Rumigeration: A spreading abroad of a Rumour or Report (from N. Baily's "An Universal Etymological English Dictionary: being also An Interpreter of Hard Words")
Friday, February 22, 2008
Date: Feb 23, 2008 12:11 AM
what else is new, eh. but the continued loss of bees coupled with more of this, particularly if it spreads around the country, surely will leave us without much in the crops department.
Researchers: Why are thousands of hibernating bats dying?
ROSENDALE, N.Y. (AP) - Bats in New York and Vermont are mysteriously dying off by the thousands, often with a white ring of fungus around their noses, and scientists in hazmat suits are crawling into dank caves to find out why.
"White nose syndrome," as the killer has been dubbed, is spreading at an alarming rate, with researchers calling it the gravest threat in memory to bats in the U.S.
.. BOXAD TABLE --> "This is definitely unprecedented," said Lori Pruitt, an endangered-species biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Bloomington, Ind. "The hugest concern at this point is that we do not know what it is."
A significant loss of bats is chilling in itself to wildlife experts. But - like the mysterious mass die-offs around the country of bees that pollinate all sorts of vital fruits and vegetables - the bat deaths could have economic implications. Bats feed on insects that can damage dozens of crops, including wheat and apples.
"Without large populations of bats, there would certainly be an impact on agriculture," said Barbara French of Bat Conservation International of Austin, Texas.
White nose syndrome has afflicted at least four species of hibernating bats, spreading from a cluster of four caves near Albany last winter to more than a dozen caverns up to 130 miles away.
Alan Hicks, a wildlife biologist with the New York Department of Environmental Conservation, said he fears a catastrophic collapse of the region's bat population and is urgently enlisting experts around the country to find the cause.
It is not even clear if the fungus around the bats' noses - something scientists say they have never seen before - is a cause or a symptom. It may be a sign the bats are too sick to groom themselves, said Beth Buckles, a veterinary pathologist at Cornell University.
The die-offs could be caused by bacteria or a virus. Or the bats could be reacting to some toxin or other environmental factor. Whatever it is, afflicted bats are burning through their winter stores of fat before hibernation ends in the spring, and appear to be starving.
The Northeast has generally had mild winters in recent years. But Hicks said he doubts that is the culprit in some way, since there are no reports of large die-offs in warmer states.
Nor are there any known links between what is wiping out the bees and what is killing the bats. The cause of the bee deaths is still a mystery, though scientists are looking at pesticides, parasites and a virus not previously seen in the U.S.
Researchers said there is no evidence the mysterious killer is any threat to humans. Scientists venturing into the caves wear hazardous-materials suits and breathing masks primarily to protect the bats, not themselves.
Hicks said it is possible that a cave explorer introduced the problem in the Albany-area caves and that it spread from there. "It could have been some caver in Tanzania with a little mud on his boot and a week later he's in a cave in New York," he said.
New York officials are asking people to stay out of bat caves in case humans are unwittingly spreading the problem. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is asking people not to enter caves with gear or clothing used in any New York and Vermont cave within the past two years.
The first inkling of trouble came in January 2007, when a cave explorer spotted an unusual number of bat carcasses around the mouth of a cave in the hills west of Albany. Within a month, people in the area were calling in with reports of bats flying outside in the middle of the day.
"We didn't know anything other than bats were coming out and they were just dying on the landscape," Hicks said. "They were crashing into snow banks, crawling into wood piles and dying."
By winter's end, 8,000 to 11,000 bats were presumed dead in the four caves. The mystery affliction has spread much farther this winter.
Death counts are not in yet for this winter since afflicted bats die slowly. But Hicks said there are 200,000 or more bats hibernating in caves where white nose has been detected.
Hicks recently led a team of scientists into an abandoned mine in this Hudson Valley town about 80 miles north of New York City. He directed his headlamp on a cluster of seven brown bats, smaller than mice, hanging high on the limestone wall. Four had the telltale white flecks on their muzzles.
