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Sun, 19 Aug 2018
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Plagues


Attention

Rabid beaver attacking father and daughter on kayak caught on video in Adams County, Pennsylvania

father daughter rabid beaver attack
© (Dan Wherley/ Facebook)
A Pennsylvania man and his daughter said they were attacked by a large beaver while they were kayaking in Adams County.
A Pennsylvania man and his daughter said they were attacked by a large beaver while they were kayaking in Adams County on Aug. 5.

Dan Wherley and Layla, 7, were kakaying down Conewago Creek when the beaver came close to them.

"I looked, and it was a beaver scratching at it, and I thought 'Wow, that's pretty cool-a beaver came up to us!' It wouldn't stop, so I used my paddle tried to hit it to get it away, and it just wouldn't stop, wouldn't stop," Wherley told WPMT-TV in a report on Aug. 9.

"The beaver came up to the kayak, and tried to get in the kayak," said Layla.

"I jumped out of my kayak and ran to her. I got to her kayak the same time the beaver did, it climbed up on the back of her kayak, started to, and I had to punch it to get it off, cause I didn't have anything with me," added Wherley in the report.

Comment: Are we seeing a rise in the spread of infectious diseases as well as animal attacks? And are they in some way connected?


Biohazard

Worst red tide in more than a decade killing sea life along Florida coast

red tide turtle florida
© Matt @VisualPersist
Kemp's Ridley
Worst red tide since 2006 leaves 'unprecedented' number of dead sea turtles, Florida

Unprecedented numbers of sea turtles have been collected across Florida's Lee and Collier counties over the past week, and hundreds are thought to have died as the worst red tide algae bloom event since 2006 plagues southwest Florida. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is monitoring the current bloom since November 2017.

The FWC has documented 287 sea turtle deaths in Gulf of Mexico waters along the southwest Florida coast since the toxic bloom started late last year.

According to Allen Foley of the FWC's Fish and Wildlife Research Institute, that's about double the average number of turtle deaths in those waters every year.

Foley said turtles living in the area become sick and die when their food gets contaminated by the toxins.

Comment: Algae blooms and dead zones have quadrupled since 1950 with Oman and the Baltic sea as some other recent examples. But what's causing them? Surely industrial agriculture will have contributed to their rise, but when we factor in the discovery of thousands of underwater volcanoes, the increasingly unstable methane deposits and the slowdown in the Gulf Stream, which all appear to be linked to a slowdown in the Sun and Earth's rotation, clearly there are other more significant drivers to take into consideration.

See also: Worldwide ocean anoxia driven by global cooling was possible factor in previous mass extinctions


Biohazard

Mysterious, massive and deadly algae bloom 'whirlpool' discovered in the Baltic Sea

baltic algae whirlpool

On July 18, 2018, the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on Landsat 8 acquired a natural-color image (above) of a swirling green phytoplankton bloom in the Gulf of Finland, a section of the Baltic Sea. Note how the phytoplankton trace the edges of a vortex; it is possible that this ocean eddy is pumping up nutrients from the depths. For scale, a ship is shown. The swirling bloom is at least 15 miles across, which means New York City's Manhattan Island could fit inside it with a little room to spare.
The mysterious algae bloom 'whirlpool' in the Baltic Sea so big it could cover Manhattan

NASA has revealed an incredible image of a gigantic 'whirlpool' of algae in the Baltic sea.

Every summer, phytoplankton spread across the northern basins of the North Atlantic and Arctic Oceans, with blooms spanning hundreds and sometimes thousands of kilometers.

Blooms this summer off of Scandinavia seem to be particularly intense, NASA said.

The swirling bloom is at least 15 miles across, which means New York City's Manhattan Island could fit inside it with a little room to spare.

Researchers are unsure what is causing the strange pattern.

Comment: Every year there are more dead zones, the gulf stream becomes more sluggish, the jet stream meanders more erratically, storms increase and our climate becomes cooler - and it seems our planet has been through all of this before: Worldwide ocean anoxia driven by global cooling was possible factor in previous mass extinctions

See also:


Attention

9 dead following listeria outbreak - UK supermarkets recall potentially tainted frozen vegetables

frozen veg

The recall includes bags of frozen sweetcorn and frozen mixed vegetables
Six of the UK's most popular supermarkets have been forced to recall various frozen vegetable products due to concerns over possible listeria contamination.

Aldi, Lidl, Iceland, Sainsbury's, Tesco and Waitrose have all recalled frozen veg, including packets of sweetcorn and mixed vegetables, because they could contain Listeria monocytogenes, which can cause listeriosis.

Health organisations recently warned that an outbreak of the bacterial infection across Europe had been linked to frozen vegetables that were not cooked properly.

Comment: Bacterial and viral outbreaks appear to be on the increase: Be sure to check out:


Sun

Severe drought affecting 40% of Inner Mongolia, China - Plague of rats take over 4 million hectares

Mongolian township.
© Reuters
File photo of a Mongolian township.
Persistent drought in the remote northwestern Chinese region of Inner Mongolia has caused a rat plague now affecting more than 4 million hectares of grassland, an area the size of the Netherlands, the official Xinhua news agency said.

