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There is no law preventing the U.S. news media from intentionally lying to the public. Whistle blowers and honest reporters are fired for telling the truth.

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Also: Conspiracy of Silence Video

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6. On September 10, 2001, Donald Rumsfeld held a press conference to disclose that over $2,000,000,000,000 (2 Trillion) in Pentagon funds could not be accounted for.
Such a disclosure normally would have sparked a huge scandal. However, the commencement of the [9/11] attack on the World Trade Center and The Pentagon the following morning would assure that the story remained buried.
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> ANIMAL ANOMALIES, Please Post All Reports Here

Freedom Fighter
Group: Members
Posts: 567
Member No.: 264

Posted: Jan 3 2007, 11:26 AM
Quote Post

01 12
Unusual Sights, Rare Fish, Hit North Oregon Coast

Mother Nature went a little wild in this north Oregon coast town this past week, with the surreal sight of snow covering the beach, masses of bull kelp washing up on shore and a rare, tropical fish getting tossed up by the tide.

“The latest winds littered the beach with Bull Kelp one of the largest species of kelp in the world,” Booth said. “They can grow over five inches a day and over 80 feet in a year; it is an annual species.”

As if all that meteorological adventure wasn’t enough, the aquarium crew was alerted to a rare and slightly strange fish that washed up with the recent storm surges. It too was covered in snow.

“We also found an Ocean Sun Fish just south of the Sunset Beach access,” Booth said.

The technical name for an Ocean Sun Fish is Mola mola, and it’s mostly found in tropical and warmer waters than those off Oregon’s.

“They are not uncommon to this area, however, because they live a ways off shore,” Boothe said. “We don't see them on the beach that often. They usually frequent the northern coast in the summer or fall when the ocean is a bit warmer, so for the Mola mola to wash in during this time of year is a bit odd.”

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04 12
Seagulls Attacking Whales Off Argentina

In the frigid waters off Argentina's southern Valdés Peninsula, the southern right whale is under attack from an odd-sounding predator: the seemingly docile seagull.

Uncovered garbage dumps and waste from fish-processing operations have fueled a spike in the number of kelp gulls in the region's coastal towns (Argentina map). Experts say the birds, which nest near the prime breeding waters for the endangered whales, are causing a peck of problems.

"The gulls are landing on the whales and pecking through their skin to feed on the blubber, which is an important source of calories," says biologist Marcelo Bertellotti of Argentina's Patagonia University. "This is causing lesions and impacting whale behavior." The kelp gull is a flexible eater that hunts insects and scavenges through trash heaps.

But it is especially fond of whale blubber, normally dining on dead animals or snatching up blubber dislodged by the whales' trademark somersaults, Bertellotti says. However, some aggressive gulls go further for a meal. "Some individuals have developed the capacity to take skin and blubber from live whales," he said.

05 12
Rare, White Buffalo Born At Local Zoo

A Fayette County zoo got an unexpected gift this holiday season. The Woodlands Zoo is now home to a rare, white buffalo. Native Americans consider the white buffalo sacred and are planning to hold a dedication ceremony to welcome it to the zoo. The chance of a buffalo being born “all white” is 10 million to one.
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07 12
Ebola Killing Thousands of Gorillas, Study Says

The Ebola virus is marching steadily across western and central Africa, wiping out more than 90 percent of the gorillas in its path and threatening the species with extinction, a new study says. About 5,000 gorillas were killed by the virus in one study area alone, according to results to be published in tomorrow’s issue of the journal Science.

Ebola causes a hemorrhagic fever, resulting in massive internal and external bleeding that kills within two weeks of symptoms appearing. There is no known cure, and in humans the mortality rate is around 80 percent.

12 12
South American Amphibian

Someone passed this news article along to me. It’s in Spanish, so I’ll just note a rough paraphrasing of the highlights:
Strange aquatic animal found in lagoon of Santa Catalina (Bolivar)

A fish, or hybrid amphibian, was caught in a fisherman’s nets last Thursday. It measured about 35 centimeters, with an oversized round head. It is white, transparent, and has a pair of frog-like legs.

Miguel Hernandez, president of the local Meeting of Communal Action, stated that he had never seen anything similar.

‘I believe it is amphibious, but the strange thing is that the toes are webbed,’ and noted that William Blanco, the fisherman who found the animal, is keeping it refrigerated.

No scientist has yet visited the area, but the animal is available for study.

It is indeed an odd photograph, but clearly represents an amphibian’s transformation from larval stage to adult stage, caught in the middle. I do not know what species it is, but it is possible that it represents a malformation – gigantism in tadpoles has been documented due to hormonal problems. Or, perhaps it is related to Pseudis paradoxa (which is South American), the paradoxical frog, with a giant tadpole that transforms into a moderate-sized frog.
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12 12
More dead fish found in Va. River

Scientists baffled by massive springtime fish kills on the Shenandoah River over several years now have additional confusing information: several hundred dead fish in December.

An environmentalist counted at least 300 dead northern hogsuckers on a 10-mile stretch of the main branch of the Shenandoah in Clarke and Warren counties last week, said Don Kain, a state Department of Environmental Quality biologist. An accurate count was impossible because many had sunk the bottom, DEQ spokesman Bill Hayden said.

About a dozen dead fish have been found this week, but they were of different species and in different parts of the river. Most of them were sunfish except for one smallmouth bass, Kain said. Half were found on the North Fork of the Shenandoah and half on the South Fork.

“That’s been the toughest thing about this fish kill,” Kain said. “There really aren’t any concerted patterns.”

Last year, 80 percent of the smallmouth bass and redbreast sunfish in the South Fork developed lesions and died. The kill was similar to one in 2004 on the North Fork of the Shenandoah.

Scientists have been unable to determine the cause of the fish kills, and the state’s Shenandoah River Fish Kill Task Force that was formed to investigate will look into the recent kills.

Fish that died in previous kills showed signs of stress, and some males had female characteristics, a condition called “intersex.”

13 12
Thousands of ducks mysteriously dying in Idaho

Officials scrambled on Wednesday to determine what has caused the deaths of thousands of mallard ducks in south-central Idaho near the Utah border.
Although wildlife experts are downplaying any links to bird flu, they have sent samples to government labs to test for the deadly H5N1 flu strain, among other pathogens.

Wildlife officials are calling the massive die-off alarming, with the number of dead mallards rising from 1,000 on Tuesday to more than 2,000 by Wednesday afternoon. “We’ve never seen anything like this – ever,” Parrish said.

13 12
Sea cucumber scare in Penang,...,119258,00.html

COULD the tsunami strike us again? That was the deep fear that struck Penang residents when they saw thousands of sea cucumbers on the beach there two days ago. The thumb-sized, jelly-like sea cucumber appeared on the beach two days ago.

Last month, The Star reported something similar happening in Kuala Terengganu when thousands of sea cucumbers, also known as gamat, appeared on the Batu Buruk tourist beach.

Professor Madya Dr Kamaruzaman Yunus, deputy director of the Oceanography Institute of Kolej Universiti Sains dan Teknologi Malaysia, described the phenomenon as ‘very odd’ and said it could have been caused by strong sea undercurrents..

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16 12
Penguins offer evidence of global warming

“We’re looking for dramatic right-hand turns (in the penguin population), which are happening now,” Ainley said. “The rate of Adelie penguin colony disappearance is accelerating as the sea ice disappears.”

As the northern sea ice vanishes and penguin populations decrease, southern penguin colonies flourish as the sea ice loosens, making it easier for them to dive and fish, he said.

Adelies and Emperors are the two species of penguin that live on sea ice; all other penguins dwell in open water.

18 12
Brazil Probes Dead Fish Washing Ashore,4...eadFish,00.html

Brazilian environmental authorities were investigating Monday what caused some 15 tons of dead fish to wash up in a major southern river. Andre Milanez, of the Rio Grande do Sul state environmental agency FEPAM, said that a lack of rainfall was the most likely cause of death but that an industrial accident or illegal runoff had not been ruled out.

“The river is sick. It can’t absorb anymore residential and industrial pollution dumping. Right now we’re just trying to get the fish out of there,” Milanez said by telephone from the state capital of Porto Alegre, about 930 miles southwest of Rio de Janeiro.

Milanez believes a lack of rainfall caused the river’s temperature to rise to around 93 degrees Fahrenheit, causing the water level to drop and reducing the amount of oxygen available to the fish.

Last October, some 85 tons of dead fish washed up in the same river due to an illegal sewage discharge.
A local businessman has been charged with illegal dumping for that incident.

18 12
Top Ten Animal Stories of 2006 From National Geographic News

10. “Walking” Sharks Among 50 New Species Found in Indonesia Reefs(September 18)
Sharks that “walk” with their fins across coral reefs are among more than 50 new species discovered recently off the coast of Indonesia, scientists announce.

9. Seafood May Be Gone by 2048, Study Says (November 2)
Unless humans act now to better manage and protect marine areas, the increasing loss of biodiversity will spell the end for the fish and seafood many people rely on, scientists say.

8. Giant Catfish Protected From Fishing in Thailand (July 10)
In honor of the King of Thailand’s 60th year on the throne, fishers in northern Thailand have promised to stop catching the world’s largest freshwater fish.

7. New Bird Discovered in India (September 12)
An amateur bird-watcher has found the first new bird species to be discovered in India in over 50 years, experts say—a vibrant babbler at home in felled forests.

6. Hippo and Tortoise Pals May Find Three’s a Crowd (January 5)
The strength of a unique bond between a young hippo and a 130-year-old tortoise will be tested later this spring when conservationists introduce a female hippo to the mix.

5. Dolphin With Four Fins May Prove Terrestrial Origins (November 8)
Proving that showing a little “leg” can really grab attention, a dolphin with four fins has scientists speculating about the marine mammal’s evolutionary past.

4. African Elephants Slaughtered in Herds Near Chad Wildlife Park (August 30)
An airborne biologist and his team have found the remains of large-scale elephant slaughters, evidence of a major poaching problem on the borders of a central African wildlife park.

3. Carolina Mystery Beast Is a Rare Abnormal Fox, Experts Say (March 21)
There’s an unidentified creature roaming the grassy fields near a North Carolina company—is it an exotic species, a mythical vampire dog, or simply a fox with a rare genetic abnormality?

2. Monster Rabbit Stalks U.K. Village (But No Sign of Wallace or Gromit) (April 11)
A dog-size bunny is ravaging prize vegetable gardens, reports say. Rabbit experts speculate that the suspect is a pet gone wild.

1.“Lost World” Found in Indonesia Is Trove of New Species (February 7)
Deep in a South Pacific island jungle, explorers have uncovered an Eden thriving with unknown kangaroos, birds, bugs, and more, the scientists announced today.

19 12
More than 360 new species discovered on Borneo since 1994: WWF

A new species of insect, animal or plant is discovered every month in Borneo, conservation group WWF has said as it warned that logging and plantations threatened the fragile “Heart of Borneo” ecosystem.

21 12
Birds and bees in winter denial

Maybe the hard frosts have given them the hint but less than a week before Christmas there were reports of swallows still swooping for insects across the country. These summer migrants might usually be expected to be 5,000 miles away in southern Africa instead of cluttering up the rarity sightings section of bird watchers’ websites. Many Swallows have not flown south this year.

The unusually long run of mild weather – in what experts say could be Britain’s warmest year on record – has seen leaves hanging stubbornly on the trees, dragonflies flitting across rivers when they should have died off and butterflies that should have hibernated still on the wing.

A third of the way into what is usually winter, there have been records of all of the hibernating butterflies – red admiral, small tortoiseshell, peacock and comma – still about, according to Tim Sparks of the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology at Monks Wood, Cambridgeshire. “We often see red admirals late in the year but seeing the others, comma especially, is unusual,” he said.

The phenology (study of change) records compiled by Monks Wood have detailed ospreys still hunting at Nayland, Suffolk, and Exeter, Devon, instead of retreating to West Africa, sandwich terns still at Emsworth Harbour, Hampshire, and Studland, Dorset, and a roseate tern unwilling to leave Dun Laoghaire, Dublin.

Martin Mere, the Wildfowl and Wetlands Trust reserve at Rufford, Lancs, reports that it has a brood of nine mallard ducklings, either six months early or six months late – it is hard to tell.

The grounds manager Andrew Wooldridge said: “Mallard ducklings are not completely uncommon at this time of year, but it is a very unusual sight to see which illustrates how the warmer weather is beginning to merge the seasons.” The ducklings have survived as they have access to a heated area

After the warmest September, October and November since records began in 1659, the Woodland Trust is asking its members to report trees that are still in leaf.
Horse chestnuts have flowered late into the autumn and Dr Sparks reports a precocious blackthorn which usually only flowers in February or March flowering in a hedge at Monks Woods.

Oxeye daisies, field scabious and ragwort are still flowering and, at a farm in Monksilver, near Minehead, Somerset, a whole field of charlock, the wild relative of oil seed rape is in flower. The plant normally flowers in the spring but never usually before late January

21 12
Sverdfisk – sjelden gjest men stadig oftere å se langs norskekysten

Den langsiktige temperaturutviklingen med varmere sjøvann langs norskekysten ser ut til å ha gitt hyppigere besøk av sverdfisk. Sammen med store forekomster av sild, makrell og kolmule gjør dette våre farvann mer attraktive for denne varmekjære arten.

21. august sverdfisk fanget ved Kragerø
27. august ett eksemplar fanget i Tømmeråsfjorden i Tysfjord, Nordland
29. august ett eksemplar rapportert fra Gratangen i Troms
14. november ble en fire år gammel sverdfisk på 22 kg fanget i Vinjefjorden i Sør-Trøndelag

Fra private tips og fra mediene har Havforskningsinstituttet registrert 18 eksemplarer av sverdfisk siden 1967. Det er altså ikke hvert år vi får besøk av denne varmekjære arten. Men siden begynnelsen av 1990-tallet har besøkene blitt hyppigere. Og den nøyer seg ikke med de sørligste og varmeste delene av Norskekysten. Halvdelen av de 18 observasjonene er gjort nord for polarsirkelen.

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This is a Norwegian article about the increasing amount of Swordfish sighted and caught along the coast of Norway. Of 18 sightings since 1967 - 9 of them are from ABOVE the polar circle. (North of Norway). The sightings/catches have increased from the 90's.

This is due to warmer seas. In fact the North Sea (outside of South of Norway)reached an record-high temperature in oct/nov this autumn - as much as 3-3,5 C above normal. It's never been recorded any higher temperature since the measuring started in 1936.

23 12
Unhappy feat: biologists baffled as millions of penguins vanish

HOLLYWOOD has turned them into the cartoon stars of the film Happy Feet, but the real life story of the rockhopper penguin is not such a happy tale, scientists have discovered.

Millions of the birds are disappearing in a “sinister and astonishing” phenomenon that is baffling biologists.

In just six years their numbers have fallen from 600,000 to 420,000 in the Falkland Islands – one of its few remaining strongholds – according to the latest survey by Falklands Conservation.

The decline equates to a drop of about 30 per cent, although the Falklands population is thought to have dipped by about 85 per cent since 1932, when there were more than 1.5 million birds.

Dr Geoff Hilton, an RSPB biologist who has studied the species, said: “It’s actually quite rare in conservation that we don’t know why a species is declining.
“All around the world from New Zealand to the Falklands there used to be all these huge colonies.
Populations separated by 1,000km of sea are all crashing.
“It’s an astonishing decline, the populations have just crashed over the last few decades and we really don’t know why. It’s quite sinister, we have got millions of penguins just disappearing.”

Dr Hilton said: “There must be some major big thing going wrong in the eco-system. We did see some clues [in the feathers study] and the finger is tentatively pointing at global warming.”

24 12
Wild elephant kills 3 villagers in India

A wild elephant looking for food killed three people and injured 10 on Sunday in a forest range in eastern India, police said

The elephant lifted the three villagers with his trunk one by one and threw them on the ground in Purlia district, said Haradhan Roy, a police officer. The three died on the spot, Roy said.

The elephant also injured 10 villagers in Parwa and Kuriam villages, nearly 155 miles southwest of Calcutta, the capital of West Bengal state, he said. The injured were tigmatised.

31 12
A plague of swans

The swan, beautiful, graceful and protected by Royal Charter, is becoming a nuisance and a threat to the environment.

After a string of mild winters, the bird's numbers are increasing exponentially and there are now so many of them they are threatening pond ecosystems.
Since 1990 the population of mute swans has increased by a quarter, with more than 30,000 of the birds living in England.
The numbers have grown so rapidly that flocks of up to 50 juveniles are congregating in rivers where they feed avidly, stripping them of vegetation and driving out other river birds.

The swans' burgeoning numbers are now threatening fish, birds and other animals that rely on the vegetation to survive. They are also depriving fish of their camouflage, making them more vulnerable to predators such as herons and kingfishers.

Swans survival rates have been helped not only by unusually mild weather, but also by the phasing out of lead in fishing tackle and in gunshot which poisoned swans in the past. The swans are forming unusually large flocks before they find their mate for life, at which time they establish their own territory and feed in pairs, posing less of a threat to the habitat. Experts say they have never witnessed so many swans flocking in one place.