He tapped one of the afflicted bats with a long stick, and it fell, already dead. Another groggily spread its papery wings on Hicks' gloved hand. The sickly bat was put into a cardboard takeout-soup container to be put to death and studied, since it was doomed anyway.
A group of Indiana bats, a federally protected endangered species, was spotted hanging lower down in the mine for cooler air, a common strategy for sick bats.
Hicks whispered grimly: "These guys are toast."
Tuesday, February 19, 2008
From: jerm: rant in j-minor
Date: Feb 19, 2008 7:31 PM
Lunar Eclipse Info----------------- Bulletin Message -----------------
THANX: The Ghost of Jake
Date: Feb 19, 2008 3:22 PM
Ideas Are Bulletproof
UFOtv ♥♥♥ Living in the Now ♥ Trusting ♥♥♥
seva ♥♥♥ Living in the Now ♥ I found the 1
Lunar Eclipse on February 20 2008
A Total Eclipse of the Moon
The moon dips into Earth's shadow for a total lunar eclipse on the night of
Wednesday, February 20, 2008.
On February 20, 2008, the moon, Earth, and sun line up causing a total lunar eclispe.
The next total lunar eclipse does not occur until December 21, 2010,
although a couple partial and penumbral lunar eclipses will occur between
now and then.
Is the Eclipse on February 20 or 21?
What day the eclipse occurs on depends on your location.
Europeans will see the eclipse on the 21st, while most residents of North America will view it on the
evening of the 20th.
For those on the East Coast, the eclipse starts on the evening of Wednesday, February 20,
and ends just after midnight in the early hours of Thursday, February 21.
Locations and Times for Eclipse Viewing
The lunar eclipse will be visible in its entirety from western Europe and Africa,
all of South America, and central and eastern North America.
The moon will already be in eclipse phase during moonrise for the western US,
The shadow of Earth will creep across the face of the brightly lit full moon for more than an hour
before totality occurs.
The total phase will last approximately 50 minutes.
Here are some of the moments of contact for different time zones:
Partial Phase Begins at 8:43 pm, Total Phase Begins at 10:01 pm, Total Phase Ends at 10:51 pm, Partial Phase Ends at 12:09 am (February 21)
Partial Phase Begins at 7:43 pm, Total Phase Begins at 9:01 pm, Total Phase Ends at 9:51 pm, Partial Phase Ends at 11:09 pm
Partial Phase Begins at 6:43 pm, Total Phase Begins at 8:01 pm, Total Phase Ends at 8:51 pm, Partial Phase Ends at 10:09 pm
Partial Phase Begins at 5:43 pm, Total Phase Begins at 7:01 pm, Total Phase Ends at 7:51 pm, Partial Phase Ends at 9:09 pm
Why Lunar Eclipses Occur
Lunar eclipses must occur during a full moon.
For the moon to be full, it has to lie on the opposite side of Earth from the sun.
Most months when the moon is full, the line made by the Earth, sun, and moon does not line up
perfectly for the moon to enter Earth's shadow.
Lunar eclipses only occur about twice a year, and even then, not all lunar eclipses are total eclipses.
Recent volcanic eruptions in South and Central America may cause the eclipsed moon there to take on
a blue, black, or violet hue. The particles in the atmosphere are what give the eclipsed moon its colors.
Normally the hue is orangish or reddish, due to the colors of sunrise and sunset on the limbs of the
Earth where the sun passes through and the color is projected onto the moon.
Lunar eclipses, unlike solar eclipses, do not require any special precautions or viewing equipment.
A lunar eclipse can be viewed without binoculars or a telescope.
Try taking a photograph of the eclipsed moon; a large zoom lens will come in handy.
Other Lunar Observing Highlights
On February 20, the same night as the lunar eclipse, the moon will lie in the constellation Leo very near Saturn and Regulus.