Rodents are a common problem throughout Inner Mongolia's huge and sprawling prairies, and adapt relatively well to dry weather.

Comment: This follows extremely harsh winters in Inner Mongolia which have resulted in mass deaths of cattle. And we're seeing similar erratic patterns all over the planet so, while the overall trend is towards global cooling, there's also an increase in droughts, wildfires, heatwaves, and violent storms bringing increased wave heights, microbursts, deadly hail and epic flooding: Also check out SOTT radio's: Behind the Headlines: Earth changes in an electric universe: Is climate change really man-made? as well as SOTTs' monthly documentary: SOTT Earth Changes Summary - May 2018: Extreme Weather, Planetary Upheaval, Meteor Fireballs


Microscope 2

Giant viruses invent genes found no where else on Earth

Pandoravirus quercus virus
© IGS-CNRS/AMU
Pandoravirus quercus, as viewed through an electron microscope. The scale bar equals 100 nanometers.
Giant viruses may invent genes and proteins found nowhere else on Earth, new research suggests.

As their name implies, giant viruses are big - as big as bacteria, and more than twice the size of typical viruses, scientists have previously reported. Giant viruses have more complex genomes than some simple microbial organisms, and many of their genes code for proteins found only in giant viruses, according to past studies.

These so-called orphan genes puzzled scientists, but a new study may suggest where they come from. In three new species of Pandoraviruses - a family of giant viruses described in 2013 - these genes originated in the viruses themselves. The giant viruses were like factories, churning out novel genes and proteins - though the origin and purpose of this prolific gene creation is still a mystery, the study authors wrote.

Even before the discovery of giant viruses, viruses occupied a questionable position on the tree of life: They contain much of the cellular material found in living organisms, including DNA or RNA, but they lack cell structure and cannot replicate outside a host - two key criteria for defining life.

Comet 2

Deadly Nipah virus has no cure, little is known about its transmission, and it has re-emerged in India

nipah virus
At least nine people in southern India have died in cases linked to an outbreak of the rare and extremely deadly Nipah virus, according to a report by the BBC.

Nipah is considered a newly emerging deadly virus - scientists only found out that it could jump from bats to other species, including humans, within the past 20 years.

The disease is currently incurable and can be transmitted from person to person. It has killed between 40 percent and 75 percent of infected people in most outbreaks.

Comment: There seems to be an increase in the spread of infectious diseases so one would do well to look to past plagues for clues: For more on the outbreak of plagues and planetary upheaval, check out SOTT radio's: Behind the Headlines: Who was Jesus? Examining the evidence that Christ may in fact have been Caesar!


Health

Three tourists confirmed as first global cases of 'super gonorrhoea' after unprotected sex in Asia

Gonorrhoea
© PA
Three tourists are the first global cases of a new strain of 'super-gonorrhoea' which is resistant to antibiotics, a new report has warned.

Two Australians and the British man picked up the sexually-transmitted disease (STD) while having unprotected sex in south-east Asia.

The Brit's case came to light earlier this year, when Public Health England confirmed he had been infected, before later revealing he had been successfully treated.

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) report, published this month, confirmed that two more tourists, both from Australia, picked up the infection.

Comment: See also: A 'very smart bug': Thanks to misuse of antibiotics, gonorrhea is becoming untreatable


Attention

Australia flesh-eating ulcer 'epidemic' a mystery, say doctors

Buruli ulcer
© DANIEL O'BRIEN
Victoria has seen a spike in recent cases of the Buruli ulcer
Doctors in Australia have called for urgent research into why a flesh-eating ulcer has become a "worsening epidemic" in the state of Victoria.

Local cases of Buruli ulcer, a skin disease most commonly found in Africa, have surged by 400% in the last four years, experts say.

Infections have also become more severe and spread to new areas.

Doctors do not know how to prevent the disease, which is caused by bacteria that breaks down tissue.

WARNING: Graphic image below

A record 275 new infections were recorded the state last year, marking a 51% increase on 2016.

Infectious diseases expert Dr Daniel O'Brien said cases of the Buruli ulcer, or Mycobacterium ulcerans disease, had become "frighteningly more common and also more severe" in the region.

It was unclear why the ulcer, typically found in tropical areas, had emerged in the temperate climate of Victoria, he said.

Microscope 1

Scientists warn plague 'hiding in plain sight'

Great Plague of London
© Getty Images
Eighteenth Century engraving showing a death cart unloading bodies into a mass grave during the Great Plague of London
The bacteria that cause plague, or the Black Death, could be lying dormant in common soil and water sources, posing a serious public health risk, scientists have warned.

The finding, published in the journal Emerging Infectious Diseases, could explain why plague suddenly re-emerges without warning in countries such as Madagascar and even the United States.

In the middle ages the Black Death swept through Europe, killing an estimated 75 to 200 million people. It is no longer a global threat but the new research may explain its occasional outbreaks across the world.

David Markman, from Colorado State University who led the study, said that plague is endemic in many different parts of the world and its origins are still not well understood.

Comment: See also: New Light on the Black Death: The Viral and Cosmic Connection