Saturday, February 20, 2016

OMEN: Plagues And Pestilences - Rare Two-Headed Python Hatched In Wodonga, Australia?! [VIDEO]

A two headed snake was hatched in Australia.
© The Daily Mail/Facebook

February 20, 2016 - AUSTRALIA - Snakes are creepy enough, but a python that hatched with two heads is taking the Internet by storm.

The baby snake is only a week old, born last Saturday.

Owner John McNamara, who is an Australian snake breeder, thought he just had twins, but it was more.

From the tail to the neck, the little coastal carpet python looks like any other snake, but from the neck up, that's when you see four eyes, two mouths and two heads.

As The Border Mail described it, the snake looks like the mythological hydra.

WATCH: A snake with two heads has been born in Wodonga, Victoria.

"There would have been two yolks and they just haven't split properly ... and I ended up with this," McNamara said.

The breeder's daughter has already become attached to the little baby, calling it the Twin Destroyers.

McNamara said he is talking to media to get publicity just to get some veterinary help.

"Just to see which head is the dominant head and which goes down to the stomach and what organs and other things are joined or can cause complications," McNamara said. - WPXI.

DISASTER IMPACT: Cyclone Winston Wreaks Destruction In Fiji - Five People Killed; Hundreds Of Homes Destroyed; ENTIRE VILLAGES FLATTENED; Widespread Power Outage; Nationwide Curfew Still In Effect; 30-DAY STATE OF NATIONAL DISASTER! [VIDEOS]

People in Ba in the north of Viti Levu island awoke to scenes of devastation © EPA

February 20, 2016 - FIJI ISLANDS - Authorities in Fiji are assessing the damage after the most powerful storm left at least five people dead.

Cyclone Winston brought winds of over 320km/h (200mph), torrential rain and waves of up to 12m (40ft).

It destroyed hundreds of homes and cut electricity lines. There are reports of entire villages flattened.

The government has imposed a nationwide curfew and 30-day state of national disaster giving extra powers to police to arrest people without a warrant.

The Category-five storm - the highest level - moved westward since making landfall at 18:30 local time (06:30 GMT) on Saturday in the north of Fiji's main island, Viti Levu.

It changed direction at the last minute, sparing the capital Suva the full force of its winds.

The government had opened about 750 evacuation centres.

More than 1,000 people were sheltering in one on the second largest island of Vanua Levu, north-east of Viti Levu, the Fiji Broadcasting Company said.

Among the victims was an elderly man who died on the smaller Koro Island when a roof fell on him. Some villages reported that all homes had been destroyed, Jone Tuiipelehaki of the UN Development Programme tweeted after the storm hit.

WATCH: Extensive damage in Fiji from Cyclone Winston.

He said 50 homes in Navaga village on Koro Island had been reported ruined.

"The images that we're starting to see roll in are terrifying," Alice Clements, from the UN children's organisation Unicef in Suva told Reuters news agency. She said she could see a car on a building roof and a small plane stuck in debris.

In the north coast of Fiji's main island where the cyclone made landfall, a man told Reuters the damage was so extensive that "it looks like a different country".

George Dregaso, of Fiji's National Disaster Management Office, told the Associated Press that about 80% of the nation's 900,000 people were without regular electricity supplies.

Schools have been ordered to shut for a week even though the main airport has been reopened to receive humanitarian supplies.

Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama described the storm on Saturday as "an ordeal of the most grievous kind".

"When we are able we will provide timelines for the return of water and power," he said.

New Zealand and Australia have promised to send aircraft to assess the damage in remote areas.

Red Cross Pacific office head Ahmad Sami told AFP news agency humanitarian needs were likely to be "very high".

The cyclone has now moved out to sea, although strong winds and heavy rains remained likely, Fiji's Meteorological Office said. - BBC News.

DELUGE: Weather Anomalies - Winter Rainfall Record Smashed In Portland, Oregon!

Record setting rainfall 2015/16.

February 20, 2016 - OREGON, UNITED STATES - Portland International Airport set a rainfall record for December through February (the meteorological winter) at 25.27 inches, the National Weather Service reports.

Normal rainfall for the airport during the same period is 14.14 inches.

Records have been kept at the airport since 1940.

That's a lot of rain. And February's not over yet, so the number will climb.

Other near-record-setting areas (where records have been kept since the 1890s) include:

Vancouver with its second wettest winter (25.77 inches)

Downtown Portland's third wettest winter (31.06 inches)

and Hillsboro with its fourth wettest winter (24.74 inches).

The ranking is for the period of Dec. 1 1 through Feb. 28-29.

And the Portland area's rainy season is far from over. Keep those rain boots and umbrellas handy. - OregonLive.

PLANETARY TREMORS: Seismic Pressure On The Ramapo Fault Line - Minor, Very Shallow Earthquake Rattles New Jersey! [VIDEO]

U.S. Geological Survey reported a 1.6-magnitude earthquake one mile northwest from Bloomingdale.© USGS

February 20, 2016 - NEW JERSEY, UNITED STATES - Many people said they heard a loud boom and could feel their homes shake. Some even said they smelled burning afterward.

"I heard a loud boom and I'm on the other side of the highway," Lori Milone wrote on Facebook.

"Shook our house and then we detected a burning smell for a little while," wrote Mark Selz.

"Double shakes here off Cascade Way, sounded like someone was in my house," wrote Carrie Shaver. "What happened?"

USGS shakemap intensity.

"Me and my husband were watching TV and he said, "What was that?" It sounded like an explosion," one Butler woman told WCBS 880's Sean Adams. "We just went about our business. We didn't hear anything else. He said to me, "You know, that almost made the house shake."

