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Sun, 17 Jan 2021
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Earth Changes


String of coyote attacks on humans in East Bay's Lamorinda area in California rattles some nerves, surprises wildlife officials

Residents of the bucolic towns of Lafayette, Moraga and Orinda have long known to guard their pets and backyards from coyotes prowling in the shadows, behind trees and around garbage bins.

"They howl behind my house every night," said Melodi Dewey, a Lafayette resident. "There's a pack of them on the other side of my fence. I have to keep my dogs from going outside at night."

But Dewey and others in the Contra Costa County area dubbed Lamorinda are warier than ever these days and just as surprised as wildlife officials after a string of coyote attacks this year left three people bitten and injured, the latest one Tuesday behind Diablo Foods in Lafayette.

And what's particularly alarming is that the same coyote is responsible for all three attacks, according to authorities. Lab results showed Thursday the DNA in the saliva around the latest victim's wounds matched the DNA found in previous attacks.

Although California Department of Fish and Wildlife officials have trapped and killed four coyotes in the area within the past couple of weeks, they have not yet caught the culprit in Tuesday's attack and those on Dec. 4 at Campolindo High School in Moraga and in July not too far from Moraga Commons Park.


Elderly Italian woman gets mauled to death by five pet wolf-dogs

wolf dog
A 74-year-old Italian woman died after her five half-wolf dogs mauled her inside herown apartment.

Mariangela Zaffino, a pensioner who stays mostly in her flat in Grugliasco town, which is near Turin in Italy, was found dead by her daughter in her own apartment. The investigation pointed to her five pet Czechoslovakian wolfdogs as the culprits behind her death.

The old woman was attacked by her pets for reasons still unknown to investigators. Her daughter said that her mother's dogs were a cross between German shepherds and wild wolves, and that they have many wolfish characteristics. She told The Telegraph that the five dogs did not show any signs of aggression before.

Car Black

Snow causes traffic jam with a 1,000 cars stretching for 9 miles in Japan

Vehicles are stranded on the snow-covered Kanetsu expressway in Niigata Prefecture on Friday.
© KYODO/Reuters
Vehicles are stranded on the snow-covered Kanetsu expressway in Niigata Prefecture on Friday.

Heavy snow in Japan causes a traffic jam stretching for nine miles. More than 1,000 cars are involved, with highway officials working to clear the roads.

Comment: Army deployed as record snowfall of 7 FEET blankets parts of Japan

Cloud Precipitation

Devastating flood hits near Barcelona, Spain

Brutal floods in Montcada i Reixac and other municipalities of the Vallès Occidental. The heavy rains that are taking place, December 18, are leaving significant accumulations that affect mobility.

The Catalan meteorological service (Meteocat) has issued a warning for the accumulation of rains of more than 200 liters per square meter in 24 hours in cities of the Metropolitan Area of Barcelona.

Snowflake Cold

Vicious feedback loop brings intense winter conditions across India

ice road
Jammu & Kashmir's 2020/21 winter season is off to a brutal start after the mercury plunged to -6.6C (20F) in Srinagar on December 19, compounding the misery caused by the recent disruptive snowstorms.

Jammu & Kashmir's winter months are divided into three stages: Stage 1) the intense 40-day period known as "Chillai Kalan" starting Dec. 21, Stage 2) the less intense 20-day spell called "Chillai Khurd", and finally Stage 3) the 10-days of mild cold entitled "Chille Bache".

This year, two days before "Chillai Kalan" had even begun, Srinagar recorded the bone-chilling low of -6.6C (20F) — a reading that was not only the lowest of the season so far, but also the second-coldest December temperature of the past decade, according to the region's meteorological department.

Arrow Up

Randall Carlson - Winter Solstice 2020

Winter Solstice 2020
© Randall Carlson.com

Winter Solstice
, the longest and darkest night of the year (in the northern hemisphere) will present to astronomical enthusiasts a once in a lifetime celestial event. It has been 794 years (1226 A.D.) since Jupiter and Saturn have aligned so closely that to the naked eye observer they appear as one object ‒ only the Moon will be brighter.

The overtaking of the slower planet Saturn by the more rapidly orbiting Jupiter takes place every twenty years. Due to its much greater distance from the Sun than Jupiter, Saturn's orbital period is right at 29.457 Earth years while Jupiter's is 11.86 Earth years. This overtaking is called a planetary conjunction. The apparent close association between two planets in conjunction, in this case Jupiter and Saturn, is due to the fact that the Earth, Jupiter and Saturn all lie in a straight line, more or less, and in this particular conjunction the alignment is very close, lying only 6 arc minutes, or one tenth of one degree apart at their closest passage.

Here is a way to think about the phenomenon: Assume Jupiter is conjunct Saturn. After 11.86 Earth years Jupiter has revolved around the Sun and returns more or less to the same position in the sky. However, Saturn, even though considerably slower in its orbit, has moved on ahead, enough, in fact, that it takes Jupiter about another 8 years to catch up. This means that there is a regular progression of Jupiter/Saturn conjunctions around the Zodiac. The last Jupiter/Saturn conjunction occurred over May 28-29 in the year 2000 against the backdrop of the star constellation Taurus. Prior to that event there was a triple conjunction in 1980 in the constellation of Libra that lasted from late December to early August in the constellation Virgo.

This year the conjunction is taking place between the constellations of Capricorn and Sagittarius, as seen in the following graphic captured from Stellarium. The fact that this conjunction is taking place on the Winter Solstice is a remarkable coincidence.


Explosion at Sakurajima volcano, Japan

Sakurajima Volcano,

Sakurajima Volcano

At approximately 16:40 JST an explosion was registered. This was cloud obscured. Thanks 4 watching!!

Comment: Another is also currently erupting in the Pacific region: Hawaii volcano: Kilauea erupts on state's Big Island followed by magnitude 4.4 earthquake

Arrow Down

Landslides severely damage houses in Iceland after record rainfall for 5-day period

© mbl.is/Eggert Jóhannesson
Reporters, accompanied by police, were given permission to enter the town of Seyðisfjörður, the East Fjords, yesterday afternoon to take pictures of the damage in town, following a series of landslides in recent days.

The town was evacuated Friday, after a landslide severely damaged at least ten homes. Aside from reporters, no one but first responders, meteorologists and an electrical repair team has been allowed to enter the town since Friday night.


Floods in Veracruz, Mexico

Natural disasters 19 December 2020.

The river burst its banks and the city went under water.

Flood in Veracruz, Mexico.

Cloud Precipitation

1 dead after further floods and landslides in south Thailand - up to 6 inches of rain in 24 hours

Royal Thai Army distributes relief supplies in Nakhon Si Thammarat Province floods, 03 December 2020.
© Royal Thai Army
Royal Thai Army distributes relief supplies in Nakhon Si Thammarat Province floods, 03 December 2020.
Thailand's Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM) reports that the strong northeast monsoon over the Gulf of Thailand caused further heavy rain and strong winds in southern provinces from 16 December, resulting in floods and landslides.

DDPM said that, as of 21 December, over 125,000 people from around 32,000 households were affected in total, with most of them in Narathiwat Province (28,836 household affected), and others in Pattani (2,304) and Yala (863 households). Over 400 people in Narathiwat have evacuated their homes and moved to evacuation centres.