The Northern Lights captured by Rory Adam Porter.Sky-gazers were left disappointed after traveling from across Ireland to see the spectacular Northern Lights above Donegal at the weekend.An alert was put out that the aurora borealis or Northern Lights would be visible in the skies over Donegal and the North-West.The amazing dancing lights, normally only seen around the Arctic Circle, were expected to move further south between Thursday and Saturday. NASA and Astronomy Ireland were among groups and organisations who alerted the pubic to the natural phenomenon.Hundreds of people travelled from across Ireland including Dublin and Roscommon to catch a glimpse of the lights.But they were left hugely disappointed when the lights failed to materialise.The lights went dim when ejections from the sun slowed down and the earth’s magnetic field pulled all the light Northwards back towards the Arctic Circle. One disappointed light-hunter travelling around Malin Head in Co Donegal tweeted “The only lights I can see are the headlights of other cars looking for the Northern Lights.”Veteran Northern Lights gazer and photographer Adam Rory Porter said he met lots of people in Donegal who were extremely disappointed.“It is not an exact science and even people in NASA were quite confident of a good lights display in more southern skies.“I met a lot of people who had traveled from down south hoping to sees the lights but it was just not meant to be.“I felt so guilty because I had been reading these forecasts from NASA and it looked like there was a good chance of seeing the lights but the ejections from the sun just slowed down. “The reality is that if you want to be almost guaranteed to see the Northern Lights then you have to travel to Iceland or Norway and that’s quite expensive.“It took me five or six warnings to see the lights myself but it was certainly worth waiting for,” he said.The aurora borealis occurs when highly charged electrons from the solar wind interact with elements in the Earth’s atmosphere leaving amazing light shows of various colours.SKY-GAZERS LEFT IN DARK AFTER NORTHERN LIGHTS NO-SHOW was last modified: January 13th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:adam rory porterdonegalNASAnorthern lights
* * *Subscribe to the Mercury News and East Bay Times for $40 a year and receive a free Warriors championship coffee table book* * *LOS ANGELES – The Warriors’ trusted veteran has made 3-point shots with dependable accuracy. He has covered the opposing team’s best scorer. He also attacks the basket as if he were in the prime of his career.The Warriors have become accustomed toward Andre Iguodala fulfilling that familiar role in April, May and June. This season, though, Iguodala has done the …
(Visited 43 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 If it’s evil, if it’s immoral, if it’s anti-religious, chances are Big Science and Big Media will be all for it.Since our last reports on science’s ethics, “Evolutionary Materialism Promotes Deadly Sins” (2/12/17), and “Why Is Big Science Pro-Death?” (2/06/17) more evidence has come in to show that Big Science (institutional science, academia, science journal editors) and Big Media (secular evolution-trusting journalists) are willing to fight traditional morality at every opportunity. For instance, why should any scientist be pro-abortion? Why are scientists and secular reporters constantly attacking even common-sense restrictions on the deadly practice?AbortionFDA urged to let abortion pill be sold at pharmacies (David Crary, Medical Xpress). Urged by whom? “a group of doctors and public health experts urging an end to tough federal restrictions on the drug.” Does Crary look for other groups of doctors and public health experts who take the opposite view? Well, sort of. They get one paragraph in the story, but it is quickly refuted by his preferred authorities.France adopts law against misleading anti-abortion websites (Medical Xpress). France’s outright punishment of the pro-life movement is given positive coverage in this article. [Note: Medical Xpress is an amalgamator of academic press releases about medical subjects, but by publishing these articles and not pro-life articles, they are accessories to the bias.]Utah’s anesthesia abortion law unenforced (Medical Xpress). A crowd of pro-Planned Parenthood protestors with pink signs leads off this article, trying to make the case that pro-life legislators can pass all the laws they want, but doctors won’t obey them. They quote one who says, “is, in my opinion, a waste of our money and our time by someone who is trying to make a political statement and really not worried about what’s best medically or what’s best for people’s health.” People’s health? What about the baby?Dutch ‘abortion ship’ due in Guatemala (Medical Xpress). Mean old Guatemala: they enacted strict abortion laws. Good old Netherlands: they sent a ship that “can provide women with free legal medical abortions till 10 weeks of pregnancy after sailing to international waters, 12 miles outside Guatemala.” This article also describes abortion pills as “very safe and effective.”Montana abortion bill would make doctors try to save fetus (Medical Xpress). Horrors! Trying to save the baby after 24 weeks when it could be viable! Who gets the good press? “Critics of the bill said it could be among the most extreme anti-abortion laws in the nation, even as other states consider their own proposals that would reduce the window for legal abortions.” Extreme – invasive – unconstitutional: you get the reporter’s drift.Other Moral IssuesSame-Sex Marriage May Reduce Teen Suicide Attempts (Live Science). Look at the positive side of this unpopular new right that the US Supreme Court, by the narrowest of margins, pushed on the country in 2015. It might save a few teens from committing suicide according to a ‘study’. “The new study did not examine the reasons behind this link, but the researchers think that the same-sex marriage policies might have helped to reduce the perception of stigma among teens who identify as sexual minorities,” one researcher said. So was this the contributing factor to teen suicides before 2015? Did anyone think of other ways to reduce teen suicide other than to force gay marriage on the whole country, resulting in gentle florists losing everything they own? (true story; see FRC and ADF). Isn’t that a kind of Guth Goof? What about the stigma and loss Barronelle Stutzman is feeling right now?Live Science Book Giveaway: ‘Cannibalism’ by Bill Schutt (Live Science). How thoughtful of “live science” to offer a free book to readers that rationalizes cannibalism. “Schutt serves up a tempting menu of evidence” [gross!] “that reveals cannibalism — yes, even in human societies — to be more widespread and ‘perfectly natural’ than previously suspected.” Suspected by whom? It’s surprising that Mindy Weisgerber didn’t quip, “You are what you eat.” She almost makes our satire on cannibal rights look trendy.Attitudes, perceptions and knowledge among men who have sex with men towards the blood donation deferral policy in Israel (PLoS One). Disallowing gay men from giving blood because they might carry HIV makes them feel discriminated against. We don’t want to hurt their feelings. Solution: make the deferral temporary. That way we can put everybody needing a blood transfusion at risk of carrying this deadly disease. This is known as science.Do you see why prayer for our country is urgently needed? With your praying, speak out. The lunatics have taken over the science lab, corrupted by Darwinian denial of human exceptionalism (see Ch. 18 of Tom Bethell’s new book, Darwin’s House of Cards).
