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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Lesley Rochart's website

 Image: A photo of a Thresher shark

If you love to view gorgeous photos of sea life I highly recommend you visit Lesley Rochart's "Shark Warrior" website. She definitely has taken some of the most beautiful photos of sharks and other sea life I have ever seen. To see what I am talking about please visit:

Government of Canada caught trying to derail United States environmental policy

 Map: Climate Change Performance Index 2008

According to the Pembina Institute website, "Newly released documents obtained under Access to Information legislation reveal the Government of Canada is pursuing an orchestrated strategy to undermine U.S. efforts to combat climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions." You can read the documents relating to this Government of Canada behavior by going to the following link:

This was brought to my attention by Danielle Droitsch, who wrote the article: "The troubling truth about the Canadian government's efforts to derail U.S. climate policy", which you can read at the following part of the Pembina Institute website:

Source of image: "U.S. Ranks Second to Last in Global Climate Rankings; European Countries Dominate Top Ten",

German Zoo Attempts to Re-Orient Gay Vultures

German Zoo Attempts to Re-Orient Gay Vultures

Please click on the link above this sentence, and read the article then return to this blog entry of mine.

Now that you have read this article, do you agree with me in this regard: Isn't it bad enough that these vultures are forced to live their lives in a zoo?What right does this zoo have to interfere in the behavior of these animals? This has nothing to do wth being gay or not being gay, but has everything to do with humans interfering in the lives of other animals when we have no right to do so! If these animals are gay, then we can only conclude that some "religious" types have somehow been able to influence the administrators of this zoo to try and "re-orient" these vultures? (And exactly how are these officials going to know when these two vultures are reorientated anyway? ) It has been proven scientifically that many different types of animals (in addition to humans) can be physically attracted to members of their own sex. Humans have already caused enough damage to the web of life on our planet, our species thinks it can kill other animals in the name of bettering our own species (ie.using other animal species in scientific labs as substitutes for human beings), and now we have some scientists and anti-gay members of our own population who are trying to interfere where they have no right to!

If you need evidence that animals other than our own species may be homosexual then please read the information at the following links: (Warning some of the language used in these links is graphic in nature):

Source of image: 

Bear teaches a wolf how to fish

I just found a very interesting news article which concerns the fact that a Wildlife photographer named Paul Stinsa indicates that he has photographed a wolf learning how to fish by watching a bear in Katmai National Park, Alaska. Some skeptics may read this and believe that this photographer may have photo-shopped the photos to gain some attention for himself, however as someone who has done some nature photography and also done some work in a darkroom, I believe his claims of seeing this fascinating interaction between these two animals is legitimate.

You can  see the photos Paul Stinsa took and read the news article about this interesting interaction by clicking on the following link:

If these photos do not convince people that animals are more cooperative and more intelligent than we give them credit for then what will?  Do you believe these photos are original or not?

Note:The photo above is not related to this experience Paul Stinsa had.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Scientists view the birth of a "Black hole"

Photo:Is a Composite visual and X-Ray image of M33-X-7 (a Black hole)

According to a news article at the website, scientists have, for the first time, witnessed the birth of a Black hole. Apparently an amateur astronomer in 1979 first noticed an exploding star when he was viewing the sky one night that year. Now scientists have used X-ray telescopes to study this area of space first noticed by the amateur and concluded that the data they have collected concerning this area coincides with that which indicates the birth of a black hole,although they still assert it could be something else besides a black hole. The following statement is from the article:

"The researchers said that what they think is a black hole is about five times the mass of our sun and was formed from the explosion of a star about 20 times as massive as our sun."

To read the entire article concerning this discovery please click on the following link:

If you do not know what a black hole is please visit the following website for a very good introduction to this phenomenon: 

To learn more about the black hole known as M-33-X-7 please visit the following link at the NASA website: 

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Save sharks

Please watch the following short videos, and have your friends watch them too.We must save our Sharks!!

Save Sharks, Don't Serve Them from Jeff Litton on Vimeo.

Save Our Sharks from Save Our Seas Foundation on Vimeo.

Scary? from Save Our Seas Foundation on Vimeo.

Rethink the Shark from Save Our Seas Foundation on Vimeo.

More than a million Atlantic sharks killed yearly: study!!!

According to an article you can read at the website more than A MILLION sharks are killed each year in the Atlantic Ocean.

 "Of the 21 species found in the Atlantic, three-quarters are classified as threatened with extinction.
 North Atlantic populations of the oceanic white tip, for example, have declined by 70 percent, and hammerheads by more than 99 percent, according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN)."

"Many are fished for their fins -- prized as a delicacy in Chinese cuisine -- and then tossed, dead or dying, back into the sea once the choice morsels have been sliced off."
"The practice is prohibited, but loopholes in the regulation have allowed the ban to be widely ignored."

 If these shark species go extinct this will have a devastating effect on the food chains where these sharks existed as apex predators.  If they do go extinct, so do we. The ocean covers 2/3 of out planet and gives of 70% of the oxygen we breathe. Sharks are at the top of the food chain,  If the Sharks go extinct so will the producers in the ocean food chain and there will be nothing  left to produce oxygen!!!. All because some of you want to eat a tasteless bowl of shark-fin soup!

I suggest those of you who eat sharks or shark-fin soup read the following articles:

and if you still want to eat Shark-fin soup after you read these articles (and watch the videos there) then you are one of the World's most selfish persons, someone who is putting all of the life on this planet in danger of going extinct! If you think we are going to allow you to kill all the sharks and other life on this planet then you are very wrong! We will find a way to stop you!

Unnatural Selection - Shark Finning on the Frontier from Blue Sphere Media on Vimeo.