This post has been edited by Mark J. Harper on Jan 3 2007, 02:01 PM

PMEmail Poster

Freedom Fighter
Group: Members
Posts: 567
Member No.: 264

Posted: Feb 5 2007, 03:55 AM
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02 01
Klimaforvirret gås fikk fire kyllinger

Det er uvanlig at gjess får kyllinger på denne tiden av året. Normalt er klekketiden på vårparten og eierne av gåsa tror det milde været har mye av årsaken til det spesielle fenomenet.
– Det er ganske uvanlig på denne tida av året, sier Line Eid.
Sammen med mannen Steve Saltermark har de drevet med gjess de siste seks årene. Aldri har de opplevd at det har kommet kyllinger til verden rett før årsskiftet.
– Det har vært god mattilgang, mildt i været og gjessene har fått gått fritt ute. Her på Sør-Helgeland spirer det på bakken og jeg tror at kombinasjonen mildt vær og bra mattilgang har ført til denne verpingen, sier Saltermark.
Familien har til sammen 12 gjess og nå har enda ei gås har lagt seg til rette.
Short translation: Goose gives birth to 4 chickens in January! This is really an unusual happening in the winter above the polar circle. The weather has been unusual mild so far this year and the geese have found lots of food outdoor. -------------------

03 01
Giant jellyfish spotted (in Norway)

For the first time the giant comb jellyfish Mnemiopsis leidyi, known for devastating local marine food chains, has been spotted in Norwegian waters.

Hege Vestheim of the University of Oslo (UiO) observed and photographed the jellyfish off Tjøme in the autumn, and told newspaper Tønsbergs Blad that she saw large numbers of the feared creature.
"They were drifting on the surface everywhere," the researcher said. The Institute of Marine Research (IMR) has examined the photographs and confirmed the identification of the jellyfish, an invasive species which ravaged the ecosystem in the Caspian Sea beginning in 1999. In the 1980s it was introduced to the Black Sea and caused damage to pelagic fish populations. It is not dangerous to humans.

Falkenhaug said that the giant comb jellyfish is robust and can survive the conditions along the Norwegian coast, but prefers water temperatures of around 20C (68F).
user posted image
This comb jellyfish considers the Atlantic coast of the USA its real home.

04 01
Drought hits India bird reserve

The world-famous Bharatpur bird sanctuary in western India is facing a shortage of birds because of severe water scarcity, officials say.
Migratory birds visiting the area in Rajasthan state are down to only about 100 compared to some 10,000 last year. The lack of water follows low rainfall. Officials say the situation is so dire that six new wells have been dug.
With so little water, many migratory birds are not nesting and are flying back to their areas of origin.

05 01
Mild winter triggers spring fever in zoo (Europe)

An unusually warm winter has sown confusion among animals at a zoo on Bulgaria's Black Sea coast, causing two bears to miss their usual hibernation period and peacocks to lay eggs months early.
"The animals are confused. They are acting more like it is spring than the dead of winter," said Todor Hristov, zoo director in the port city of Varna.
Temperatures have risen to as high as 13 degrees Centigrade (55 degrees Fahrenheit) over the last few days in Varna, far warmer than usual.
Hristov said the two 35-year-old bears may go to sleep once temperatures fall to around minus three for at least 10 consecutive days, while the peacocks usually laid eggs in May or June, not January.

07 01
Animals feel effects of unusually warm weather (US)

Bears aren’t hibernating, squirrels are mating early, and ducks and geese are delaying their southward journeys. Those are just some of the ways this warm winter is affecting New Hampshire’s wildlife.

Wildlife biologist Eric Orff has flown over the waterways of Great Bay and the Isles of Shoals to count the number of ducks and geese wintering along the shores every January since 1989. Normally, he counts about 6,000 geese and ducks, but last week, he spotted only half that number.

Because of the warm weather, birds that normally fly south are staying where they can find food

08 01
Dead Birds Cause Health Concerns in Austin, Texas

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) -- Police shut down 10 blocks of businesses in the heart of downtown early Monday after dozens of birds were found dead in the streets, but officials said preliminary tests showed no dangerous chemicals in the air.
As many as 60 dead pigeons, sparrows and grackles were found overnight along Congress Avenue, a main route through downtown. No human injuries or illnesses were reported.
``We do not feel there is a threat to the public health,'' said Adolfo Valadez, the medical director for Austin and Travis County Health and Human Services. He said preliminary air-quality tests showed no dangerous chemicals and the area should reopen around noon.

09 01
Scientists baffled by U.S. stranding of dolphins

Scientists are struggling to explain the stranding of 31 dolphins and a pilot whale off the coast of Massachusetts since the start of the year, including some found with brain deformities or chronic diseases. Eight Atlantic White-sided dolphins were found on Tuesday, following 23 dolphins, a pilot whale and a seal discovered since January 1 in the hook-shaped Cape Cod region and its maze of sandbars and marshes that are a magnet for tourists in summer.
The number is unusually high, according to the Cape Cod Stranding Network that oversees rescue efforts. It typically averages 200 rescues a year, compared to 31 rescues performed in the last 10 days alone.

Sarah Herzig, who oversees rescue work at the CCSN, said they may have become beached during a recent full moon that affects tides or that unseasonably warm water could have affected the migration of fish that they typically feed on.
Initial studies showed some suffered chronic diseases

09 01
Dead birds wash ashore in Noord-Holland

AMSTERDAM — Dozens of dead seabirds have washed up on the beaches between Den Helder and Petten in the past few days.
The birds are covered in a yellowy-green substance which dissolves their beaks and claws.
Traces of the poison — presumably dumped at sea — have appeared on the beach over a distance of 40km.

10 01
Are the dead porpoises on Scottish beaches more evidence of global warming?

“It is a worrying change. Harbour porpoises eat lots of other fish – haddock, whiting and the occasional cod, mackerel or herring. But it seems that, particularly in the spring in the Scottish North Sea area, sandeels are very, very important to them.” – COLIN MACLEOD, ABERDEEN UNIVERSITY

Story in full HARBOUR porpoises are starving to death in the North Sea as a result of rising water temperatures, scientists have revealed.
Climate change has resulted in a dramatic decline in the numbers of sandeels – a major part of the staple diet of the porpoises.

Marine scientists have recorded a significant rise in the percentage of porpoise deaths due to malnutrition. They are also becoming increasingly concerned about the impact of the declining sandeel populations on other species such as the bottle-nosed dolphin and the minke whale, believing this could jeopardise the future of Scotland’s booming whale-watching sector.

Previous reports have already revealed that seabird populations around Scotland’s coast have been seriously hit by the decline in sandeel numbers.
But, unlike seabirds that only eat sandeels, it had always been assumed that harbour porpoises and other cetaceans would simply switch to eating other fish species when sandeel numbers fell, without suffering any ill-effects. The study, however, suggests that this is not the case

10 01
Mystery as thousands of birds fall from sky (Australia)

Wildlife authorities investigating why thousands of birds fell from the sky over a town in remote southwestern Australia have ruled out infectious diseases but are no closer to figuring out what killed them, a state official said Friday.
Around 5,000 birds have been found dead in Esperance, Western Australia, since mid-December, according to Nigel Higgs, spokesman for the state's Department of Environment and Conservation.

The birds were mostly nectar- and insect-eating species, although some seagulls also have been found, Higgs said in a telephone interview from his office in the Western Australia capital, Perth.
Pathologists at the Western Australia Department of Agriculture examined several of the carcasses, and have ruled out the virulent H5N1 bird flu virus and other infectious diseases. "It may be an environmental toxin. It may be an agricultural or industrial toxin. We just can't be specific," Higgs said.

Further tests were being done on the dead birds, and Higgs said that it would be at least another week before pathologists have any more information on the mysterious deaths. Meanwhile, the reports of dead birds were waning, he said.

12 01
Storm strands seal pups on south coast (Australia)

Seal pups have been stranded on Esperance beaches in the latest in a series of bizarre natural events to plague the region. Residents who found two dozen seal pups washed up on the south coast beaches after last week’s freak storm say they have never seen such a mass stranding.
Wildlife authorities are still baffled by the mysterious deaths of an estimated 4000 birds.
Esperance has been declared a natural disaster area, with the damage bill from last week’s “oncein-a-generation” storm expected to reach tens of millions of dollars. Gales and 5m swells washed the eight-week-old seal pups on to coastline near Esperance and east of Hopetoun.

12 01

A few days ago appeared an odd story in the Icelandic media from a small town in the west of the country. The town is named after the fjord it sits by, Grundarfjordur.
For a number of years a local company has managed a cod fishfarm situated in the fjord. A few days ago they were stunned to find 20 tons of their fish were dead

Local scientists quickly pointed out that an unusually dense group of herring had been observed in the fjord recently and it was their guess that as a result a lack of oxygen in the sea killed the codfish and probably fish in the sea surrounding the fishfarm as well, though there has been no indication of that happening. .
Also this is not the first time that a large group of herring ventures into the fjord and never has there been a report of any fish death in those cases, either in Grundafjordur or any of the other numerous fjords scattered along the coastline of the country.

16 01

RED Admirals are fluttering around three months early - and experts reckon it is the latest sign of global warming. The butterflies usually migrate here in spring from North Africa and southern Europe.
Stragglers who try to hibernate in Britain are normally killed off by the cold. But in the past couple of days they have been spotted in gardens in Hampshire, Bristol and Herefordshire.

Temperatures so far this month have been almost double the average. Another unseasonal visitor spotted in Devon was a stick insect - also normally killed off by winter. Tom Brereton, of the Butterfly Conservation Trust in Lulworth, Dorset, said: "The Red Admiral hardly ever survives spending the winter here because of the frost.

16 01
Dolphins Stuck In Shallow Waters Of East Hampton

About two dozen dolphins are struggling for survival in the unlikeliest of places, and thanks much in part to the unseasonable winter weather. Rescuers in East Hampton have been working to free the mammals from shallow waters, worried they will die from hunger.

Strong winds are forecast for Tuesday, which could add an additional challenge to rescuers trying to herd dolphins stranded in the shallow coves.

The Department of Environmental Conservation says the mass strandings are the first of their kind here. The next few days are critical because cold weather is coming and that might make them more nervous. If seas get rough it will make rescue attempts impossible.

ScientIsts are puzzled by the high number of strandings this winter -- from Boston and Cape Cod to Long Island --nearly 100 dolphins are reported to be at risk.

17 01
Sea turtles released at Vanderbilt Beach and Sanibel Island (US)

Veterinarians with Mote Marine Laboratory today released two sea turtles at Vanderbilt Beach and one at Sanibel Island.

A crowd of about 50 people clad in bikinis, one-pieces and board shorts cheered as first the Kemp's ridley turtle and then the loggerhead clambered into the Gulf of Mexico off Vanderbilt Beach. Both turtles had recuperated from being sickened in October by the poison emitted by red tide, an algae bloom that can kill fish and other marine life and cause respiratory discomfort in humans.

The Kemp's ridley, nicknamed Marco because it was recovered on Marco Island, was tagged with a transmitter to track its travels at sea. The public can view the turtle's whereabouts at Kemp's ridleys are the rarest type of turtle that swims off Florida's shores.

The second turtle, a loggerhead named Amber, was discovered floating near Tiger Key in the Ten Thousand Islands. The turtle released on Sanibel Island was named Dunkin and was a juvenile green sea turtle.

A record 109 sea turtles became stranded in Collier County last year, county monitors say. "Stranded" refers to turtles that are dead, severely ill or injured. Nearly half of those strandings are believed to have stemmed from red tide exposure

16 01
Extreme Weather Leaves Flamingos Hungry

Lesser flamingos (Phoeniconaias minor) at Lake Bogoria, Kenya, are suffering from malnutrition, report Earthwatch-supported scientists working there. The scientists are investigating the causes of recent large-scale mortality events, resulting in the death of thousands of lesser flamingos in Kenya last year and at least half a million birds during the 1990s.

Post-mortem examinations on several flamingos found dead at Bogoria in late 2006 revealed that the birds weighed just 63 per cent of their normal body mass, approximately 1,050 grams. An analysis of the lake water confirmed that very low levels of spirulina (a blue-green bacteria that is the primary food source for lesser flamingos) were leaving the birds with only 10 per cent of their minimum daily food requirements.

"Based on these findings, it appears that starvation needs to be included in the possible causes of flamingo mortality," said Dr. David Harper of University of Leicester, principal investigator of Earthwatch's Flamingos of the Rift Valley project

17 01
More dead birds found in WA (Australia),2...5005961,00.html

ANOTHER 200 dead birds have been found in WA, taking the total number to die in mysterious circumstances in the state to 4000.

Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) nature protection branch acting manager Paul Connolly said today his department had received a new report of at least 200 dead swallows in Narembeen, about 240km east of Perth and 380km from Esperance.
He said the swallows apparently died earlier this month during large storms that passed through the wheatbelt region.

Investigations into the mysterious death of thousands of birds in have been widened, with toxins now considered a possible cause. Autopsies have ruled out viral and bacteriological causes.

DEC is now waiting for autopsy results to determine whether pesticides or toxins caused the deaths.

24 01
Warm Winter Brings Exotic Butterflies to Alps

Unusually warm temperatures are bringing African and Mediterranean butterflies to the Austrian Alps, one of Western Europe's coldest regions.

As almond trees and primroses burst into bloom in the valleys in what should be deep winter, migratory butterflies such as the Admiral, which would normally spend the winter in the warmer Mediterranean area, have been spotted in the Alps.

"We have seen some very unusual species and ... we are talking about species that shouldn't even be able to survive the winter here, which is what surprises us," said Peter Huemer, biologist at the Tyrolean State Museum. "The frost should have killed all these animals."

26 01
Russian scientists 'alarmed' as millions of birds begin falling from world's skies

An alarming series of reports from the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences Influenza Research Institute are reporting today that millions of avian species have succumbed, while in flight, to a rapidly evolving virus linked to the deadly H5N1 Bird Flu variant.
Doctor Scientist Oleg Kiselyov, the head of the Influenza Research Institute, states in these reports that a nematode parasite belonging to the 'Superfamily Subuluroidea' has now become a carrier of a 'mutated' H5N1 Bird Flu Virus with 'sub strains' never seen before.

More horrifically are that these reports state that this mutated H5N1 Bird Flu virus has now 'jumped' the 'species barrier' and is now infecting both animals and insects, and which has also been confirmed by Indonesian scientists, and as we can read as reported by the Malaysian National News Service in their report titled "Indonesian Scientist Warns Of Bird Flu In Flies", and which says:

"In the wake of the increasing number of bird flu cases in Indonesia, an Indonesian scientist has warned the government not to place too much of the blame for bird flu on poultry as other animals could also carry the virus.

Veterinary pathologist Wasito of Yogyakarta's Gajah Mada University's veterinary medicine said that other animals such as cats, dogs and even flies could also carry the H5N1 virus. "A study we are conducting here, for example, has convincingly found that it is possible for flies to spread the bird flu virus," he was quoted as saying by the Jakarta Post daily in Yogyakarta yesterday."

Doctor Scientist Kiselyov further states that Western scientists are rejecting Russia's research and are instead reporting to their citizens 'other causes' to explain the growing number of mass bird deaths in mid-flight, including Sri Lanka, and which has become yet another of the World's Nations to report birds falling from sky dead.

Australia has likewise refused this research for the mass bird deaths in their country, preferring instead to blame the sudden deaths of thousands of birds in mid-flight on a 'mystery toxin'.

The United States, also, continues to keep the dire situation facing our World's avian species from this virus from their citizens, even as more reports of mass bird deaths continue to rise in their country, including the latest report from their Western Regions which are reporting this week on the deaths of hundreds of ducks.

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February- news.gif

Hundreds of Endangered Turtles Die along Bangladesh Coast

Hundreds of endangered sea turtles have been found dead along Bangladesh’s coast over the past two weeks, triggering concerns about pollution and local fishing practices, an official said Thursday.

A team of four scientists has launched an investigation into the deaths of the olive ridley turtles, said Jafar Ahmed, a top official in the government’s marine fisheries department.

At least 65 of the sea turtles – ranging from 40 to 60 kilograms (88 to 132 pounds) – have been found dead along a five-kilometer (three-mile) stretch of beach near Cox’s Bazar, one of the main cities on Bangladesh’s coast. Hundreds more dead turtles have been found elsewhere in the area, and on a pair of islands. There is no clear total of exactly how many turtles have died.

Ahmed would not give any specific reason for the spike in deaths, but said the use of illegal fishing nets near the shoreline has apparently increased recently. The fishermen do not properly release the turtles and often kill them, leaving them to wash ashore, he said.

Photo in the News: 1,000 Giant Turtles Wash Ashore in India, Bangladesh
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10 02
Dead fish flood shores at Salton Sea

Last month’s cold snap has caused waves of dead fish to flood shores along the Salton Sea in a rare winter die-off.
It’s unclear how many of the sea’s estimated 200 million fish perished, but hundreds of thousands of rotting fish floated along the shoreline at Desert Shores on Friday.
“It smells worse than cow (manure),” Desert Shores resident Chuck Friedly said Friday.

Water temperatures that flirted with lethal levels – dipping to high-50s to lower-60s – are blamed for this most recent fish die-off in the state’s largest lake, California Department of Fish and Game biologist Jack Crayon said Friday.

Officials first saw signs of the winter die-off about two weeks ago.
“It’s the worst I’ve ever seen,” said Gabe Jensen, a Salton City resident since 1997. “The fish are just terrible. I just got over a cancer treatment and the smell’s not helping me.”

