Wednesday, November 19, 2014

MONUMENTAL DELUGE: Floodlist – The Latest Reports Of High Tides, Heavy Rainfall, Flash Floods, Widespread Flooding, Sea Level Rise, And Catastrophic Storms!

November 19, 2014 - EARTH - The following list constitutes the latest reports of high tides, heavy rainfall, flash floods, widespread flooding, sea level rise and catastrophic storms.

Floods Cause Travel Chaos in Israel and Lebanon

Flooded car park at Beirut airport, January 2013. Photo: A Karim Khalifeh

Southern Europe isn’t the only place currently experiencing storms and high levels of rainfall.

Torrential downpours have caused flooding across parts of Israel, the Palestinian territories and Lebanon. The latest spate of flooding comes less than 2 weeks after 3 people died and at least 60 were injured in flooding in Israel and Jordan in early November.

In a 24 hour period between 16 and 17 November, 73 mm of rain fell in Beirut. In Israel, Ben-Gurion International Airport, Tel Aviv, had 83mm between 15 and 16 November.

The storms have caused power outages across the region. Travel has also been left in chaos after roads, railways and airports were all badly hit by floods.

Once again the important road network leading to Beirut airport was flooded and blocked. These roads are notorious for flooding after heavy rain – they were flooded after floods in December 2013 in almost the exact same way.

Local media
are reporting that accusations as to who is at fault are already flying and Lebanon’s judiciary are demanding the names of the public works contractors from Transportation Minister Ghazi Zeaiter.

In Israel, Tel Aviv, Bethlehem and parts of the West Bank, in particular Jericho, all saw some flooding. Although the severe weather is expected to cease in the next 24 hours, river levels in the region will remain high for several more days. Any further rain could bring more flooding.

Floods kill 3 in Albania, over 5 inches of rainfall in 2 hours

Flooding in Albania has killed three people, after torrential rain caused power and water supply cuts in the western part of the country, authorities said Wednesday.

A 60-year-old man and his 26-year old daughter were found dead after their car was swept away by floodwaters in Lac, northwest of the capital, Tirana, late Tuesday. A 21-year-old motorcycle driver was also found dead in Lac, while his teenage passenger was rescued.

The heavy rainfall also flooded the main streets and buildings in Tirana and the western port city of Durres.

The government said the army was on standby to help emergency service workers with evacuation efforts, as more heavy rain was expected.

Agriculture Minister Edmond Planarity said the storm dumped 130 millimeters (5.1 inches) of rain in two hours overnight on the Lac and nearby Lezhe districts, causing power outages and flooding homes in those areas.

WATCH: Albania floods kill at least 3 people.

Albania Floods 2010

Albania saw some of its worst flooding during several periods of heavy rainfall between December 2009 and January 2010. The counties of Shkodra and Lezhë were once again among the worst affected. The county of Durrës was also badly hit.

Floods in Albania, 2010. Photo: Pooja Bryant
Almost 10,000 hectares (25,000 acres) of land was flooded, and over 5,000 people evacuated from their homes. The number would have been higher but many refused to leave. Around 2,200 houses were damaged by the flooding.

Dead after Floods and Landslides in Southern Europe

File photo: Floods in norther Italy. Photo: Sirio Negri

More severe weather has swept across parts of southern Europe over the last 4 days. France, Italy and Switzerland have all been badly affected. Floods and landslides have killed 9 people since Friday 14 November 2014.

The BBC reported earlier today that the region near to the Swiss / Italian border region has seen more rain in a few days than it would normally expect in a year.


Swiss authorities said two women, aged 34 and 38, had died when the mudslide hit the building in the village of Davesco-Soragno, near Lugano, Switzerland, on 16 November 2014.

Some of the heaviest rainfall was seen in parts of Ticino canton. Approx, where over 80 mm fell in 24 hours in Locarno between 15 and 16 November. Levels and flow of the Ticino river are dangerously high. This could spell further woes for parts of Italy since the Ticino is a tributary of the Po River, which is already seeing high levels.


In Italy, a 70-year old man and his 16-year-old granddaughter were killed when a mudslide engulfed their home in Cerro di Laveno in Italy on 16 November 2014

The Liguria region is, once again, one of the worst affected. Landslides have blocked roads and disrupted transport, while several rivers have burst their banks, inundating streets of the city of Genoa and nearby towns.

Elsewhere in Italy, levels of lakes Lugano and Maggiore are already dangerously high. Some lake-side villages have been cut off.

Emergency officials have warned of a “critical situation” in the North East, while damages have been estimated at more than €100 million.

Rainfall Levels during a 24 hour period, 15 to 16 November 2014
  • 102.4 mm in Milan
  • 159.4 mm in Genoa

Five people have died in three separate accidents after their cars were swept away by floodwaters between 14 and 15 November 2014 in the southern French region of Le Gard.

On Friday evening, a mother and her 2 young children were killed after their car was swept off a bridge by floods near the Cevennes Mountains. The father managed to escape from the vehicle.

A man was found dead in his car in Peyremale, Le Gard region, early on Saturday morning, downstream from the bridge he had been crossing, according to local authorities. Another man was swept away while he was driving his car on the mountainside, Friday night in Lozère

Orange flood warnings (2nd highest) had been issued for four neighbouring departments of the Vaucluse, Bouches-du-Rhône, Var and Alpes-Maritimes, but not for Le Gard.

More Heavy Rain Expected

The heavy rain is expected to continue across the region. Severe weather alerts have been issued for Luganese and Mendrisiotto in Switzerland, with between 70 mm and 100 mm of rain expected today. High levels flood and severe weather warnings remain in place across much of northern Italy.

