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Wed, 22 Mar 2023
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Earth Changes


Dolphin and minke whale found dead on beaches in Portugal


Dead minke whale.
On Christmas day, locals spotted a lifeless minke whale and a dolphin at Rocha beach and Prainha beach, in Alvor, respectively.

According to Sul Informação, the whale, found on Rocha beach, was close to six meters, while the dolphin, which came ashore in Prainha was about two meters.

The Municipal Water and Waste Company of Portimão (EMARP) is planning to remove the animals tomorrow, the 27th, at 7am, said the same newspaper.

Snowflake Cold

Huge 'bomb cyclone' storm hits US with life-threatening cold as holidays begin

More than 60% of US faces winter weather warnings, with temperatures drastically below normal in many places
snow in flint , michigan
© Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
Street lights and snow blow in severe wind gusts in Flint, Michigan.
A wild winter storm enveloped much of the US on Saturday, bringing blizzards, freezing rain, flooding and intense cold close to record lows. More than a dozen deaths were attributed to the storm. Holiday travel and utilities were disrupted, with around 1.4 million homes and businesses left without power by late afternoon.

Forecasters said the storm, a "bomb cyclone" or "bombogenesis", was caused by a collision of cold, dry air from the north and warm, moist air from the south.

More than 200 million people were under some form of winter advisory or warning in "one of the greatest extents of winter weather warnings and advisories ever", the National Weather Service (NWS) said.

Comment: See also:


Hunt for two people missing after avalanche in free skiing area in Austria

avalanche austria December 2022
© Daily Mail
The avalanche occurred at around 3pm, with several helicopters and search teams deployed soon afterwards, December 25, 2022
Rescue workers are now searching for two missing people after an avalanche swept across ski trails in western Austria.

A video from a witness led rescuers to believe that as many as 10 people could be missing after the avalanche hit at around 3pm at the Lech Zuers free skiing area. Eight of those individuals have since been identified and are no longer feared buried, German news agency dpa reported, citing a spokesman of the rescue team.

About 200 rescue workers have been searching the avalanche site this afternoon and evening, with rescuers requesting headlamps so that they can continue their search in the dark.

Snowflake Cold

An insane amount of snow for Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario - over a meter deep

Sault Ste. Marie has a 97 per cent chance of seeing a white Christmas from year to year. After all, to officially call a White Christmas you need 2 cm on the ground Christmas morning. We've gone slightly overboard this year.

Since Friday, the Sault has received over 77cm and that's not including accumulation from midnight Saturday to Christmas morning. Unofficially, another 30cm fell in that time frame.

To put things in perspective, last winter the Sault maintained a snow pack of 40 to 50cm - that was for the entire winter
. As of Christmas morning, we have seen over 100cm and it's still snowing.

Snowflake Cold

Heavy snow in Japan kills at least 17

Japan hit by deadly heavy snows

Japan hit by deadly heavy snows
Many deaths caused by people falling from roofs or being buried underneath thick piles of snow sliding off rooftops

Heavy snow in large parts of Japan has killed 17 people and injured more than 90 while leaving hundreds of homes without power, disaster management officials have said.

Powerful winter fronts have dumped heavy snow in northern regions since last week, stranding hundreds of vehicles on highways, delaying delivery services and causing 11 deaths by Saturday.

More snowfall over the Christmas weekend brought the number of dead to 17 and injured to 93 by Monday morning, according to the disaster management agency.

Many of them had fallen while removing snow from roofs or were buried underneath thick piles of snow that slid off rooftops.

Comment: Niigata, southern Tohoku in Japan hit by record snowfalls - 2.2 meters (7.2 feet) deep


Wrong place, wrong time: MacGillivray's warblers from West Coast that should be wintering in Mexico turn up in Virginia and Massachusetts

The MacGillivray's warbler spotted at Lake Shenandoah in Rockingham County. Courtesy of Garland Kitts.

