17 de noviembre de 2019

Two people just got the plague in China — yes, the Black Death plague By Jessie Yeung, CNN Updated 8:43 AM ET, Thu November 14, 2019

(CNN)Two people in China are being treated for plague, authorities said Tuesday. It's the second time the disease, the same one that caused the Black Death, one of the deadliest pandemics in human history, has been detected in the region -- in May, a Mongolian couple died from bubonic plague after eating the raw kidney of a marmot, a local folk health remedy.

The two recent patients, from the Chinese province of Inner Mongolia, were diagnosed with pneumonic plague by doctors in the Chinese capital Beijing, according to state media Xinhua. They are now receiving treatment in Beijing's Chaoyang District, and authorities have implemented preventative control measures.
Why is bubonic plague still a thing?

Why is bubonic plague still a thing?
Plague, caused by bacteria and transmitted through flea bites and infected animals, can develop in three different forms. Bubonic plague causes swollen lymph nodes, while septicemic plague infects the blood and pneumonic plague infects the lungs
.Pneumonic -- the kind the Chinese patients have -- is more virulent and damaging. Left untreated, it is always fatal, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
During the Middle Ages, plague outbreaks devastated Europe, killing around 50 million people. Since then, we've invented antibiotics, which can treat most infections if they are caught early enough -- but the plague isn't gone. In fact, it's made a recent comeback.
Plague-infected prairie dogs have shut down parts of a Denver suburb
Plague-infected prairie dogs have shut down parts of a Denver suburb
From 2010 to 2015, more than 3,248 cases were reported worldwide, including 584 deaths, according to the WHO. The three most endemic countries are the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Madagascar, and Peru.
In the United States, there have been anywhere from a few to a few dozen cases of plague every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2015, two people in Colorado died from the plague, and the year before there were eight reported cases in the state.

Having caused close to 50,000 human cases during the past 20 years, the plague is now categorized by WHO as a re-emerging disease.
How do you get plague? Is it curable?
According to the CDC, people usually get plague after being bitten by a rodent flea carrying the bacterium Yersinia pestis. Infected animals like cats and dogs can also infect their owners.
The bacteria persists because low levels circulate among populations of certain rodents, the CDC says. These infected animals and their fleas serve as long-term reservoirs for the bacteria.
A 2018 study suggested it's not just rats that are responsible -- the Black Death may have spread by human fleas and body lice.
Black Death spread by humans, vindicating rats
Black Death spread by humans, vindicating rats
There is currently no effective vaccine against plague, but modern antibiotics can prevent complications and death if given quickly enough. However, a strain of bubonic plague with high-level resistance to the antibiotic streptomycin, which is usually the first-line treatment, was seen recently in Madagascar.
Untreated bubonic plague can turn into pneumonic plague, which causes rapidly developing pneumonia, after bacteria spreads to the lungs.
A recent report suggests that researchers are exploring a variety of approaches to develop an effective vaccine. Since different vaccine designs lead to different mechanisms of immunity, the authors conclude that combinations of different types might overcome the limitations of individual vaccines and effectively prevent a plague outbreak.
How do you protect yourself from plague?
Key steps for prevention of plague include eliminating nesting places for rodents around your home, sheds, garages and recreation areas by removing brush, rock piles, trash and excess firewood, according to the CDC.
Report sick or dead animals to law enforcement or your local health officials, do not pick up or touch them yourself. If you absolutely must handle a sick or dead animal, wear gloves.
Use insect repellent that contains DEET to prevent flea bites and treat dogs and cats for fleas regularly. Do not sleep with your pets as this increases your risk of getting plague. Finally, your pets should not hunt or roam rodent habitats, such as prairie dog colonies.

Anotado en noviembre 17, domingo 18:50 por walkingstick2 walkingstick2 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

13 de agosto de 2019

7 Dogs died this past weekend due to Toxic Blue Algae

This past weekend 7 dogs have died. Dr.s could not save them. So far 1 in Georgia, 3 in N. Carolina, 3 in Austin, TX at Lady Bird Lake.
Dogs swimming and or drinking in this type of water have had seizures shortly after swimming and on arrival to the Vet's Brain dead.
It is found in fresh water but can migrate to marine water as well.
It is also bad for people. It can cause Alzheimer's, ALS and liver disease, as stated in the news.
Please be safe with your Pets and keep kids from playing in water not checked out by you or other.