Save The Sharks from Andre Moura on Vimeo.

Six species of Atlantic sharks protected

Six species of endangered sharks which have been hunted for an Asian demand for sharkfin soup are now protected in the Atlantic.Scalloped, smooth and great hammerheads, along with oceanic white tip, cannot be targeted or taken if caught accidentally, the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) said.Three other types of hammerhead are included in the ban: smalleye, scoophead, and whitefin.

Unfortunately all the news is not good. Canadian officials were not willing to close a Porbeagle shark fishery, which means this shark species has a questionable future. Why are Canadian Government officials not willing to protect this endangered shark species, in order to save a few jobs? According to the website:

In 2007 these statements were made about the Porbeagle species in Canada:

"Porbeagles are slow reproducers even by the sluggish standards of the shark world.They are not biologically equipped to take heavy fishing," said Sonja Fordham, director of the shark conservation program for the Washington-based Ocean Conservancy." (source: )

So again why has the Canadian Government refused to protect the porbeagle species? Have they done a population survey of this shark species and found the species can handle the current fishing limits imposed on this species? We deserve to know what the rationale is behind this decision of the Federal Government of Canada! 


The porbeagle (Scientific name: Lamana nasus) (pictured above) is a large pelagic shark that is most often found close to the continental shelf between Newfoundland and Labrador and the Gulf of Maine. Porbeagle meat is mainly sold in Europe, while its fins are sold to Asian markets. Source:

Source of image:

According to the following website: 

 in November, 2005 it was reported by the Canadian Government that the Department of Fisheries was engaged in a research project concerning the Porbeagle species: where it is stated:

Porbeagle Shark Migration Patterns and Location of Pupping Grounds
 "This project is designed to identify the migratory pathways and pupping grounds of porbeagle sharks to improve the international management of this species, and to possibly designate the pupping areas as marine protected areas", ....."these species are now being considered for listing as an endangered species in Canada."

At the website:  I found the following statement:

"Best evidence indicates that the porbeagle population began to decline in the 1960s. Canadian vessels joined the fishery in the 1990s with the result that reported landings reached 1,778 tonnes in 1992. According to the 2001 stock status report, the porbeagle population was under pressure from fishing and was low in abundance. Consequently, in 2002 the TAC for porbeagle was set at 250 tonnes, with 200 tonnes being directed catch and 50 tonnes as bycatch."

"As a result of this management plan, the porbeagle population has stabilized. However, population projections indicated that population recovery would require that harvest rates be kept below four per cent. In response, the TAC was lowered for the fishery in 2006 to 185 tonnes (135 tonnes directed and 50 tonnes bycatch). Given the low productivity of the porbeagle, it is expected to take several decades for this species to recover from its low abundance."

If it is going to take several decades for the porbeagle species to recover from its low abundance then why did the Canadian Government refuse to  protect this species from being overfished??

Friday, November 26, 2010

New Video:Vanishing of the Bees (Colony Collapse Disorder)

A trailer to new video which describes what scientists know about Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) in bees has been released online. The Video is entitled "Vanishing of  the Bees" and can be viewed by going to the  following website:

A Trailer for this video can be viewed at: 

There is also a facebook group devoted to this video, which you can join at:

The last time I discussed Colony Collapse Disorder on my blog was in early October in this blog entry: 

You can see other blog posts I have made about this situation by putting the phrase "Colony Collapse Disorder" into the search engine for my blog, which is just below the title for my blog on page one.

The conservation biologist Dr Reese Halter, who  is the author of The Incomparable Honey Bee and the Economics of Pollination was interviewed in October by Australian Public Broadcasting. To listen to this interview and see a  transcript of the interview please click on the following link: 

The most recent articles online I could find concerning CCD and Bees are at these links

Source of image: 

It was Ants not Humans who discovered farming and pesticides

Scientists who study on species of ant known as the "leaf-cutter" now assert that this species discovered farming and pesticides eons before we humans were even a living species. The results of a new study suggest that fungus-cultivating ants may have co-evolved with bacteria whose antibiotic compounds help them protect their crop To read about this study please click on the following link:

To learn more about leaf-cutter ants please visit the following websites:

Source of image:

Here is an informative 7 minute video about leaf-cutter ants which I found on You Tube:

Source of video:

The truth about army ants:they are creators not destroyers

Once again we humans seem to have labeled a member of the insect world in an erroneous fashion. In this case I am talking about army ants. You have probably seen some video on at least one occasion in which a nest of army ants is shown devouring every kind of life in its path. Well, it is time to put aside these stereotypes of army ants as new research views army ants in an entirely different light.

To read an interesting article entitled, "Army ants are creators not destroyers of worlds" written by Matt Walker of  BBC news please click on the following link:

Source of image: 

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Grandmaster Kramnik draws against a Chess Robot

Former World Chess Champion has been busy. I see he played a Computer Robot a game of blitz chess.Watch what happens in the game on this video (source:Youtube):

This chess playing robot called “Chess Terminator”,  was designed by Konstantin Kosteniuk, who is the father of the current women’s Chess champion, Alexandra Kosteniuk. Watch what happens when Kramnik offers a draw at around the 2:45 minute mark in the video.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Amazing Orca behavior captured on film!

Check out the amazing behavior of some Orcas (Killer whales) which was captured in photographs and posted online: Wow can they ever surf! :)  To see what I am talking about click on the following link:

Source of image: 

Secrets of sharks' success


Porbeagle shark (Lamna nasus), Red List Assessment: Vulnerable 

Secrets of sharks' success

To read a fascinating new article which discusses why scientists now believe Sharks have been such a long-living species on our planet please click on the link above this line. This will take you to a news article at the website.