11 02
Mystery Ailment Strikes Honeybees

A mysterious illness is killing tens of thousands of honeybee colonies across the country, threatening honey production, the livelihood of beekeepers and possibly crops that need bees for pollination.
Researchers are scrambling to find the cause of the ailment, called Colony Collapse Disorder
Reports of unusual colony deaths have come from at least 22 states. Some affected commercial beekeepers _ who often keep thousands of colonies _ have reported losing more than 50 percent of their bees. A colony can have roughly 20,000 bees in the winter, and up to 60,000 in the summer

14 02
Costa Rica Probes Deaths of 500 Pelicans

Authorities in Costa Rica said Tuesday they are investigating the mysterious deaths of about 500 brown pelicans along the country’s Pacific coast over the last five days but do not suspect bird flu was the cause.

The first dead birds were spotted by a fisherman on Thursday on San Lucas Island, about 10 miles from the coastal city of Punta Arenas. More turned up in the following days at nearby islands and rivers.

“This is a situation that is enormously worrisome,” Costa Rican Environment Minister Roberto Dobles said. “But it is hard to know what happened, and so it is better not to speculate.”

Investigators were collecting tissue samples from the dead birds, but tests to determine the cause of death may take several days, said National Animal Health Service spokesman Flor Aguero.

16 02
Freak storm kills millions of fish

MILLIONS of fish have been washed ashore at St Andrews Bay following a freak North Sea storm lasting several days. The fish were found over a five-mile stretch of beach, including West Sands, one of the top-rated in Scotland.
Staff at St Andrews Aquarium have been trying to save some of the creatures which include five species of crab, plaice and flounder, starfish, scallops and an octopus.
While around 80% of the creatures have died, staff have been trying to get some of them back into the sea.
Another factor is believed to be the fact that the tide is not rising as far as in previous years, leaving the creatures stranded on the beach and at the mercy of seagulls.
John Mace, general manager of the aquarium, said the sealife had been washed ashore over a three-day period.
“It is essentially a complete freak of nature,” he said. “Everyone that has talked about this seems to think it is down to oil tanker pollution but it is not. It is like a natural disaster.
“I have seen this happen once but it was on a tiny scale and there were a few animals washed up.”

16 02
Mysterious Duck Deaths Spread

The number of mysterious duck deaths is higher and more widespread than first thought and the problem is not just limited to the Metro wastewater treatment plant, 7NEWS first reported.

A document from the Colorado Department of Health shows that not only have dead ducks turned up at the metro Denver plant, but also along the South Platte River. Wastewater treatment plants in Thornton, South Adams County, Westminster, Northglenn, and Littleton-Englewood have also reported a higher than normal number of duck deaths.

Dead ducks have also been found at the Sunfish Lake near The Breakers apartments in Denver, officials said. But at this point, nobody knows why.
“No one remembers ducks dying in these kinds of numbers,” said Steve Frank with Metro Wastewater District.

The problem first showed up at the Metro wastewater treatment plant. Employees found more than 400 ducks dying from hypothermia but don’t know what caused it. Plant operators have scrambled to figure out why and have come up empty.
“Right now, we haven’t found anything different in the water now as opposed to years past,” Frank said.

“Histology from the birds shows no clinical signs of disease. There are no conclusive test results pointing to the cause. Additional tests are being conducted at United States Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS) labs in Ashland, Ore., and the United States Geological Survey (USGS) labs in Madison, Wis. CDOW and USFWS are confident there is no significant risk to public health,” the CDOW said in a release.

20 02
Rare loon deaths in New Hampshire faze scientists (UK)

Scientists are struggling to explain the rare death of 17 loons in New Hampshire, saying warm weather may have confused the threatened species of bird which typically heads to the ocean for winter.

Twenty-two male and female Great Northern Divers, known as Common Loons, were found on Saturday and Sunday on Lake Winnipesaukee, many them covered in snow from wind gusts with their heads tucked into their wings to keep warm.

Biologists are unclear why the loons congregated on the ice deep in New Hampshire when they normally migrate to open water such as the ocean in winter. The five that survived were transported to the ocean and released.
“This is the first time I ever have seen this,” said senior biologist and executive director of the Loon Preservation Committee, Harry Vogel. “It’s unprecedented.”

The mild early winter — including the warmest December on record in New Hampshire and an unseasonably warm January — may have contributed to the confusion of the loons, biologists said.

Lake Winnipesaukee, which usually freezes by the first week of January, did not fully ice over until January 25, said Don Miller, a large lake fisheries biologist with New Hampshire Fish and Game.

Initial evidence suggests that the loons were in the process of molting new flying feathers, an annual event that usually happens after the birds have migrated for the winter.

23 02
New Zealand Fishermen Catch Rare Squid

A fishing crew has caught a colossal squid that could weigh a half-ton and prove to be the biggest specimen ever landed, a fisheries official said Thursday. The squid, weighing an estimated 990 lbs and about 39 feet long, took two hours to land in Antarctic waters, New Zealand Fisheries Minister Jim Anderton said.

The fishermen were catching Patagonian toothfish, sold under the name Chilean sea bass, south of New Zealand “and the squid was eating a hooked toothfish when it was hauled from the deep,” Anderton said.

The fishing crew and a fisheries official on board their ship estimated the length and weight of the squid: Detailed, official measurements have not been made. The date when the colossus was caught also was not disclosed.

Colossal squid, known by the scientific name Mesonychoteuthis hamiltoni, are estimated to grow up to 46 feet long and have long been one of the most mysterious creatures of the deep ocean.

Colossal squid are found in Antarctic waters and are not related to giant squid found round the coast of New Zealand. Giant squid grow up to 39 feet long, but are not as heavy as colossal squid

From BBC:
user posted image
Local media said the Mesonychoteuthis hamiltoni was about 10m (33ft) long and weighed an estimated 450kg (990lb).

23 02
Warming Climate, Cod Collapse, Have Combined To Cause Rapid North Atlantic Ecosystem Changes

Ecosystems along the continental shelf waters of the Northwest Atlantic Ocean, from the Labrador Sea south of Greenland all the way to North Carolina, are experiencing large, rapid changes, reports a Cornell oceanographer in the Feb. 23 issue of Science.

While some scientists have pointed to the decline of cod from overfishing as the main reason for the shifting ecosystems, the article emphasizes that climate changes are also playing a big role.

“It is becoming increasingly clear that Northwest Atlantic shelf ecosystems are being tested by climate forcing from the bottom up and overfishing from the top down,” said Charles Greene, director of the Ocean Resources and Ecosystems Program in Cornell’s Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences. “Predicting the fate of these ecosystems will be one of oceanography’s grand challenges for the 21st century.”

Most scientists believe the planet is being warmed by greenhouse gases emitted in the burning of fossil fuels, and by changing land surfaces. Early signs of this warming have appeared in the Arctic: Since the late 1980s, scientists have noticed that pulses of fresh water from increased precipitation and melting of ice on land and sea in the Arctic have flowed into the North Atlantic Ocean and made the water less salty.

At the same time, climate-driven shifts in Arctic wind patterns have redirected ocean currents. The combination of these processes has led to a freshening of seawater along most of the Northwest Atlantic shelf.

In the past, during summer months, a wind-mixed layer of warmer, less salty water (which is less dense and lighter) floated on the ocean surface. When the air temperature cooled during autumn, temperature and density differences lessened between the surface mixed layer and the cooler, saltier waters below. Similar to the flow of heating and cooling wax in a lava lamp, as the density differences became smaller, mixing between the layers typically increased and the surface mixed layer deepened.

But, Greene cites recent scientific studies that reveal the influx of fresh water from Arctic climate change is keeping the surface mixed layer relatively shallow, curbing its rapid deepening during autumn. A gradual rather than rapid deepening of the surface mixed layer has led to changes in the seasonal cycles of phytoplankton (tiny free-floating plants like algae), zooplankton (tiny free-floating animals like copepods) and fish populations that live near the surface, according to the report.

Without the fall deepening of the surface mixed layer, phytoplankton populations have continued access to daylight needed for growth, and their numbers have stayed abundant throughout the fall. In turn, zooplankton, which feed on the phytoplankton, have increased in number during the fall through the early winter. Herring populations also rose during the 1990s, which some scientists suspect may be because of the abundance of zooplankton to feed on.

At the same time, Greene’s article cites how the collapse of the cod populations in the early 1990s has led to increases in bottom-living species such as snow crab and shrimp that cod feed on. Without cod preying on them, other animals that live in the water column and feed on zooplankton, including herring, may have increased in numbers. But, while the story with herring is still unclear, the authors contend that the crash of cod populations does not fully explain why phytoplankton and zooplankton populations at the base of the food chain have risen during autumn.

“We suggest that, with or without the collapse of cod, a bottom-up, climate driven regime shift would have taken place in the Northwest Atlantic during the 1990s,” Greene said.

Andrew Pershing, an oceanographer who recently moved from Cornell to the University of Maine and Gulf of Maine Research Institute, co-authored the article.

Note: This story has been adapted from a news release issued by Cornell University

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Posted: Mar 14 2007, 02:44 AM
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oh - and this news figured in many forums in the beginning of february:

Russian fishermen catch squeaking alien and eat it

Pic of the alien-monster:
user posted imageuser posted image

But it turned out to be a skate/ray: ( it could be... scratchinghead.gif )
user posted imageuser posted image


This post has been edited by Blue Eyed on Mar 14 2007, 02:45 AM

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Posted: Mar 15 2007, 07:02 PM
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Four legged chicken in Hebron - growth hormone related - will be euthanaised, stuffed and put on display in freak museum

rotatingskull.gif danger.gif EmoticonFreak3.gif


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Posted: Apr 12 2007, 01:20 PM
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QUOTE (Guest @ Mar 16 2007, 04:02 AM)
Four legged chicken in Hebron - growth hormone related - will be euthanaised, stuffed and put on display in freak museum

rotatingskull.gif  danger.gif  EmoticonFreak3.gif

I followed your link from Sidney Morning Herald and got to this gallery "Freaks of Nature"... blinkNEW.gif

Freaks of nature.
In recent years, an increasing number of reports about animals with genetic mutations have been appearing.

oh.. and this is one I found in March archive - a shark with webbed feet...
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This post has been edited by Blue Eyed on Apr 12 2007, 01:24 PM

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peeking.gif News from March:
01 03
Colombian drought suffocates 1,200 tons of fish meant for U.S. and Europe (S.america)
An estimated 3 million fish have suffocated in a reservoir in southern Colombia, where a four-month drought has drastically drained water levels, leaving too little oxygen to sustain dozens of hatcheries.

Since Sunday, more than 1,320 tons of tilapia raised inside giant metal cages have gone belly-up and floated to the surface behind the Betania hydroelectric dam, where scorchingly high temperatures have lowered water levels by 82 feet in recent months

05 03
Birds Die At State Building Because Of Mother Nature (US)
More than 50 birds were found in the courtyard at the Texas Department of Aging and Disability building.
Employees were notified immediately, and the area was blocked for about two hours while the Austin Fire Department’s HazMat Team and Animal Control checked the courtyard to make sure there wasn’t a public health threat and to remove the dead birds.

After investigating, Texas Parks and Wildlife officials said it’s just Mother Nature at work. “It’s not uncommon for cedar wax wings to gorge on a brush and other kinds of fruit-bearing bushes,” said Tom Harvey with the parks and wildlife department. “If they do that, they develop a natural toxicity, like block alcohol poisoning.” Harvey said the birds ate too many berries from trees located in the courtyard.

A dead bird was found across the street from where the building. The department said it didn’t know if it was part of a mass bird kill. People in the area didn’t seem worried about all the dead birds.

>>update on the other dead birds in Texas earlier this year: <<
Back on Jan. 8, Congress Avenue was closed after the discovery of 63 dead birds.
Scientists at Texas A&M University said a sudden drop in the temperature coupled with a parasitic infection that spread amongst the birds.

08 03
Biologists try to solve duck-die off (update) (US)
State and federal biologists have ruled out several causes in the deaths of 850 ducks this winter and were still trying to figure out how they died. Avian flu, bacterial infections and exposure to heavy metals and toxins have been ruled out as culprits in the only mass duck die-off its kind nationally, said Bruce McCloskey, director of the Colorado Division of Wildlife.
“We’ve got more answered questions than we have answers,” McCloskey said Thursday

10 03
Counting the polar bears a heated issue (Arctic)
Pictures of a polar bear floating precariously on a tiny iceberg have become the defining images of global warming - but they may be misleading.

A new survey of the animals' numbers in Canada's eastern Arctic has revealed that they are thriving because of mankind's interference in the environment. In the Davis Strait area, a region of 140,000 square kilometers, the bear population has grown from 850 in the mid-1980s to 2,100 today.
"There aren't just a few more bears - there are a hell of a lot more bears," said Mitch Taylor, a biologist who has spent 20 years studying the animals. His findings back the claims of Inuit hunters who have long claimed that they were seeing more bears.
But critics point out that his study was commissioned by the Inuit-dominated government of Nunavit. Critics claim it has an agenda to encourage polar bear hunting and keep the animals off the endangered species list.

11 03
Weather proves hazardous to whale rescue effort (Australia)
A change in weather on Tasmania's west coast is slowing the rescue of two sperm whales. The pair are the last of 12 whales which got caught on a sandbar in Macquarie Harbour on Wednesday.
So far, five have been herded back to deeper water.

12 03
Wolves, Moose Struggling On Isle Royale National Park (US)
A plague of ticks, stifling hot summers and relentless pressure from wolves have driven the moose population on Isle Royale National Park to its lowest ebb in at least 50 years.
The lowest since researchers began tracking their numbers on this wilderness Lake Superior archipelago. Now in its 49th year, the project is the world’s longest-running study of predator-prey relationships.

“Along with this is an even more impressive decline in wolves, from 30 to 21,” said John Vucetich, an assistant professor at Michigan Technological University. “The main reason is a lack of food.” For wolves, that translates into a lack of moose.

In 2002, the island was home to more than a thousand moose. Since then, unusually warm summers have dealt a double whammy to the big herbivores: They lose their appetites and seek shelter from the heat, putting them in a worse position to survive winter. And the climate change also seems to favor ticks, causing a massive infestation that has yet to abate. Fortunately for human visitors to the island, the ticks have no interest in people.

13 03
Up To One Million Fish Found Dead In Thai River (Asia)
Hundreds of thousands of farmed fish have been found dead in one of Thailand’s key rivers, the fisheries department said Tuesday, prompting fears that factories were polluting the waterway. Parts of the central provinces of Ang Thong and Ayutthaya along the Chao Phraya river were officially declared disaster zones Tuesday, after the fish started dying there on Sunday night.

Officials said they were still trying to determine what had caused the deaths of up to one million caged tubtim fish, a type of tilapia, at different locations along the river about 100 kilometres (60 miles) north of Bangkok.

Jaranthada Karnsasuta, director general of the fisheries department, said a sudden lack of oxygen in the water killed the fish. “Oxygen in water is very poor. Some reported zero to 0.5 percent of oxygen in the water, while fish need more than three percent to survive,” he told AFP.

He said they were currently investigating two possible explanations – that a sugar boat which capsized earlier this month released toxic byproducts into the river, or that upstream factories had polluted the waterway

14 03
Penguins die from mystery illness at Gold Coast (Australia)
BRISBANE - More than two dozen penguins have died at the Sea World theme park on the Gold Coast. The penguins became ill on Thursday last week and, by the weekend, 25 of the 37 sick birds were dead, Sea World said in a statement.
The surviving penguins had been isolated while vets continued their investigations into the cause of the deaths.

But Department of Primary Industries general manager of animal biosecurity Ron Glanville said today disease had been ruled out. "We don't believe there is any other threat to animals at Sea World at this stage," he told ABC Radio. "It does not appear to be an infectious cause that is going on so we don't believe there is a problem in terms of a threat to other animals or the public."

Sea World's manager of marine sciences Steve McCourt told the Courier-Mail newspaper today he suspected the deaths were caused by a load of contaminated gravel placed in the bird's enclosure as part of three-monthly maintenance.

Biosecurity Queensland principal veterinary officer Ian Douglas said tests for bird flu were negative. "It's a bit too early to speculate what's happened," he said. "But in the veterinary world, it's not unusual to get a large number of animals affected at the one time.

14 03
Whale beached days after sonar drill (US)
A 15-foot female beaked whale stranded herself on the Outer Banks shore last week and died.
The whale, a nursing mother, had bleeding around both ears, but a scientist who performed an autopsy could not say what caused the mammal to strand.
Navy officials said Tuesday that they had been conducting sonar training exercises about 150 miles offshore of Virginia Beach, Va., about 10 days before the whale beached March 7. They declined to be more specific about the date, citing security reasons.

In the most recent incident, the whale's death was accompanied by the beaching of three harbor porpoises on the Outer Banks around the same day. Aleta Hohn, director of National Marine Fisheries Service program at a federal laboratory in Beaufort, conducted an autopsy on the whale but could not pinpoint a cause of death.

Hohn did note that the whale had bleeding around both ears -- more around one ear than the other. She said the acoustic fat that lines the whale's jaw, which also is used in hearing, was in good shape.
Hohn said about three beaked whales strand on North Carolina's coast each year. She said the stranding of young harbor porpoises is common this time of year and might not be related.

19 03
Texas dolphin die-off puzzles scientists (US)
The stranding deaths of about 60 bottlenose dolphins on Texas beaches over the past three weeks has puzzled researchers and is a cause for concern during the calving season, a senior scientist said on Monday.

