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Extreme Temperatures


Florida: Number of annual manatee deaths top 800 for first time on record

© Wikimedia Commons.
A group of three manatees
For the first time since records began being kept in Florida in the 1970s, the number of manatee deaths in a single year has topped 800, with two weeks remaining to the end of 2013.

Numbers released by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Research Institute in St. Petersburg this week showed the number of dead manatees at 803 as of Dec. 13. That's about 16 percent of the state's estimated population of 5,000 manatees.

And 173 of the dead were breeding-age female manatees, Martine DeWit of the institute's Marine Mammal Pathology Laboratory said Thursday.

Although it's too soon to say how this will affect the future of the species, she said, "It must have an impact to lose these important breeding females."

For comparison, last year's total number of manatee deaths was 392, which is more in line with what's normal.

The old record for manatee deaths, set in 2010, resulted from a lengthy cold snap that killed hundreds of manatees, pushing that year's number of deaths to 766. That cold snap mostly affected younger manatees that had not yet attained breeding age, DeWit said.

This year's record die-off was driven by two causes - one of which remains a mystery.

Snowflake Cold

Ice Age cometh: Northern Thailand declared cold disaster zone - Snow in Vietnam - In Turkey, animals literally freeze where they stand

Donkeys freeze in Turkey
© Unknown
Donkeys freeze where they stand during a cold snap in Turkey
A flurry of Middle Eastern and Asian news websites are reporting on "unusual" cold sweeping across vast areas of Asia and the Middle East.

The online Thailand pattayamail.com reports "Hundreds of thousands of residents of northern and northeastern Thailand are suffering from the current cold snap, with many areas having been declared disaster zones. [...] Some 100,000 people are suffering from the cold and in need of winter clothing. "

The German language thailand-tip.com reports that the "Meteorological Institute forecasts temperatures in the north to fall another 4 - 7°C by Thursday."

Alarm Clock

In the wealthiest area of the country, 7 homeless people have frozen to death this winter

Joe White, a homeless man who died during a Bay Area cold snap last weekend, in a photograph with his mother Mary Archuleta
Joe White was this close to making it.

A 50-year-old California man described by relatives as a "loving father and a doting grandfather," White had been living on the streets of Hayward for years. He wanted to work and was able to find odd jobs here and there, but it was never much or consistent enough to afford a place to live. Hayward has no emergency shelter with beds for single men, so White slept outside.

But things were looking up. Last Saturday, White was second on a long list to get permanent supportive housing in Hayward. He had been waiting in line for months and it seemed as though he might finally catch a break.

White died on Sunday.

Temperatures in the Bay Area plummeted to near-freezing on December 10, an uncommon occurrence in a region generally known for its lack of inclement weather. White's body was found in the old Hayward City Hall courtyard. He'd been beaten up and robbed by multiple men, who took the new winter coat White's sister had given him on Friday. He was wearing just a hoodie and shorts. His cause of death is still being determined, but police speculated that his death was weather-related.


Jordan: Four days of heavy snowfall leaves Amman paralyzed

Thousands of homes in Jordan's capital Amman have been left without power, after four days of heavy snowfall left the city paralysed.

Hundreds of vehicles were left stranded, covered by the snow. Amman's residents have begun trying to clear the roads.

It is one of the worst blizzards to hit the country in recent history, leaving half a metre of snow in certain areas. Heavy snow has fallen in parts of Israel, Lebanon, Jordan, Turkey and Syria over the last few days. The major winter storm, known as Alexa, is the first to hit the region this season.

Cloud Lightning

Finland's chief meteorologist can't understand why storms on increase


This powerful storm battered Finland in 2010
The last four winters in Finland have been brilliantly white, with snow. Intense storms are also on the increase. This has the Director of the Finnish Meteorological Institute, Mikko Alestalo, rather confused.


Cold wave grips Mumbai for 2nd day

© OLA Cabs
Mumbai: A cold wave continued to grip Mumbai for the second consecutive day with Santa Cruz recording a minimum temperature of 15.6 degrees Celsius on Monday.

On Sunday, Mumbai had recorded the first coldest day of this season with a minimum temperature of 15.7 degrees C. This sudden drop in temperature is due to the northerly cold winds, said V K Rajeev, director, India Meteor-ological Department (IMD), Mumbai. The temperature is currently 2-3 degrees below normal, and would continue for the next two-three days. "After that, the city might witness a slight rise in temperature."