The backward question-mark shape that marks Leo the Lion's head lie to the north. The period in the question mark is Regulus, shining at magnitude 1.4. During the eclipse it lies about two degrees from the moon.
Saturn, the brighter point of light near the moon, shines at magnitude 0.2, a little less than four degrees from the moon. Use a telescope to spot Titan, Saturn's largest moon. Scientists believe an ocean lies under Titan's icy surface, making Titan one of the most likely places in the solar system outside of Earth to harbor life.
Close Encounters with Venus
Venus's first conjunction of the month occurs on the first day of the month in the early hours before sunrise. On February 1, Jupiter and Venus lie just a half degree apart, or about half the amount of sky covered by your pinky when held at arm's length.
Look east-southeast about two hours before sunrise as the duo rises above the horizon. Venus will be a stunning bright light at magnitude -3.9. Jupiter will hold its own at magnitude -1.8. The two planets will be above the teapot asterism in the constellation Sagittarius.
As a bonus for getting up early to see the conjunction, look just two degrees to the right of the planets to find globular cluster M22. Under dark enough skies it can be seen without binoculars or a telescope.
If you do have binoculars or a telescope, use them to take a better look at the conjunction and globular cluster. Even better, take a photo if you are so inclined. A telescope will show Jupiter’s four largest moons. These moons, called the Galilean moons, are the four satellites orbiting Jupiter. Jupiter and its moons will be lined up, from lower left to upper right, in this order: Callisto, Europa, Io, Jupiter, and Ganymede. Remember that if you are looking through a telescope the image will be inverted.
February's second great conjunction occurs on the morning of February 27. Venus has moved away from Jupiter and is now by Mercury in the constellation Capricornus. Venus will still be at magnitude -3.9 and Mercury will be shining at magnitude 0.2. Venus will be closer to the horizon with Mercury about one degree above. The two planets will rise only about one hour before the sun and therefore be harder to catch than the conjunction at the beginning of the month.
Eclipse of the Moon Among the Constellations
Wednesday evening February 20, 2008
In the constellation of Leo the Lion, the eclipse of the Moon will occur towards the southeast portion of the sky.
Off to the left of the Moon, you can see the planet Saturn.
Of course the sky would appear to be moving over the course of time during the eclipse.
The size of the Moon is exaggerated for this graphic.
Our Moon thirty minutes after sunset for February 17.
Enjoy Eclipse Chasing???
Join My Group!!!
See You On the DARK Side of the MOON,
Sunday, February 17, 2008
----------------- Bulletin Message -----------------
From: Global Warming: The Only Solution
Date: Feb 17, 2008 12:30 PM
worlds largest river island washing away under flood waters
Body: World's largest river island washing away under flood waters
Majuli, in the river Brahmaputra in Assam, is being washed away by flood waters
It may be the largest river island in the world but it is steadily shrinking – eroded by the Brahmaputra river in which it is situated. Efforts to preserve the island and halt the erosion, caused by the glacial flood waters of the Himalayas, have been unco-ordinated and – say critics – ineffective.
Now the authorities are staking their hopes that having the island of Majuli listed as a World Heritage Site can bring about the focus and the funds needed to help save the culturally rich island.
"If it is listed as a World Heritage Site, there will be a co-ordinated management plan. The state and federal authorities will be obliged to prevent the erosion," said Diganta Gogoi, project director with the Majuli Island Protection and Development Council.
This week, the Indian government submitted an application to Unesco, requesting that Majuli, in the north-eastern state of Assam, be listed for special status under the "cultural landscape" category. The UN body has in turn asked the Indian authorities to provide them with a risk-preparedness strategy, outlining how it planned to save the island.
The island – formed by a change of course by the Brahmaputra – has a long and rich history and is considered a centre of Vaishnavite Hindu culture, whose followers worship the god Vishnu. The island is home to more than 30 satras or monasteries, many of which house irreplaceable collections of writings, antiques and masks.
