Earth ChangesS


Antarctic Fish Species Adopts Winter Survival Strategy Similar To Hibernation

Scientists have discovered an Antarctic fish species that adopts a winter survival strategy similar to hibernation. Scientists from British Antarctic Survey (BAS) and the University of Birmingham reveal, for the first time, that the Antarctic 'cod' Notothenia coriiceps effectively 'puts itself on ice' to survive the long Antarctic winter.

Antarctic Cod
©Dr Hamish Campbell
The 'Antarctic Cod' (Notothenia coriiceps) became isolated from its warmer water cousins around 30 million years ago when the Antarctic circumpolar current was formed.

Cloud Lightning

Angola ravaged by new floods

Torrential rains forced more than 30,000 people to flee their homes in southern Angola and floods killed 30,000 cattle, state television reported Thursday.

The worst of the floods hit Kunene province on Wednesday covering about 72,000 hectares (178,000 acres) of land with up to two metres (6.5 feet) of water, TPA television reported.


Hawaii: Kilauea Lava Flow Reaches Ocean

Kilauea ocean flow

The latest flow from Kilauea Volcano reached the ocean overnight, according to scientists with the Hawaii Volcano Observatory.

A scientist flew over the flow with Hawaii County officials on Thursday morning.

Access to Kilauea's eruption was cut off Wednesday after the current lava flow crossed the last Big Island access road to the site.


Illinois: Ice jams cause record flooding

Rock river ice jam
©John Greenwood


Scientists believe photograph depicts wolverine in California

U.S. Forest Service scientists believe an Oregon State University graduate student working on a cooperative project with the agency's Pacific Southwest Research station on the Tahoe National Forest has photographed a wolverine, an animal whose presence has not been confirmed in California since the 1920s.

Katie Moriarty, a wildlife biology student, was conducting research on another carnivore called the American marten when a remote-controlled camera she set photographed the animal on February 28, 2008. Forest Service scientists who are experts at detecting rare carnivores believe the photographed animal is a wolverine.

©US Forest Service, Oregon State University photo
Scientists believe a wolverine was photographed with a remote-controlled camera on Feb. 28 on the Tahoe National Forest. Evidence of wolverines in California has not been scientifically verified since the 1920s.

Bizarro Earth

Ferocious storm to hit UK at weekend

Barometric pressure could break all time record of 925mb

Weather forecasters are warning that a potentially fierce and damaging storm may hit Britain Sunday night and Monday morning.

Both the weather division of the Press Association, Meteogroup UK, and the Met Office said they were receiving reports that a band of exceptionally low pressure coming in from the west of the UK could bring heavy rain and bad weather.

Red Flag

This is not a drill: The earth actually is moving beneath western Washington

While the annual Sound Shake exercise on Wednesday produced a simulated magnitude 6.7 earthquake on the Seattle fault, a real though unfelt seismic event is taking place beneath western Washington.



Bird Found After 80 Years

A bird species not seen for 80 years has been rediscovered near Papua New Guinea, experts said Friday. The Beck's petrel, long thought to be extinct, was photographed last summer by an Israeli ornithologist in the Bismarck Archipelago, a group of islands northeast of New Guinea.

Hadoram Shirihai, who was leading an expedition to find the bird, photographed more than 30 Beck's petrels. Shirihai's photographs and his report were published in "The Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club" on Friday.

Arrow Down

Russia's snow leopard population declines by half

The number of snow leopards in Russia's southwestern Siberian Altai Republic has fallen from 40 in the late 1990s to 10-15, the director of the Gorny Altai nature preserve said on Friday.

Russia has an estimated total of 100 large mountain cats, which are in the Red Book of Endangered Species.

Sergei Spitsyn said the main reason is an insufficient number of forest rangers and rampant poaching, adding that local residents often see helicopters that are used for illegal hunting.

Bizarro Earth

Pet hamsters banned in Vietnam

Vietnam has banned the sale and possession of hamsters, whose popularity has been soaring.

The Ministry of Agriculture says anyone caught with a hamster will be fined up to 30m dong ($1,900) - almost double the average annual wage in Vietnam.

The authorities say the creatures are a potential source of disease.

Officials have also expressed concern that the animals are imported from China and Thailand without proper licensing or controls.