Summer is long gone, but I still have some pictures from my holidays that I haven’t shared yet. I will mix and divide them between two blog posts. This canyon road goes through Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest all the way from Utah to Wyoming. There are countless opportunities for hiking, but with our newborn baby we only […]
|Africa promises one of the best safari experiences in the world, enabling you to see the five big wild animal groups: the lion, the leopard, the elephant, the rhino and the buffalo. Capturing a good photo of these beautiful animals is not always easy, and very often, it comes down to being at the right place at the right time. But, the pictures below are pretty incredible. So, get ready to enjoy some animal watching with this great photo series!|
|Male lion ignoring a group of Thomson’s Gazelles.
Its been a few years now since I took my very first landscape image or used a camera for that matter…Sometimes I look back at my older images from a few months ago and think to myself “what the F$@^! was I thinking!! I learn now how easy it is to fall into that rather large social media trap..And more recently learned how much of a negative impact it can have on a person or there vision. This is something I learned first hand and how I am slowly moving out of that phase, back to when I enjoyed the scene for myself more then for the crowds. For the next few months I will be embarking on a journey to witness natures beautiful moments, I will be changing a lot and evolving as far as my vision grows and also refining processing techniques…
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southwest california wildlife sanctuary / foundation sunset, sunsets, sustainability, environment, ocean, sea, energy
April 1972: The fifth pair of astronauts to visit the moon were the most enthusiastic geologists, bringing home the largest sample ever collected from the moon.
Apollo 16 launched on April 16, 1972 as the tenth crewed Apollo mission, and the fifth to land on the moon. Astronauts John W. Young and Charles M. Duke Jr. spent 71 hours on the lunar surface They completed 20 hours and 14 minutes of moonwalks during three extra-vehicular activities, including driving 26.7 kilometers (16.6 miles) in their lunar rover around the Descartes and Cayley formations. Along with installing a ultraviolet stellar camera on the surface, the duo collected 95.8 kilograms (209 pounds) of lunar samples. In an echo of geologists everywhere, they couldn’t seem to restrain themselves to just the small samples and collected the most massive lunar sample of any Apollo mission.
Big Muley is one hefty rock! Image credit: NASA
Lunar Sample 61016 masses a mighty 11.7 kilograms (26 pounds). The rock bares the nickname “Big Muley,” named for Apollo 16 field geology team leader Bill Muehlberger. Found on the east rim of Plum Crater, researchers suspect it was actually ejected during the impact that formed South Ray crater. The rock is a breccia: a sedimentary rock composed of primary large, angular smaller rock fragments cemented together. The exposed top surface is rounded with a thin patina and micrometeorite zaps; the rest was protected by being buried within the lunar soil. The melted shock fragments within the rock date to 3.97 billion years ago.
David White [left] and William Muehlberger [right] admire the largest lunar sample ever returned, Big Muley (sample 61016). Image credit: NASA
While Young and Duke were busy on the surface, Thomas Ke Mattingly II observed the moon; during the return trip to Earth he and Duke ducked outside for a one-hour spacewalk to retrieve film cassettes from the exterior. The crew returned to Earth just over 11 days after launching, splashing down on April 27th.
Duke and Mattingly (wearing Young’s striped helmet) spacewalking to inspect the Service Module and retrieve film. Image credit: NASA
The mission wasn’t without its hitches. It was the first Apollo mission to be delayed for technical issues, then a fuel tank was damaged during a routine test in the months leading up to launch, requiring replacement. Once the crew reached Earth orbit, the third stage booster developed an attitude control system problem that required in-flight fiddling to fix. The Lunar Module Orion started shedding paint peeling off the aluminum skin, although the astronauts decided it was cosmetic after closer inspection. Soon after, Mattingly spotted a gimbal lock warning light that the spacecraft wasn’t reporting attitude, so had to reorient the guidance system using the Sun and Moon instead.
Lunar Module Orion with Young and Duke on board, heading up to rejoin Mattingly on Casper, their Command Service Module. Image credit: NASA/Thomas K. Mattingly II
The next day, Young and Duke boarded Orion and peeled off for their decent. The lunar module’s engine backup systems malfunctioned, and error that should’ve scrapped the moon landing. Instead, mission controllers determined a workaround, descending to the surface just six hours behind schedule. This squeezed the surface mission schedule, and cut the final moonwalk by a few hours to accede to the demands of both orbital dynamics and sleep.
Young and Duke during a simulated traverse in a training area at the Kennedy Space Center. Image credit: NASA
Top image: Duke [left] and Young [right] on a two-day geology training field trip near Los Angeles. Credit: NASA
by Robin Walter
Morning light spills
through grass thick
small whorls of dust
stamping their lives
into this ground.
to the clatter
This blog is part of an ongoing series following the Rediscover the Prairie expedition, a horseback journey across the Great Plains. To learn more please visit http://ift.tt/1B02Abg
All photos © Robin Walter or Sebastian Tsocanos. All rights reserved.