But the island is fast disappearing. In 1950 it was around 1,256 sq km but by 1990 it had shrunk to about half that size. Since 1990 up to 35 villages have been washed away and some reports suggest the island could disappear within as little as 20 years.
"The erosion problem is everywhere," said K N Dikshit, general secretary of the Delhi-based Indian Archaeological Society. "There are many historical artefacts and paintings. If the island is not preserved it will all disappear."
Majuli's people are also suffering as the land slowly disappears. Worst affected are those who try to eke out a livelihood on the edge of the river. Most of these people belong to the Mishing clan and, as their land and villages have disappeared, so they have been transformed from farmers into labourers. Reports from Majuli say that many of these communities are living in dire conditions.
"The main problem is that the Brahmaputra is a massive river. During the high flood season the discharge of water is enormous," said S Jagannatana, secretary to Assam's governor, Lt-Gen Ajay Singh. "The soil on the edge of the island is very loose – it's all alluvial silt."
The central government has set aside around £10m to fund measures to try to prevent the erosion. These have included concrete barriers placed in the river to try to divert the water and measures to strengthen the embankments of the island.
But local people say these steps have made little difference and that the land from which they try to survive continues to disappear, sometimes requiring them to move overnight. Their lives have become a constant struggle to find a piece of land that seems stable – at least for a while.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
From: Tierra ~Abolition, Veganism, & Direct Action
Date: Feb 14, 2008 12:00 AM
----------------- Bulletin Message -----------------
Date: Feb 13, 2008 9:41 PM
Captain Paul Watson
“I have been honored to serve the whales, dolphins, seals – and all the other creatures on this Earth. Their beauty, intelligence, strength, and spirit have inspired me. These beings have spoken to me, touched me, and I have been rewarded by friendship with many members of different species.
If the whales survive and flourish, if the seals continue to live and give birth, and if I can contribute to ensuring their future prosperity, I will be forever happy.”
- Paul Watson
Captain Paul Watson
Founder of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society
Founding Director, Greenpeace Foundation
Paul Watson was born in Canada on December 2, 1950. He was raised in the lobster fishing town of St. Andrews-by-the-Sea in New Brunswick. He is the eldest of seven children. His father was Anthony Joseph Watson, a French Canadian born in New Brunswick, Canada. His mother was Annamarie Larsen, the daughter of a Danish artist, Otto Larsen, and Canadian, Doris Phoebe Clark.
In 1960, Paul was a member of the Kindness Club, founded by Aida Flemming in New Brunswick. After trappers killed one of his beaver friends, Paul set out, at the age of nine, to confiscate and destroy leg-hold traps. He was also known to disrupted deer and duck hunters, and to prevent other boys from shooting birds.
In 1968, Paul joined the Canadian Coast Guard. His first ship was the weathership C.C.G.S. Vancouver. In 1969, Paul joined the crew of the Norwegian bulk carrier Bris on a voyage to Asia and Africa. Early voyages with the Canadian, Norwegian, Swedish, and British merchant marine provided him with experience on all the world's oceans, including weathering typhoons in the South China Sea, North Atlantic storms in the iceberg-strewn northern latitudes of the Atlantic and navigating the war zones of the Persian Gulf. He served in the Canadian Coast Guard for two years in the early seventies on weatherships, buoy tenders and on a search and rescue hovercraft.
Paul Watson was one of the co-founders of the Greenpeace Foundation. His involvement began with a Sierra Club protest on the U.S. and Canadian border in October 1969, against the nuclear testing at Amchitka Island by the Atomic Energy Commission.
A few of the participants from the protest organized a small group to work on ideas to oppose the testing at Amchitka. The group was called the Don't Make a Wave Committee and was composed primarily of members from the Sierra Club and the Society of Friends (Quakers). Paul was a Sierra Club member and his motivation to protest the Amchitka testing was his concern for marine wildlife at Amchitka.