10 reasons why Great white sharks are great

I found an interesting illustrated article/slide show concerning Great white sharks that I wanted to share with my readers. The article/slide show is entitled, "10 Reasons why Great white sharks are great" and can be viewed by clicking on the following link:

I hope you enjoy learning about these amazing and important animals!

Source of image: 

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Nice cool lakes getting less so; NASA finds world's lakes warming up twice as much as air

Nice cool lakes getting less so; NASA finds world's lakes warming up twice as much as air

More evidence that Global warming is occurring on our planet. Please click on the link above to read about this new scientific research.

Image:The image shows jellyfish living in the Black sea, these jellyfish have moved to the sea due to global warming

Source of image:

CBC News - Canada - Coast guard ship used by oil companies

CBC News - Canada - Coast guard ship used by oil companies

To read a news article which discusses the fact that the Government of Canada is allowing BP  and Imperial Oil to lease a Government of Canada icebreaker for a fee of $50,000 a day please click on the link above this sentence. Ironically the ship in question, the CCGS Amundsen —  is Canada's most advanced research ship which is dedicated to the study of climate change . Why is our Federal Government allowing BP anywhere near our Northern waters with their track record in causing damage to the environment?

Source of image of the CCGS Amundsen:

Monday, November 22, 2010

Today in History: November 22,1928:The first public performance of Bolero

Today is a special day for those of us who love Classical music. On November 22nd, 1928 the first performance of Ravel's Bolero occurred in Paris.

Source of this information:

Maurice Ravel lived from March 7, 1875 until December 28, 1937 and was a French composer of Impressionist music. Although Bolero certainly has grown into a piece of music which most people enjoy, in contrast Ravel himself "considered the piece trivial and once described it as "a piece for orchestra without music." Originally composed as a ballet commissioned by Russian ballerina Ida Rubenstein, the piece, which premiered in 1928, is Ravel's most famous musical composition.

"The work had its genesis in a commission from the dancer Ida Rubinstein, who asked Ravel to make an orchestral transcription of six pieces from Isaac Albéniz' set of piano pieces, Iberia. While working on the transcription, Ravel was informed that the movements had already been orchestrated by Spanish conductor Enrique Arbós, and that copyright law prevented any other arrangement from being made. When Arbós heard of this, he said he would happily waive his rights and allow Ravel to orchestrate the pieces. However Ravel changed his mind and decided initially to orchestrate one of his own previously-written works. He then changed his mind again and decided to write a completely new piece based on the musical form and Spanish dance called bolero. While on vacation at St Jean-de-Luz, Ravel went to the piano and played a melody with one finger to his friend Gustave Samazeuilh, saying "Don't you think this theme has an insistent quality? I'm going to try and repeat it a number of times without any development, gradually increasing the orchestra as best I can." This piece was initially called Fandango, but its title was soon changed to "Boléro"." (source:

A Hollywood film titled Bolero (1934), starring Carole Lombard and George Raft, made major use of the theme in Ravel

Source of this information:

It is interesting to note that the word "Bolero" "is a name given to certain slow-tempo latin music and its associated dance and song. There are Spanish and Cuban forms, which are both significant, and which have separate origins. The term is also used for some art music. In all its forms, the bolero has been popular for over a century, and still is today." (source: ) To learn more about this work of music (including a discussion of the first performance of the piece please click on the link I placed before this sentence.

 Here is a performance of this work, I found on Youtube: This performance is conducted by
Christoph Eschenbach  with the orchestra being the Orchestre de Paris and took place on November 5,2007.
The performance requires you first listen to the top video and then the  bottom one:

I hope you enjoy this performance:

Silent Requiem: Death of a Deity"

The Future of Sharks

The Future of Sharks (Oceana TV) from Oceana on Vimeo.

Sharks: Life or death in the Bahamas

Sunday, November 21, 2010

More than a million Atlantic sharks killed yearly: study"

If a million human beings were being killed each year some way you can bet the media would being having news stories about this situation. Somehow we have to find ways to educate the media about this tragic loss of life of so many sharks so the media will at least do some news stories about this awful reality in our World! This is what I am referring to:

"More than a million Atlantic sharks killed yearly: study"
By Marlowe Hood (AFP) –

PARIS — "At least 1.3 million sharks, many listed as endangered, were harvested from the Atlantic in 2008 by industrial-scale fisheries unhampered by catch or size limits, according to a tally released Monday."

"Of the 21 species found in the Atlantic, three-quarters are classified as threatened with extinction."

"North Atlantic populations of the oceanic white tip, for example, have declined by 70 percent, and hammerheads by more than 99 percent, according to the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN)."

"Other species -- including the porbeagle, common thresher and shortfin mako -- have also been overexploited, and may be teetering on the brink of viability."

"Regional studies have shown that when shark populations crash the impact cascades down through the food chain, often in unpredictable and deleterious ways."

To read the entire news article please click on the following link:

"The porbeagle (Lamna nasus) (pictured directly above)  is a species of mackerel shark in the family Lamnidae, distributed widely in the cold and temperate marine waters of the North Atlantic and Southern Hemisphere. In the North Pacific, its ecological equivalent is the closely related salmon shark (L. ditropis). The porbeagle typically reaches 2.5 m (8.2 ft) in length and a weight of 135 kg (300 lb); North Atlantic sharks grow larger than Southern Hemisphere sharks and differ in coloration and aspects of life history."