Several yellow flood alerts (low-level) remain in place across parts of France.

Serbia and Croatia

The severe weather appears to be moving eastwards and heavy rain has now affected parts of Serbia and Croatia. According to WMO figures, in the last 24 hours, 104.1 mm of rain fell in Loznica, Serbia, and 60.4 mm in Dubrovnik, Croatia.

- ABC News | Floodlist.

CONTAGION: India Isolates Man With Ebola-Infected Semen - Patient Traveled To New Delhi From Liberia On November 10!

Health workers in protective suits transport Dr. Martin Salia from a jet that brought him from Sierra Leone to a waiting ambulance in Omaha, Nebraska, on
Saturday, November 15. Salia died early Monday, November 17, after being brought to the U.S. for treatment of Ebola.

November 19, 2014 - NEW DELHI, INDIA
- An Ebola survivor has been quarantined in India after his semen tested positive for the virus, health officials there have announced.

The 26-year-old man, an Indian national, traveled to New Delhi from Liberia on November 10, almost two months after he was hospitalized in the West African nation after showing symptoms of the illness, India's health ministry said in a statement.

He was released from the Liberian hospital on September 30 with documents declaring him free of clinical signs linked to Ebola, the ministry added.

As a precautionary measure, Indian authorities carried out tests on his body fluids, which confirmed traces of the virus in his semen, the statement said.

"Currently, this person is not having any symptoms of the disease. However, he would be kept under isolation in the special health facility of (the) Delhi Airport Health Organization, till such time his body fluids test negative and he is found medically fit to be discharged," it said.

Passenger surveillance

In the wake of the first detection of the deadly virus in India, the country's health minister, J.P. Nadda, held talks with top officials from various departments, the government said.

The minister advised strengthening passenger surveillance at the country's airports and seaports, the government said. He also ordered expert teams to visit states and report back to him on preparedness to deal with the virus, it added.

A man moves down the escalator at the arrivals section of the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi on Wednesday, November 19. A 26-year-old
Indian man who recovered from Ebola in Liberia has been placed in isolation at the New Delhi airport after traces of the virus were found in his semen,
according to India's Health Ministry. Health officials say the Ebola outbreak in West Africa is the deadliest ever. More than 5,100 people
have died there, according to the World Health Organization.

India's health ministry, however, urged calm. "The situation is under control and there is no need for any alarm. However, all precautions are being taken in this regard," it said in its statement.

According to the ministry and doctors, patients whose blood samples test negative for Ebola after treatment continue to shed the virus in their body fluids, such as urine and semen, for variable periods. A survivor with infected semen can transmit the disease to his sexual partners, they say.

"There is no cure that actually kills the virus," explained Naresh Trehan, chairman and managing director of Medanta The Medicity hospital near New Delhi. Patients, he said, are treated with supportive care.

Experimental vaccines and treatments for Ebola are under development, but they have not yet been fully tested for safety or effectiveness, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.

Healthcare providers, Trehan emphasized, must adhere to standard safety protocols while attending to Ebola patients and survivors carrying the virus in their body fluids.

India's preparations

India has screened thousands of passengers arriving from the Ebola-hit countries since the outbreak of the disease in West Africa.

"This is like a dress-rehearsal for India, and while we are already in the mode of preparation, this case will help us galvanize into action," said Hemant Thacker, a consultant physician and cardio-metabolic specialist at Mumbai's Bhatia Hospital.

"I believe we are theoretically prepared because we have learned the lessons from the West. That, however, doesn't mean that our medical authorities become complacent," he cautioned. - CNN.

Tracking the EBOLA Virus Outbreak

NEW WORLD DISORDER: Societal Collapse, Civilizations Unraveling Or Global Awakening - The Latest Reports Of Protests, Demonstrations, Riots, Coups And Revolutions! [VIDEOS]

November 19, 2014 - EARTH - Social inequalities and political discontent have spurred peoples across the globe to gather and protest against their respective governments. Even places traditionally muted, have seen citizens erupt into wild riots in the streets. Is this more evidence of societal collapse as civilizations unravel or are we witnessing a true global awakening?

London student protests turn violent, arrests made

Demonstrators break through barricades in Parliament Square and confront the police in front of the Houses of Parliament, as they participate in a
protest against student loans and in favour of free education, in central London November 19, 2014. (Reuters)

Police and protesters have clashed during the UK’s largest student demonstration for four years. It is not yet clear how many arrests have been made.

The protest, initially a campaign for free university education after the coalition government raised tuition fees, was joined by anarchists who clashed with police after they attempted to stop them entering Parliament Square.

Prior to the scuffle the demonstration had remained peaceful, with over 5,000 students from 40 cities marching through central London.

The clashes took place after demonstrators refused to obey police orders to “stand back”. Masked dissidents struggled against police and climbed over temporary fencing, eventually causing it to collapse.

Further violence and at least one arrest took place after a splinter group marched to Victoria, where police pinned one protester to the ground, and one officer was injured.

Matthew Taylor reported to the Guardian: “It happened in a pedestrianized area just near Victoria Station at about 3.30pm. A man in his 20s – who protesters told the Guardian was a Kurdish student – was forcibly bundled to the ground. He did not appear to be posing any great threat at the time of the arrest.

Students’ protest in London erupts in clashes.


“It was one of several violent arrests carried out by Territorial Support Group police officers as the breakaway demonstration snaked its way through the backstreets around Victoria station.