CBS2's Lonnie Quinn explained that low-magnitude earthquakes happen often in the Morris County area, as it - and Butler specifically - sit on the Ramapo Fault Line - one of the major fault lines in the U.S.

WATCH: Earthquake in New Jersey.

Quinn reported the reason the earthquake was felt by so many people in the area was that it was very shallow - occurring only about a mile to a mile and a half underground.

By contrast, the 1994 Northridge earthquake in Los Angeles was 11 miles deep. - CBS.


GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVALS: Massive Sinkhole Swallows Buildings In Norhausen, Germany - Measured 50 Meters Deep By 30 Meters Wide! [PHOTOS + VIDEO]

February 20, 2016 - GERMANY - A huge sinkhole opened up between two buildings in Nordhausen, Germany.

The giant 40 to 50 meters deep, 30 meters wide crater is filled with water and still growing. It has already swallowed parts of an office building. Another house is on the verge of collapsing.
A first sinkhole opened up between two farm buildings in Nordhausen at around 7pm on Friday evening.

Then the ground collapsed another time. The two holes than merged into a giant cavity measuring 30 meters in diameter and 40 to 50 meters deep. That is gigantic.

As the ground collapsed, witnesses reported a strong rumbling noise like that we hear during an earthquake.

The two buildings were empty as they collapsed into the ground.

In this video, you see one of the house collapse @ 3:33:

WATCH: Massive sinkhole in Germany.

Although the hole is still growing up, the area is well protected and nobody is in danger.

The two buildings may however disappear underground. - Strange Sounds.

EXTREME WEATHER: "That's Freakin' Awesome" - "Firenado" Filmed During Missouri Wildfire; Over 1,300 Acres Burned!

A firenado spins flames into the sky during a Missouri wildfire Thursday. © Southern Platte Fire Protection District/Facebook

February 20, 2016 - MISSOURI, UNITED STATES - Firefighters battling a massive wildfire in Missouri captured video of a "firenado," or fire tornado, blowing flames into the sky.

The Southern Platte Fire Protection District, one of several agencies battling the wildfire Thursday in Platte County, just north of Kansas City, posted a video to Facebook showing the firenado, also known as a fire whirl, spinning flames high into the sky.

"Oh, that's freakin' awesome," a firefighter can be heard saying in the video.

WATCH: 'Firenado' filmed during Missouri wildfire.

Authorities said the wildfire, which spread across more than 1,300 acres, was started by sparks that shot from a malfunctioning prison lawnmower near the Centennial Bridge. Posted by Southern Platte Fire Protection District on Thursday, February 18, 2016

No injuries were reported from the wildfire and SPFPD Fire Chief Rich Carrizzo tweeted late Thursday that the fire had been brought under control. - UPI.

ANIMAL BEHAVIOR: Disaster Precursors - Piranha Attacks On Swimmers In Brazil Leave Over 50 People Injured In A Month?!

A white piranha (Serrasalmus rhombeus), aka ‘white bitch’, held by a fisherman in Los llanos, Venezuela © Alamy

February 20, 2016 - BRAZIL - Hundreds of swimmers in Brazil are being warned to stay out of the water following a spate of attacks by shoals of deadly piranha, which has left more than 50 people injured in just over a month.

Unsuspecting tourists have had chunks of flesh bitten out of their hands and feet as drought conditions in the South American country force the lethal predators to migrate from their natural habitat to deeper waters packed with holidaymakers.

This week at least eight bathers were bitten by the man-eaters, known as "white bitches", the 6in-long species blamed for the attacks, on beaches in Palmas, in Tocantins State, north-east Brazil. Three children were among the casualties as people took to the waters to cool off during the hot holiday weekend. A four-year-old boy had a chunk taken out of his heel.

Veraluci Milhomem's toe was bitten on the same day. "I felt a stab of pain in my foot and started screaming," said the 55-year-old administrative assistant. "My friends dragged me out of the water before anything else could happen."

Also in the north-east in the last 10 days, 25 people reported vicious attacks scaring off swimmers in a popular stretch of the San Francisco river in the town of Pao de Acucar, in Alagoas.

Among the victims was student Lucas André da Silva, 15, whose heel was lacerated on Sunday. "I was playing in the river with friends when I felt something dig into me. I pulled my foot out of the water to see what had happened and saw a lot of blood. The bite still really hurts," he said.

On a freshwater beach in Populina in Sao Paulo, south-east Brazil, 20 holidaymakers were injured by lone piranha. Juraci de Souza, 42, was just getting out of the Rio Grande when it happened.

"I was swimming to the shallower part of the river when I felt a twinge. As I came out onto the sand I saw that I was bleeding heavily from my foot," said the forklift truck driver. "Thankfully I'd been bitten by a bitch [piranha]. If it had been a whole school it would have been much worse," he said.

According to Bruno Benhocci, a biologist at the Votuporanga University in Sao Paulo, the unusually high numbers of piranha plaguing the waterways could be linked to drought conditions in recent years which has affected food supplies.

"In the absence of their natural food, piranha are moving from shallow areas to deeper parts where they can find it," he said. "Piranha can't detect whether a movement is made by a finger or a fish, they just bite what they can get."

The predators can smell blood up to two miles away and pound for pound their sharp toothed bite is more powerful than a great white shark's and three time stronger than that of an alligator.

Every year hundreds of piranha attacks are reported in South America. The most frightening in Brazil was in 2011 when a series of incidents left 100 people injured. In 2012, a five-year-old girl died after she was eaten by piranhas when her canoe capsized in the Amazon. - The Independent.