(source: )

Source of image:

Some beautiful marine life in Micronesia

Shark diving in Yap from geodive on Vimeo.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Sharks just want to have fun

Well, thanks to Cyndi Lauper we all know that "Girls Just Want to have fun". My apologies if you do not know what I am talking about. Cyndi Lauper is a musician who came out with a song entitled "Girls Just want to have fun", in the 1980s See the following website for more about this song:

Apparently sharks like to have fun too. Just watch this Spinner shark having fun in this video!!:

You are probably wondering like I did the first time I saw this video, why would a shark spin like this?
Is it just having fun, being a shark or is there some reason which shark experts who have watched these sharks for long periods of time, come up with for this behavior of these sharks?

The answer is: "While feeding, the spinner shark uses a leaping and spinning technique to catch fish as they break the surface of the water while passing through a school of swarm fish."
source:  Scientifically this behavior has been described as follows:

"It has an unusual method of feeding, swimming rapidly through schools, spinning along the axis of its body. The shark snaps in all directions at the quickly scattering fish, followed by leaping out of the water. This feeding behavior has also been reported for the blacktip shark (C. limbatus), although to a lesser degree. During feeding and scavenging events, spinner sharks sometimes form aggregations. These sharks have been also reported to scavenge discarded fish from fishing vessels."
(source:  )

The  spinner shark is not aggressive when it comes to human contact and will not attack unless provoked.

This species of shark has a scientific name of , "Carcharhinus brevipinna,  and is found in subtropical waters between 40°N and 40°S near continental and insular shelves.  The  genus name Carcharhinus is derived from the Greek "karcharos" = sharpen and "rhinos" = nose.

Spinner sharks inhabit waters between 0-100 m. It is a highly migratory species in the Gulf of Mexico, where it moves closer inshore in spring and summer

months to reproduce and feed."   sources : and

"Due to the fact that this shark is frequently captured in the commercial and recreational fisheries, it is highly vulnerable to fishing pressure. In addition, the spinner shark utilizes inshore waters as nursery areas making it also susceptible to habitat alteration from development of shoreline areas."

"The spinner shark  species is currently listed by the World Conservation Union (IUCN) as "Near Threatened" throughout its range and "Vulnerable" in the northwest Atlantic Ocean. The IUCN is a global union of states, governmental agencies, and non-governmental organizations in a partnership that assesses the conservation status of species." (source: )

It certainly would be a shame if this amazing shark was fished into extinction! Here is a photo of a spinner shark caught during one of its amazing spins:

Source of image: 
I hope you now find this shark as interesting as I do! This shark certainly deserves the right to live in the oceans, so please do not engage in overfishing if you chose to fish out there in our World's waterways and oceans.

Friday, November 19, 2010

I Pledge Not to Eat Shark Fin Soup" - Campaign Video - English

"I Pledge Not to Eat Shark Fin Soup" - Campaign Video - English from Shark Savers on Vimeo.

2010 Tal Memorial Chess Tournament:final report

The Tal Memorial Chess Tournament finished on November 14. Here are the results from the all of the rounds of play (including the last 3 rounds I had not yet reported on):

These results meant the final standings in the tournament were as follows:

Grandmaster Levon Aronian and Grandmaster Sergei Karjakin share first place because they ended up with the same tie-break.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

A World without Birds? Don't think it is not possible in our World!

Today, an article entitled "None flew over the cuckoo's nest: A world without birds" certainly has caught my attention. This article was published on November 15,2010 in the website ( In this article the following is stated:

"According to Henk Tennekes, a researcher at the Experimental Toxicology Services in Zutphen, the Netherlands, the threat of DDT (to bird populations) has been superseded by a relatively new class of insecticide, known as the neonicotinoids. In his book The Systemic Insecticides: A Disaster in the Making, published this month, Tennekes draws all the evidence together, to make the case that neonicotinoids are causing a catastrophe in the insect world, which is having a knock-on effect for many of our birds."

"Already, in many areas, the skies are much quieter than they used to be. All over Europe, many species of bird have suffered a population crash. Spotting a house sparrow, common swift or a flock of starlings used to be unremarkable, but today they are a more of an unusual sight. Since 1977, Britain's house-sparrow population has shrunk by 68 per cent."

"The common swift has suffered a 41 per cent fall in numbers since 1994, and the starling 26 per cent. The story is similar for woodland birds (such as the spotted flycatcher, willow tit and wood warbler), and farmland birds (including the northern lapwing, snipe, curlew, redshank and song thrush)."

"Ornithologists have been trying desperately to work out what is behind these rapid declines. Urban development, hermetically sealed houses and barns, designer gardens and changing farming practices have all been blamed, but exactly why these birds have fallen from the skies is still largely unexplained."

"However, Tennekes thinks there may be a simple reason. "The evidence shows that the bird species suffering massive decline since the 1990s rely on insects for their diet," he says. He believes that the insect world is no longer thriving, and that birds that feed on insects are short on food."

To read the remainder of this article please click on the following link:

According to the article "Major Decline Found in Some Bird Groups" which was written by Washington Post Staff Writer Juliet Eilperin and published in the paper on March 20,2009,  and which discusses the fact that scientists have noticed a decline of birds in the United States, (see:

the writer states:

"The (bird) species in decline are being affected by climate change, habitat destruction, invasive species and disease, among other factors, the report said. More pedestrian threats, such as collisions with buildings and attacks by feral cats, have diminished birds' numbers in some urban and suburban areas. "

The "report" which is referred to in the above-quoted paragraph, is "The State of the Birds" report, which was created by the United States Federal Government Interior Department and outside experts.