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from Green – The Huffington Post http://ift.tt/1QDVvXP
The projected upsurge of severe El Niño and La Niña events will cause an increase in storm events leading to extreme coastal flooding and erosion in populated regions across the Pacific Ocean, according to a multi-agency study published Monday in Nature Geoscience.
The impact of these storms is not presently included in most studies on future coastal vulnerability, which look primarily at sea level rise. New research data, from 48 beaches across three continents — including Hawaii — and five countries bordering the Pacific Ocean, suggest the predicted increase will exacerbate coastal erosion irrespective of sea level rise affecting the region.
Researchers from 13 different institutions analyzed coastal data from across the Pacific Ocean basin from 1979 to 2012. The scientists sought to determine if patterns in coastal change could be connected to major climate cycles.
Although previous studies have analyzed coastal impacts at local and regional levels, this is the first to pull together data from across the Pacific to determine basin-wide patterns. The research group determined all Pacific Ocean regions investigated were affected during either an El Niño or La Niña year.
When the west coast of the U.S. mainland and Canada, Hawaii, and northern Japan felt the coastal impacts of El Niño, characterized by bigger waves, different wave direction, higher water levels and/or erosion, the opposite region in the Southern Hemisphere of New Zealand and Australia experienced “suppression,” such as smaller waves and less erosion.
The pattern then generally flips: during La Niña, the Southern Hemisphere experienced more severe conditions.
The published paper, “Coastal vulnerability across the Pacific dominated by El Niño/Southern Oscillation” is available online.
Abstract: To predict future coastal hazards, it is important to quantify any links between climate drivers and spatial patterns of coastal change. However, most studies of future coastal vulnerability do not account for the dynamic components of coastal water levels during storms, notably wave-driven processes, storm surges and seasonal water level anomalies, although these components can add metres to water levels during extreme events. Here we synthesize multi-decadal, co-located data assimilated between 1979 and 2012 that describe wave climate, local water levels and coastal change for 48 beaches throughout the Pacific Ocean basin. We find that observed coastal erosion across the Pacific varies most closely with El Niño/Southern Oscillation, with a smaller influence from the Southern Annular Mode and the Pacific North American pattern. In the northern and southern Pacific Ocean, regional wave and water level anomalies are significantly correlated to a suite of climate indices, particularly during boreal winter; conditions in the northeast Pacific Ocean are often opposite to those in the western and southern Pacific. We conclude that, if projections for an increasing frequency of extreme El Niño and La Niña events over the twenty-first century are confirmed, then populated regions on opposite sides of the Pacific Ocean basin could be alternately exposed to extreme coastal erosion and flooding, independent of sea-level rise.
See more: via: www.nature.com
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How Can I Tell If An Animal Sanctuary Is Genuine, Or If They Are Taking Advantage Of Animals?!
There a many people across the world that put the safety and care of endangered animals above themselves. A great animal sanctuary’s first concern is always to the animal, making sure they are happy, healthy, and that they feel safe. The animals there are abused, abandoned, or simply displaced by circumstance. These animals are released into the wild when possible, but a great many don’t have that option. A good sanctuary will bring you to the brink of tears with their dedication and success. However, not every “sanctuary” is what it advertises. Some are glorified breeding houses that exploit the animals and don’t take their health into consideration. It’s tough to tell them apart, but it’s important that you go through a rigorous vetting before contributing or taking part in any sanctuary.
When I was 16 I found out about an exotic sanctuary near me in Wisconsin. It took in abused and abandoned big cats, as well as a few bears, horses, foxes, and various farm animals. Each animal came from a horrific environment. One Sumatran tiger, a breed quickly becoming extinct, had been defanged and declawed by the circus he lived in. Tiger teeth are actually part of the jawbone, meaning his jaw couldn’t close correctly, and he couldn’t eat anything but boneless meat. One of the Jaguars (who lived below the room I stayed in) had been beaten numerous times with a metal pipe by her drug dealer owner, causing brain lesions, and a massive mistrust for males. Far too many of the animals came from other “sanctuaries” that were shut down for animal abuse, as well as some that escaped euthanasia at zoos for being “too old.” Every animal had a similar story, but almost every one turned into a happy, friendly, and affectionate animal. They had large indoor and outdoor enclosures, fresh meat every day, and at no point where they exploited or used as an attraction. A great sanctuary will have happy, playful animals because they provide a safe environment for the animals.
There are a number of red flags to look for that can easily identify those animal farms that you should stay far away from. Of course, these are not the only signs to look for. If you feel uncomfortable with the sanctuary, walk the other way.
where did all these animals come from?
Sanctuary animals can be broken into two categories, rescue animals and commercial animals. Seems obvious right? It’s sadly more complex than that.
Rescue animals are going to come from circuses, zoos, those saved from hunters or disease, or private homes. None of them are capable of surviving in the wild, so they need a home to live out the rest of their days. Each animal will have a story, most likely not a good one. Pay attention to why the animal is there, and you’ll get a quick understanding of what the sanctuary is trying to accomplish.
