenya have affected over 20 villages in Busia, Siaya, Migori, Homa Bay and Kisumu.

"As we continue to tackle the COVID 19 pandemic, the March-May long rains have begun causing havoc in various places already," the Red Cross said via Social Media. Response teams are assessing needs on the ground so as to provide support.

One of the worst hit areas is Budalang'i in Busia County. The local Member of Parliament, Raphael Wanjala , called for assistance on 28 March. Local media reported that at least 500 families in Budalang'i have been forced to move to higher ground.

Cloud Precipitation

Heavy rains bring flash flooding to Saudi Arabia

Heavy rain cause flash floods in Ha'il, Saudi Arabia.


Blue Planet

With India on lockdown, endangered sea turtles on course to lay SIXTY MILLION eggs this year

Olive Ridley sea turtles
While the coronavirus may have sparked one of the biggest crises seen by the planet in modern times, the global pandemic has had some positive effects on the environment.

In India, along the coast of the eastern state Odisha, over 475,000 endangered Olive Ridley sea turtles have come ashore to a roughly 3.75-mile (6-km.) Rushikulya beach to dig their nests and lay eggs.

However, restrictions in place due to the CoViD-19 threat has allowed for hundreds of thousands of endangered turtles to be protected from any human presence — especially the presence of tourists — resulting in what may be their most successful mass nesting in years.

According to the forest service, well over 250,000 mother turtles have taken part in the daytime nesting activity within the past week alone, reports Down to Earth.

Snowflake Cold

Severe Spring frosts destroy crops across Europe

Poland frosts
A brutal and extensive swathe of sub-zero temperatures has engulfed much of Europe, ravaging farmers' fields throughout Northern Italy, much of Poland, and the Ukraine.

Italian farmers' group Coldiretti issued a report on March 24, revealing a "difficult situation" throughout a significant part of the Italian peninsula, with frost-damage recorded from Lombardy to Emilia Romagna and from Veneto to Puglia.

Temperatures as low as -6C (21.2F) were recorded in Emilia Romagna.

As reported by iegvu.agribusinessintelligence.informa.com, the Coldiretti statement identified that apple, pear, peach, apricot, and almond trees had begun flowering, while cherry and plum trees were now also in bloom, and that these frosts have already destroyed many a harvest.

Massimo Franchini, a peach and apricot producer from Casal Fiumanese, reported as well that there is nothing left of his plantation. "I do not know how long it lasted, but enough to damage every single fruit."

"I believe it will be difficult for producers to honor payments this year, as we will have no income," he stated.

The Coldiretti report continued, adding that the damage is also seen in artichoke to asparagus fields, from beets to chicory, and also to peas.


Out-of-season snow falls in Tokyo, Japan

Out-of-season snow fell in Tokyo and surrounding areas on Sunday, with the weather agency warning of icy road surfaces.

As cold air gripped the Kanto-Koshin region, including the Tokyo metropolitan area and the prefectures of Yamanashi and Nagano, the temperature dropped below 1 C in Tokyo in the morning, according to the Japan Meteorological Agency.