Once again it seems a human invention, and human behaviors are being cited  for threatening another species of life on the planet. Maybe humans should stop using insecticides all-together and see how Mother Nature responds towards such a behavior? Only our human species views some insects as "pests". Why should humans be allowed to use pesticides against certain insects when this may be causing detrimental effects to other forms of life on our Planet? Climate change certainly seems to be at  least partially-caused by human behavior, and habitat destruction is certainly due to human behaviors on this planet! Human behaviors have to change towards our planet and its other life forms,the facts  I have cited in this blog post clearly indicate this is necessary.

Source of image:

Shark advocate interviewed by media:Sonja Fordham

Sonja Fordham, who worked for the Ocean Conservancy and the Shark Alliance before founding her own group, Shark Advocates International, has recently been interviewed regarding the state of shark populations in our oceans. The following is part of the interview which she was involved in with Yale Environment 360 (website at:, which is publication of  the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies.

"Yale Environment 360: I’ve been reading about these absolutely phenomenal numbers of sharks — in the tens of millions — that are killed every year. What is the latest, best scientific estimate?

Sonja Fordham: The best science-based figure is 26 to 73 million sharks.

e360: Per year?

Fordham: Per year. That doesn’t mean that all those sharks were finned, because a lot of shark meat is actually increasingly being used.

e360: What demand is driving this trade? How much of it is growth in China and Asia and the demand for shark fin soup?

Fordham: Shark fin soup is a traditional celebratory dish, a Chinese delicacy. It used to be reserved for royalty and very high levels of society. There obviously has been a boom in the Chinese economy, where more and more people can afford to serve it at their banquets or weddings. It’s a very traditional dish, and these kind of attitudes are not changing overnight. But they are changing. There are a lot of groups working in that region in Asia, trying to educate the public and getting celebrities to pledge to not serve shark fin soup.

Most shark species are particularly vulnerable to overfishing. They tend to There are a lot of people who still remember ‘Jaws’ and are afraid of sharks.”
grow slowly and mature late, and have few young. And we know of many There are a lot of people who still remember ‘Jaws’ and are afraid of sharks.”
cases of serious shark depletion around the world. As you’ve probably read, a good proportion of sharks and rays around the world are deemed threatened by IUCN’s [International Union for the Conservation of Nature] Shark Specialist Group. So we know that there are very few well-managed shark fisheries in the world, and that these species in general are prone to overfishing and need to be managed even more cautiously than we would do with other marine fish."

There is no way that the shark species is going to be around for very long if sharks continue to be overfished especially by Asian Nations!

From the article:

"e360: What is the Chinese government doing about the shark trade? Certainly the fin trade seems to be centered there. Is the Chinese government taking any action?"

"Fordham: Not that I know of. China has in the last few years become much more vocal at international fishery and trade meetings, and it’s mostly in opposition to shark conservation. They were the leading opponents of proposals to list these eight shark species under CITES this year. They weren’t as vocal about their positions before, but certainly now they’re getting more and more vocal."

"e360: In any anti-conservation way?"

"Fordham: Yes, more vocal and strident."

"e360: Has the rise of the shark fin trade, and the concomitant increase in the killing of sharks, tracked China’s economic rise?"

"Fordham: Yes, we saw a real rise starting in the 1980s. But we have many more conservation groups just in the last few years, trying to convince Around the world, too many sharks are being killed, whether it’s for their fins or meat, or both.”

e360: What is the Chinese government doing about the shark trade? Certainly the fin trade seems to be centered there. Is the Chinese government taking any action?

Fordham: Not that I know of. China has in the last few years become much more vocal at international fishery and trade meetings, and it’s mostly in opposition to shark conservation. They were the leading opponents of proposals to list these eight shark species under CITES this year. They weren’t as vocal about their positions before, but certainly now they’re getting more and more vocal.

e360: In any anti-conservation way?

Fordham: Yes, more vocal and strident.

e360: Has the rise of the shark fin trade, and the concomitant increase in the killing of sharks, tracked China’s economic rise?

Fordham: Yes, we saw a real rise starting in the 1980s. But we have many more conservation groups just in the last few years, trying to convince Around the world, too many sharks are being killed, whether it’s for their fins or meat, or both.”

I’d like to add something on the issue of finning, because it does get the most attention, that it’s really important to know that even if we had perfect finning bans all over the world, that alone would not save sharks. We also need concrete limits on shark catches. Around the world, too many sharks are being killed, whether it’s for their fins or meat, or both, or by accident."

You can read the entire interview by going to the following website:

Please visit Sonia Fordham's shark initiative website at: 

If China and its Asian neighbor countries, as well as other nations of the World want to over-fish sharks why wouldn't they also over-fish other species of fish and sea life which all humans have a right to access? Why wouldn't they also engage in other selfish actions (such as  over-consuming the World's fresh water supply to satisfy their selfish needs?)

 By acting as they are, the Chinese people  and their allies are being selfish and irresponsible, and it is time that definite economic,political and social measures are drawn up against the Chinese and their allies,  by nations interested in conserving shark and fish species on our planet!  We can all send a message to the Chinese and their allies by ending our consumption of their goods and services. Only if we send such a message to them will they possibly  consider the consequences of their actions on all peoples on our planet!

Source of image: 

CBC News - Technology & Science - Planet from another galaxy discovered

CBC News - Technology & Science - Planet from another galaxy discovered

"Today scientists indicated today that they have found the first known planet to orbit a star that began its life outside our own Milky Way galaxy." To read the entire article about this discovery please click on the link above.