“Commercial” is a broad term, but in essence it’s the best one. These animals are captured specifically for housing in the facility, or they are bred in captivity for the purpose of selling or displaying. Some hide behind the veil of “protecting the species,” but animals born in captivity can’t be released into the wild, so they are simply an attraction, which is exactly what real sanctuaries are trying to protect their wards from.
“come on in and play!”
Are the animals available for photo ops with you? Can you ride around on them? This is a huge distinction, and an immediate way to know if you should run the other way. Being able to SEE the animals is great. Most sanctuaries give tours (the one I worked with limited tours to 5 people maximum), but they are small, and keep the psychological needs of the animals in mind. No animals wants to be smothered by people. Most come from backgrounds that bred mistrust of people, and even a “gentle” animal can turn deadly when scared. There should always be a significant barrier between the animals and the guests, and the animals should always have somewhere they can go to be alone if they become stressed. If you can pay for a photo with them, or you can interact directly with the animal right away, then the facility is certainly not a sanctuary.
Training should never be tolerated.
Rescue animals often come from abusive situations. Circuses and private owners often use cruel and violent training methods, leading to long-term physical and psychological harm, often times to the point the animal can never recover. When an animal is rescued, it should have a safe home. It isn’t there to do tricks or to be a showpiece. There is no need to train them! Yet, many commercial facilities have trainers on staff in order to keep their photo op animals in line. Things like bull hooks, electric fences or prods, and chains are all signs of an abusive facility. At no point should the animal be chained or tied up. All of these actions lead to abuse, and are the antithesis of what a sanctuary is trying to accomplish.
Everyone needs to play
Pay attention to how the animals are housed. No sanctuary will have the endless space that the animals would have in the wild, they should have ample space to run and play. They should have toys, enclosures to sleep and hide, and a way to separate them from the enclosure when it’s time to clean. At no time should an animal be tied up, and their enclosure should be on grass or natural ground, not cement! If the animal can only pace and turn around, then their welfare is being ignored, brazenly so. Imagine what you would need to be happy in that situation, and if you don’t see it, then you know the “sanctuary” is a sham.
Home sweet home?
We can’t read an animals mind, but there are a number of behaviors that are obvious signs of distress in the animals. Zoochosis is the unnatural behavior animals exhibit in captivity, and a common occurrence in the commercial shelter community. Acts like pacing constantly back and forth is the most noticeable sign. Their posture tends to be hunched and more predatory when pacing, showing how anxious and bored they really are. Other signs are sitting and rocking, self-mutilation, and chewing or licking the bars of their cage constantly. Each of these is a sure sign the animals is in a terrible situation.
There’s now one more reason to avoid Victoria’s tourist-swarmed downtown core this summer.
Volunteers in 1940s-style British “bobby” uniforms — complete with egg-shaped hats — will be walking the beat “armed only with a smile, interesting historical facts and crime prevention information,” according to police. It’s an effort to make out-of-towners feel even more like they’ve escaped to a west-coast Pleasantville. And it’s another reason to hate on tourists:
You know, the camera-toting (don’t you have a smartphone?!), meanderers clad in comfortable shoes, clogging the seawall in Vancouver and the streets of Kensington Market in Toronto. Also known, to one friend, as “THE WORST SIDEWALK WALKERS!”
But in our annoyance, we forget: We are tourists, too.
Canadians are the seventh-largest spenders on travel in the world, to the tune of $37 billion in 2014.
The golden rule of a good trip is good people. That could be a travel buddy or a hostel crew, but it’s also often the locals. In Lisbon, Portugal, my sister and I made friends out of people who showed us the hidden bars and late-night hangouts, the beaches a short drive out of town, the best places to catch the sunset.
That’s the hipster way to travel these days — getting the “local” experience. But we forget it relies on locals treating us, the tourists, like the potentially interesting humans we are.
I try to be kind to tourists, sometimes. I’ll offer directions or tips on what to see and eat. But I’ve never looked at a tourist as a potential friend. And I’ve never been the source of someone’s amazing story of travel to Canada.
There is another reason to stop hating tourists: They brought in $17.3 billion in 2014. You’ve heard this before, but many people’s livelihoods depend on them.
Yes, it is irritating to see my hometown become even more of a caricature of imagined Englishness. I didn’t think Victoria could grovel any harder at the feet of its British roots. It can.
But whatever I think of the volunteer bobby idea, it’s time to shed the haughty gaze at the wayward tourist. There’s no point having a superiority complex if you don’t help make your city a nice place to be.
The active volcano glows through the night
The Villarrica Volcano in southern Chile is the most active volcano in South America.
In March the volcano, which is located near the tourist resort Pucon, erupted and caused thousands of people to evacuate. This photograph was taken May 10, and depicts the view of the volcano from the city.