Anotado en agosto 13, martes 18:10 por walkingstick2 walkingstick2 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

09 de agosto de 2019

Thousands of Tarantulas are about to crawl across Colorado

August 8th 2019 Story by Kashmira Gander
Around the 10 of September but the article says you can see them in October as well. Between 5:46pm and 6pm
La Junta on Highway 109 on the Comanche National Grassland is the best spot, according to the tourism board.
They are looking for females.
It is an interesting article talks about the male and female tarantulas How long they can live and more.

Anotado en agosto 09, viernes 06:33 por walkingstick2 walkingstick2 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

14 de julio de 2019

Dozens of Corellas birds dead after falling from the sky in suspected poisoning, South Australia.


Sadly, they say these native birds are sort of considered a nuisance. They can cause a huge amount of damage according to the article.
It is an interesting article either way.

We have had many birds and animals in large amounts, around the world die in the month of May and June of 2019. Sad but true.

Anotado en julio 14, domingo 19:55 por walkingstick2 walkingstick2 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

22 de junio de 2019

Animals trapped in notorious Russia ‘whale jail’ begin path to freedom By Natasha Daly Published June 20, 2019

I read this on National Geographic, today. Some good news about the article I had posted about the illegal capture of ocean life in Russia. I thoughtI would share the update.
If you go to this news article, By Natasha Daily on National Geographic News, it also supplies photos.

Authorities today loaded eight of 97 belugas and orcas onto trucks for release.
In what have since been declared illegal captures, four Russian companies that supply marine mammals to aquariums caught almost 100 beluga whales and orcas over the course of several months in the summer of 2018. The animals have been in holding pens in Srednyaya Bay, in Russia’s far east, ever since.

Today, the Russian government began the process of returning them to the wild, announced Deputy Prime Minister Alexey Gordeyev during President Vladamir Putin's annual televised public call-in program.

Authorities from VNIRO, the Russian Institute of Fisheries and Oceanography, have begun moving the first eight animals. Six belugas and two orcas were lifted in slings by cranes and prepared for transport. They’re to be released in the Sea of Okhotsk, roughly 1,100 miles away, where they were originally captured. The journey, by truck and by boat, will likely take about five days, according to Charles Vinick, executive director of the U.S.-based Whale Sanctuary Project. He has been in contact with Vyacheslav Bizikov, the deputy director of VNIRO, who is overseeing the transport and release.
Gordeyev said it will take four months to move all the animals and that the cetaceans will be released in small groups, according to a Reuters report on his remarks. According to a VNIRO statement translated by The New York Times, the cetacean transport will be monitored by 70 specialists, including veterinarians and scientists. Each whale will be accompanied during transport by two people and will be equipped with a GPS tracker before release.
The orcas and belugas attracted international attention in late 2018 and early 2019 when a drone captured aerial video footage of the facility, which showed 98 orcas and belugas crowded in small sea pens. The footage led the media to label the facility a “whale jail.” The situation sparked outrage worldwide, both over the capture itself and the the cetaceans’ treatment
At the time, three of the four companies maintained that the animals were captured legally, and the fourth did not respond to requests for comment. None has made any public statements since the release process began

.Transport begins
Putin personally monitored the start of the transport operation via live feed, reports EastRussia, an English-language Russian news outlet. The Russian president commented on the release, according to a BBC translation of the Russian televised program. "The killer whales alone—as far as I know—are worth around $100 million," Putin said. "When it's big money, problems are always hard to solve. Thank God things have started moving."