"This is the calving season so we often have strandings at this time of the year. It's tough to be an air-breather born in the water," said Dr. Daniel F. Cowan, professor of pathology at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston and director of the Texas Marine Mammal Stranding Network.
"But over the last few weeks we have had about 3 to 4 times the usual mortality," he told Reuters.

Most of the carcasses were in an advanced state of decomposition, suggesting that they were carried to Texas beaches from areas further off or up the shore. Suspected causes include parasites, an outbreak of infectious diseases or red tide, an algal bloom prompted by fertilizers or other excess nutrients.

Number of dead dolphins called `unusual'
About 180 dolphins are beached during the stranding season all along the Texas coast during a normal year, but this year nearly all the strandings have been limited to Galveston and Jefferson counties. Scientists so far have no explanation for the high numbers turning up in only two counties.

Most of the bodies were partially decomposed, leading scientists to believe that the dolphins were dying at sea off the Louisiana coast.
Mase said that some algae blooms had been reported off the coast of Louisiana. She also said that brevetoxin, the toxic substance from red tide algae blooms, has been found in dolphins even though there was no evidence of a red tide bloom in the vicinity

28 03
EPA ignores my evidence predicting Lake Colac fish kills: Brian Gane (Australia)
Last week Brian Gane emailed the ABC South West Victoria newsroom and said he knew a big fish kill was about to happen in Lake Colac - and his prediction turned out to be true, with roughly 1,000 fish turning up dead this week. His evidence is based upon aerial photographs taken of the lake before the events, in a region which has seen massive deaths in eel and carp populations over the past years of drought.

It was in February of last year that this website published images of the massive eel kill at Lake Modewarre, part of the Corangamite lakes system which includes Lake Colac, which, in years past, has been reknowned as a haven for recreational fishing. Gane says he has made repeated attempts to present his evidence to the EPA, to no avail.

"Other people have looked at the photographs amd everyone is absolutely baffled by what they're seeing. These are possibly the most dramatic evidence of an event that will lead to a fish kill roughly four to five days later," he says. Two of the photographs (see links on right of page) were taken 12 months apart, both just five days before a fishkill.

"The first photograph was taken in January 2006. It has a very strong foam pattern that looked like sand dunes moving across a perfectly stil lake. The other tell-tale was the shore was thickly covered in foam. These are precursors, generally, to a significant fish kill to follow.
The [second] photo I took, pretty sure it was the 10th of March, Saturday morning. When I flew over the lake early in the morning, the water was dead calm. What I observed below was an intricate patern of bubbling foam rising to the surface. It was very dramatic. It was restricted to the northern end of the lake, the water was dead calm, there was no wind, the shore was covered in thick foam," he says.

"The intriguing part of the patterm was it appeared the bottom of the lake was erupting with gas-type bubbles that were forming the foam pattern on the surface. When I returned over the lake 20 minutes later [see third photograph] I then approached from the centre of the lake and was even more staggered to see the pattern on the lake had remained unchanged, despite a 15-20 knot wind."

His direct reply to whether he knows what is causing these events - and the ensuing fishkills?
"I wouldn't have a clue."

Gane is convinced there is a link between the phenomenon he has photographed and the fish kills, and rejects the explanations being put forward by the EPA - that the surface disturbance is the result of fish spawning, and the fish kills are attributed to increasing salinity in the lakes due to the drought and water evaporation.

"I had no doubt there would be a fish kill from this event. The intriguing part of the observation on both occasions is that Lake Colac is generally very turbid - usually a pretty unhealthy greyish colour. On both occasions, you'll see the 2006 photograph, the lake looks pristine, almost crystal clear.
More startling on the 2007 photograph, when the lake is significantly lower and more turbid, where the event is taking place you can clearly see patches of the [lake] bottom. This is extraordinarily uncharacteristic of Lake Colac," he says.

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03 04
El Nino effect blamed for deadly 'red tide' (Thailand)

A decrease in sea temperatures caused by the El Nino phenomenon is blamed for the deaths of huge numbers of fish off Tarutao island.

A number of fish were found dead on Sunday near the western part of the island in the Andaman Sea. The incident coincided with a change in the colour of the water to red. "Water off the Son Bay, where most fish died, became very cold," said Tarutao Marine National Park chief Naruebet Chumtong.

The fish, which inhabit deep water, came to the surface to escape the cold. Those which could not adjust to the different environment died, he said. Officials also spotted whales which came near to shore to escape cold water, he said.

El Nino, or ocean warming, normally refers to an increase in ocean water temperatures around the equator. When that happens, it causes cold, nutrient-rich currents to flow toward the Andaman Sea, with temperatures plunging from 26C to below 20C, said Kasetsart University marine scientist Thorn Thamrongnawasawat.

However, the Tarutao Marine National Park yesterday said examinations of the dead fish showed no traces of toxic substances, and the park has allowed villagers to eat the fish.

03 04
Something Fishy at Lake Isabel (US)

Something fishy is going on between Bismarck and Jamestown at Lake Isabel, thousands of times over. Carp, some up to two feet long, are washing up on shore after a severe winter kill. Some nearby residents say it`s the worst fish kill since they`ve been living there.

Carp are normally a hearty fish. But this winter, even the heartiest fish couldn`t survive the conditions in Lake Isabel.
"We`re in the seventh year of a pretty significant drought and Lake Isabel water levels have been declining for the past seven years and so decreased water levels increase the chance of kills happening," says Paul Bailey, fisheries supervisor at the North Dakota Game and Fish.

"There`s actually hundreds of them, dead ones, they`re big carp too, some of them are one or two feet long and six to eight inches in diameter," says Marvin Bodvig, who lives beside Lake Isabel.
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03 04
Struggling seabirds - Dead murres, auklets washing ashore with little in their stomachs (US)

West Coast seabirds are dying, apparently from a lack of food -- and some researchers think the phenomenon may be linked to global climate change.

This is the third year that scientists have found unusually large numbers of marine birds -- mainly common murres, but also rhinoceros auklets and tufted puffins -- washed up on beaches in California, Oregon and Washington. In 2005, the first year of the phenomenon, large numbers of Cassin's auklets also died.

Hannah Nevins, the coordinator for Moss Landing Marine Laboratories beach survey program, said 253 dead murres were recovered on 11 Monterey Bay beaches during the first week of March. During the past nine years, an average of nine dead birds were collected on the same beaches during the same week, she said.

About 180,000 breeding murres live along the West Coast, so it is unlikely the recent spate of deaths is enough to drastically harm the overall population. "But if this continues for multiple years, then we could have real problems," Nevins said.

Most of the casualties were young birds that had just gone through their first winter. "They were all in poor condition, and generally had empty stomachs," she said. "Either they were not finding food, or they were unable to capture the food they did find."

Bill Sydeman, the director of marine ecology at PRBO Conservation Science, a Bay Area group that specializes in avian research, said the deaths are worrisome because it now appears they are not isolated events. In the two past years, the winter deaths were followed by less successful breeding at the Farallon Islands, one of the West Coast's most productive seabird rookeries, he said.
"I would not be surprised to see the same thing this year," Sydeman said.

Sydeman said the trend appears to be linked to changes in the California Current -- a vast oceanic stream that delivers cold, nutrient-rich water from the Gulf of Alaska to the continental West Coast. Plankton thrives in this water, forming the basis of a food web that sustains everything from small fish to whales.

Fluctuations in the current in recent years appear to have resulted in regions of warmer water that support less plankton, Sydeman said. That can also reduce upwelling, a seasonal phenomenon that results in the replacement of warmer water along the Pacific Coast with cold, nutrient-laden offshore water.

04 04
Massive Shad Kill Beneath Nickajack Dam (US)

A massive shad kill has occurred beneath Nickajack Dam in Marion County, Tenn. TWRA Wildlife Officer Russell Vandergriff says that "there are millions of dead shad below Nickajack Dam." He says as far as he could tell they are all threadfin shad. They are the smallest of three species of shad found in area waters. Most threadfins are 4-6 inches long.

04 04
Red tide may be behind recent manatee deaths in Fort Myers area (US)

State officials suspect red tide may have killed some of the 26 manatees whose bodies were found in Lee County waters in the past two weeks. Scientists are awaiting results from toxin analyses to determine for certain whether red tide caused their deaths, said Wendy Quigley, a spokeswoman for the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. Four of the sea cows were found dead Monday

04 04
Low oxygen triggers fish kill in Baton Rouge creek (US)

State environmental officials are trying to determine what casued low oxygen levels blamed for a fish kill in Dawson Creek in a Baton Rouge subdivision
Glenn Carman, a 15-year-old who lives in the Walden subdivision discovered the dead fish earlier this week while he was exploring near the creek. He saw more than a dozen dead shad washed up near vegetation and tree branches near the Kenilworth Parkway bridge over the creek. In addition, the usually clear water had turned murky, he said

04 04
Crazy Frogs Baffle Boffins (UK),,30100-1259113,00.html

Experts are investigating after frogs with five legs were found in a river. Environmental agency Natural England said specialists were puzzled by the deformity.
She said research in the US suggested the deformity might be caused by a parasite which attacks frogspawn and disrupts growth patterns

05 04
Dead fish cleared from Fujairah beach (United Arab Emirates)

A clean-up operation to rid Fujairah's beaches of large quantities of tiny dead fish is almost over. Large numbers of the dead fish washed up on the main Fujairah beach on Monday.

The head of the environment section at Fujairah Municipality dismissed suggestions of an environmental cause insisting it was due to bad fishing practices. He said: "[It] happened because the fishing nets of some local fishermen couldn't cope with the large quantities of the tiny fish collected so the nets came apart and huge amounts of the fish were dumped into the sea....

08 04
One beekeeper’s chaos theory (US)

Something is devastating the nation’s bees, and David Hackenberg wants us all to know it.

10 04
Volcano’s fury throws up mystery fish (Indian Ocean)

SCIENTISTS on the Indian Ocean island of Reunion have discovered hundreds of fish of unknown species, floating belly-up in the sea, following a spectacular volcanic eruption over the past week

Along with two scientists working for Reunion’s aquarium, he collected specimens of the dead fish, which have bulging eyes, heads sometimes protracted by a beak and appear to have surfaced from depths of about 500 metres. Mr Barrere said he hoped the specimens would help them determine “where they came from and how they died”.

10 04
Rising salinity blamed for mass eel deaths (Australia)

More than 100,000 eels have died in Lake Bolac in Victoria’s west The figure marks a rapid increase from the rates of deaths last month, when 2,000 eels washed ashore. Thousands of eels also died last year.
Environment Protection Authority regional services acting director John Williamson says the continual drying of the lake and increasing salinity are to blame.

10 04
Lobster’s price hits an all time high (US)

Retail lobster prices have hit an all time record high of around $15 or more a pound. In Maine, due to a combination of weather, water temperature, and the timing of fishing seasons have all come together to make it all but impossible for lobster men to fish for the lobsters. The high winds make it difficult to work the waters, and the cold water temperatures make the lobsters less hungry. This means that the lobsters don’t go into the traps

10 04
Seasonal seafood supplies thrown off balance by weather (Japan)

But this year, fishermen are reporting ikanago catches as small as one-tenth the volume of last year. What’s more, the eels are larger than usual, posing a challenge for chefs who’ve had to adapt their menus to suit the bigger fish. But this year, fishermen are reporting ikanago catches as small as one-tenth the volume of last year. What’s more, the eels are larger than usual, posing a challenge for chefs who’ve had to adapt their menus to suit the bigger fish.
Besides changes in fish size and haul volume, some fisheries are noticing a change in seasons, too. Yellowtail that are caught in the Hokuriku area along the Sea of Japan during the winter months of November through January have long been considered a winter delicacy. Their name, kanburi, means “cold weather yellowtail,” and they are prized for their tasty, oily flesh. The kanburi haul was disappointing up to December, but soon after January, the catch began to increase, and the season continued until the end of February.
The water temperature in Tosa Bay during winter has been on the rise for more than 20 years. This year, when the temperature was measured in February, the surface water temperature was 18.9 degrees, the second-highest recorded since 1975. The normal average is 17.0 degrees.

17 04
Ebola virus killing thousands of apes (Africa)

The Ebola virus is killing thousands of Republic of Congo gorillas and chimpanzees in an outbreak possibly caused by transmission between ape social groups.

17 04
What’s In The Water? Estrogen-like Chemicals Found In Fish Caught In Pittsburgh’s Rivers (US)

A new study from the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute’s Center for Environmental Oncology suggests that fish caught in Pittsburgh rivers contain substances that mimic the actions of estrogen, the female hormone. Since fish are sentinels of the environment, and can concentrate chemicals from their habitat within their bodies, these results suggest that nalysing chemicals may be making their way into the region’s waterways .

18 04
Seals Dying in Caspian Sea (Kazakhstan)

Kazakh officials have blamed the deaths of more than 800 seals off its Caspian Sea coastline on an abnormally warm winter and the early melting of sea ice. “The total number of dead seals by late Monday was 819, including 639 adults and 180 pups. A search of the zone is continuing,” said a statement on the Kazakh emergency situations ministry website.

Most of the dead Caspian Seals were found in April in the sea’s north-eastern Mangistauskaya region near the Kalamkas oil field, the statement said. Preliminary reports suggested the cause was not pollution but the unusually early ice melt, which disrupted the birthing season, the ministry said.
A similar problem in 2000 resulted in the death of some 20,000 seals, according to a report on the website of the Caspian Environment Programme (CEP), an international body set up to protect the oil-rich inland sea. Many seal pups died when the ice collapsed, while subsequent overcrowding during the birthing season provoked epidemics killing many more, the report said.

18 04
NYC Whale Beaches Itself, Dies Suddenly (US)

A young whale that swam aimlessly for two days in a small bay off an industrial section of Brooklyn beached itself at an oil depot dock Wednesday and died suddenly. Animal activists said the minke whale, about a year old, was too young to survive on its own

19 04
Mystery animals roam northeast Ohio woods (US)

Wildlife experts haven’t been able to positively identify at least three animals spotted roaming the woods in Chester Township, about 20 miles east of Cleveland, over the past few months.
Police have received calls from residents offering varying descriptions, with possible Ids including bighorn sheep and wild goat
Sal LaPuma, an avid outdoorsman, said he recently got within 30 feet of one of the animals before it ran away. “The moment I saw it, I knew it was out of place,” he said.

20 04
Fish kill around Crooked Tree has residents concerned (S.America)

Kendra Griffith, Reporting That crisis according to villagers is that hundreds of dead fish have been washing up on the waterways surrounding Crooked Tree. Denvor Gillett “All the tilapias are just floating down the lagoon. In Black Creek, the banks are littered with fish. The trees that are across the creek are full with dead tilapias.”
Sr. Environmental Officer at D.O.E. Jevon Hulse told News Five that they are aware of the situation and have been to Crooked Tree twice to take samples. Hulse says so far tests show that some areas of the lagoon are normal, while other sections reveal low oxygen levels ... but the residents aren’t buying the low oxygen theory.

23 04
Baby Frogs And 22 Ducklings...Global Warming? (UK)

NATURE is springing its surprises as Britain basks in another spell of sizzling sunshine. Legions of tiny frogs have been spotted among colourful flowerbeds across the UK.
The unseasonably hot weather has also brought a bonus for visitors to parks and lakes as hordes of ducklings take their first tentative paddle out on the pond.
Over the weekend a kaleidoscope of colour warmed the hearts of nature lovers as flowers burst into bloom weeks before they were expected. The same gardeners were buzzed by wasps and bumble bees not usually spotted before June.

24 04
Disease kills more than 1,000 birds (US)

State and federal wildlife scientists have collected almost 1,200 lesser scaup carcasses at Pheasant Lake, said Erika Butler, North Dakota Game and Fish Department veterinarian. The lake is west of Ellendale. Preliminary testing point to an avian form of coccidiosis, a disease that isn’t a threat to humans, pets or livestock, Butler said Monday. Test results were negative for avian influenza, she added.
The scaup die-off is the sixth within the past 20 years at the lake, but this one is by far the largest. Last year, 50 to 70 scaup died, and the largest scaup die-off previously was 227 in 1990, Butler said. Coccidiosis is caused by stress, and migration plus a snowstorm this spring could have been too much stress for the ducks.

25 04
Insects, Birds And Fish Dying In The Millions (worldwide)

Million Fish Die In Colorado. At Once - 'A Lack Of Oxygen'? I was having a cup of tea in the kitchen when I heard a 'brief' blurb on the news telling of a million fish that had died in the Colorado River (covering an area of 7 miles). The reason given was 'lack of oxygen'.
I waited to hear more on evening broadcasts (pictures) and there was NOTHING just that 30 second announcement. When I went searching I found that this was not an aberration pertaining just to the Colorado, but was happening in all parts of the country (rivers & lakes) and to put the people, who blame farmer's fertilizer at ease, many of these areas had no farms anywhere near them.
Tens of thousands of fish have been found in California, Oregon, Washington State, Pennsylvania, and the Potomac etc. Looking further, I found that this is happening world wide, from Romania to China!
Combine these massive die-offs with thousands of dead whales, sea turtles, porpoises, birds, honey bees, and butterflies.well, it's not hard to reason that the planet is dying.
These massive deaths appear to be reported only locally and never making it to the national scene or an all out alarm by the EPA or environmental (corporate sponsored) groups?