2 April 2015The hunted has become the hunter off the coast of Cape Town, where great white shark expert Chris Fallows has made a remarkable discovery. Fallows has recorded his observations of free-swimming blue sharks, Prionace glauca, being caught, killed and partially consumed by Cape fur seals, Arctocephalus pusillus pusillus.It is an important discovery, revealing a previously hidden part of one species’ diet, and could also have important implications for the understanding of the food web in the open ocean.A study of Fallows’ discoveries has been published in the African Journal of Marine Science.Fallows, who runs the diving group Apex Shark Expeditions, has been working with sharks since 1992. He spends more time on sea than on land – up to 200 days a year tracking and observing sharks.One day in December 2012, he was taking a group of tourists on a standard shark dive 20 nautical miles southwest of Cape Point. Fallows put out some bait, which attracted 10 blue sharks. And then a male Cape fur seal, not quite mature, swam into view.Feeding frenzyInstead of going for the bait, as expected, the seal attacked one shark, tearing open its abdominal cavity and feeding on the viscera. Not satisfied, it turned to attack a second shark. Fallows recorded the seal attack and eat five of the 10 sharks before the scientist left, thinking he may be adding to the feeding frenzy.“I have not seen this behaviour since then,” Fallows said after the study was published on 31 March, although he has seen seals feeding on small sharks.In the vast, open ocean not everything has a human witness, but Fallows thinks this behaviour by seals is not widespread. “Only a small group of seals do this. They have probably been forced to because their usual food has been depleted.”There has been a depletion in the abundance of fish in the open ocean, and Fallows notes that species are also smaller: “In-shore reef fish have disappeared, there are fewer in-shore reef sharks and, what there is, is smaller in size than they were before.”He speculates that the Cape fur seals have been forced to attack predators – “while they did not eat full-grown blue sharks, these are efficient predators” – through desperation caused by heavy over-fishing by humans.High nutritional valueSeals’ teeth are rounded and cone-shaped – not made for tearing apart the extremely tough skin of sharks. Instead, they rely on tearing their prey by shaking it about.“Going after a shark is a big step. They bite into the softer gills and just eat the liver, which is rich in oils and nutrition they need. The stomach is also eaten. The rest of the shark is left for other marine creatures to eat.”Full grown, an adult Cape fur seal can reach 3m in size, although Fallows said this was unusually large. Adult blue sharks grow up to 3.3m; large specimens can grow to 3.8m long. The sub-adult males he witnessed attacking the sharks were about 1.5m in size, compared to the 1.4m of the young sharks. “They are punching in different weight classes. The seal is definitely the apex predator in this relationship,” he said.On the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species, the Cape fur seal population appears to be healthy, and it is classified as Least Concern. The population trend of the blue shark is unknown and it is listed as Near Threatened.Scientists weigh inFallows first witnessed seals attacking sharks in 2004. Again on the open water near Cape Point, he spotted a young male seal chase and catch a blue shark. The seal tossed the shark into the air before eating its stomach and liver.Hugues Benoit, a fisheries scientist at Fisheries and Oceans Canada, was intrigued, and contacted Fallows. Working with Neil Hammerschlag at the University of Miami, they wrote the paper, describing the event and its ecological significance.Cape fur seals and blue sharks have similar diets, but seals were not previously known to turn on their predatory rivals. The seal’s consumption of only the most energy- dense part of the shark, was also noteworthy, they said.Unlike Fallows, the scientists said the fact that the seal discarded the rest of its catch showed that it had the option to be picky and was probably not at a loss for food.In its article on the discovery, The Smithsonian reported the behaviour suggested that traditional methods of diet estimation for marine mammals might be missing some key strands in the food web.“If seals are selectively eating viscera from sharks – or any other large animal – that slippery evidence would have evaded scientists’ detection methods, potentially leading to a biased picture of who’s eating whom.”It also pointed out that predators that only targeted viscera instead of the whole animal could have population-level consequences for the prey, because they would have to kill so many animals to get their fill.“Benoit suspects that shark-eating is a natural behaviour for the seals, given that Fallows first witnessed it in open water where no human activity might somehow be egging on an abnormal interaction,” The Smithsonian writes. “Fallows was also ‘impressed at the ease with which this seal was able to take these sharks’, Benoit says, implying that this wasn’t the seal’s first shark-gobbling rodeo.”