“A crowd of around 100 protesters surrounded the police as the man was pinned to the floor, with some minor scuffles breaking out. The man has now been put in a police van and the crowd largely disbursed.”

The man is apparently a Turkish Kurd studying history, politics and economics at Birkbeck University.

A friend, who wished to remain nameless, said “He was just walking outside John Lewis and they attacked him.”

“He hadn’t done anything at all – we are all just here to protest. It was really violent, he looked like he was unconscious for a while,”
said another.

The friends say they hope footage of the event will stop the man being prosecuted. “The police said he is going to be charged with assaulting an officer but I just hope someone caught what happened on camera.”

More violent arrests of protesters at Parliament Square have been reported.

Masked mob burns down construction site in Kiev

 Dozens of masked protesters demolished a construction site in Kiev as they opposed the construction of a new shopping mall. Protesters demolished a small booth and dismantled the fence surrounding the site.

Protests in Kiev.

Eviction Resistance: Milan cops hit by barrage of Molotov cocktails in clash with protesters

A massive protest has broken out on the streets on Milan afteer the police evicted two squats on the south of the city.Some 150 left-wing activists were throwing molotov coctails and firecrakers to the officers, who responded with tear gas.

WATCH: Protests in Milan.

Protests over 43 missing students sweeping to a head in Mexico

The disappearance of 43 students near the town of Iguala over 6 weeks ago continues to fuel outrage across Mexico. While public anger is growing over the government's handling of the case, protesters are blocking roads and demanding justice.

Over a thousand student protested in Mexico City on Sunday, blocking a busy avenue with rubbish bins. The demonstration was called after two students were shot and injured by police at the Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) on Saturday.

The student march, which began at Copilco metro station, made its way to Rectoria, the heart of the National Autonomous University of Mexico.

After the peacful demosntraion ended, a group of around 20 masked students set oil containers on fire and threw rocks smashing windows of a bank and a petrol station in a business area located outside of the university.

On Sunday, during the G20 Summit in Australia, attended by Mexican President Pena Nieto among others, demonstrators demanded justice in the Ayotzinapa case. A group of protesters carrying Australian and Mexican flags emblazoned with the number 43 gathered in Brisbane. They also had banners saying: "You are not welcome in Australia," and demanded the Mexican president's resignation. Last month, Enrique Pena Nieto met with the relatives of the missing students and promised them a "renewed search plan."

The national strike is set to take place on November 20 in protest at the presumed killing of 43 students from the Ayotzinapa teachers training college. They were detained on September 26, following a protest where a group of students clashed with police. They have been missing ever since. Their classmates blamed their "disappearance" on a corrupt government and police with alleged close ties to drug cartels. Mass graves were discovered in the area in early October, but initial tests suggested they were not those of the students.

More bodies have been found since then, and now the accuracy of the initial tests is under question.

Earlier this month, police in Mexico arrested the fugitive mayor of the town of Iguala, where the students went missing. Local officials have accused Luis Abarca of ordering police to confront the students on the day of their disappearance.

WATCH: Protests in Mexico.

Drone Footage: Thousands protest govt corruption in Budapest

 Over 10,000 protesters gathered in front of the Hungarian Parliament Building in Budapest on Monday, protesting against perceived government corruption and lack of transparency.

While thousands of protesters turned out for the event, there were no reports of violence or arrests. Protests in the Hungarian capital kicked off last October after staunch opposition to government plans to tax internet use.

Tensions have since escalated after President Orban refused to fire National Tax Authority President Ildiko Vida, after she was accused of corruption by US officials. Orban has since rejected the US corruption allegations.

WATCH: Massive demonstration in Budapest.

Turkey Brawl: Students clash with police after refusing to be searched

Clashes broke out between police and a group of students after they allegedly refused to be searched before entering the Ankara University campus, Monday. Police used tear gas and detained several students near the security point of the university's Faculty of Language History and Geography.

WATCH: Wild protests in Turkey.

Seed of Suicide? Indian farmers protest against GMO giants and crop failures by killing themselves

One Indian farmer commits suicide every thirty minutes. Human-rights groups cite a number of reasons for the high rate of suicide - including droughts, the government's economic policies and lack of support for farmers. A more controversial reason that's been put forward, is the advent of GMO crops in India.

WATCH: Suicide protests in India against GMO giants.

- RT.

ICE AGE NOW: Worst In Memory - 8 Killed As Ferocious Cold "Thunder" Snowstorm Sweeps Through United States! [PHOTOS + VIDEO]

Steven Gros shovels snow from outside his home in Orchard Park, New York, November 18, 2014. (Reuters/Judy Gros)

November 19, 2014 - UNITED STATES
- Record-breaking cold weather with freezing temperatures is sweeping through US states. A huge “thunder” snowstorm slammed the US state of New York, killing at least eight people, and bringing some six feet of fallout.

Heavy Lake Effect snow falls in Orchard Park, New York, November 18, 2014 (Reuters/Judith Gros)

Arctic air made this Tuesday morning the coldest in November since 1976 in the USA. Even in Hawaii, the temperature dropped to +31 C. Over the past week the country’s cities and towns have seen 1,360 daily low maximum records, Boston news website reports.

WATCH: Buffalo Lake Effect.

Meteorologists say that this kind of weather is much more typical for January or February. According to the National Weather Service, over half of the country –50.2 percent – saw snow on the ground that day.

The city in the state of New York that suffered particularly hard was Buffalo, where authorities had to issue a ban that eased road-clearing by allowing only emergency vehicles to travel.