25 04
Task Force Investigates New Fish Deaths in Shenandoah Watershed (US)

The Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) has received reports this week of dead fish on the North and South Forks of the Shenandoah River. Dead and dying smallmouth bass and sunfish were found in at least three areas: a section of the North Fork several miles downstream of Woodstock, from the South Fork between Bentonville and Front Royal, and about six miles upstream of Elkton on the South Fork
Though only a few dead fish were found, a number of live fish with skin lesions or abnormal behavior were observed. Live specimens were collected and immediately delivered to the Virginia Tech Veterinary School pathology lab and the U.S. Geological Survey fish health lab in Leetown, W. Va. These fish will be thoroughly examined, with evaluations for diseases, viruses, parasites and organ-by-organ anomalies
Fish kills have begun in the Shenandoah River system during the spring of each of the past three years. The causes of these fish kills remain unknown. The kills have occurred at low rates, have lasted for extended periods, and have affected primarily adult smallmouth bass and redbreast sunfish. In some areas adult smallmouth bass and redbreast sunfish numbers have been reduced by an estimated 80 percent. DEQ and DGIF, along with partners in the Shenandoah River Fish Kill Task Force, have been seeking the causes of these fish kills since 2004.

26 04
Experts may have found what’s bugging the bees (US)

A fungus that caused widespread loss of bee colonies in Europe and Asia may be playing a crucial role in the mysterious phenomenon known as Colony Collapse Disorder that is wiping out bees across the United States, UC San Francisco researchers said Wednesday. Researchers have been struggling for months to explain the disorder, and the new findings provide the first solid evidence pointing to a potential cause.

26 04
Dead fish victims of winter kill (Canada)

A number of dead fish washed up along the shores of Wascana Creek last week. The dead fish in Wascana Creek followed a rash of dead fish washing ashore around Wascana Lake. The cause of death was a lack of oxygen. The process is known as "winter kill." When ice gets a few inches thick it prevents sunlight from getting to underwater plant life. Plants need sunlight for photosynthesis, which creates oxygen in the water.

27 04
Algae Bloom Killing Birds, Sea Lions, Dolphins Off California Coast, Environmentalists Say (US)

A bloom of ocean algae that produces a toxic acid has sickened and killed hundreds of birds, sea lions and dolphins in California, environmentalists said. Birds and animals have been washing up on shores from San Diego to San Francisco Bay. In the past week, 40 birds have been taken to the International Bird Rescue Center in San Pedro with symptoms of domoic acid poisoning, which attacks the brain and can cause seizures.
Domoic acid is produced by microscopic algae. Birds and sea mammals ingest the acid by eating fish and shellfish who dine on the algae.
“In five years of study I have not seen a bloom this large at this particular time of year,” Caron said. “It’s having an extraordinary impact on pelicans and many other species.” “There are conceivably thousands of animals being affected,” Caron said. 4) Fourteen sea lions have been treated for domoic acid poisoning at the Pacific Marine Mammal Center in Laguna Beach. Seven died, said Michele Hunter, the center’s director.

27 04
Ebola-like virus killing fish in Great Lakes (US)

A deadly Ebola-like virus is killing fish of all types in the Great Lakes, a development some scientists fear could trigger disaster for the USA's freshwater fish.
The disease has been found in Lake Erie, Lake Ontario, Lake Huron, the St. Lawrence Seaway, the Niagara River and an inland lake in New York. The aggressive virus, which causes fish to hemorrhage, was unexpectedly found in the Great Lakes in 2005. Last year, it resulted in large fish kills that struck at least 20 species. Scientists are watching to see whether the disease returns in mid-May when water in the lakes warms to temperatures at which the virus attacks

27 04
Something Fishy (US)

Whenever Rita Peloquin comes to McAlester she goes by the little pond at Oak Hill Cemetery. It’s a peaceful scene, with ducks and geese lounging on the banks or swimming past turtles poking their heads through the surface of the water.
Little fish, fairly large fish, sunfish, catfish, carp — dead. Some floated off down a little overflow stream leading from the pond. Ducks and turtles were feasting on others.
He had samples of the pond water tested to see if tests could determine what caused the fish to die. The sample showed that a city water line was leaking into the pond, since chlorine and fluoride were detected in it, Clifton said. But Marley Beem, an extension specialist with Oklahoma State University, said that the water leak might not be the reason for the fish kill. “It’s possible, but that’s not necessarily the cause,” he said. “It depends on how strong the chlorine is.”
Usually fish kills happen in the fall, but they have been known to happen at other times of year. The most common cause is when algae, microscopic plants, die for some reason

29 04
Bad rap? Maybe... but ‘killer’ bees are here (US)

Aggressive honeybees have arrived in Osceola County, furthering their advance across Florida and prompting beekeepers to worry that a panicky public will start indiscriminately killing bees. Dubbed “killer bees” after they arrived in the Western Hemisphere 50 years ago, the insects really aren’t any deadlier than ordinary honeybees. Their defensive nature, however, makes them quicker to swarm, chase and sting anyone who disturbs their hives

30 04
Pacific whale decline ‘a mystery’

Grey whales in the eastern Pacific appear to be in some trouble, with the cause far from clear, scientists say. Researchers with the conservation group Earthwatch found that whales are arriving in their breeding grounds off the Mexican coast malnourished.
The same thing happened just after the 1997/8 El Nino event, which warmed the waters and depleted food stocks. Scientists are not sure whether the current decline is climate related or part of a natural predator-prey cycle.
The cause of this change is not clear. A link with climatic conditions makes sense; warmer waters hold less oxygen, they become less productive, resulting in less of the tiny crustaceans which are the grey whales’ favoured food. This is thought to have caused the slump which followed the 1997/8 El Nino event. But he is concerned that other factors may be involved too, in particular the slow rise in the average temperature of the oceans.

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Posted: Jan 2 2008, 04:58 AM
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02 05
Officials Don’t Know What Caused Fish Kill at Lake Eufaula (US)

About 300 fish died in the Coal Creek and Mill Creek areas of the lake in mid-April. Danny Bowen of the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation says he knows of no similar incident at Lake Eufaula or any other lake in the state that has affected smallmouth buffalo fish. Researchers made it out to the area a week after the fish kill was estimated to have occurred and found the dead fish in advanced stages of decomposition.

03 05
Bacteria, mold blamed for fish killa (US)

Jerry Moss, the district fisheries supervisor for the Alabama Division of Wildlife and Freshwater Fisheries, said the 400 to 500 white crappie that were found dead in Lake Tuscaloosa in the last seven days were “loaded” with a bacteria called columnarius and a water mold called Saprolegnia.
It usually only proves fatal in fish that are old or in a weakened state. Moss said the white crappie found dead and/or dying in the lake had just finished spawning and were weakened from spending energy creating sperm and eggs. “They were tired and spent and their immune system wasn’t up to par,” Moss said. “They had a compromised immune system and couldn’t fight off infection. That’s likely how they got it.” Moss said no other fish besides white crappie were found dead in the area of the fish kill, which occurred in the upper section of Lake Tuscaloosa.
Last week’s fish kill was the second on Lake Tuscaloosa in 10 years.

06 05
Fish kill perplexes officials (US)

State and local officials have yet to identify what has killed 250-plus fish in Springwood Lake Park.
“The fish kill is not over. They’re still dying,” Garringer said. “But I’m pretty sure that whatever it was is no longer flowing into the lake.” DNR and IDEM officials scoured the lake throughout the day, trying to find the source of the contaminant, but to no avail.
The situation began around 8 p.m. Wednesday when a park employee saw a white film on top of the water at the lake’s south end. He also noticed a number of dead fish. The stench was strong and the water foul as workers began cleaning up dead fish and examining the lake and bank for signs of the source. Garringer said the toxin killed mostly smaller fish, such as crappie, bluegill and catfish. He said he toured the lake by canoe and saw several largemouth bass and carp along with snakes, turtles and bullfrogs.

07 05
Fish kill on east coast (Barbados)

Officials of the Coastal Zone Management unit and the Fisheries Division were today trying to determine what caused a massive fish kill along this country’s east coast.
There has been some speculation about the cause of the fish kill but until the scientists make a determination it will remain a mystery.

07 05
Arctic Seal Captured In Fort Lauderdale Canal (Arctic-US)

A bearded Arctic seal was finally captured Monday after eluding experts not only in South Florida but along the Treasure Coast. The seal, which experts say is dehydrated but doing well, turned up in a canal near U.S. 1 around Andrews Avenue.
Wildlife experts are baffled as to how an animal that usually lives in the ice of Greenland and Canada ended up this far south.
The 6-foot, 300-pound mammal will be taken to SeaWorld in Orlando to assess its condition and scientists are hoping to study it to find out what would cause it to drift so far from home.

08 05
Mysterious mass fish deaths in Sakarya River (Turkey)

Fish in the Sakarya River of Turkey’s Marmara region are dying en masse from an as-yet-undetermined cause
The Sakarya Forestry and Environment Directorate has launched an investigation and taken samples from the water and the dead fish

08 05
Mystery Illness Kills China Pigs

An unidentified animal illness has spread in two southern Chinese cities, infecting at least 1,300 pigs and killing more than 300, according to reports in Hong Kong newspapers. No human infections have been reported. The illness started killing pigs in Yunfu city in southern Guangdong province in early April, eventually claiming the lives of more than 300 of the animals, the Ming Pao Daily News reported Monday, citing government statistics.

09 05
Fish deaths in Dunkirk Harbor leave officials looking for cause (US)

The [New York] state Department of Environmental Conservation isn’t sure what has left a large number of dead fish in Dunkirk Harbor. Hundreds, if not thousands, of gizzard shad – 12 inch [30cm] long fish that feed on small invertebrates and phytoplankton and are in turn eaten by larger sport fish – have been found dead or dying in the harbor over the past several weeks.
There are a number of possibilities, Einhouse said, but the 2 main suspects are a virus or stress brought on by a long winter. It’s possible the die-off might be related to the emergence of viral hemorrhagic septicemia [VHS] in New York waters, he said. Although the virus has no impact on humans, VHS has been blamed for other fish kills across the Great Lakes. Einhouse said the stress of a long winter also may have weakened the fish enough to cause the die-off.

17 05
Wrong-way whales draw a crowd (US)

Two lost humpback whales continued their four-day odyssey up a busy delta river channel Wednesday as hundreds looked on with amusement and concern. The mother and calf apparently suffered wounds inflicted by a boat propeller, scientists said at a packed news conference. They said the injuries occurred after the pair entered the Sacramento River Delta on Sunday and do not explain why the whales veered into inland waters.
Humpback whales traditionally migrate twice a year between feeding grounds in colder waters off Washington state, Oregon and Canada and the warmer breeding waters off Central America and Mexico. The mother and calf were apparently headed north when their navigation went amiss.

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Posted: Jan 2 2008, 05:12 AM
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12 06
Extreme hot weather taking its toll on birds (India)

More than 120 peacocks have died in Tughlakabad Fort and Surajkund areas here because of the intense heat and severe water shortage. Some 400 peacocks have died of intense heat conditions in Morena area of Madhya Pradesh; about 200 have died in Haryana and Punjab alone.
Those living in extreme summer conditions have faced one of the worst natural devastations. It’s not only peafowl that is on the verge of extinction, various species of birds like munias, starlings, francolins, parakeets etc. that once were familiar to Indian homes, trees and gardens, suddenly seem to have disappeared into oblivion
While the mass-extinction of birds could be attributed to various reasons, some experts suggest that of global warming has to a large extent contributed to their disappearance. It is said that the very food cycle of birds has changed, as birds are not able to feed themselves. Insects, larvae etc. are not getting conditioned due to climatic changes. Dr Kaul says: “There has been a lot of land use changes in recent times. Birds, who we were extremely familiar to us in early days, have disappeared. Farm birds are feeding on seeds that are laced with pesticide. They eat them and no longer see the day. All this can be prevented of course. We may be killing the birds, not high temperature.”

23 06
Klamath Fish Kill Alert Level Raised To Yellow (US)

As Klamath River temperatures rise and the region’s below average snow pack continues to recede, the Klamath River’s salmon are again in trouble. These conditions, coupled with increased observation of disease, mortality, and average run size predictions have prompted the Klamath Fish Health Assessment Team (KFHAT) to increase its fish kill readiness alert level to yellow
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service monitors disease infection rates in Klamath River juvenile Chinook salmon. Although it is impossible to predict the fate of a diseased fish, preliminary findings for May and early June show that up to seventy percent of sampled Chinook juveniles near Iron Gate Dam are infected with disease. These studies have occasionally identified even higher infection rates since they began four years ago.

25 06
Distemper kills Danish seal pups (Denmark)

An outbreak of distemper has killed at least 41 seal pups, whose carcasses have washed up on a Danish island. The Danish Forest and Nature Agency is investigating the scale of the outbreak among harbour seals off Anholt island, between Denmark and Sweden.
A distemper outbreak in 2002 killed about 30% of seals off Denmark, but the virus killed nearly 60% of seals in the area in 1988, the agency says.
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26 06
Hundreds Of Animals Found Dead (US)

A deadly substance is killing frogs, fish and birds and other wildlife in Northeast Philadelphia, NBC10's Monique Braxton reported Tuesday. Residents first noticed the dead animals Monday in Paul's Run Creek, a tributary into Pennypack Creek, near Bustleton Avenue and Norwalk Road. Environmental experts and scientists are investigating. Philadelphia and state environmental officers spent Tuesday testing water near homes and businesses. The officers said it could take days to determine what is causing the kill. One officer said he has never seen anything like it. Area residents are concerned.
Environmental experts agree that something bad is killing the wildlife, but they aren't sure what it is. The deadly substance, officers said, has no color, a slight petroleum smell and an oily sheen. On Monday, pool cleaners noticed foggy water and then floating wildlife.
One Northeast resident said she had to keep her sliding door closed because the gas smell was so bad.

27 06
Seabirds mysteriously end up dead on beach - UPDATE (US)

Greater shearwaters, by the hundreds, are being found. And no one really knows why. Hundreds of dead and dying seabirds are washing up on Florida’s Atlantic coastline and wildlife experts say the cause is a mystery. But they do know this: The die-off is far larger than in past years. The birds, called greater shearwaters, spend most of their lives over the open ocean, coming ashore only to nest, said Tara Dodson, habitat conservation coordinator for St. Johns County.
The commission is running tests on the birds to find out why they are dying. All that’s known is the birds appear to be emaciated, causing speculation that stress from strong winds or an Atlantic storm could have disrupted feeding patterns, Hill said.

29 06
Dead fish alert in markets (Bahrain)

INSPECTION campaigns at fish markets across Bahrain were stepped up yesterday to ensure consumers are not duped into buying dead fish that washed up on the shores of Sitra and Sanad this week.Samples of thousands of fish from these shores are being tested by the Public Commission for the Protection of Marine Resources, Environment and Wildlife and a report on the problem will be ready by next week.

Officials say that fish deaths were a natural phenomenon in summer due to the high temperature. However, environmentalists and fishermen claim that pollution was the main cause.

29 06
Low oxygen levels blamed in an Annapolis creek fish kill (US)

More than 15,000 fish were killed when the oxygen levels in an Annapolis creek dipped too low. Toxins released from decomposing algae likely caused the dangerously low oxygen levels in Weems Creek, Maryland Department of the Environment spokesman Robert Ballinger said. "Over the years, scientists have not been able to identify a bacteria or disease causing these kills, so I think it has to be a sudden low-oxygen event," Severn Riverkeeper Fred Kelly said of Thursday's fish kill.

This post has been edited by Blue Eyed on Jan 2 2008, 05:13 AM

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Posted: Jan 2 2008, 05:40 AM
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01 07
More dead birds discovered floating in Bahamian waters

An alarming number of dead birds are being discovered floating along the shores of the northern Bahamas causing concern among some residents in the Grand Bahama community. A week after the first incident was reported, accounts of dead birds floating in Bahamian waters are still filing in.
The boaters estimated that they had seen somewhere between 50 to 100 dead birds on their trip. The birds were described as having brown wings, white chests and hooked beaks.
At this point, the reason for the mass deaths of the birds remains unknown. Residents are concerned that the biggest threat is not knowing what the possible health hazards may be, resulting in the spread of misinformation. Water temperatures had dropped to about 59 degrees because of upwelling – when colder water is pushed up to the surface by strong winds. With the hot weather, the water temperatures have shot up drastically since Sunday
The rays are usually found in tropical areas and coral reefs, as well as the Sea of Cortez and through Baja, and occasionally in San Diego, the highest point of their range.

03 07
Dying sea birds showing up on Hilton Head Island shore (US)

State and federal wildlife officials are investigating the deaths of hundreds of sea birds turning up on the coasts of South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. Wildlife biologists say more than 1,000 shear-waters -- large, gull-like water birds that spend most of their lives far offshore until they nest -- have been found dead over the past two weeks on Southeastern beaches. Since last week, more than 160 of the dead birds have been found in South Carolina, including at least 22 on Hilton Head Island. Officials remain uncertain about what's causing the mass casualties, but they say most of the birds recovered appear to have died of dehydration and malnutrition during migration.
"For some reason, these birds are dying, and most think it's due to starvation," he said. "Whatever the reason, this appears to be pretty significant; we just don't know how significant yet." Preliminary findings in Georgia and Florida indicate no pathogen or disease -- including West Nile virus or avian influenza -- is involved in the deaths, biologists said.
"The only common factor is that most of the birds are emaciated and pretty much wasted," said Dr. Al Segars, a S.C. Department of Natural Resources veterinarian who's helping coordinate efforts here to collect carcasses. "Sometimes," he said, "they just run out of gas."
A similar die-off was reported in 2005, when dead birds washed up on beaches from Florida to Virginia. "It's not uncommon for some of these birds to die off during migration, but the numbers here are significant enough to cause alarm with natural-resources people internationally,"

04 07
Zambezi fish disease mystery cracked - update from 2006 (Africa)

Scientists have identified the mystery disease that killed fish in parts of the Zambezi River last year. Researchers have identified the disease as Epizootic Ulcerative Syndrome (EUS), caused by a fungal pathogen. Infected fish develop large sores and die from secondary infections. The researchers say this is the first known outbreak of the disease in Africa. But they still don't know how the pathogen got into the Zambezi, which flows through eight southern African countries.