In October 1971, the Don't Make a Wave Committee sponsored the voyage of the Greenpeace I.
The Greenpeace I was an 85' Canadian fishing boat known as the Phyllis Cormack. The ship set forth from Vancouver, British Columbia, bound for Amchitka Island, (under the command of Captain John Cormack), with the intention of sailing into the test site. There were thirteen volunteers on board including Robert Hunter, Rod Marining and Lyle Thurston. Three decades later, these three would still be sailing with Captain Watson on Sea Shepherd campaigns.
The test was delayed and the Greenpeace I, after a month at sea, headed back to Vancouver.
In the meantime, a second ship was organized. This was the converted Canadian minesweeper the Edgewater Fortune. She was named the Greenpeace Too. One of her crew was Paul Watson.
The Greenpeace Too passed the Greenpeace I near Campbell River and carried on north to Alaska - first to Juneau, and then outward bound across the Gulf of Alaska to the Aleutians.
The nuclear test had been delayed to foil the voyage of the Greenpeace I, however, the U.S. Atomic Energy Committee advanced the next blast date to avoid the Greenpeace Too.
The five-megaton explosion was detonated under Amchitka Island when the Greenpeace Too was still a few hundred miles away.
The controversy the Greenpeace voyages generated led to the decision to cancel further tests, and the detonation of November 1971 was the last nuclear test to take place at Amchitka.
In 1972, the Don't Make a Wave Committee took the name of the two ships from the first campaign and renamed themselves the Greenpeace Foundation.
Paul Watson was one of the founding members and directors of Greenpeace. In fact, he was officially the eighth founding member. Robert Hunter was the first and his lifetime membership number was 000. His wife Roberta Hunter was second and her membership number was 001. Paul Watson's official membership number was and continues to be 007.
In 1972, Paul Watson skippered the tiny Greenpeace boat Astral, and placed it on a collision course with the French helicopter carrier, the Jeanne D'Arc, in Vancouver harbor. This was a protest against French nuclear testing at Mururoa Atoll in the South Pacific. The Jeanne D'Arc was forced to change course. The Astral changed course and kept on target - bow to bow with the warship, forcing the Jeanne D'Arc to stop.
In 1973, Watson and David Garrick represented Greenpeace during the occupation of Wounded Knee, South Dakota by the American Indian Movement. Both men served as volunteers for AIM, with Watson working with the medics and filing stories back to Robert Hunter at the Vancouver Sun.
In 1974, Robert Hunter, Dr. Paul Spong, Paul Watson and others organized the first campaign by Greenpeace to oppose whaling.
In 1975, Watson served as First officer under Captain John Cormack on the voyage to confront the Soviet Whaling fleet. In June 1975, Robert Hunter and Paul Watson were the first people to put their lives on the line to protect whales when Paul placed his inflatable Zodiac between a Russian harpoon vessel and a pod of defenseless Sperm whales. During this confrontation with the Russian whaler, a harpooned and dying sperm whale loomed over Paul's small boat. Paul recognized a flicker of understanding in the dying whale's eye. He felt that the whale knew what they were trying to do. He watched as the magnificent leviathan heaved its body away from his boat, slipped beneath the waves and died. A few seconds of looking into this dying whale's eye changed his life forever. He vowed to become a lifelong defender of the whales and all creatures of the seas.
In 1976, Paul served again as First Officer on the voyage of the Greenpeace V. This was the converted Canadian minesweeper James Bay. Once again, the crew confronted the Soviet whaling fleet, this time north of Hawaii.
Soon after the whaling campaign, Paul and David Garrick organized and led the first Greenpeace campaign to protect Harp and Hood seals on the East coast of Canada. During this campaign, Robert Hunter and Paul Watson stopped a large sealing ship in the ice by standing on the ice in its path.
Watson's account of the campaign was published in the Georgia Straight newspaper and entitled Shepherds of the Labrador Front. It is this article that inspired the name Sea Shepherd a few years later.