The planet was discovered by the star known as "HIP 13044", which exists
about 2,000 light years from Earth in the southern constellation of Fornax.Fornax the Furnace is one the hardest Southern Hemisphere constellations to find because of its dim stars. Here is where Fornax is located:

Source of Star Map: 

To read more about this discovery please visit the following websites:

Here is a  video about this discovery: source:

Big fish seen surviving in depleted oceans - study | Reuters

Big fish seen surviving in depleted oceans - study | Reuters

To read an article which discusses the fact that some scientists now suggest that overfishing will not kill off the apex predators of the ocean, please click on the link above this sentence.

Mediterranean sharks are Australian immigrants : Nature News

Mediterranean sharks are Australian immigrants : Nature News

To read an article which discusses the scientific finding that Great White sharks found to be living in the Mediterranean Sea may be descended from a single small Australian population please click on the link above this sentence.

Here are links to other articles about this scientific finding:

Eleventh Hour for Tuna and Sharks - NatGeo News Watch

Eleventh Hour for Tuna and Sharks - NatGeo News Watch

Please click on the link above to read an important article concerning Tuna and Sharks and their status in our World.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

How Great white sharks made it to the Mediterranean

The Mediterranean Sea is connected to the Atlantic Ocean by the Strait of Gibraltar on the west and to the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea, by the Dardanelles and the Bosporus respectively, on the east. However
  these connections to other waters are extremely short in magnitude. Why am I bringing up the Mediterranean Sea and these connections to other bodies of water? Please read below the map.

To read an interesting article which discusses how Great  White sharks came to populate the Mediterranean Ocean please click on the following link which will take you to part of the NBC television network website"

You can see a list of all of the species of sharks which live in the Mediterranean Ocean by clicking on the following link: 

Source of image:

Source of map: 

Filming, Tracking, Protecting the Elusive Wolverine | Guest Writer | Travel & Outdoors | NewWest.Net

Filming, Tracking, Protecting the Elusive Wolverine | Guest Writer | Travel & Outdoors | NewWest.Net

To read an article about a PBS  documentary about Wolverines which aired last weekend on the PBS network please click on the link above this line.

Source of image:

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

New research study concludes Earth's lower atmosphere is definitely warming

According to a new scientific study which examined 40 years of data, the Earth's lower atmosphere (known scientifically as the troposphere)  (see image below)   is definitely warming.

According to an article about this new research which you can read at the following website: the scientific paper in which these findings are revealed, "documents how, since the development of the very first climate models in the early 1960s, the troposphere has been projected to warm along with the Earth's surface because of the increasing amounts of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. This expectation has not significantly changed even with major advances in climate models and is in accord with our basic physical understanding of atmospheric processes."

"In the 1990s, observations did not show the troposphere, particularly in the tropics, to be warming, even though surface temperatures were rapidly warming. "

"This lack of tropospheric warming was used by some to question both the reality of the surface warming trend and the reliability of climate models as tools. This new paper extensively reviews the relevant scientific analyses -- 195 cited papers, model results and atmospheric data sets -- and finds that there is no longer evidence for a fundamental discrepancy and that the troposphere is warming."

Well maybe this is the final word on Global Warming,  based upon the fact that  this study  examined longitudinal data, which is more reliable.

Some key scientific facts concerning the troposphere are these:

  • Troposphere
    • Contains 90 Percent of the Atmosphere's mass
    • Weather occurs in this layer.
    • Temperature in this layer decreases with altitude
    • The atmospheric layer which begins at the Earth's surface is known as the Troposphere. It begins at the surface and extends upward 4 to 12 miles (7-20 km). The height of the Troposphere is greatest at the equator, approximately 11-12 miles (18 - 20 km), and it decreases to just under 4 miles (7 km) high near the North and South poles. At the upper surface of the Troposphere is a transition boundary known as the tropopause. The Troposphere and the tropopause are both known as the lower atmosphere (2009).
    • (source:  )

  •  If this area is warming then we can now understand why some of  the dramatic changes in our weather throughout our planet have been experienced by us in these last years.

     Source of image:

    Indonesia creates a marine sanctuary

    "Indonesia has declared a vast sanctuary for sharks, turtles and manta rays in a region known as one of the world's richest sources of marine biodiversity, officials and conservationists said Tuesday."

    "The sanctuary covers 46,000 square kilometres (17,760 square miles) of waters around the Raja Ampat islands in eastern Indonesia, part of the so-called Coral Triangle region of Southeast Asia."

    "Sharks, manta rays, mobulas, dugongs and turtles are fully protected within the sanctuary, and destructive practices including reef bombing and the aquarium fish trade are banned, local officials said."

    "Sharks, as apex predators, play a vital role in regulating the health of important commercial fish species, population balance, and coral reefs," conservation group Shark Savers and the Misool Eco Resort, which are supporting the sanctuary, said in a statement."

    "Despite this importance, up to 73 million sharks are killed annually with some shark populations declining by as much as 90 percent, mostly for shark fin soup."

    "In Raja Ampat, three fourths of its shark species are threatened with local extinction."


    This is great news for marine life which lives in this area of the world,I commend the people who got together to think of this idea and implement it to help save these species from being possibly going extinct.I hope other nations in our World follow the lead of Indonesia and create sanctuaries like this in their marine ecosystems!