In Buffalo one person died in a vehicle accident, while three others suffered cardiac arrests as a result of shoveling snow on Tuesday, Erie County officials said, AP reported.

One of them was an 81-year-old man whom couldn’t get to the hospital in time. Another victim of the storm was a man found dead in his car on Wednesday morning.

For nearly a day people were trapped inside their homes or stranded in cars, and roadways turned into parking lots of abandoned vehicles. Dozens of people sought shelter inside a fire station or spend a night inside a local police station.

"We have tried to get out of our house, and we are lucky to be able to shovel so we can open the door," Linda Oakley of Buffalo told AP. "We're just thinking that in case of an emergency we can at least get out the door. We can't go any further."
In a three-day period a year's worth of snow is going to come down – with another storm expected on Thursday in the state of New York.

 - RT.

CONTAGION: "Fever Travel Incident" - Woman Who Caused Ebola Panic After "Dropping Dead With Blood Pouring From Her Nose And Mouth" In Brooklyn, New York; Officials Claim Say She Did Not Have The Virus, After Travelling From Guinea 3 Weeks Ago; Are Suspected Ebola Cases Being Covered Up?!

FDNY activated the Special Operations and Hazmat units after the woman, who had recently traveled from Guinea, dropped
dead in Brooklyn on Tuesday, raising the alert of a suspected new Ebola case

November 19, 2014 - NEW YORK, UNITED STATES
- A woman who dropped dead at a New York salon with blood pouring from her nose and mouth did not have Ebola, tests confirmed today.

The Fire Department sent in Hazmat teams after the woman, who returned to the U.S. from Guinea three weeks ago, died at Amy Professional African Hair Braiding in the Brownsville area of Brooklyn on Tuesday.

Tests on her body came back negative for the virus, the New York City Department of Health told MailOnline on Wednesday. Her identity has not been released.

An eyewitness who saw the woman, who was reportedly 40 years old, said there was blood coming from her 'face, nose and mouth'.

A worker at Amy Professional African Hair Braiding said they were still open for business on Tuesday evening despite the incident.

'Everything is business as normal,' a male worker, who asked to not be identified, told MailOnline.

The body of a victim who dropped dead at a hair salon is removed in Brooklyn, New York on Tuesday. Tests confirmed on Wednesdaythat she did not have the virus

An eyewitness reported that a woman had blood coming from her 'face, nose and mouth' at the hair salon

He also said the woman, believed to be in her early forties, was visiting the owner of the establishment, Amy Cisse, and confirmed she had recently traveled from West Africa.

'She was in Guinea three weeks ago and they were monitoring her,' he said.

'We were told she had had a heart attack, but now we are hearing that she may be tested for Ebola.'

The woman, who was born in Guinea according to the salon worker, was not a health care worker, and therefore not subject to the 21-day home quarantine introduced by New York's Governor Andrew Cuomo in October.

On Tuesday evening, a Hazmat team was back on the scene to run tests, setting up across the street from the hair salon.

It was not clear why Amy Professional Hair Braiding would not have been evacuated until it was certain the woman did not have Ebola.

The salon was decontaminated late on Tuesday by a Hazmat crew.

According to a source who was on the scene, the incident occurred just after 3pm on Tuesday.

The woman was pronounced dead at the scene by EMTs.

A Hazmat team arrived back at the establishment late on Tuesday to run more tests, setting up in a building across the street

The woman who died suddenly at the salon had been visiting the owner, Amy Cisse (pictured above)

Costa, a man who works in the building next door, said: 'We were in the building and all the sudden the other owner came from the store and he said somebody dropped dead in their store.'

He then said he ran in there to find a woman laying on the floor.

When asked what she was bleeding from, Costa said: 'Face, nose, mouth, everything.'

FDNY crews changed into Hazmat gear outside the salon before heading in, for what they referred to as a 'fever travel illness'.

The FDNY said it was a 'clean scene' with no bodily fluids leaving the woman's body.

An FDNY memo in October reportedly instructed all personnel to use more vague terms when discussing Ebola, such as 'fever travel incident'.

The New York Department of Health was on the scene to take blood from the woman. Those officials, along with firefighters and workers from the Medical Examiner's office, were all decontaminated.

No one from Amy Professional Hair Braiding was decontaminated said the worker who spoke to MailOnline on Tuesday evening.

A New York City official briefed on the woman's death told ABC News on Tuesday: 'Earlier today, an individual who came to the U.S. from one of the three Ebola-impacted nations in West Africa within last three weeks died of an apparent non-Ebola condition.

FDNY referred to the death as a 'fever travel incident',  and claimed it was a 'clean scene,' with no fluids leaving the woman's body

'This individual at no time showed any symptoms of Ebola. However, due to travel history and an abundance of caution, an Ebola test will be performed on this individual's remains. Test results are expected later tonight or early tomorrow morning.'

The New York City Health Department said that the last time the woman was checked, she did not show any symptoms of Ebola.

Individuals could be seen walking in and out of Amy Professional African Hair Braiding wearing no protection at all.

Last week, Dr Craig Spencer was declared free of Ebola at Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan after contracting the virus while treating patients in Guinea.

He was the first, and only, case of Ebola to date in New York City.

On Monday, Dr Martin Salia, a Maryland resident who was flown back to the U.S. after contracting Ebola in Sierra Leone, died at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.

The outbreak of Ebola in Guinea began in March and has resulted in over 1,100 deaths to date.

The CDC has already recommended that all Americans avoid nonessential travel to the African country.