In 1977, Paul led the 2nd Greenpeace campaign to oppose the seal hunt off the coast of Labrador, this time bringing Brigitte Bardot to the ice floes to focus international attention on the seal slaughter.
In June 1977, Paul Watson resigned from the Greenpeace Foundation because of disagreements with the emerging bureaucratic structure of the organization. Patrick Moore had replaced Robert Hunter and was opposed to direct action campaigns. Moore had informed Watson that he would not be allowed to lead another seal campaign.
Paul left Greenpeace because he felt the original goals of the organization were being compromised, and because he saw a global need to continue direct action conservation activities on the high seas by an organization that would enforce laws protecting marine wildlife.
To answer that need, that same year, Paul founded the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society - dedicated to research, investigation and enforcement of laws, treaties, resolutions and regulations established to protect marine wildlife worldwide. In December 1978, with the assistance of the Fund for Animals, Paul purchased a North Atlantic trawler in Britain and converted her into the conservation enforcement vessel Sea Shepherd.
Over the years, Paul has exhibited a remarkable diversity in his activism. Aside from being a co-founder of Greenpeace in 1972 and Greenpeace International in 1979 and founder of Sea Shepherd in 1977, Paul was a Field Correspondent for Defenders of Wildlife between 1976 and 1980. He was a field representative for the Fund for Animals between 1978 and 1981, and a representative for the Royal Society for the Protection of Animals in 1979. He co-founded Friends of the Wolf in 1984 and the Earthforce Environmental Society in 1977. Paul's first affiliation with the Sierra Club was in 1968 and he has remained a Sierra Club supporter ever since. In April 2003, Paul was elected to the National Board of the Sierra Club USA. He will be a director until 2006.
Paul majored in communications and linguistics at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia. He has lectured extensively at universities around the world, and was a professor of Ecology at Pasadena College of Design from 1990 through to 1994. Paul also was an instructor in UCLA's Honors Program for 1998 and 1999. Currently, Paul is a registered speaker with the Jodi Solomon Speakers Bureau of Boston, and regularly gives presentations at colleges and universities in the United States, and at special events throughout world.
On the political front, Paul has run for Member of Parliament for Vancouver Centre in the Canadian Federal elections. He ran twice for the Green Party. He also ran on the Green Party ticket for Vancouver Parks Board in 1987 and for Mayor of Vancouver in 1995.
Paul has received many awards and commendations over the years. In 1996, Paul was awarded an honorary citizenship to the French town of St. Jean Cap Ferrat. Previous to that he was made an honorary citizen of the Florida Keys in 1989. Other awards include Toronto City TV's Environmentalist of the Year Award for 1990, the Genesis Award in 1998 and he was enrolled in the U.S. Animal Rights Hall of Fame in 2002. He was also awarded the George H. Bush Daily Points of Light Award in 1999 for his volunteer efforts with conservation activism. He was chosen by Time Magazine as one of the environmental heroes of the 20th Century in the year 2000.
Daily Point of Light No. 1404
June 22, 1999
Paul Watson is a prolific author. His titles include: Shepherds of the Sea* (1979), Sea Shepherd: My Fight for Whales and Seals* (1982), Cry Wolf* (1985), Earthforce! (1993), Ocean Warrior (1994) and Seal Wars (2002).
*These books are out of print, and can only be found via book-finding services.
Paul has served as Master and Commander on seven different Sea Shepherd ships since 1978. He currently commands the 657-ton Canadian-registered research ship Farley Mowat and the Canadian-registered research and patrol ship Sirenian. He continues to lead Sea Shepherd Conservation Society campaigns to protect defenseless marine wildlife around the world.
He has one child, Lilliolani Paula Lum Watson, (born in 1980), from a previous marriage.
"Captain Paul Watson is the world's most aggressive, most determined, most active and most effective defender of wildlife."
- Farley Mowat
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