    Saturday, November 13, 2010

    Elasmosearch:a web browser designed by and for shark enthusiasts

    I just discovered some of my friends who love sharks have created a special seach engine for people such as myself. This search engine is called Elasmosearch and can be accessed by going to the following website:

    Friday, November 12, 2010

    Scientists gain a better understanding of how fear occurs in our brain

    According to new research which was published at the http:/ website, scientists have gained a better understanding of how humans come to evoke a fear response.This new understanding also relates to a better understanding of the "fear circuit" in the human brain."These scientific researchers have discovered that a microcircuit in the amygdala that controls, or "gates," the outflow of fear from that region of the brain."
    "Fear begins in your brain, and it is there -- specifically in an almond-shaped structure called the amygdala -- that it is controlled, processed and let out of the gate to kick off the rest of the fear response."
    The microcircuit in question, a scientist named  David J. Anderson, the Benzer Professor of Biology at Caltech and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator " explains, contains two subtypes of neurons that are antagonistic -- have opposing functions -- and that control the level of fear output from the amygdala by acting like a seesaw."
    "Imagine that one end of a seesaw is weighted and normally sits on a garden hose, preventing water -- in this analogy, the fear impulse -- from flowing through it," says Anderson. "When a signal that triggers a fear response arrives, it presses down on the opposite end of the seesaw, lifting the first end off the hose and allowing fear, like water, to flow." Once the flow of fear has begun, that impulse can be transmitted to other regions of the brain that control fearful behavior, such as freezing in place.
    "Now that we know about this 'seesaw' mechanism," he adds, "it may someday provide a new target for developing more specific drugs for treating fear-based psychiatric illnesses like post-traumatic stress disorder, phobias, or anxiety disorders."
    "The key to understanding this delicate mechanism, Anderson says, was in uncovering "markers" -- genes that would identify and allow for the scientists to discriminate between the different neuronal cell types in the amygdala. Anderson's group, led by postdoctoral fellow Wulf Haubensak, found its marker in a gene that encodes an enzyme known as protein kinase C-delta (PKCδ). PKCδ is expressed in about half the neurons within a subdivision of the amygdala's central nucleus, the part of the amygdala that controls fear output."


    This new research  concering the functioning of the "fear cicuit" in the Human brain certainly gives those of us who experience anxiety some hope,that these findings may be used to find new ways or new longer-lasting or more effective medication to help us deal with these sensations which are so hard to deal with on a daily basis!
    Source of image:

    New Scientific research about sharks:they help scientists understand the state of the World's oceans

    New scientific research has been released to the public today for the first time, and it gives scientists a better understanding  of the relationship between  aquatic life which sharks interact with and this life's relationship with its environment. As well because of this research scientists now assert that they will have a  benchmark for the health of our oceans.

    "The joint study between researchers at The University of Western Australia and The University of Queensland looked at the visual adaptations of four species of wobbegong sharks, which are also known as carpet sharks."

    "The study examined the western wobbegong (Orectolobus hutchinsi) and the dwarf spotted wobbegong (Orectolobus parvimaculatus, which are both found off Western Australia, as well as the ornate wobbegong (Orectolobus ornatus) and the spotted wobbegong (Orectolobus maculatus) found off Queensland."

    "The researchers found that the eyesight of the western and ornate wobbegongs was suited to both day and night activities, whereas the spotted and dwarf spotted wobbegongs were better adapted to low light conditions."

    "WA Premier's Research Fellow and Winthrop Professor Shaun Collin, Associate Professor Nathan Hart and UQ's Dr Susan Theiss said the results would lead to a better understanding of the sensory systems of marine life and help scientists better predict reactions to a change in light conditions."

    "Dr Theiss said the sharks' visual adaptations were linked to factors such as their diet, habitat, whether in shallow or deep waters, and their reproductive behaviours."

    "This research is important in establishing general trends and predictions in biogeography and ecology that we don't yet have data for," Dr Theiss said. "

    "If we can understand their habitat, we can extrapolate and make informed decisions about other sharks and rays and how they are able to survive in different light environments.

    To read more about this research please visit the following website:

    Once again a shark species gives us a hand at improving our understanding of the World!

    Source of image of  Wobbegong Shark:

    Ever wonder how cats drink? So have an explanation

    Scientists investigate and try to understand many things about the World. Now they have investigated the question as to how cats drink. To read about their research please click on the following link:
    Source of image:

    Thursday, November 11, 2010

    2010 Tal Memorial Chess Tournament:round 6 results and standings,round 7 pairings

    The sixth round of the 2010 Tal Memorial  Chess Tournament was played today in Moscow.Here are results from all the games:(the player on the left had the white pieces in the game): Below these results is the 6th round crosstable:

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    Round 6 (November 11, 2010)
    Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar - Eljanov, Pavel1-0 49D11Slav Defence
    Karjakin, Sergey - Grischuk, Alexander½-½ 46B90Sicilian Najdorf Variation
    Nakamura, Hikaru - Wang Hao½-½ 25C11French Defence
    Gelfand, Boris - Kramnik, Vladimir½-½ 32E10Blumenfeld Counter Gambit
    Shirov, Alexei - Aronian, Levon½-½ 33C89Ruy Lopez Marshall

    Tal Memorial 2010 | Round 6 standings

    Tal Memorial 2010 | Schedule and pairings
    Here are the results from all the rounds thus far as well as the pairings for round 7 (the player on the left has the white pieces in the game):

    Tal Memorial 2010 | Schedule and pairings

    Motivation,successful habits and other helpful ideas

    My friend Alan Loomis has some new interesting and very practical ideas to help us. Here are  links to some of his latest blog  posts: 

    Source of image: 

    Wednesday, November 10, 2010

    Saturn's Giant Storms, Hidden Rings, and Bizarre Moons

    Saturn's Giant Storms, Hidden Rings, and Bizarre Moons
    To read a scientific article which discusses new research concerning the rings of Saturn and the planet's weather patterns, please click on the
    link above.This will send you to a page of the Discovery website.
    Source of image:

    "Ringing in the Ears" Is Actually More Like "Ringing in the Brain"

    "Ringing in the Ears" Is Actually More Like "Ringing in the Brain"
    If you have ringing in the ears (also known as tinnitus) like I do, you should read a new article about the condition which was posted to the on-line edition of Discover Magazine. This magazine is science-orientated and has been in existence for many years.Please click on the top sentence to be directed to the article. New research indicates that the brain of a tinnitus sufferer is involved also in this condition. You may also want to read the following research study  about tinnitus at:

    2010 Tal Memorial Chess Tournament:round 5 results and standings,round 6 pairings

    The fifth round of the 2010 Tal Memorial Chess Tournament was played today in Moscow, here are the results from this round of play:

    (the player on the left had the white pieces in the game):

    Aronian - Karjakin draw,
    Grischuk - Mamedyarov draw,
    Kramnik - Wang Hao draw,
    Shirov - Nakamura draw,
    Eljanov - Gelfand 1-0.