Western aquariums are scaling back on keeping cetaceans in captivity (Canada last week banned the practice altogether). But in China, dolphinariums with wild-caught animals are a booming business: There are now 78 marine mammal parks and 26 more under construction.
Vinick says transport back to the waters around Sakhalin Island in the Sea of Okhotsk “is the right decision.” In April, he was invited by Russian authorities, along with Jean-Michel Cousteau, founder of the California-based nonprofit Ocean Futures Society, to assess the whales’ condition and draft a rehabilitation plan. After their visit, they published a joint report stating that most of the animals had skin lesions, which could indicate health issues, and that they would require further health assessments. But they noted that all appeared to be well fed and had undergone minimal training. The report concluded that all 97 could be rehabilitated and released.
Vinick says the team recommended more significant rehabilitation prior to transport and release, to ensure that the animals were in good health. “While every detail is not perfect,” he says, “we have been told that they are trying to follow as many of the recommendations [that] our international team provided as they can.”

“Monumental” change to come?
Deputy Prime Minister Gordeyev also said Russia will clamp down on the capture of cetaceans and that the government will change the law that currently allows the capture of cetaceans for “educational and cultural purposes,” a loophole that fisheries in Russia have long used to legally capture belugas and orcas for use in aquariums in Russia and abroad, notably in China, as documented in National Geographic’s June feature on captive wildlife tourism. Export of orcas for commercial purposes was made illegal in 2018.

If those changes are indeed enacted, which would require amending federal law, cetaceans could only be legally caught for scientific purposes. It would mean the end of Russia’s commercial cetacean trade, which would be a “monumental” development, says Vinick. “It changes everything about the capture of these animals for public display. That would be leadership by the Russian government for the world to see.”

On May 31, the South-Sakhalin City Court, which has jurisdiction over the area where the cetaceans were captured, declared illegal all catch quotas that the Federal Fisheries Agency issued for belugas and orcas in 2018. In other words, the four firms’ argument that they had caught the animals with government permission was retroactively nullified. As a result, two of the four Russian firms have been fined. On June 7, White Whale LLC was fined $435,000. On June 14, Oceanarium DV was fined $870,000, reports the Moscow Times. The cases against the other two firms, Afalina LLC and Sochi Dolphinarium LLC, are still in progress, the paper reports.

Pens icing over
During their months in captivity, the animals appeared to be suffering, Dmitry Lisitsyn told National Geographic in February. Lisitsyn heads Sakhalin Environment Watch, an NGO based on Sakhalin Island, near where the cetaceans were originally captured, that has been monitoring the situation since last summer.

In November 2018, after the drone footage went public, regional authorities opened an investigation into the alleged illegal capture of the marine mammals. While the investigation was pending, the animals remained in the holding pens. As temperatures dropped during the winter, ice formed over the surface of the pens, alarming cetacean experts in Russia and abroad.

In late February, one of the orcas, Kirill, who had been ill for some time, went missing. Facility owners filed a police report saying he likely escaped. Environmentalists with the Free Russian Whales coalition, who are familiar with the facility, said that escape was highly unlikely. He has not been found.
What’s next
Details are scant on whether the cetaceans will have any period of adjustment once they arrive at the release point, says Vinick. “Our recommendation was that they have some period of time to get acclimated to the area. There are risks involved in any kind of release.”

VNIRO did not immediately respond to requests for comment or further details.

“We could all be second-guessing every part of this, and many people will, and they should,” says Vinick. “But at the same time, we have to be grateful that this is moving in this direction.”
Natasha Daly is a writer and editor at National Geographic, where she covers animal welfare and exploitation.

Anotado en junio 22, sábado 06:17 por walkingstick2 walkingstick2 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

11 de junio de 2019


Well, here I go again! 😬 Mosquitos do not like me but those chiggers do. I can stand in 1 inch grass and they seem to find me. With all the rain we have been having it seems to have made it worse. I have had chiggers two times since May and now June. I even spray my shoes to prevent it. Crazy!!! I think I need to climb into one of those big plastic clear balls to observe nature. Run around like a hamster.😳

Anotado en junio 11, martes 21:46 por walkingstick2 walkingstick2 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