Libera, Guinea and Sierra Leone have been ravaged by the Ebola outbreak which began late last year with more than 5,000 people dying from the disease in these three countries, according to the latest WHO figures. - Daily Mail.

Tracking the EBOLA Virus Outbreak

FIRE IN THE SKY: "As Bright As The Moon,... With A Long Tail,..." - Massive Fireball Lights Up The Skies Over Northern Ireland!

A "fireball as bright as the moon" has been spotted moving across the sky above Northern Ireland.

November 19, 2014 - IRELAND
- A "fireball as bright as the moon" has been spotted moving across the sky above Northern Ireland, according to the Irish Astronomical Association.

IAA president, Terry Moseley, said the sighting was reported by member of the association who works at the Met Office in County Antrim on Tuesday evening.

Mr Moseley said it could be a piece of space rock - part of an asteroid - burning up in the Earth's atmosphere.

A number of other people also contacted the BBC to report seeing the fireball.

'Long tail'

They included BBC Northern Ireland reporter Declan Lawn, who was playing football at a pitch in south Belfast when he saw a bright object, resembling a flare, travelling through the sky.

He described it as having "a very bright pinpoint with quite a long tail behind it".

It's thought it could be part of an asteroid burning up in the Earth's atmosphere.

"It took about six seconds to pass over the pitch, going south to north," the reporter told BBC Radio Ulster.

"We all assumed it was a firework that hadn't properly gone off, because there was no noise."

'Shooting star'

BBC Radio Ulster listener Janice MacArthur said: "I was leaving work at Clarendon Dock, Belfast, when in the sky I saw what looked like a shooting star".

She said it appeared "very low to to the ground" and seemed to be travelling towards the docks area of the city.

The fireball was first reported to the IAA by a member who was working in the Met Office at Aldergrove, County Antrim

Ms MacArthur said she was "very excited to have seen this".

Schoolboy Sam Buller said he was taking his dog out of his family home in the hills above Holywood, County Down, when he suddenly saw "a glow" in the sky.

'Pretty cool'

The 12-year-old Campbell College pupil said: "I thought it was a shooting star at first and then it disappeared into the distance."

"It was pretty cool," Sam said.

According to Mr Moseley, the Met Office security cameras at Aldergrove are being checked to find out if any pictures of the object have been recorded.

The meteorologist reported seeing the fireball at about 17:30 GMT.


Mr Moseley told BBC Radio Ulster: "He was out observing with a group of students and they all saw it. So it was travelling south east to north east across the sky.

"He described it as 'bright as the moon' which is really remarkably bright. I've seen many ones, but never one as bright as that myself."

Mr Moseley appealed to members of the public to report any sightings of the fireball to the IAA.

"Then if a piece of it actually landed and it becomes a meteorite, then the more reports we have of where people saw it, what direction, from as many different people as possible, that enables us to try and work out the trajectory and find out where it might have landed." - BBC.

DISASTER PRECURSORS: Omen – The Latest Incidents Of Strange Animal Behavior, Mass Animal Die-Offs, Appearance Of Rare Creatures And Warnings From Mother Nature!

Hundreds of dead seals have been washing up on Germany's North Sea coast since the beginning of October.
Researchers have now found the cause of death: the avian flu virus.

November 19, 2014 - EARTH
- The following constitutes the latest reports of unusual and symbolic animal behavior, mass die-offs, beaching and stranding of mammals, and the appearance of rare creatures.

Hundreds of seals have washed up dead since October along North sea coast in Germany

Since early October, 609 dead or dying seals have been found on the coasts of the German North Sea islands of Sylt, Heligoland, Amrum and Föhr.

"That is more than we normally find," Hendrik Brunckhorst tells DW. Brunckhorst is a biologist and spokesman for the Schleswig-Holstein Wadden Sea National Park, a favorite habitat for the seals.

Typically, according to Brunckhorst, one to two thousand seals wash ashore in this part of Germany every year. Six hundred in less than a month, therefore, is indeed an "increased death rate."

The number of unreported cases is far higher, since only a percentage of the dead animals are actually found: Most of them are lost in the oceans.

Avian flu for seals

National park authorities have declared that the increased death rate is due to an avian flu virus of the strain H10N7. Researchers of the University of Veterinary Medicine Hanover discovered the virus in the dead seals' bodies.

H10N7 can infect all kinds of birds
. So far, it has occurred among turkeys and emus in the United States, among farmed Peking ducks in South Africa, and chickens in Canada und Australia.

"This is the first time we have verified this virus in our seals," Brunckhorst says.

Most of the infected animals died of pneumonia caused by bacteria, Brunckhorst says. This often occurs as a secondary ailment when the animals catch the flu virus.

Seals at the Schleswig-Holstein Wadden Sea National Park

Spreading illnesses

Even though this virus has never been found in seals before, it is not unusual for seals to be infected with different kind of viruses.

Brunckhorst still remembers the last outbreak of phocine distemper in 2002: The virus infected thousands of animals, and about half of national park's seal population died as a result. Seals from the polar sea had originally introduced the phocine distemper virus to those in the North Sea.

Now, it is an influenza virus - and one that has probably spread from Denmark. Seals around Anholt and the Danish Wadden Sea are also dying at a much higher rate than usual.

Researchers at the Technical University in Frederiksberg in Denmark confirmed that these animals were infected with the same flu strain as the seals in Germany.

'Not an epidemic yet'

For the moment, authorities remain relatively calm.

"We have a seal population of about 12,000 animals here in Schleswig-Holstein," Brunckhorst says. "That some of them die is very normal. At the moment, we're not even calling it an epidemic yet."