06 07
Where have all the bees gone? Blame people, not cellphones (US)

The scientists: Jeffery Pettis, research leader of the USDA’s honeybee lab, told us the current collapse is one of the worst ever. Eric Mussen, of the Honey Bee Research Facility at the University of California-Davis, maintained it may only be cyclical. Wayne Esaias, of the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, an amateur beekeeper, outlined his compelling views about the impact of climate change on bees. John McDonald, a biologist, beekeeper and gentleman farmer in rural Pennsylvania, reminded us, if at times sardonically, of the poetry in agriculture.

08 07
Kawartha carp die-off spreading (Canada)

FINDING a few dead fish in spring is the norm for any lake. Red flags were raised in early June, though, when Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR) survey crews counted more than 2,000 dead carp in Lake Scugog, part of the Kawartha Lakes northeast of Toronto. At our press deadline, reports of more dead carp were coming in from Sturgeon, Cameron, Pigeon, and Little Bald Lakes.
Preliminary testing of dead carp by the University of Guelph has, however, found columnaris disease, caused by Flavobacterium columnare. It's prevalent around the world, says MNR spokesman Barry Radford, but is not a threat to humans

11 07
Bus-Sized Squid Washes Up on Beach (Australia)

A squid as long as a bus and weighing 550 pounds washed up on an Australian beach, officials said Wednesday.

13 07
Melting Ice Drives Polar Bear Mothers to Land (Arctic)

Melting sea ice is driving mother polar bears onto dry land to give birth in northern Alaska, US Geological Survey scientists reported on Thursday. They found that just 37 percent of polar bear dens were built on sea ice between 1998 and 2004, compared to 62 percent between 1985 and 1994
They said the edge of the sea ice remains as far as 125 miles (200 km) offshore in late September and early October. Only a decade ago, the water was frozen almost to the shore by that time, they reported in the journal Polar Biology.

14 07
Scientists study thousands of dead fish in eastern Lake Ontario (Canada)

Environmental scientists are trying to determine what killed thousands of fish that washed up on Lake Ontario's eastern shore this month.
In June, scientists collected large numbers of dead round gobies and some dead muskies in the Thousand Islands area. Testing confirmed a virus known as viral hemorrhagic septicemia, or VHS, in several fish species from Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River.

16 07
White bass dying in Waurika (US)

Officials with the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation have received reports of a number of dead white bass at Waurika Lake, and though recent heavy rains and lake conditions have limited research opportunities, biologists are working to understand just what killed the fish.
“Based on the signs and the fact that only white bass seem to have been killed, we can rule out pollution. Similar fish kills have affected other state lakes in the past, such as Tenkiller, Texoma, Foss, Altus-Lugert and Ft. Cobb, and lakes have been affected in Kansas and South Dakota” Cofer said. “In these cases, the condition has run its course and not returned. Thankfully, Waurika has abundant populations of white bass, and though we are concerned and unsure of exactly how many white bass were killed at this point, the number doesn’t appear to be significant in terms of the total number of white bass in the lake. In the fall, we’ll survey the fish populations and will have a little better idea of exactly how much the lake has been affected.”

18 07
'Disastrous' season for seabirds (UK)

Scotland's seabirds are having a "disastrous" breeding season, according to RSPB Scotland. It said mid-season reports had found cliffs, where there should be thousands of birds, almost empty. Parts of Shetland, Orkney and Cape Wrath in the Highlands were among the worst affected. RSPB Scotland said climate change appeared to be disrupting food supply, but added that more research would need to be done

19 07
Squirrels Cause Alarm In Oak Lawn (in May) (US)

Dozens of fish were found floating in the lake in late May. More unusual was a series of reports about dead squirrels around the lake, animal control officer Elisabeth Perry said
Lab results should indicate whether toxins played a role in the squirrel's death. Concerns likely will be allayed if no contaminants are found.
The birds look pretty healthy," said Perry, who is taking residents' concerns seriously but proceeding with caution.
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20 07
Fish kill discovered in Neuse River (US)

More than 6,000 fish were found dead Friday in the Neuse River at Carolina Pines. The Neuse River Rapid Response Team investigated the kill, which extended nearly a mile. The dead fish included multiple species such as spot, croaker, menhaden, silver perch, trout, flounder and needlefish.
The fish kill appears to coincide directly with the drop a dissolved oxygen, and rise in salinity at the surface. Response Team staff members were able to observe this drop in dissolved oxygen levels in the area using data monitors at channel marker 11.

21 07
Fish kill discovered in Co. Louth (UK)

There has been a fish kill on the Castletown River near Dundalk in Co. Louth. It is believed the source of the kill originated 20 miles away near Newtownhamilton in south Armagh. 2) The extent of the kill and the amount of contamination in the river is not yet known, due to the high level of water from recent heavy rainfall. Brown and Sea trout have been seen floating in the river.

21 07
Mystery Of Dead Ducks May Be Solved (US)

The mystery of the dead ducks in Sanford might finally be solved. More than 70 ducks turned up dead at Lake Monroe over the past month. After conducting several tests, experts from the National Wildlife health Center in Wisconsin said most of the deaths appeared to have been caused by botulism.
Liver damage was also found in some of the ducks which suggested an algae-related toxin might have contributed to those deaths. Officials are still awaiting test results on those ducks.

23 07
California's attack of the jumbo squid (US)

Ferocious, pack-feeding jumbo squid have invaded waters off California's central coast and are devouring local fish populations. Researchers say global warming and overfishing are likely to blame. Humboldt or jumbo squid (Dosidicus gigas) first appeared off Monterey, California during an El Niño event which warmed waters in 1997. Since 2002 they have taken up permanent residence. The findings offer a striking look at how multiple human-induced environmental changes are affecting ocean ecosystems
Robison says overfishing of tuna in the tropics has caused squid populations to rise. This occurs because tuna feed on the same smaller fish that squid eat, and also prey on young squid, keeping the population in check.
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23 07
Cold finishes off barra (Australia),00.html

IT'S enough to make any barramundi fanatic reach for a hanky. Thousands of dead tropical fish – some more than a metre long – floating to the surface of Lake Moondarra, Mount Isa's main water supply. Authorities are blaming Queensland's big chill on the mass fish deaths, which have local anglers fearing the worst. George Fortune, president of the Mount Isa Fish Stocking Group, said about 2000 fish had died in July. "It's been unusually cold for unusually long, and they just can't tolerate the low temperatures for any length of time," Mr Fortune said. "The barramundi come into the shallow parts of the dam to try to get warm, but they get caught up in the shallows, dying of the cold weather."

23 07
Thousands of Seabirds Found Dead in Southeastern U.S

Craig Watson is a wildlife biologist with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. In the last week of June, reports started coming in to him from the east coast of Florida. “There was an e-mail that circulated around about folks starting to find dead seabirds, and these were mostly greater shearwaters,” Watson recalls. He says he put out an alert to his contacts along the southeastern coast. By his count, just over 2,000 dead birds have been found. It’s impossible to say how many shearwaters in all have actually died, because winds and currents would push only some fraction of the birds to shore. The shearwaters have been tested for avian flu, toxic algae and other contaminants, but Watson says that so far, they have come up clean. From all appearances, the birds are starving to death. But no one can say exactly why.

24 07
Thousands of dead fish collected from P.E.I. (Prince Edward Island) rivers (Canada)’

More than 1,000 dead fish have been cleaned out of the Tryon River, and officials are still counting the fish cleaned out of a larger kill on the Dunk River near Freetown
Provincial Fish and wildlife officers said it’s still too soon to say exactly what happened, but say it’s similar to past fish kills caused by heavy rain and run off from farm pesticides
P.E.I. rivers suffered from a number of fish kills from 2002 to 2004, but following changes to farming rules around streams and rivers, there were no major kills in 2005 and 2006.
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Some of the fish recovered from the Dunk River were quite large.(Rob LeClair/CBC)

25 07
Mass fish kill in Maine drives off golfers, but lobstermen delight (US)

The stench from piles of dead herring stretching hundreds of yards along the shore of Sanford Cove has forced residents of this coastal community to shut their homes tight. The fish started washing ashore a week ago, and the Maine Marine Patrol is investigating the cause of the mass fish death.

25 07
Heat causes big fish kill near Kalispell (US)

Thousands of dead fish are floating on Rogers Lake, west of Kalispell, and are washing up on its shores.
The shallow lake is the state's primary breeding ground for the arctic grayling. Biologists collect the eggs, raise the fry and distribute grayling to other waters around the state. But Schiess thinks it might be time to reconsider that plan. Arctic grayling are a cold-water fish, and this summer's relentless heat is warming the lake and killing the fish.

26 07
Little Clifty Creek fish kill remains a mystery (US)

The fish kill on Little Clifty Creek in western Pulaski County is still a mystery. “At this point, we don’t know (for sure) what caused it,” said Mike Hardin, chief of the Environmental Section, Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources. “The oxygen level was fine … it (oxygen) was not suppressed enough to kill fish.” John Williams, district biologist for the Southeastern Fisheries District, checked the creek on July 12, the same day a reporter called to report the incident. Williams said he is looking at the possibility that manure may have washed into the creek causing the fish kill
Hardin said Williams tested the oxygen level in the creek that day and it was 6.85. “Anything below 4 will kill fish,” Hardin noted. He said there have been natural fish kills this summer due to the drought
Williams said he found at least 500 dead fish in various stages of decomposition at five spots along the creek bordering Bethlehem and Valley roads. “And there may have been many more,” he added.
Robert Hudson, who currently lives on Country Lane about a mile above Little Clifty, said he has walked three or four miles along the creek bank and there were dead fish “stacked up” all along the area where he walked. Worse than that, Hudson said, he observed a doe drinking out of the creek at a bridge near Camp Dove. Hudson said he saw the doe again about 150 feet across the road and the animal appeared very sick. “The doe was vomiting … it was skin and bones … that deer was dying,” said Hudson. The water in the creek had a red tinge, according to Hudson. “It looked like rust … if it were more than four inches deep, you couldn’t see the bottom.”

28 07
Sightings of mysterious giant bird continue in San Antonio (US)

Strange sightings of a huge flying creature have been reported as recently as six months ago. Is it a monster or myth?
“What’s interesting is that the reports of these giant, raptor-like birds do continue into modern times,” said Gerhard, a cryptozoologist. Cryptozoology is the study of and search for legendary animals to prove their existence. He says there’s solid evidence something is overhead.
“Eyewitness testimony is very unreliable. And so it’s hard for a person to tell — even experts to tell — ‘Is that thing I’m seeing out there, is it small and nearby? Or is it huge and farther away?’ “ Radford said. But in one sighting in San Antonio, three people gave similar accounts, witnessing the same fly-by of a huge, winged creature. A trio of South Side teachers elatine a deserted road had their cars “buzzed” by the monsters, and it made the papers in February 1976

29 07
Scientists Excited By Indonesian-Caught Coelacanth

Two months ago Indonesian fisherman Justinus Lahama caught a fish so exceptional that an international team of scientists rushed here to investigate. French experts equipped with sonar and GPS asked Lahama to reconstruct, in his dugout canoe, exactly what it was he did that enabled him to catch a rare coelacanth fish, an awkward-swimming species among the world's oldest. Last May 19, Lahama and his son Delvy manoevred their frail canoe into the Malalayang river, on the outskirts of Manado, on northern Sulawesi island. Like any other morning, they rowed out to sea and fished within 200 metres (yards) of the beach
Coelacanths, closely related to lungfish, usually live at depths of 200-1,000 metres (656-3,200 feet). They can grow up to two metres (6.5 feet) in length and weigh as much as 91 kilogrammes (200 pounds).
Lahama's catch, 1.3 metres long and weighing 50 kilograms (110 pounds) was only the second ever captured alive in Asia. The first was caught in 1998, also off Manado. That catch astonished ichtyologists, who until then had been convinced that the last coelacanths were found only off eastern Africa, mainly in the Commoros archipelago. They had been thought to have died out around the time dinosaurs became extinct, until one was found there in 1938
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03 08
Thousands of Dead Fish Found (US)

More than 5,000 dead fish were discovered last week below the Pensacola Dam on Grand Lake. The dead fish were mostly white bass, but included paddlefish, blue and channel catfish and shad, said Barry Bolton, chief of fisheries for the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife Conservation. That fish kill was the result of low dissolved oxygen, a problem that sometimes will occur at this time of year in tailwaters, Bolton said.
The dead fish are predominantly large gizzard shad. Skylar McElhaney, public information officer for the state Department of Environmental Quality, said shad are very sensitive and changing water temperatures might be to blame. Alberty said the most recent fish kill is considered to be a “minor thing.”

05 08
Azov Sea beaches closed due to dead fish (Russia)

Thousands of dead fish washed-up on the shore have forced authorities to close beaches in the Sea of Azov. A heat wave is said to be the cause of the incident
Biologists suggest high water temperatures may be to blame. It causes seaweed to die, which reduces the amount of oxygen in the water,causing the fish to suffocate

08 08
3 Taal Lake villages lose P2.1M in fish kill (Indonesia)

At least 31 metric tons of tilapia were lost to a fish kill in Taal Lake, the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources–Inland Fisheries Research Station (BFAR-IFRS) reported on Wednesday.
Leah Villanueva, BFAR-IFRS center chief, however, said in a phone interview that the latest fish kill was not massive compared to the previous ones, noting that the lake towns lost 3,700 MT of tilapia in 2005 and 1,700 MT in 2000. She said the fish kills in the lake were usually common during the rainy months with local operators already prepared to handle the situation.
She noted that the level of hydrogen sulphur in their 12 monitoring stations in Agoncillo, Laurel and Talisay towns was recorded as critical and believed that the toxic gas emissions may have depleted the lake’s oxygen, thus, causing the fish kill.
BFAR officials, however, admitted that improper aquaculture practices in the lake such as intensive feeding and overstocking of tilapia fry in fish cages were the primary precursors of latest fish kill
The BFAR-IFRS was also studying whether the fish died of suffocation following a sulphur upwelling from the bottom of the volcanic lake.

11 08
Several Birds Found Dead Near Argyle Lake (US)

More than a dozen dead birds have been found in a suburban lake within the last three weeks, and officials suspect a paralyzing bird disease that can stem from rotting bread or intense heat. Babylon Village officials said they had never seen so many dead waterfowl in such a short time at Argyle Lake, a popular spot that has at times been stocked with trout for fishing, according to state Department of Environmental Conservation records. The birds included mallard ducks, Canada geese and a swan. Officials reported finding 15 dead birds in the last two weeks. Visitors have reported seeing as many as four dead or dying birds a day, sometimes staggering around or gasping for air, officials said. Those can be symptoms of avian botulism, which can result when birds eat a toxin produced from bacteria found in decaying fish, other dead animals or old bread. Intense heat and lowered water levels also can increase bacteria, potentially causing the disease, Mayor Ralph Scordino said
The DEC is awaiting results of tests on a duck found at the lake, spokeswoman Aphrodite Montalvo said.

Update 06 09:
State Department of Environmental Conservation tests recently confirmed that the cause was avian botulism, as authorities had suspected -

13 08
Thousands of Dead Fish at Lake Erie (US)

Parts of Lake Erie look like a sea of silver. Thousands of dead fish are washing up on shore – creating an unbelievable stench. The lake is coated with dead sheep head. Thousands and thousands of dead fish are piling up on shore
The Ohio Department of Natural Resources says all of this is natural. The recent flood plus cooler temperatures at night cause the cool water to sink and warm water to rise. “That’s led to somewhat of a flip in the lake, and oxygen levels have changed, Certain fish are able to handle that better than others,” said Scott D

13 08
Mystery still surrounds fish kill near Esperance - in july (Australia)

The Department of Water says it does not yet know what caused thousands of fish deaths near Esperance, in southern Western Australia, last month. The department took samples of water and fish after the bodies were discovered at Stokes Inlet, 70 kilometres west of Esperance, on August 13.

13 08
Fisk kill claims multiple species, Riverkeeper reports 2-mile area of creek (US)

A fish kill involving multiple species near the Cotton Patch Landing area of Blounts Creek likely may have been caused, at least in part, by low levels of dissolved oxygen in the water, according to an official with the Pamlico-Tar River Foundation.
Jacobs estimated she saw 50,000 to 100,000 dead menhaden, ranging in size from 2 inches long to 6 inches long. Aside from menhaden, most of the other dead species — and the largest of the dead fish — were found farther up Blounts Creek near Herring Run, Jacobs reported.
Jacobs, in her e-mail to the Daily News, said dissolved oxygen levels at the lower end of the fish kill were less than 2 milligrams per liter at the water’s surface and under 0.5 milligrams per liter at the bottom of the creek. Jacobs also reported that some of the dead menhaden had sores. On May 29, the Pamlico-Tar River Rapid Response Team investigated a fish kill at Crystal Beach on the Pamlico River. The team discovered more than 30 decomposed mullet, bream and striped bass near the mouth of Nevil Creek and the Crystal Beach campground. The team determined the fish died as the result of some aspect of recreational fishing

18 08
Monster Jellyfish Invade Gulf of Mexico (US)

Australian jellyfish that invaded the Gulf of Mexico seven years ago have made a "vigorous reappearance" this summer and threaten to devour native fish, scientists announced Friday. And in the Gulf, with plenty to eat, they grow to monster size.
The Australian spotted jellyfish, Phyllorhiza punctata, are not dangerous to humans. But scientists say the invasion could pose a threat to the fishing and shrimping industries. The jellies foul trawling nets and eat eggs and larvae of other fish. The invasive jellyfish have been found in the Gulf since 2000 but in small numbers. This year, there are more of them, and their range has extended up to the Mid-Atlantic states.