IMD officials said that as the northern parts of the country cool further, the temperature in the city might drop a bit more towards the end of the year or early in January. "The temperature is likely to stay between 15 and 16 degrees C for the next few days," said an official.

If other parts of the country get even cooler, Mumbai might see some drop in the maximum temperature in the coming few days," said an official from the India Meteorological Department (IMD).

Officials said that last December, the maximum temperature in the city had dropped to about 30 degrees C around this time of the year giving Mumbaikars a respite from the heat during the day. Currently, the maximum temperature is a little above 32 degrees C. "Other parts of Maharashtra are already much cooler. Bur Mumbai's proximity to the coast adds to the humidity and keeps the maximum temperature high," said an official.

IMD officials said morning haze will be a fixture till the end of January adding to the coolness. "Earlier, the haze would lift by 7am. Now, it stays till about 8.30am. In December, more than 75% of the days witness a visible haze," the IMD official added.

Ice Cube

Ice Age Cometh: Unprecedented influx of Arctic Ivory Gulls into UK

On par with a mammoth influx of juvenile Snowy Owls in North America (involving at least 750 so far), the UK has experienced its largest-ever influx of first-year Ivory Gulls from the Arctic ice-shelf.

Following the first off Seaburn (County Durham) on 30th November, an unprecedented five more have been discovered since......

Comment: See also: Ice Age Cometh: Snowy Owl invasion coming in North America?

Maine experiencing a Canadian owl invasion

Incredible Hawk Owl invasion in Estonia!

Huge Snowy Owl invasion becomes official in Canada and U.S.

Thousands of Hawk Owls descend on Finland as food in northern Russia runs out

Snowflake Cold

Heavy snowfall causes damage in Lao Cai, Vietnam

Heavy snow has damaged large areas of crops while stopping traffic on many roads in Sa Pa district, the northwestern mountainous province of Lao Cai.


According to the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development of Sa Pa, more than 100 hectares of chayote and another 100 hectares of flowers were buried under snow.

Thick ice also blocked about 10 kilometres of Highway 4D linking Lao Cai and Lai Chau provinces. Efforts have been made by local authorities to clear the roads.

Freezing temperatures have also forced more than 8,500 pre-school and primary school students to cease their schooling.

According to the Lai Chau Department of Education and Training, thousands of students in the hard-hit districts of Sin Ho, Phong Tho and Tam Duong have had to stay at home. Students in 63 schools in Sa Pa, including 20 nursery, 22 primary and 21 secondary schools, have been allowed to stay at home on December 16 and 17.

Ice Cube

How the global warming whopper is being buried under a jillion pounds of Arctic ice


It was only five years ago in December that Al Gore claimed that the polar ice caps would be completely melted by now. But he might be surprised to find out that Arctic ice coverage is up 50 percent this year from 2012 levels.

"Some of the models suggest that there is a 75 percent chance that the entire north polar ice cap, during some of the summer months, could be completely ice-free within the next five to seven years," Gore said in 2008.

The North Pole is still there, and growing. BBC News reports that data from Europe's Cryosat spacecraft shows that Arctic sea ice coverage was nearly 9,000 cubic kilometers (2,100 cubic miles) by the end of this year's melting season, up from about 6,000 cubic kilometers (1,400 cubic miles) during the same time last year.


The Arctic's stunning single year recovery! BBC reports there's 50% more Arctic Sea ice VOLUME this year!

Arctic sea ice thickness
Arctic sea ice thickness - late Oct 2013.
If the oceans have eaten the heat, then it certainly isn't to be found in the Arctic Ocean - that's for sure!

The Beeb has surprised today in reporting that Arctic sea ice VOLUME grew a stunning 50%, from 6000 cubic kilometers to approx. 9000 cubic kilometers, from 2012 to 2013, this according to measurements made by the Cryosat probe of the European Space Agency.

Yet another argument of the warmists is melting away.
Data from Europe's Cryosat spacecraft suggests there were almost 9,000 cu km of ice at the end of this year's melt season. This is close to 50% more than in the corresponding period in 2012.
Are sea ice models next in line to be embarrassed?