The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) shares this opinion. The seal population is not threatened, the organization writes on its website. "At this state of knowledge, we have to assume that this is a natural process and that there is no danger of a mass mortality," said Hans-Ulrich Rösner, a Wadden Sea expert with WWF who's based on the North Sea.

And in any case, there's nothing authorities can do, Brunckhorst says. "Even if there was a vaccine, we wouldn't be able to vaccinate thousands of wild marine animals."

Beachgoers, however, should be careful not to touch any dead or dying seals, say the national park authorities.

The animals can carry diseases that may also infect humans. - DW.

California's Chinook salmon Fall spawning run slowed by drought

© Shutterstock

The annual fall migration of Chinook salmon has been delayed by warmer water temperatures and slow-flowing streams in parts of California as the state's three-year drought drags on, hatchery officials said Monday.

Cool November temperatures usually bring thousands of adult salmon from the Pacific Ocean into streams and rivers to spawn. But this year, fish have been slow to migrate up the American River to the state's hatchery near Sacramento, said William Cox, manager of the fish production and distribution program at the California Department of Fish and Wildlife.

"They haven't come into the river at the same time that they would normally," Cox said.

Wildlife researchers check the strength of the fall salmon run by going out to creeks and rivers and counting them. This year in the American River and its tributaries, the survey crews found just 210 corpses of salmon that had presumably spawned and died in the streams, a tenth of the number normally encountered, Cox said.

At another hatchery, near the Central Valley city of Merced, a higher than normal number of male salmon are arriving unable to provide viable sperm to spawn, he said.

State wildlife experts are not entirely sure why the salmon are late, but some speculate that warmer temperatures and slower flow in the American River might be to blame.

"Folsom reservoir is low and warm right now, so the water coming down isn't as cold as the fish prefer," said Kevin Thomas, a supervising environmental scientist with the state.

Gary Novak, who manages the Nimbus Hatchery, said the facility is still taking in its normal capacity of about 500 fish for each of its twice-weekly spawning activities.

During the season, from November to around December, hatchery workers open a gate in the water most Sundays and Tuesdays, allowing fish to swim inside where they spawn and the young are fed and raised to fingerling size and released.

The slow start to the salmon run does not mean that the fish are in danger, or that spawning will be reduced this year, Cox said. There are signs that more salmon are starting to make the trek upstream, and that could mean that the run is simply starting later, as the water cools down and fall rains swell the river.

"Chinook salmon are big fish, and they like to go where there's big water," Cox said.

- Rawstory.

10 seals wash up dead, HUNDREDS dead in past two months in Denmark and Netherlands

Picture: WIkimedia Commons/Boyd Amanda, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Seal sanctuary Pieterburen and scientists from Erasmus University have confirmed that seal flu is now also in the Netherlands.

In September and October 10 to 15 percent of the seal population in Germany and Denmark died because of this flu. The expectation is that the H10N7 virus will cause as much damage to the seal population in the Netherlands.

In the past week 10 dead seals washed up in the Dutch Wadden area. A veterinarian from Pieterburen took monsters and scientists at the Erasmus University subsequently confirmed that all these animals were suffering from H10N7 virus.

The H10N7 virus is an influenza virus that originates from birds. The virus is not dangerous to birds, but is very dangerous for seals. There is no connection between this virus and the current outbreak of bird flu in chickens in Hekendorp.

The virus is most probably not dangerous to humans, says virologist Ab Osterhaus. “We are working on a vaccine, but we first have to get permission to vaccinate the seals.” - NL Times.

Coyote attacks woman and her dog in Greenland, New Hampshire

Stalking coyote.  © U.S. National Park Service.

A woman and her dog are recovering after they were attacked by a coyote while walking on their property Monday morning, police said. Husband fires gun in bid to scare animal away.

A woman and her dog are recovering after they were attacked by a vicious coyote while walking in a field on their property Monday morning.

The woman was returning to her house on Post Road around 9:15 a.m. after taking her dog out for a morning walk when the two were attacked.

"It came charging across the field and was hell-bent on attacking them," said the woman's husband, who was armed with a gun when he rushed to their aid.

The attack happened in an open field on the property about 100 yards from the house.

The woman's husband, who asked that their names be withheld, said he was inside their house when he heard his wife screaming.

He jumped into his pickup truck and raced over to help.

As he drove toward them, he kept thinking, "I've got to get this coyote away from them and I've got to be careful."

Coyotes have been seen around the property many times before, but this was the first time one has attacked.

He estimated the coyote weighed about 60 pounds; it was the largest he's seen.

"It was very aggressive. I have never ever seen a coyote attack a person and a 90-pound dog. He was attacking them for a full 10 minutes. He was just circling and circling," he said.

His wife tried to fend it off while the couple's dog, a Chesapeake Bay retriever, struggled to protect her.

"There was something wrong with it," she said of the coyote. "It just charged at us."

Her husband said he fired his gun at the coyote a few times but missed. The gunshots eventually scared the animal off.

His wife and the dog then got into the truck while the coyote scurried away.

She suffered bites on her hand and leg while the dog received multiple bite wounds. The dog was rushed to a local veterinarian while she was brought to Portsmouth Regional Hospital for treatment.

The dog was up to date on his rabies vaccinations, but received numerous stitches.

"He's not a happy boy," the husband said.

The couple must also now undergo a series of shots to prevent rabies.

Even though he wasn't bitten, the husband said he ended up with some blood on him from the attack. Drops of blood were still visible on the patio of their home Monday afternoon.

