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Sun, 19 Sep 2021
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Earth Changes


Endangered fin whale beached along Delaware coast dies

© WGMD/Walt Palmer
Officials say a 50-foot endangered fin whale found stranded along the Delaware coast has died. The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control said in a Facebook post Friday that scientists were taking measurements and samples of the whale, which would then be buried in a trench on the beach.

Biologists monitoring the whale say it "seems to be struggling," according to the MERR Institute. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is working with partners in the region to develop a response plan "which includes options for palliative care, sedation, or euthanasia."

The whale first showed up in Lewes on Thursday, stranded on a sandbar. It was able to swim back out to sea but later became beached on the ocean side of The Point at Cape Henlopen State Park, where the Delaware Bay meets the Atlantic Ocean.

Source: AP

Comment: Also in the same region recently: Dead 54-foot fin whale washes up on Barnegat Light Beach, New Jersey

Black Cat

Mom repeatedly punches mountain lion with bare hands, saving her 5-year-old son's life in Calabasas, California

A California woman has been called "a hero" by state officials after she fought off a mountain lion with her bare hands after it attacked her 5-year-old son.

The boy was playing by a tree near his home in Calabasas, west of Los Angeles, on Thursday morning when a 65-pound mountain lion attacked him, according to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. Department spokesman Patrick Foy told the Associated Press the mountain lion "dragged him about 45 yards" before his mother, came to the rescue.

"She ran out of the house and started punching and striking the mountain lion with her bare hands and got him off her son," Foy said. "The true hero of this story is his mom because she absolutely saved her son's life."

Foy told CBSLA the boy's mother noticed the attack when she heard her son screaming. He added the boy suffered traumatic injuries to his head and torso and was taken to a children's hospital in Los Angeles.


Student mauled to death by pack of stray dogs in Satriano, Italy

dog attack
A student was mauled to death by a pack of stray dogs while she was on a romantic picnic with her boyfriend.

Simona Cavallaro, a 20-year-old Italian, died after she was attacked by the dogs in the southern Italian town of Satriano earlier this week.

Cavallaro and her boyfriend, who has not been identified, had finished their picnic in the woods with a group of friends and had decided to go for a stroll, local news site Agi reports.

The couple were attacked by a pack of stray dogs whilst they were passing through a densely wooded area.

Cavallaro's boyfriend eventually got away but she was mauled by the dogs that are reported to have attacked every part of her body.


Italy's Mount Etna erupts after weeks of calm

Italy's Mount Etna erupted on August 29 spewing ash and lava after weeks of calm.

This footage by Giuseppe Tonzuso shows the volcano spraying debris and bright red lava down the side of its southeast crater as smoke and ash billow skyward.

Credit: Giuseppe Tonzuso via Storyful

Comment: More footage:


Dead 54-foot fin whale washes up on Barnegat Light Beach, New Jersey

© Ryan Morrill
A 54-foot decomposing fin whale that washed up on Barnegat Light's 19th Street beach Sunday morning would be too large to be disposed of any other way than burying it, according to the director of the Marine Mammal Stranding Center who was consulted after the whale washed up.

Bob Schoelkopf, director of the Brigantine-based stranding center, said a necropsy would not be performed. "The animal had been dead too long."

The definitive cause of the male whale's death was "hard to tell," Schoelkopf said, because "it had been dead for several days." The carcass showed "large shark bites."

"We think the animal may have been struck by a freighter, a large ship."

Cloud Lightning

Lightning kills two girls in Nigeria

There was confusion in Orisa Elejin community in Ikirun, Osun State, on Sunday, after two girls were allegedly struck dead by lightning.

The incident reportedly occurred during a light rain.

The Chairman of the Ifelodun Local Government Area, Ikirun, Hassan Okanlawon, who confirmed the incident, told our correspondent that the girls were found dead on the playground of an Arabic school after lightning struck.

Okanlawon said the deceased were living with their grandmother in the area.

Comment: Elsewhere in Africa and four days earlier than the above event a student was also fatally struck in Ghana.

Cloud Precipitation

Flash floods in province of Castellón, Spain after record August rainfall - 6 inches in 24 hours

Firefighters help clear a flooded home in Benicàssim in Castellón Province, Spain, 29 August 2021.
© Government of Castellón Province
Firefighters help clear a flooded home in Benicàssim in Castellón Province, Spain, 29 August 2021.
Record rain fell in parts of the Province of Castellón in the region of Valencia in Spain on 29 August 2021, causing flash floods.

Flooding damaged homes and roads in the coastal town of Benicàssim. Emergency services received 167 calls for assistance. Teams responded to flooding of around 50 homes. Firefighters rescued 3 people who were trapped inside their vehicles on flooded roads. They also helped evacuated one person from a flooded home.

Traffic along the major highway N-340 was temporarily suspended near Castellón de la Plana. Flooding was also reported in the town of Sagunto.


Hurricane Ida hits coast of Louisiana with 150 mph winds - 16 years to the day Hurricane Katrina hit the state

Hurricane Ida makes landfall as 'extremely dangerous' Category 4 storm in Louisiana

Hurricane Ida makes landfall as 'extremely dangerous' Category 4 storm in Louisiana
Thousands of people had already fled their homes as Hurricane Ida hit the coast of Louisiana with wind speeds of 150 mph.

More than 100,000 households had lost power in Louisiana by noon and were without electricity, according to PowerOutage.US, which tracks outages nationwide.

Long lines formed at petrol stations on Saturday as people rushed to escape.

Trucks pulling saltwater fishing boats and campers streamed away from the coast on Interstate 65 in Alabama, where Ida is also predicted to hit, while traffic jams clogged Interstate 10 heading out of New Orleans.

Ice Cube

Sharp uptick in Arctic Sea ice: Extent on course to be the highest in 15 years

Arctic Sea Ice Extent has been holding exceptionally well during the 2021 summer melt season.

Throughout August, higher volumes than usual have survived due to cold conditions and favorable wind patterns.

As a result, Arctic Sea Ice Extent is now the highest in 8 years,
and, if this year's trajectory continues for another week or two (which is expected), 2021 will achieve the 'healthiest' extent of the past 15 years (since 2006).

Only 2014, 2013, and 2009 remain in its way - though the gap is narrowing, fast:


Flood situation deteriorates in Assam, India with over 225,000 people affected

On Saturday, the flood situation in Assam took a turn for the worse with more than 2.25 lakh people from 15 districts affected.

On Saturday, the flood situation in Assam took a turn for the worse with more than 2.25 lakh people from 15 districts affected.
The overall flood situation in Assam deteriorated on Saturday as the rising Brahmaputra river and its tributaries inundated vast tracts in 15 districts and affected 2,25,501 people of the state, according to the daily bulletin issued by the Assam State Disaster Management Agency (ASDMA).

There have been, however, no loss of human or animal life so far, the bulletin said.

The current wave of flood triggered by continuous heavy rainfall in the catchment areas has hit Baksa, Barpeta, Biswanath, Bongaigaon, Chirang, Dhemaji, Dibrugarh, Golaghat, Jorhat, Lakhimpur, Majuli, Morigaon, Sivasagar, Sonitpur and Tinsukia districts and affected 512 villages under 34 revenue circles in them, it said.