31 de mayo de 2019

Newborn Hawaii beach is already polluted with microplastic

By Sarah Gibbens Published May 30, 2019

“There's this romantic idea of the remote tropical beach, clean and pristine….that kind of beach doesn't exist anymore.”
Only a year ago, streams of lava gurgled from Hawaii's Kilauea volcano, blocking roads and inching across fields. It eventually reached the ocean where the intensely hot lava hit cold seawater and burst into tiny shards of glass and rubble: brand new sand.
Eventually, new beaches formed, like Pohoiki, a black sand beach that stretches for 1,000 feet on Hawaii's Big Island. Scientists based in the area aren't sure if the beach formed quickly after the volcano began erupting in May 2018 or slowly as the lava began to simmer down in August, but based on samples taken from the newborn beach, they know it's already polluted—covered with hundreds of tiny pieces of plastic. Pohoiki adds to the growing body of evidence that plastic is most likely ubiquitous on beaches: even ones that look virgin.
Pohoiki adds to the growing body of evidence that plastic is most likely ubiquitous on beaches: even ones that look virgin.
Testing the waters
Microplastic is smaller than five milimeters and rarely larger than a grain of sand. To the naked eye, Pohoiki looks pristine.
“It's gorgeous,” says Nic Vanderzyl, the University of Hawaii at Hilo student who discovered the beach's plastic.
Vanderzyl saw the new beach as an opportunity to study new sediment that was perhaps untouched by human influence. He collected 12 samples from various beach spots. Using a solution of zinc chloride, which is more dense than plastic but less dense than sand, he was able to separate the two by forcing plastic to float to the top while the latter sank. The separation method was published in the journal Environmental Pollution in 2017.
On average, Vanderzyl found 21 plastic bits per every 50 grams of sand. Most of them, he says, were microfibers, the hair-thin fibers that shed from commonly used synthetic textiles like polyester or nylon. They enter the water via wastewater flushed from washing machines or simply from swimmers plunging into the sea.
Steven Colbert, a marine ecologist and Vanderzyl's academic mentor, says the plastic would have likely washed up with waves and been left on the beach as tiny grains of sand comb through it. Compared with samples taken from two other neighboring beaches that were not formed by volcanoes, Pohoiki has about 30 to 50 percent of the plastic they have.
Vanderzyl and Colbert plan ongoing monitoring of Pohoiki to measure whether the amount of plastic increases or stays the same.
-An end to pristine beaches
“I didn't want to find it,” Colbert says of the microplastic in Vanderzyl's samples, “but I really wasn't surprised.”
“There's this romantic idea of the remote tropical beach, clean and pristine like the beach Tom Hanks washed up on [in the movie Castaway],” says Colbert. “That kind of beach doesn't exist anymore.”
Plastic, including microplastics, has washed ashore on some of the world’s most remote beaches, uninhabited by humans.
Scientists have often likened the current state of the ocean to a plastic soup. Microplastics are so prolific that they rain down from the sky in remote mountain locations and turn up in most of our table salt.
It's still unclear how this excess of plastic will affect marine ecosystems, but scientists suspect it may have dangerous consequences for wildlife and human health. Numerous times, large marine mammals like whales have washed ashore with guts full of plastic, but scientists have recently found that even larval fish are eating microplastic in their first days of life.
And unlike larger plastic items like bags and straws that might be grabbed and tossed in the trash, microplastics are is simultaneously abundant and invisible. One study published earlier this month found that beach clean-ups often leave behind millions of pieces of plastic.
Conservation groups like the Hawaii Wildlife Fund have teamed up with universities to
develop beach cleaning contraptions that essentially act like a vacuum, sucking up sand and separating out the microplastics. But the machines’ bulk, cost, and the tendency to scoop up microscopic life as well all mean they can be used to clean only the worst polluted beaches.
Though already filled with plastic, Pohoiki has a long way to go before it can rival places like Hawaii's famous “trash beach.”
Vanderzyl hopes to return to Pohoiki in the coming year to see if or how the beach changes, but already, Colbert says, his early research shows that beach pollution is now instantaneous.