Greenland police and Fish and Game officers were called to the home after the incident.

"I think it's important for people to realize that wildlife is wildlife and there's a variety of different things that can cause them to react," Greenland Police Chief Tara Laurent said.

It's not known why the coyote attacked.

It's possible that it was trying to protect a nearby den or a food source that was recently killed, she said.

The property consists of about 100 acres and has large open spaces, Laurent said.

Laurent said this is the first coyote attack she's investigated in her 18 years in law enforcement.

Meanwhile, the woman who was attacked was too shaken to talk much about the ordeal.

"She'll be shook up for a long time," her husband said, adding that he and his wife are licensed to carry firearms and will make sure they're armed when they're out around the property in case the coyote returns.

"For a coyote to attack an adult and a 90-pound dog in a field is extremely rare. Coyotes don't do this. As soon as they see a person they run the other way about as fast as they can." he said.

Coyote sightings are not uncommon in the Seacoast area.

Last Thursday, a Portsmouth woman reported seeing a large male coyote about 15 yards from her Martine Cottage Road home.

Beth Simpson let her dog out into her backyard at about 6:30 p.m. Thursday night and then noticed the dog had returned to the sliding glass door and was looking out into a field.

Simpson said she looked outside and saw the coyote staring at her dog.

- Portsmouth Herald.

Feral dog pack found to have killed woman on Wyoming Indian reservation

Feral dogs. © Dante Dasaro
On Monday, authorities in Wyoming said a dog pack was behind the death of a Native American woman. The animal attack comes on the heels of a warning last week to the public to be on the lookout for a dangerous predator. With the FBI involved, among other things, members of the Eastern Shoshone Tribe were left a bit skeptical of the pack of dogs revelation, citing a report from the NWI Times.

Deanne Lynn Coando, 40, of Fort Washakie, was found dead on the Wind River Reservation. The terrain is rugged and bordered by mountains and steep hills. The Fremont County Chief Deputy Coroner, Mark Stratmoen, said the woman's cause of death was from a combination of hypothermia and bite wounds from a dog pack in the Wyoming mountains.

The news of the tribal member's death sent ripples through the community of 3,900 members when federal authorities were tapped to assist in identifying hairs that belonged to a dangerous and unknown animal. At the time, the victim's identification wasn't publicly known, and Wyoming officials did not mention a dog pack in their bulletin.

Kimberly Varilek, attorney general of the Eastern Shoshone Tribe, downplayed concerns of a dangerous pack of feral dogs on the loose in Wyoming. She contends that despite the fatality, deaths by pack dogs are rare in the 2 million acre Indian reservation community. Varilek is not sure where the dog pack came from, but says there are ordinances in place to guard against, and track, resident violations where necessary.

Sergio Maldonado, Sr. echoed the comments by the attorney general. The Northern Arapaho Tribe member also denied hearing about any past reports of dog attacks in Wyoming, or any threats of dangerous animals that pose a threat to the public. He did admit that it is commonplace in Wyoming to see dogs that gather in packs for warmth and to find food.

A Wind River Law Enforcement Center spokesperson said that at least one attack from a dog pack in Wyoming took place in recent years. Unlike the recent incident, that encounter ended with injury only.

- Inquisitr.

Unusual groundhog attack causes scare in Hampton, New Hampshire

A groundhog tries to get inside a Little River Road home in Hampton after attacking a man who ran inside. (Courtesy photo)

The McGraths are used to friendly critters stopping by their Little River Road backyard, but a frenetic visit Tuesday morning from their resident groundhog was anything but a welcomed encounter.

Gary McGrath was unloading his truck when the roughly two-foot-long groundhog came barreling toward him. What started out as a comical sight quickly turned into a somewhat scary incident for the 65-year-old woodworker as he watched the plump animal running at a brisk jog in his direction.

"Out of the corner of my eye I saw something move, then it came running," said McGrath. "I kicked it away, but then it got back up and came back at me again. I kicked it away again, and it came right back."

That's when McGrath ran into his garage and shut the door, only to have the groundhog circle around to the other side of the garage and get in through a different open door.

"He was out to get me,"
said McGrath. "Fortunately he doesn't run very fast, but neither do I.

"My first thought was, 'He's being awful friendly,' when he came up to me the first time. He's normally friendly. After he came after me again, I thought, 'Wait, he wants something.'"

McGrath was not injured.

The groundhog, which McGrath's grandchildren enjoy looking for when they come to visit, then bared its teeth as it chased McGrath into his house. It didn't stop there, as McGrath said it the animal began digging at the glass-and-metal door, furiously attempting to bite and claw its way inside.

"We were lucky," said McGrath's wife Carol, who described the attack as a "crazy" and "freaky" ordeal. "You're just in a kind of disbelief when something like that happens."

The couple called Hampton Animal Control Officer Peter MacKinnon for help, watching in amazement as the groundhog continued to dig at the door and a corner of leaf-covered dirt next to the front stairs before MacKinnon arrived.

The groundhog also tried to attack MacKinnon when he got out of his truck, forcing him to jump back into the vehicle and slam the door before the animal could get inside. MacKinnon used a rifle to kill the animal after he exited his vehicle, and the groundhog's body will now be tested for rabies.

McGrath laughed several times while recounting the story Tuesday afternoon, although he said the incident should be taken seriously.

"I've had (enough excitement) for today," said McGrath, adding that he didn't have a name for the groundhog despite the fact that he has named his cars, tractor and furniture.

Tuesday wasn't the first time the McGraths have encountered wild animals in their yard. A possibly rabid raccoon made an appearance over the summer and they've also found bobcat scat.

