Saturday, April 30, 2011

Millions of King Crabs Invade Antarctica!

File photo of a king crab

With this recent invasion of king crabs in Antarctica, I wonder how long before we will see Deadliest Catch: Antarctica!

-- thousands, possibly millions, of king crabs are marching through icy, deep-sea waters and up the Antarctic slope.

"They are coming from the deep, somewhere between 6,000 to 9,000 feet down," said James McClintock, Ph.D., University of Alabama at Birmingham Endowed Professor of Polar and Marine Biology.

Uruguay to Legalize Up to Eight (8) Marijuana Plants for Personal Use

Jurisdictions around the world are loosening the legal restrictions on marijuana. Many States in the United States have passed or are considering passing medical marijuana laws. Last year, California even attempted to legalize marijuana for non-medical uses too.

Uruguay is the latest country to jump into the mix by proposing to legalize marijuana. The below quote is from the translated story (via Google Translate), but you can read the original Spanish story here.

The Frente Amplio (FA) agreed a draft law to regulate the use of marijuana. The new text was adjusted between the Movement of Popular Participation (MPP), the Socialist Party and the New Space (NE).

The initiative, to be adopted on Tuesday 26 April by the bench of the FA in the Lower House, allowing the planting, cultivation and harvesting and industrialization and trade up to eight cannabis plants per household.

Notwithstanding the foregoing, "shall include quantity for personal consumption to 25 grams of marijuana," as defined in Article 3 of the bill agreed that El Pais.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

White Nose Syndrome Found in Kentucky Bat for First Time!

Little brown bats with WNS, Trigg Co., KY

Little brown bat with WNS, Trigg Co., KY

Little brown bat with WNS, Trigg Co., KY

Bats eat millions of pesky insects every year and also help pollinate crops. The loss of bats will cause major issues in the cycle of events - namely in agriculture and pest control. For additional information on white-nose syndrome, check out this Remixx World! article from the April, 2010 archives - White-Nose Syndrome Fungus Kills Ninety Percent (90%) of Bats in Hibernia Mine (New Jersey's Largest Hibernaculum).


Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet News Release

Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife Resources

White-nose Syndrome Confirmed In Kentucky Bat

Apr 13, 2011

Media Contacts:

Sunni L. Carr
Ky. Dept. of Fish and Wildlife Resources

Ann Froschauer
National White-Nose Syndrome Communications Leader
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
(413) 253-8356

Tom MacKenzie
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

FRANKFORT, Ky. – The Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) have detected the presence of white-nose syndrome in a bat residing in Trigg County, located in southwest Kentucky.

A suspect little brown bat from a cave in Trigg County, about 30 miles southeast of Paducah, was submitted to the Southeastern Cooperative Wildlife Disease Study (SCWDS) in Athens, Ga., which confirmed the disease.

White-nose syndrome was first detected in New York state in 2006. It has since killed more than one million cave-dwelling bats in eastern North America. Mortality rates of bats have reached almost 100 percent in multi-year infected caves. With confirmation of the syndrome in Kentucky, a total of 16 states - mostly in the eastern U.S. - and three Canadian provinces have now been confirmed infected.

“This is likely the most significant disease threat to wildlife Kentucky has ever seen”, said Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Commissioner, Dr. Jonathan Gassett. “It would be professionally irresponsible to take no action to stop or slow this disease. Bats are an important part of our natural environment, acting as pollinators and consuming mosquitoes and other insect pests across the landscape. We plan to aggressively manage this threat as it occurs in Kentucky in order to protect and conserve our bat populations.”

Anticipating the arrival of white-nose syndrome (WNS) in Kentucky, biologists have taken exhaustive measures to limit its spread.

“We have had a long-term partnership to address white-nose syndrome in Kentucky since it was first discovered in New York state,” said Mike Armstrong, USFWS Regional WNS Coordinator. “Now that it is confirmed here, we will continue to support the state in their research and management to limit the spread as much as we can.”

WNS is known to be transmitted primarily from bat to bat, but fungal spores may be inadvertently carried to caves by humans on clothing and caving gear. Both state and federal agencies took pro-active measures to limit potential human movement of the disease. These measures included increased education on decontamination procedures, surveillance, monitoring and cave closures on private, state and federal lands. All measures were included in the “Kentucky WNS Response Plan” developed in 2009.

Kentucky was the first state to develop a response plan to address WNS both before and after its arrival in the state.

Almost 100 hibernacula were checked throughout Kentucky during the winter. The Trigg County cave was one of five revisited by scientists upon confirmation of WNS in Ohio. These hibernacula were rechecked due to their known proximity to infected sites in adjacent states. The privately-owned Trigg County cave is used as a hibernaculum by six species, including the endangered Indiana bat, and is a summer roost for the endangered gray bats.

Surrounding caves were checked within a 16-mile radius; no additional infected sites were found. Measures were taken to limit the spread of WNS beyond the Trigg County cave that is regularly used as a hibernaculum by more than 2,000 bats. These included removing and euthanizing 60 highly suspect little brown bats and tri-colored bats, as they were not expected to survive.

Bats collected will be used to provide critical information to researchers. Under the direction of Kentucky Fish and Wildlife’s veterinarian, Dr. Aaron Hecht, staff from SCWDS collected samples from the bats.

“A better understanding of the disease process will enhance our ability to respond to outbreaks,” said Hecht.

Spores of Geomyces destructans, the fungus associated with WNS, are known to reside in the environment. Physical barriers were strategically affixed within the cave to prevent bats from roosting in areas known to harbor infected individuals. These barriers will not alter the climate or restrict passageways used by bats. Scientists are attempting to reduce the possibility of other bats from coming in direct contact with the fungal spores and becoming infected. White-nose syndrome does not affect people.

Pest-control services provided by insect-eating bats in the United States likely save the U.S. agricultural industry at least $3 billion a year, and yet insectivorous bats are among the most overlooked economically important, non-domesticated animals in North America, according to an analysis published in this week’s Science magazine Policy Forum. (Source: USGS)

For more information about white-Nose syndrome, visit these websites:

Monday, April 25, 2011

Easter Stabbing at Venice Beach Drum Circle on April 24, 2011

At 3:05 of the above video, some dude says that he used his "wife beater" to save the guy's life who was stabbed. The dude also says that a fight broke out over dancing and that the guy was stabbed in the abdomen.
I have attended the Venice Beach Drum Circle on past Sunday occasions, so if I had been on my skateboard this past Sunday, I might have stopped by. Fortunately, I did not leave my couch, because you never know when you might be collateral damage to some nonsense.

I wonder if this is going to be a wild summer in 90291, because Venice has been seeing a lot of violence in the last few weeks including a shooting.

Source: Yo! Venice