18 08
Hundreds of Saudi camels die from mystery ailment (Saudi Arabia)

Hundreds of camels have died in Saudi Arabia this week from a mystery ailment. The Agriculture Ministry has said 232 camels died in the space of four days in the Dawasir Valley, 400 km (250 miles) south of Riyadh. King Abdullah has promised compensation for owners, who say the real number of deaths is far higher. Agriculture ministry officials have denied an infectious disease caused the deaths and blamed them on animal feed supplied by food storage authorities

24 08
Information on Dead Seals in 2007: Status Report No. 8 - Update on the current seal epidemic (24 August 2007) (Scandinavia)

Up to the 22nd of August more than 90 seals have died along the Swedish west coast up to the Tanum Municipality. The ultimate cause of death was pneumonia in all cases. We get daily reports of single cases in the entire area, which means that the disease is still present in Swedish waters all the way from southern Kattegat and northwards
The tested samples were proved negative for PDV, which means that PDV is not the likely infective agent causing the current seal epidemic
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31 08
Dead fish reported on some Florida beaches (US)

There were reports Tuesday of dead fish at St. George Island, Bald Point, Alligator Point and St. Teresa. Florida wildlife officials said they were collecting water samples from the areas to determine whether red tide was to blame. However, officials told the Democrat they were not sure whether the fish died elsewhere and were carried by currents into the various regions

31 08
Giant web sets minds a-spinning in Texas (US)

Most spiders are solitary creatures. So the discovery of a vast web crawling with millions of spiders that is spreading across several acres of a North Texas park is causing a stir among scientists, and park visitors. Sheets of web have encased several mature oak trees and are thick enough in places to block out the sun along a nature trail at Lake Tawakoni State Park, near this town about 50 miles east of Dallas.
Allen Dean, a spider expert at Texas A&M University, has seen a lot of webs, but even he described this one as "rather spooky, kind of like Halloween." Dean and several other scientists said they had never seen a web of this size outside of the tropics, where the relatively few species of "social" spiders that build communal webs are most active.
Record-breaking rains that flooded Texas earlier this summer inspired outbreaks of crickets and "webworms," the caterpillar larvae of the white moth. The rains might have something to do with the web too, said Mike Quinn, the state biologist who distributed the online photos, and who runs a Web site about Texas invertebrates. "You'd have to get a lot of spiders together and feed them a whole lot of food to make a web that big," he said. Whatever caused it, the sight of the vast web has inspired both awe and revulsion.
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Posted: Jan 2 2008, 06:28 AM
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04 09
Exotic wasp spider that bites swarming across England (UK)

For decades, only the gardens of the South Coast were warm enough for them. But after years of mild winters, one of Britain's most colourful and striking spiders is on the march. The population of the wasp spider has exploded and is spreading rapidly north.
Originally from the Mediterranean, they were discovered in England in 1922 where the climate was just warm enough for them to survive. For decades they clung to the sunnier South Coast but in recent years have been seen as far north as Cambridge.
Hertfordshire's biological records centre has had four sightings of females in the last year. Climate has been linked to the spread of a number alien species across Britain in recent years.

06 09
Rare sight: Manta rays spotted off the coast (US)

An unusual sighting occurred on the coast this week when three large manta rays were spotted about eight miles off Dana Point
When Rachael Calkins, marine biologist for the Ocean Institute, first heard of the sighting, her reaction was "how bizarre is that?" The last official sighting she had heard about in the area was during El Nino. Calkins speculated that the manta rays came here because of the quick change in water temperatures this past week
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MANTA RAY: This manta tay spotted off Dana Point, eight miles off the coast, a very rare sighting. Biologists are shocked, and have their theories. This could mean other subtropical fish are on their way.

06 09
Virus Is Latest Suspect in Bee Die-Off (US)

The “Israeli acute paralysis virus” has become the latest in a growing lineup of possible culprits responsible for the disappearance of 90 percent of the wild honeybee population in the United States.
The first reports of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD)—when a beehive’s population suddenly disappears, abandoning the hive, queen, and eggs—surfaced in 2004.
By June of 2007 the USDA was calling it “the biggest general threat to our food supply.” For the last three years scientists have scrambled to account for the honeybee’s enigmatic absence, putting forth theories implicating pesticides, fungi, parasites, cell phones and genetically modified crops.

Now researchers have found a new suspect, the Israeli acute paralysis virus. Thought to have come from Australia in 2004, the virus has thus far been detected in nearly all the decimated colonies tested. Although scientists are being careful not to make any broad claims about their findings, the developments are considered a definite step forward in tackling this far-reaching problem

14 09
Investigation into summer carp deaths continues (UK)

THE Environment Agency is continuing its investigations into the unusually high number of carp mortalities being reported for this time of the year. “Overall, we have seen fewer carp mortalities in 2007 than in previous years.
However, an unusually high number in August and September have been investigated by the Environment Agency’s Fish Health, Ageing and Species Team based at Brampton,” explained Environment Agency Fisheries Advisor Nigel Hewlett.
“We have seen large carp dying in a number of waters in the Midlands and Thames regions. As well as investigating individual cases, we are gathering information that allows us to look for common causes. However, our investigations have so far revealed a number of possible factors, either acting alone or in combination. We have not detected a single common cause.”
Some of the possible causes are: Notifiable disease, Flooding, Algae, Poor fisheries management.

14 09
Zambia warns against fish killed by mysterious disease (Africa)

Zambia’s government on Friday warned citizens against eating fish killed by a mysterious disease after hundreds of them were found dead on River Zambezi in western part of the country. Agriculture Minister Ben Kapita told AFP that government has appointed a team of experts to investigate the outbreak of the disease that has killed several hundreds of sore-covered fish in the river in recent weeks
A mysterious disease, which infected fish in parts of the Zambezi River in nearby Namibia, also broke out last December, forcing the government to impose a two-month ban on fishing to safeguard the public

15 09
Red River catfish kill still being studied (US)

An estimated 1,600 catfish died in the Grand Forks area. Officials were first notified by a fishing guide who spotted dead fish last weekend. The Red River forms the border between Minnesota and North Dakota, and wildlife officials from both states are investigating.

22 09
Thousands fish found dead along Gujarat coast (India)

Thousands of fish have been found dead along the coast in Gujarat State. Initial investigation suggests an oil spill as the possible cause.
Officials, who conducted a probe, said the dead fish were sticky, which suggested they had been covered by oil and chemicals. “Fish in large number have been found dead. It seems some poisonous substance in the water might have led to it. It could also be due to some chemicals mixed with sea water,” said S. Ansari, conservator of forest in south Gujarat.
The dead fish have been sent to laboratory to arrive at the exact cause of their death.

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Posted: Jan 2 2008, 06:49 AM
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01 10
Endangered turtles wash ashore Malaysia after Indonesia earthquakes

About 50 endangered sea turtles have washed ashore with logs and debris in Malaysia, possibly due to strong currents after recent earthquakes in Indonesia, an official said Monday. Two of the hawksbill turtles, which landed Saturday on muddy Kuala Tunjang beach in the northwestern state of Kedah, were found dead, while four others were injured and being treated, said state fisheries director Sani Mohamad Isa. The rest of the turtles have been released into the sea, Sani said. He said that the logs and bamboo washed ashore with the turtles were not found in Malaysia, and that plastic water bottles and shampoo containers in the debris had Indonesian labels.

01 10
West Nile deaths of pelicans studied (US)

U.S. scientists have linked the West Nile viral deaths of hundreds of pelican chicks in northeast Montana to an infestation of stable flies. Veterinary entomologist Greg Johnson of Montana State University began studying the deaths at the Medicine Lake National Wildlife Refuge after discovering a bird with blood on its neck and some flies feeding on the blood in late July

01 10
Yamuna death bed for thousands of fish (India)

Pollution in river Yamuna is taking its toll on the marine life. Thousands of fish have been found dead in the river near northern Agra. Over the past couple of days, people in the area have sighted dead fish floating in water, which is littered with garbage and sewage

03 10
Deer disease found in 15 counties; has spread to cattle (US)

West Virginia officials say an insect-borne virus that’s killed hundreds of deer has now spread to farm animals
In addition to West Virginia, EHD has been confirmed this year in Pennsylvania, Ohio, Kentucky, Virginia and Indiana.
The disease has been found in deer in 15 counties so far, and wildlife officials expect to find it in others. It can’t be transmitted to humans, though.

04 10
More dead fish, this time in Kuching

Hundreds of fish were found dead in the large man-make lake of the popular Malaysia-China Friendship Park at Jalan Song here.
Council public relations officer Winnie Lau said the fish could have died of suffocation due to the lack of oxygen in the murky water.
“The public have fed the fish with buttered bread and other foods, and this might have caused the water to become oily and murky, thereby cutting off the oxygen supply,” she said on Thursday.

11 10
Thousands of Wildebeest Perish in Kenya (Africa)

Some 15,000 wildebeest have drowned in the Mara river during their annual migration between Tanzania and Kenya, shocking tourists and baffling conservationists, officials said on Wednesday. The mass death of the animals was the first of its kind in recent memory, officials said
It was a strong tide that swept them away,” said Mara administrative official, Sarisa Nkadaru, adding that most wildebeest died when they were stepped on by others. Some officials blame the destruction of the nearby Mau forest for changing weather patterns and affecting tide levels, and they called on the government to curb the deforestation
“This incident happened while peak season is still on, but it has not affected it as there are more than 5 million wildebeest in the Mara-Serengeti eco-system,” Kokkai said.

12 10
Dead Fish Victims Of Red Tide (US)

Red tide first showed up in St. John’s County where a large fish kill was reported. State health officials believe red tide migrated south to Flagler County where it has stayed for almost a week.
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14 10
Row erupts over risk to polar bears (Arctic)

The global warming sceptic Bjorn Lomborg, has sparked fresh debate about the dangers of increasing temperatures with new claims that polar bears are not on the brink of collapse and are more threatened by hunting than by climate change. In a new book called Cool It, Lomborg says many of the predicted effects of climate change – from melting icecaps to drought and flood – are ‘vastly exaggerated and emotional claims that are simply not founded in data’. Based on this ‘hype’, international leaders are spending too much time and money trying to cut carbon dioxide and the other greenhouse gas emissions blamed for global warming, rather than spending cash on policies that would help humans and the environment more effectively – such as stopping the hunting of polar bears, he argues

His book comes at a highly charged time for the climate change debate. Last week a British High Court judge, Mr Justice Barton, ruled that Al Gore’s Oscar-winning film An Inconvenient Truth was guilty of ‘alarmism and exaggeration’ in making several claims about the impacts of climate change, including the plight of polar bears.

Lomborg’s analysis has in turn been attacked by international polar bear experts saying that he has used out-of-date statistics to make his case and play down the plight of the world’s biggest carnivores

He claims that in this case many fears about polar bears being driven to extinction as global warming melts the ice floes they depend on to hunt and wean their cubs can be traced back to research published in 2001 by the Polar Bear Specialist Group of the World Conservation Union, the IUCN. It looked at 20 populations of polar bears in the Arctic, a total of about 25,000 bears. That report, says Lomborg, found only two bear populations that were in decline, and two were showing an increase in numbers. It said the declining populations were in areas where temperatures were getting colder, and the flourishing populations in areas where temperatures were rising

Other research referred to in the book shows that since the Sixties global polar bear numbers have increased from 5,000, says Lomborg.

Finally, Lomborg says even though it is ‘likely disappearing ice will make it harder for polar bears to continue their traditional foraging patterns’, many can turn to the lifestyles of brown bears, ‘from which they are evolved’.
‘They [polar bears] may eventually decline, though dramatic declines seem unlikely,’ he concludes

Dr Andrew Derocher, chairman of the IUCN Polar Bear Specialist Group, said Lomborg’s book was based on outdated statistics because the group had published an updated report in 2006, which showed that of 19 populations five were declining, five were stable and two were increasing; and for the remaining six there was not enough data to judge. Derocher said data from before the Eighties was considered ‘very questionable’, that hunting was considered a ‘minor concern in some populations’, and that the decision by the IUCN to classify polar bears as ‘vulnerable’ was based on the unanimous advice of his committee of 20 members from the five ‘polar bear nations’ in the Arctic, including the only previous dissenter, a scientist quoted by Lomborg in his book. Derocher, a professor in biological sciences at the University of Alberta in Canada, also criticised the idea that polar bears can adapt to the sort of life lived by the brown bear because they need to eat vast numbers of seals, which are also threatened by the changing ice. ‘The changes of sea ice are evident to local people living in the north,’ he said. ‘Over the last 25 years that I’ve worked in the Arctic the changes are astounding. Polar bears are adaptable, but there are limits to this

15 10
Thousands of earthworms in Taiwan vineyard trigger quake fears

Hundreds of thousands of earthworms appeared in a Taiwan vineyard, prompting the owner to consult an expert out of fear that a strong earthquake might be coming soon, a newspaper said on Monday. According to the China Times, the worms crawled out of the earth and covered the surface of Wu Ching-chuan's vineyard in Changhwa County, west Taiwan, Sunday morning. Wu, who bought the vineyard 40 years ago, said he has never seen so many earthworms in his vineyard before and estimated there were 200 to 300 kilograms of them.
Wu consulted a farm expert who said the earthworms crawled out because his vineyards were flooded when Typhoon Krosa hit Taiwan on October 5.
Wu's worry about an upcoming strong earthquake eased when it was pointed out that another vineyard near Hu's house has not been invaded by earthworms because it was not flooded during the typhoon's passage

17 10
Sickened Birds Recover, Fly Off In O.C. (US)

The illness that killed nearly three dozen sandpipers brought to the Huntington Beach Wetlands and Wildlife Care Center appears to have abated Tuesday, but its cause remains a mystery, officials said
Officials hoped tests will be back from the Wildlife Health Center by that time so that the cause of the illness, suspected to be avian botulism, can be confirmed, McGuire said. The lab is testing for avian botulism and avian influenza, although preliminary tests did not pinpoint any bacteria and virus, and there were no obvious signs on the bodies of the dead birds to indicate any specific illness, McGuire said.

18 10
Cold may be behind large die-off of fish in Sloan's Lake (US),00.html

A large fish die-off at Sloan's Lake may be linked to cold weather killing algae, which leads to oxygen being absorbed from the water, authorities said Wednesday. While scores of dead fish were bobbing in the west Denver lake, catfish, crappie, coy, bluegill and perch were gasping on the lake's southwestern shore where an inlet from Edgewater releases fresh, oxygenated water. Such die-offs are natural seasonal events when abundant algae killed by a cold snap decompose and drift to the bottom of the shallow lake, absorbing oxygen, officials from Denver's Department of Environmental Health said. Samples from the lake are being tested, but so far officials don't believe the water was contaminated by a toxin, said Ellen Dumm, the city's environmental health communications director. It's a sizable die-off," Dumm said

22 10
Environment Agency investigates second major fish kill in a week (UK)

Officers from the Environment Agency are investigating a pollution incident involving the death of more than one hundred fish in the Ginge Brook in Drayton, Oxfordshire.
This is the second major fish kill in Oxfordshire which officers from the Environment Agency have investigated in the past week. A hundred fish including brown trout and bullhead – which are both protected species under European legislation – were killed in a separate pollution incident on the Shill Brook in Carterton last week. Officers are now investigating the causes of both incidents, which are not linked.
We believe that some of the chemicals have entered the Ginge brook. The Health Protection Agency has been notified. Should any members of the public have concerns for their health, they should contact their local environmental health department.

25 10
Mystery bee-killing disease returns to Florida (US)

Unexplained honeybee deaths have recently started showing up in Florida, the same state where the mysterious Colony Collapse Disorder was first discovered a year ago, the Agriculture Department’s top bee scientist said Thursday. Jeffrey Pettis, research leader of the department’s Bee Research Laboratory in Beltsville, Md., said it is too early to say if another round of bee die-offs has started

26 10
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Additional pathology tests have ruled out 2 deadly fish viruses -- viral hemorrhagic septicemia (VHS) and channel catfish virus [CCV] -- as causes of a die-off that killed thousands of catfish in early September [2007] along the Red River south of Grand Forks.

Instead, the tests confirm the initial diagnosis that 2 bacterial infections, Columnaris and Aeromonas, caused the catfish to die.

According to Ling Shen, fish health specialist for the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) in St. Paul, a nearly dead catfish sent to the DNR's pathology lab in early September [2007] tested positive for both bacteria, which occur naturally in the water.