    You can play through the moves from all the games by going to the following websites:

    (the chessdom website has some computer program analysis (Stockfish) of every game from the 5th round of play).

    These results mean the following standing exist in the tournament after 5 rounds of play:

    Here are the pairings for the sixth-round of the tournament (the player on the left has the white pieces in the game):

    Nakamura-Wang Hao

    Best wishes to all the players for round 6! 

    Similarities between marine and terrestrial predators found to exist

    Source of Bullshark image:

    Source of Wolf image:Photograph by Ian McAllister/Getty Images

    Interesting new research links the behavior of marine and terrestrial predators ( sharks and Wolves). What is this research? Pleases continue reading.

    "Similarities (exist) between the importance of large predators in marine and terrestrial environments, researchers concluded in a recent study, which examined the interactions between wolves and elk in the United States, as well as sharks and dugongs in Australia"

    "In each case, the major predators help control the populations of their prey, scientists said. But through what’s been called the “ecology of fear” they also affect the behavior of the prey, with ripple impacts on other aspects of the ecosystem and an ecological significance that goes far beyond these species."

    To read more about this research please click on the following link:

    Monday, November 8, 2010

    Stop buying goods and services from Japan!

    I have been made aware of some absolutely disgusting behavior on the part of the some members of the  Japanese Population. According to a report at the Sea Shepard Conservation society, Japanese fisherman have been deliberately slaughtering dolphins in the waters off of Japan. More specially, in the area of Taiji, dolphins have been deliberately trapped in waters in a cove and slaughtered!!


    This behavior of these Japanese can not be tolerated!  Dolphins are intelligent, social creatures who have just as much right if not more right to be on the planet as we do!

    More than 2 million people from 151 countries have signed online petitions urging an end to the slaughter of dolphins in Japan, I hope you join us and do this to serve as the voice of these Dolphins. You can sign such a petition (letter) by going to this website: 

    Dolphin Drive Hunting is done yearly by the Japanese! The Japanese deliberately slaughter these dolphins because they say these dolphins are eating fish, fish which only the Japanese have a "right" to eat. The Japanese do not even eat the meat  from these slaughtered dolphins! What defense do the Japanese use to rationalize their slaughter of these gorgeous and intelligent social animals who live in social groups like human families? They suggest this barbaric behavior of theirs is a "tradition"!!!!

    "The Japanese government, which allows about 19,000 dolphins to be killed each year, acknowledges that dolphin meat is contaminated with mercury, but denies it's dangerous unless consumed in huge quantities."Still, most Japanese don't know about the annual dolphin hunt, and dolphin meat is hardly eaten in Japan."

    Well those of you from Japan who do not know this is happening now do,and I hope you voice your discontent and disapproval of this barbaric killing with your Government officials!

    Source of quoted information above: 

    "Embarrassed by activists' footage, Japanese officials now prohibit any photos or video of the slaughter and attempt to seal off the areas with signs warning of fake dangers, and use canvas walls and blue tarps to prohibit viewing of the areas."


    Please click on this link in order to watch a video about this abhorrent and disgusting behavior of these Japanese: 

    Please visit the following websites to learn about things you can do to stop the slaughter of these beautiful and intelligent animals:

    The only voice these dolphins have is your voice!!

    Source of image:

    Visit GM Alexandra Kosteniuk's Women's Chess Blog:Please click on the image below:

    Visit GM Alexandra Kosteniuk's Women's Chess Blog:Please click on the image below:
    Chess needs more women and girl participants and administrators!

    Thoughts worth thinking about

    "Our subconscious minds have no sense of humor, play no jokes and cannot tell the difference between reality and an imagined thought or image. What we continually think about eventually will manifest in our lives."-Sidney Madwed

    Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every woman and man present their views without penalty, there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.- Albert Einstein Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. - Leo Buscaglia

    A person's true wealth is the good he or she does in the world. - Mohammed

    Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty. -Albert Einstein

    The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others. - Ghandi

    The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves. - Helen Keller

    Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism. Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be human can, paradoxically, make yourself a happier and more productive person. - Dr. David M. Burns

    Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures. -His Holiness The Dalai Lama

    Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals. And in this respect mankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it. -

    Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being

    The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. -George Bernard Shaw

    Ego's trick is to make us lose sight of our interdependence. That kind of ego-thought gives us a perfect justification to look out only for ourselves. But that is far from the truth. In reality we all depend on each other and we have to help each other. The husband has to help his wife, the wife has to help the husband, the mother has to help her children, and the children are supposed to help the parents too, whether they want to or not.-Gehlek Rinpoche Source: "The Best Buddhist Writing 2005 pg. 165

    The hostile attitude of conquering nature ignores the basic interdependence of all things and events---that the world beyond the skin is actually an extension of our own bodies---and will end in destroying the very environment from which we emerge and upon which our whole life depends.