The MacGillivray's warbler spotted at Lake Shenandoah in Rockingham County. Courtesy of Garland Kitts.
A brisk day on Lake Shenandoah just a few days before Christmas, Kent Scaggs searched the edge of the water for his prey.

The flighty creature was first spotted a couple weeks earlier just outside of Harrisonburg foraging in some thick nestle. Scaggs, 57, quietly scoured these secluded areas in hopes of catching a glimpse of a yellow wing, finally tracking it on a honeysuckle bush. The silky gray hood and striking white arcs around its eye identified the winged animal as the one he had been hunting. He slowly lifted the scope to his eyes for a clear, swift shot.


A perfect picture of MacGillivray's warbler, a bird thousands of miles away from the warm climate it flees to this time of year.

Comment: The other bird turned up in Boston, Massachusetts, from a report on December 12:
Mary Ellen spotted this MacGillivray's Warbler in McLaughlin Woods, part of Mission Hill's McLaughlin Playground.

They're not usually seen east of Texas, so maybe it was blown here by one of the recent cross-country storms?


US: Prolonged winter storm causes at least 37 deaths and leaves thousands without power

ice lake erie
© John Normile/Getty Images
Ice covers the Lake Erie shoreline in Hamburg, New York, on December 24.
The prolonged winter storm that brought heavy snow, high winds and brutal cold to most of the US this past week has killed at least 37 people and had hundreds of thousands without power on Christmas morning.

Perhaps the worst impact was around Buffalo, New York, where 43 inches of snow fell as of Sunday morning, according to the National Weather Service. The snowfall and blizzard conditions made roads impassable, froze power substations and left more than a dozen people dead, Erie County officials said.

The conditions eased slightly on Sunday, allowing emergency responders to get out and see the extent of the problem.

Comment: For more on the storm, see: Severe winter storm leaves 1.5 million Americans without power


Severe winter storm leaves 1.5 million Americans without power

Millions of Americans are under severe weather warnings as the United States face holiday travel chaos due to arctic winter storm, December 23, 2022.
© Seth Herald / AFP
Millions of Americans are under severe weather warnings as the United States face holiday travel chaos due to arctic winter storm, December 23, 2022.
A severe winter storm accompanied by heavy snow and howling winds left nearly 1.5 million Americans without power on Friday, causing over 4,000 flight cancellations ahead of Christmas.

Nearly 70 percent of the country's population - 240 million Americans - are under weather warnings. According to the National Weather Service, the temperatures fell down to -55 degrees Fahrenheit.

The electricity outage was especially common in the southern and eastern states. Another concern was near-zero visibility on the roads, covered in ice and blizzard with transportation authorities urging people to stay home. At least two traffic fatalities were reported in Oklahoma, another three were confirmed in Kentucky.

Cloud Precipitation

Rare flooding in Baghdad after heavy rains hit Iraq

Iraqi children cross a flooded street in the Iraqi
Iraqi children cross a flooded street in the Iraqi capital Baghdad after heavy rains, on Dec. 24, 2022. (AFP)
Municipality workers in Baghdad on Saturday worked to pump water out of flooded roads after torrential rains hit several areas in Iraq, the state-run Iraq News Agency reported.

The municipality said it has fully mobilized all its workers and was working at maximum capacity to drain the rainwater throughout the capital, in joint cooperation with a government team, the Ministry of Interior, and the Civil Defense.

Municipality spokesman Mohammed Al-Rubaie said the intensity of the rain has doubled in the last 45 days and the meteorology directorate announced that it is falling at a rate of 70 millimeters per hour.

"It is rare for the capital, Baghdad, to be exposed to such an amount of rain," he said.


Winter waterspout filmed in Long Beach, New York

A News 12 viewer sent in video of a waterspout in Long Beach Saturday afternoon.

Storm Watch Team Meteorologist Meredith Garofalo says that most people don't think about waterspouts in the winter, but the right dynamics happened for it to occur.

Garofalo says it's not a severe weather event to happen, but it's not something most people expect to see on Christmas Eve day.