Meanwhile, 2 other fish caught by Grand Forks anglers and collected by DNR staff for testing a few weeks later showed skin lesions, Shen said, but were in better condition than the 1st catfish tested. Neither of the fish had Columnaris bacteria on their gills, she said, and none of the internal organs tested positive for the Aeromonas bacteria.

It's likely a combination of environmental factors, including high water temperatures and low river flows in the weeks leading up to the die-off, weakened the immune systems of the catfish, making them more susceptible to infection.

26 10
Massive bird die-off tied to invasive snail (US)

More than 25,000 birds — mostly coots and scaup — have died on the upper Mississippi River since 2002 as a result of eating faucet snails that carry an intestinal parasite, according to federal wildlife officials. From 2005 to 2006, there was a 16-fold increase in bird deaths in pools 8 and 9. Last fall, there were an estimated 5,000 bird deaths in the area between La Crescent, Minn., and MacGregor, Iowa.
Last week, Gheri collected about 200 dead coots along the bank of Broken Gun Island. On Thursday, he picked up 160, a fraction of the birds floating among wild celery and algae
They’ve discovered that two varieties of trematodes, a kind of fluke worm, infect the snails, which can host up to 100 of the parasites; birds can get a lethal dose in less than 24 hours of feeding and die within three to eight days.
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Calvin Gehri, biologist technician with the US Fish and Wildlife Service, piles dead waterfowl in the front of his boat Thursday along the banks of Broken Gun Island in Lake Onalaska. The birds, American Coots, fell victim to a parasite in the faucet snails they ate. (Photo by Melissa Carlo/Winona Daily News)

27 10
Thousands of fish found dead in Crofton pond (US)

This week, thousands of fish died in Lake Louise - the man-made pond off of Route 3 - and washed to its gravel banks
What exactly caused the fish to die is unknown, but Town Manager Larry Schweinsburg said calls began trickling into Crofton Town Hall early in the week. It appears that the fish began to die before it began raining. The pond was at an unusually low water level, Mr. Schweinsburg said.
Both he and Mr. Schweinsburg have a theory that the recent low water levels caused the fish to die. When there is less water, there is less oxygen for fish to breathe. They believe as the levels continued to sink, there was less oxygen and the fish suffocated. However, past droughts haven't caused the same problem. "There have been no fish die-outs, but in the last couple of years, there have been dry-outs that have been as bad," Mr. Grimaud said

27 10
Mass bird death raising questions (US)

The Suquamish Tribe and the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife are working in concert to determine why 209 common murres and Pacific loons washed up dead on the Indianola beach Monday.
Suquamish Tribal Fisheries Biologist Paul Dorn said there could be a number of different reasons for the mass death, among them drowning, pollution, poisoned food or fishing via purse seining. He and other tribal workers helped collect the bodies and samples to send to the Fish and Wildlife laboratories to establish the cause of death
This particular case is unusual,” he said. “In quite a few years, I’ve dealt with bird wash ups for quite a few years on this beach, and this one is different.” Dorn said the bird carcasses he saw appeared to be in perfect health, without ruffled feathers or other signs of a struggle or contamination. An immediate reaction was to ascertain whether the birds ingested something that could prove to be fatal to other species in the area, and sound a warning to address it, he said

29 10
Snakes awake in hot winter (Australia),228...13-3462,00.html

SNAKES have stayed active through winter in Tasmania for the first time. Climate change as a result of global warming is probably to blame for snakes shunning their normal dormant period, says herpetologist Ian Norton.
Since the official snake season started in September, the Reptile Rescue service has had 36 call-outs to retrieve unwanted visitors from homes.

30 10
More Dead Seabirds Reported Near Kingston (US)

A ferry captain on the Kingston-Edmonds route reported seeing between 50 and 100 dead birds floating on the water Tuesday morning.
The birds were floating upside down, their white bellies facing up, Koivu said. He spotted the birds at about 10 a.m. in an area perhaps 300 yards across and less than a mile from the Kingston ferry terminal. The finding follows an alarming incident last week in which more than 200 dead birds washed up on the beach near Indianola. Both events coincided with commercial fishing in the Kingston area, but Koivu and others involved said they could not specifically tie the bird kills to fishing

31 10
Walruses invade Alaska beaches, alarm conservationists

Thousands of walrus have appeared on Alaska's northwest coast in what conservationists are calling a dramatic consequence of global warming melting the Arctic sea ice. Alaska's walrus, especially breeding females, in summer and fall are usually found on the Arctic ice pack. But the lowest summer ice cap on record put sea ice far north of the outer continental shelf, the shallow, life-rich shelf of ocean bottom in the Bering and Chukchi seas
"It looks to me like animals are shifting their distribution to find prey," said Tim Ragen, executive director of the federal Marine Mammal Commission. "The big question is whether they will be able to find sufficient prey in areas where they are looking.
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31 10
Birds vanish from wetlands (Australia)

An aerial survey by UNSW researchers reveals that waterbirds and water have vanished from the northern reaches of Macquarie Marshes wetland, north of Dubbo. "This year we didn't find a single bird in Marshes' northern region. It was heartbreaking," says UNSW river and waterbird expert Richard Kingsford. The decline in water and bird life stem from the present drought and long-term effects of over-allocating water for irrigation. These are causing catastrophic changes on the rivers of the Murray-Darling Basin. It is the worst finding in the 25-year history of annual aerial waterbird surveys of eastern Australia done by UNSW scientists. The Macquarie Marches wetland is unique to Australia because of its large colonies of breeding ibis and egrets

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01 11
Monkey Sighting Stirs Climate Fears in Kenya

The discovery in Kenya of a new population of monkeys far from their normal habitat is a sign of how climate change may already be changing Africa's ecology, a leading conservationist said on Wednesday.

The white-bearded De Brazza's monkeys were found in the Great Rift Valley, a place they had never been spotted before, Richard Leakey, a prominent white Kenyan credited with ending the slaughter of the nation's elephants, told Reuters in Nairobi. "That is telling us a lot about the climate change scenarios we are looking at now," he said. "It puts climate change as the most critical consideration as we plan for the future."
The monkeys had moved into an area of forest which had dried out as Kenya's climate had become more arid.

02 11
Thousands Of Fish Dead In Bright Green Stream (US)

-An error at a manufacturing plant may have killed thousands of fish south of the metro. The problem is located just outside of Creston, in the Platte River tributary. On Thursday, officials at the local water treatment facility noticed the tributary had turned green.
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02 11
Botulism Suspected in Mich. Bird Deaths (US)

Dead birds are washing ashore in Antrim County, and environmental scientists suspect botulism associated with invasive mussels is to blame.
Beachgoers recently have spotted dozens of loon and grebe carcasses littering beaches along the eastern shore of Grand Traverse Bay. The disease has killed thousands of birds in the Great Lakes region in recent years. "I walk on the beach every day, and I've seen some dead birds," Sherri DeCamp, who lives on the bay north of Elk Rapids, told the Traverse City Record-Eagle for a story Friday. "I would guess we see four or five each day, new ones.

02 11
Suicide or murder? Iran blames US after 152 dolphins die,,2203846,00.html

• Official says military ships behind mystery deaths
• Environmentalists suspect mass cull by fishermen

When 152 dolphins were washed up on Iran's southern coast mass suicide was blamed. Then suspicion was shifted to fishermen, who were said to have beaten the dolphins with grappling irons after they became entangled in fishing nets.

But now a more familiar target has been accused: the US military and its hi-tech hardware and spying equipment. Rejecting suggestions that his employees may have committed a mass cull, the head of Iran's state-run fisheries organisation, Sha'aban-Ali Nezami, has alleged that the dolphins were victims of experimental US surveillance techniques. He has also said they could have been killed by electro-magnetic waves from military vessels in the Gulf and Oman Sea, where the US and British navies conduct regular patrols.
Some 73 dolphins were found washed up on the beach near the southern port of Jask last week. A month earlier 79 striped dolphins were discovered in the same area, which is rich in tuna and a site of industrial-scale fishing.

Distressing pictures of rows of dead dolphins have appeared in the Iranian media, alongside reports that they had "committed suicide".

However, Mr Nezami blamed more sinister factors, telling Iranian journalists: "As these dolphins are not among the species normally found in the surrounding Persian Gulf and Oman Sea, probably the Americans - for tracking purposes - have brought them to carry out laboratory works in the Gulf region. This group of dolphins have not been able to tolerate the tests. The likely reason for these deaths is water pollution, the spreading of electro-magnetic waves by military ships or a kind of virus disease."

The explanation was dismissed by environmental experts after tissue examinations showed no sign of poisoning or pollution. The environmental protection agency found bruising on some corpses, arousing suspicion that the dolphins had suffered violent blows. It has formed an inquiry committee consisting of officials from the oil ministry, the state-run shipping organisation and Tehran University's veterinary medicine faculty.

"We are basing our hypothesis on fishing - either nets left at the bottom of the Persian Gulf or the big fishing nets that ships spread to catch different kinds of fish," said Mohammad Baqer Nabavi, the agency's deputy head responsible for marine biology. "We are determined to establish the precise cause, not to apportion blame or find the guilty but to prevent such incidents from recurring
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06 11
Thousands of bluebills dead since Thursday (US)

Dan Markham and Noel Hill of Duluth, MN were setting up to hunt ducks on Lake Winnibigoshish near Deer River on Saturday when they noticed a dead bluebill on shore. A quick walk along the shore turned up another three dozen dead bluebills.

Waterfowl biologists with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources estimate that as many as 3,000 bluebills, also known as lesser scaup, may have died along the west shore of Lake Winnie. The die-off began Thursday, said Steve Cordts, DNR waterfowl specialist in Bemidji. Biologists believe the cause is a microscopic trematode, a kind of fluke, present in snails that the bluebills are feeding on

06 11
Thousands of fish found dead in Yamuna (India)

Thousands of fish were found dead in the Yamuna river on Monday morning, creating a near-panic situation among fishermen and those living close to the river banks. Pollution department officials said algae and lack of oxygen probably caused the deaths.

07 11
Squirrel deaths probed at Wallington (UK)

FEARS are growing over the future of Castle Morpeth's red squirrels after seven of the creatures at Wallington Hall are thought to have fallen victim to a deadly virus. If the presence of squirrel pox is confirmed, the news could spell disaster for the area's population of reds.

Wallington's Assistant Wwarden, John Jamieson, said that the animals had been discovered suffering symptoms of the disease and had since died. Now experts are awaiting the results of tests to show whether they were infected with the virus, which is passed on by greys. "It's virulent and spreads quite easily so we could be looking at a bit of a disaster," he said.
"We've culled four greys in the past three months, but unfortunately we think they've had something on them and now we've lost seven reds in one area of woods."

15 11
Seal pups lost to storms (UK)

HIGH tides and stormy weather may have washed away hundreds of pups from one of the country’s major seal colonies off the North-East coast.
Waves battered the Farne Islands, two miles off the Northumberland coastline last week, and the devastation to the local seal population can only be assessed now as the sea conditions slowly improve.

Unusually, grey seals pup in the autumn, and the colony on the Farnes waits longer than other groups around the UK, making the youngsters particularly susceptible to heavy storms.

The fate of the young grey seals has featured on the BBC’s hit wildlife programme Autumnwatch, presented by Bill Oddie and Kate Humble. The programme’s expert Simon King has struggled to get out to the islands in the North Sea due to the storms. Mr King said: “The grey seals have been severely affected by the storms we have experienced over the past few days. “Early signs are pretty grave. There is no doubt the colony has been severely affected by the great surge of waves that washed over the islands a few days ago.”

David Steel, head warden for the National Trust on the Farne Islands, estimated that 60%-65% of pups had died. But he said: “Grey seals have a very long life span so if there have been extra deaths this year, the seals could easily be replaced over the next couple of years.

15 11
Wildlife officials report swan deaths in Sarnia, Ont. (Canada)

A recent spate of swan deaths near Sarnia, Ont., has worried wildlife officials and area residents. Experts say the deaths could be linked to botulism, which has caused a larger die-off of loons and other migratory birds on the Great Lakes.

Greg Brunet of the Canadian Wildlife Service said that eight dead mute swans had been found on the banks of the St. Clair River, near Sombra. He said the dead birds had been there for close to two weeks.
An additional 10 swans have reportedly been found dead near Walpole Island. Brunet said three of the bodies have been shipped to the University of Guelph for analysis.
But experts suggest the birds were poisoned by botulism after feeding on invasive species. There have been similar die-offs of loons and other migratory birds on the U.S. side of the Great Lakes recently, which New York State Department of Environmental Conservation scientists have attributed to Type E botulism.

16 11
Dolphins Swim to Germany

Dolphins have always liked the warm Mediterranean. Why are some of them now swimming around the Baltic Sea and playing with boats in northern Germany?

16 11
Expert trying to identify mysterious bird flying around S. Texas (US)

More sightings of a huge flying creature, originally reported by KENS, have prompted an investigation to determine if it is a monster or myth. “Even though it was dark, the thing itself was black. The blackest I’d ever seen,” said Frank Ramirez.

Years ago, Ramirez thought he was after a prowler in the back of his mother’s Southwest Side home. But what greeted him on the garage rooftop still gives him goosebumps now. “That’s when the thing up there turned to me, and it was in a perched state, and it started to turn,” he said. “It started to move its arms and this giant blackness was just coming out. At that point, I dropped the stick and I ran.”

Ramirez sketched a drawing of the large, bird-like creature. The image is disturbing, and similar to dozens of sightings across San Antonio and South Texas. “If you were to take a man’s face and pull his chin down, just like a stretched face,” said Ramirez.

An earlier KENS story about a large, prehistoric-like bird drew more than 100,000 hits on More than a few people in San Antonio came forward to say they’d seen the creature, too. One woman contacted KENS by e-mail, saying that because of our story, she now knows she’s not crazy.

But even Sanchez admits that blogs spiked with reports this summer of something.
“People were posting about a very large, raptor-like bird, and they were talking about an 18-to-20-foot wingspan. I don’t know ... It’s kind of a myth,” said Sanchez. Critics say where’s the proof? Eyewitness testimony without a feather or other body of evidence leaves these stories as they are — just stories.
“We know that it’s rare, and we know that this area’s been pretty popular hangout in the past,” said Gerhard.

21 11
Whale Lost in Amazon Found Dead (Brazil)

A minke whale that got lost and swam some 810 miles (1,300 kilometers) up the Amazon River died after a failed effort to capture it and transport it back to the ocean, an environmental official said Wednesday.

The 18-foot (5.5-meter) minke whale was stranded on sandbars at least twice after it was first spotted last week in the Tapajós River, a tributary of the Amazon, near the jungle city of Santarém.
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23 11
Stinging jellyfish swarm hits Scotland

Millions of stinging baby jellyfish have been spotted off Scotland just days after another swarm wiped out Northern Ireland's only Salmon farm, the Marine Conservation Society said on Friday.

The organisation, which said the abnormal swarms of baby mauve stinger and compass jellyfish were due to wind and tidal factors, urged fish farmers and the public to report any sightings to help monitor their progress. "It is quite unusual for this number of juvenile jellyfish to be occurring in UK waters at this time of year," said Anne Saunders, MCS Scottish Projects Officer. "But these blooms are phenomenal and consist of millions of individuals, being washed here by strong Atlantic currents."
Compass jellyfish are common in British waters during the summer, but mauve stingers are relatively uncommon.

25 11
Mystery illness strikes penguins (New Zealand)

Yellow-eyed penguins are dying in droves on Stewart Island and scientists are at a loss to explain why. About 70 per cent of the penguin chicks have died over the past six years.

Researchers for the Yellow-Eyed Penguin Trust (YEPT) along with Otago and Massey university scientists and the Department of Conservation cannot find a cause. "We don't know if the penguins are starving and then succumbing to disease or if they're diseased and then starving," said trust spokeswoman Sue Murray Researchers have already found dead chicks from this year's generation, hatched over the past weeks.

Massey University's associate professor Maurice Alley, of the NZ Wildlife Health Centre, said blood samples showed cases of diphtheria or leucocytozoon a malaria-like parasite spread by sandflies that causes anaemia and weakness. Diptheria causes lesions in the mouth which prevent the chicks from eating. "It was very bad last year, all the nests at the top part of the island were affected.

30 11
Red Tide Blamed for Calif. Bird Deaths (US)

Hundreds of dead or injured seabirds have washed up on the shores of Monterey Bay in recent weeks, and scientists believe a red tide of marine algae is to blame.
About 600 birds have been found stranded on beaches in Monterey and Santa Cruz counties since a large rust-colored algal bloom began circulating in the bay about three weeks ago, scientists say.

About 70 of the birds have died, while 530 have been taken to wildlife rescue centers, said Michael Ziccardi, director of the Oiled Wildlife Care Network.

The affected birds include loons, pelicans, western grebes, northern fulmars and surf scoters, said Dave Jessup, a veterinarian with the state Department of Fish and Game. Fish and marine mammals do not appear to be affected.

Officials initially believed the birds were victims of the San Francisco Bay oil spill that has killed or injured at least 2,800 birds. But tests found that the sticky, yellow substance found on the Monterey Bay birds was not petroleum or vegetable oil.

Scientists now believe the birds were injured by a protein that sticks to the birds’ feathers and disrupts their ability to stay dry and warm, forcing them from the water where they live and feed.

“The birds are in distress because their feathers are no longer keeping them warm,” Ziccardi said. “It’s doing something to their waterproofing.”

Researchers believe the protein is produced either directly or as a byproduct of the red tide, which is common in Monterey Bay this time of year.

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