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Wed, 29 Nov 2023
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Earth Changes


UK: Crab riddle on Thanet beaches

Velvet crabs
© Unknown
Velvet swimming crabs
Mysterious circumstances surround the beaching of thousands upon thousands of crabs on the isles beaches.

Last week the bodies of velvet swimming crabs were washed up on shores all around the Thanet coast but no definitive reason can be found.

Some think the sudden death of the velvet swimming crabs could be due to the cold weather.

Tony Child of the Thanet Coast project said: "It does seem to be linked to the weather, as it's been particularly cold.

It is something which happened three or four years ago. It's very strange."

However, he added that some crabs have been taken away to test for disease and "it was odd that no other species had been affected" by the cold.

Crab numbers had just started to recover from the last wave of deaths.

Cloud Lightning

US: Mysterious bird deaths solved?

A rash of brown pelican deaths and illnesses was probably caused by a severe mid-December storm in the Pacific Northwest, state wildlife officials believe.

An estimated 400 birds turned up dead, injured or sick along the California coast beginning about Dec. 19. The episode has largely faded, state officials said.

"It doesn't appear severe (poisoning) or disease appears to be doing this. It appears to be more weather-injury and nutrition-related," said David Jessup, senior wildlife veterinarian for the California Department of Fish and Game.

Bizarro Earth

Magnitude 5.4 - Chiapas, Mexico


* Saturday, January 17, 2009 at 02:57:33 UTC

Location 15.854°N, 92.483°W

Depth 178.5 km (110.9 miles)

Distances 60 km (35 miles) SW of Comitan, Chiapas, Mexico

100 km (65 miles) S of San Cristobal d/l Casas, Chiapas, Mexico

250 km (155 miles) WNW of Guatemala City, Guatemala

810 km (500 miles) ESE of Mexico City, D.F., Mexico


Alaska: Oil spills at Slope's Milne Point

The North Slope had one of its largest crude oil spills this week.

So far there's no evidence that any oil from the 24,400-gallon spill at BP's Milne Point oil field on Monday morning contaminated the tundra, though it's possible that some saline water may have escaped on the snow, state regulators said.

The spill is the biggest on the Slope since BP's record 201,000-gallon oil spill at Prudhoe Bay in 2006, which resulted in congressional hearings and criminal prosecution of BP. That spill did contaminate the tundra.


US: Why are the western white pines dying?

Everett, Washington - Sharon Collman's quest for answers started at her childhood home.

There, in Shoreline, 60 years ago, her mother planted a tiny Western white pine sapling that would grow strong and sure until a few years ago, when it inexplicably began to die.

Collman, an extension educator and entomologist, knows a few things about trees. A healthy, well-cared-for tree in her mother's front yard should live at least 200 years.

She didn't know it then, but she had stumbled on a problem that has the potential to devastate certain species of pines across Western Washington. It's already killing Western white pines from Mill Creek to Seattle.


Bird flu comes to Nepal, confirms UK laboratory

There has been an outbreak of bird flu for the first time in the country today. The deadly H5N1 strain of virus has been detected at Kakarbhitta, which shares a border with West Bengal in India, in Jhapa district.

An emergency cabinet today meeting declared the affected zone 'bird flu crisis-hit area'.

"No bird flu symptoms in human have been detected till now. But we are planning to monitor the health of the people in the affected area. Preliminary estimates suggest that the virus will be eliminated within a month," said Tek Bahadur Thapa, secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives (MoAC).

Bizarro Earth

US: Quakes rattle western, south-central Wyoming

Cheyenne -- A minor earthquake jolted the western Wyoming town of Alpine, startling people and pets. No damage was reported.

The U.S. Geological Survey says the magnitude 3.7 quake struck about 9:15 p.m. Thursday. The quake was centered in the Snake River Canyon about seven miles east of Alpine.

John Bellini with the Geological Survey in Golden, Colo., says the quake had nothing to do with the recent swarm of small earthquakes in Yellowstone National Park roughly 100 miles north of Alpine.

Better Earth

Arctic Heats Up More Than Other Places

Temperature change in the Arctic is happening at a greater rate than other places in the Northern Hemisphere, and this is expected to continue in the future.

As a result, glacier and ice-sheet melting, sea-ice retreat, coastal erosion and sea level rise can be expected to continue.

A new comprehensive scientific synthesis of past Arctic climates demonstrates for the first time the pervasive nature of Arctic climate amplification.

The U.S. Geological Survey led this new assessment, which is a synthesis of published science literature and authored by a team of climate scientists from academia and government. The U.S. Climate Change Science Program commissioned the report, which has contributions from 37 scientists from the United States, Germany, Canada, the United Kingdom and Denmark.


Russia issues tsunami warning after quake-RIA

Russia has issued a tsunami warning in the Far Eastern coastal city of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky after a large earthquake off the Kuril Islands, RIA news agency reported.

The news agency did not immediately give details.

A Reuters witness in the city said he had felt the earthquake.


Genetically Modified Crops Implicated in Honeybee Colony Collapse Disorder

As the disappearance of honeybees continues, researchers are trying desperately to discover the cause of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD). General concensus at this point is that there is more than once cause and the latest culprit may be genetically modified crops. This is one area of research being neglected as mainstream scientists insist GM crops are safe.

For the last 100 years, beekeepers have experienced colony losses from bacteria, (foulbrood), mites (varroa and tracheal) and other pathogens. These problems are dealt with by using antibiotics, miticides and and other methods of pest management. Losses are slow and expected and beekeepers know how to limit the destruction. This new mass die-off is different in that it is virtually instantaneous with no warning of the impending collapse.

John McDonald, a bee keeper in Pennsyvania with a background in biology, speculated that genetically modified crops could play a role in CCD. Although the government constantly reassures us that these genetic manipulations are safe for both humans and the environment, his hope is that looking more closely at these issues might raise questions about those assumptions.