McGrath said he hopes his neighbors check their pets and be wary of possible sick animals in the area, especially because there are a number of dogs and cats wondering neighboring properties, some of which are owned by families with small children.

"The public should know," said McGrath, noting that his son-in-law had to pay $5,000 to receive just one rabies shot after he was bitten by a bat in his Vermont home.

Aggressive, sick and injured animals can be reported directly to the Hampton's animal control officer by contacting the Hampton Police Department at 929-4444.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control recommends residents ensure their pets are up-to-date on all vaccines to avoid contraction of the rabies virus. The CDC also recommends to refrain from contact with wild and sick animals, to refrain from feeding them, and to contact local animal control authorities if they are sighted on local residential properties.

Additional information and tips about rabies can be found online here.

The groundhog incident came one day after a coyote attacked a woman in Greenland.

- Seacoast Online.

91-year-old woman fighting for life after her dog attacked

A 91-year-old woman mauled by her own dog is fighting for her life three days after the attack.
Police said the woman suffered serious arm injuries when the dog attacked around 4 p.m. Friday at the victim's home on Judith Terrace in Stratford.

The dog mauled her in the kitchen, and although the victim was gravely hurt, she was conscious and managed to call 911 on her own. First responders rushed her to Bridgeport Hospital, where she remains in critical condition, hospital officials said.

According to her daughter, the victim has owned the black-and-white Keeshond mix for eight years and has never had a problem with the animal. Now she's dealing with skin grafts and kidney failure, and family members fear she is dying.

WATCH: 91-year-old woman attacked by her own dog.

Neighbors described the victim as a quiet and kind woman and said they were reeling from the news.

"To think a dog could just turn on you and attack you like that... it's kind of crazy," said Amy Garrison, of Stratford. "I really have no idea, because you think you know your own dog."

Animal Control officers brought the dog to an animal shelter in Stratford following the attack. The animal's future remains uncertain - as does the future of the victim. - NBC Connecticut.

Thousands of fish, plus birds, otters and turtles dead due to Kerosene leak in Rome, Italy

A lightning flash, a small electric light dives into the water and fishing. It dates back to the roost, around ten fish move their tails on the water surface, bent on one side, with gills that are struggling to find the strength to oxygenate the body. Our skilled fisherman returned there on the branch, but immediately begins to have the first symptoms of intoxication. The plumage is turned off, swallowed kerosene starts to burn the internal organs after a while, falls on the edge of the canal and died. He was a Kingfisher, a small colorful bird that lives in marshy places healthier and is the symbol of an environmental tragedy announced: that Maccarese . It is the symbol of how there are no guarantees for the environment, for the people, for biodiversity, where there insist potentially polluting facilities like pipelines national.

There are a few tens of kilometers north of Rome.
Here the Venetians in the 20's reclaimed a vast marshy area, a place for migrating birds. Today in this country produces large quantities of fruit and vegetables for markets in central and northern Italy. All around a network of canals that promotes resting, feeding and breeding of many animals that resemble those areas as historical sites dedicated to travel, moving from Europe to Africa and vice versa. Upstream of this rich agricultural biodiversity and environmental placed a pipe, 2 feet in diameter, of hydrocarbons that travel for a distance of 80 km from Civitavecchia to Fiumicino Airport . A tube bridge to allow planes of the international airport to fill their tanks of thousands of liters of kerosene.

On November 9, there were two incidents, one in Palidoro and one Maccarese , which resulted in massive leakage of fuel.
Probably more than 30,000 liters ended up in the river three spouts. The alarm got a late start caused the poisoning of miles of canals that join with the Arrochar river to its mouth. We are in the natural state of the Roman coastline; Nearby complete the three ecological corridor oasis managed by the WWF. And it was the responsibility of the environmental to seek help us in Lipu because the situation was precipitated. They served immediately volunteered for groped to recover and help some animals still alive.

We arrived on Sunday: even on Saturdays were collected corpses of birds and mammals "burned" by kerosene , and we realized the gravity of what happened.
Thousands of dead fish, ducks, moorhens, cormorants, herons, otters, turtles, shellfish, even a frog, all dead, impregnated with hydrocarbons. A nauseating smell that we took the lead. Volunteers Lipu, courageously and passionately followed first north and then south to the main channel leading, after working hours, the dead animals to the identification and seizure of the rite. The "angels" Lipu came from Ostia, Civitavecchia, Rome. There were also experts in the wildlife rescue center Lipu Rome.

Eni said that he had undergone an attempted theft of kerosene by unknown assailants .
For now we have to believe it, but a statement signed by me and the President of the WWF will give more strength to the prosecutor's office are investigating. We now need the cleaning done in no time and that Eni will work to award damages to the municipality of Fiumicino to restore the ecological balance that existed before the accident. The mayor of Fiumicino , after discontinuing hunting and fishing in the municipal area and had banned the irrigation of fields with water from the drainage canals, is deploying all its institutional capacity to defend its territory and we will be by his side to offer the most appropriate scientific and professional .

We now await the operator of the pipeline to complete the removal of kerosene before the bad weather aggravates the situation.
Immediately after triggered the claim for damages. In this case, I hope that common sense triumphs and avoid going to the civil court where we know that a case can take up to ten years. But Maccarese needs to start now, we can not wait that long. Meanwhile, today we are still in the field to look for injured animals. Yesterday, a mallard and a small otter survived intoxication. A sign of hope for this kind too offended by us men. - Huffington Post Italy. [Translated]