Anotado en mayo 31, viernes 19:06 por walkingstick2 walkingstick2 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

Scientists Splice Spider Gene Into Fungus to Kill Mosquitoes

By James Gallagher - Health and science correspondent, BBC News
Spider Gains
If we want to stop malaria from killing more than 400,000 people every year, we’ll need to stop mosquitoes — the irksome insects are the primary transmitter of the deadly disease.
To that end, researchers from the University of Maryland (UMD) genetically modified a fungus to produce a spider toxin that quickly kills mosquitoes. And in an out-of-lab trial, the fungus reduced a mosquito population by more than 99 percent, according to NPR — though the team’s controversial use of genetic engineering has some worried the method is too dangerous for the real world.
Killer Fungus
According to a paper published Thursday in the journal Science, the fungus the UMD researchers modified kills mosquitoes in the wild — but it isn’t particularly fast, meaning the insects might have time to infect someone with malaria before meeting their demise.
To give the fungus a boost, the team engineered it to produce a toxin derived from the venom of the Australian Blue Mountains funnel-web spider, which kills mosquitoes far more quickly. The team then tested the fungus in a “MosquitoSphere,” a screen-enclosed setting in West Africa designed to mimic a village.
“Simply applying the transgenic fungus to a sheet that we hung on a wall in our study area caused the mosquito populations to crash within 45 days,” researcher Brian Lovett said in a news release. “And it is as effective at killing insecticide-resistant mosquitoes as non-resistant ones.”
Calculated Risk
This was the first time anyone has tested a transgenic method for combating malaria outside of a lab setting, according to the news release. But while the fungus may have been effective, some worry that releasing a genetically engineered organism into the wild could cause unforeseen problems.
“This study raises several urgent concerns,” Dana Perls of the environmental group Friends of the Earth told NPR. “Genetic engineering of fungus could have problematic negative public health impacts and unpredictable ripple effects on ecosystems, affecting pollinators, bats, and bees. Like with all genetic engineering, this needs to be addressed with great caution.”
READ MORE: Scientists Genetically Modify Fungus To Kill Mosquitoes That Spread Malaria [NPR]
More on malaria: Scientists Wiped out a Mosquito Population by Hacking Their DNA With CRISPR

Anotado en mayo 31, viernes 18:56 por walkingstick2 walkingstick2 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

22 de mayo de 2019


This is not a creature of our planet. But I think it will be a great start to save the beautiful creatures Of our planet!
If you have to use a straw for you or your children or grandchildren, here is a great solution and also teaching your littles ones about protecting mother earth, for their future.
A stainless steal collapsible straw with a pipe cleaner to clean it and it comes in a hard pouch to keep it handy and clean.
( I am not sure if steal leaches chromium, iron or nickel into what you are drinking/eating if you are using other beverages, other than water as in alkaline or acidic beverages with the straw) I just like the fact it is not plastic in the environment..
You can also purchase Stainless Steal Straws cheap on line, that do not collapse.
We all need to start somewhere if we want to help preserve our environment.
No, I am not a saleswoman! I am someone who loves all life on this planet big and small, always looking and reading to help better myself and my planet.
Also to keep in mind, when purchasing a water bottle, make sure the stainless steal is real. Some are coated with a plastic inside the bottle. Though it says, "STAINLESS STEAL".
Glass water bottles are another great option! I use glass when out hiking, camping, and photographing nature. At home as well.

  • - Website: finalstraw.com
    - Also, Amazon sells some similar, but cheaper.
    My son bought me some with silicone colored tips you can put on the tips to distinguish who's straw it is. I told him about these straws that I was going to order on-line.

Anotado en mayo 22, miércoles 01:18 por walkingstick2 walkingstick2 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario

10 de mayo de 2019

$2.5 trillion 'Holy Grail' found? Breakthrough discovery could lead to 100 percent recyclable plastics, scientists say

Clearly, this is a great news! So, long as there are no downfalls to this recyclable type plastic, long term.

Anotado en mayo 10, viernes 22:56 por walkingstick2 walkingstick2 | 0 comentarios | Deja un comentario