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Archive for June 15th, 2014

Japanese Driving Eel to Extinction

Posted by feww on June 15, 2014


Japanese eel at risk of extinction:  IUCN

Japanese eel (Anguilla japonicais) is at risk of extinction, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), a global conservation group based in Switzerland.

The group placed the eel  on its Red List on Thursday, which classes Japanese eels as “endangered.”

An endangered species is one which has been categorized by IUCN as likely to become extinct, or the second most severe conservation status for wild populations, following “critically endangered.”

Overfishing, shrinking  habitats, changes in sea current and deterioration of water quality are cited by IUCN as grounds for the designation.

The list is not legally binding; however, it would probably make little or no difference to the Japanese who have already begun whaling in defiance of the International Court of Justice recent ruling.

Se also: Japan Kills 30 Whales in 1st Hunt Since ICJ Ruling

IUCN Red List

All known mammal species have been assessed using the IUCN Red List categories and criteria, according to the group.

The term “Threatened” refers to those species classified under the IUCN Red List categories of Vulnerable, Endangered, or Critically Endangered.

Of the 5,487 mammal species assessed, nearly one-quarter of species (22.2 %) are globally threatened or extinct, representing 1,219 species. Seventy-six of the 1,219 species are considered to be Extinct (EX), and two Extinct in the Wild (EW).

Some 3,079 animals and 2,655 plant species are now endangered (EN) globally, compared with about 1,100 in each category, just 15 years ago.

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Whooping Cough Epidemic Declared in California

Posted by feww on June 15, 2014


3,458 reported cases, two infant deaths, prompt authorities to declare statewide Pertussis Epidemic in Calif.

The Golden State has reported 3,458 cases of the disease including two infant deaths, so far this year.  The figure is reportedly on track to reach or surpass the 9,163 cases reported in 2010—the last epidemic year.

California health authorities have declared a pertussis epidemic after a 20-folds increase in the number of infections was reported over that last two weeks. Statewide cases soared from about 90 per month to more than 800 since June 1, a two-week period.

Meantime, director of the California Department of Public Health has urged “all pregnant women to get vaccinated.” He has also urged “parents to vaccinate infants as soon as possible.”

Infants aged 12 months or younger face the greatest risk of illness or death from pertussis infection, said CDC.

What’s Pertussis (Whooping Cough) – sourced from CDC

Pertussis, also known as whooping cough, is a highly contagious respiratory disease caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis.

These bacteria attach to the cilia (tiny, hair-like extensions) that line part of the upper respiratory system. The bacteria release toxins, which damage the cilia and cause inflammation (swelling).

Pertussis is known for uncontrollable, violent coughing which often makes it hard to breathe. After fits of many coughs, someone with pertussis often needs to take deep breathes which result in a “whooping” sound.

infannt diagnosed with pertussis
A female infant diagnosed as pertussis. Pertussis is a highly communicable, vaccine-preventable disease due to Bordetella pertussis, a gram-negative coccobacillus, lasting for many weeks and typically afflicts children with severe coughing, whooping, and posttussive vomiting.

Transmission [sourced from CDC]

Pertussis is a highly contagious disease found in humans and is spread from person to person by coughing or sneezing while in close contact with others. Many infants who get pertussis are infected by older siblings, parents or caregivers who might not even know they are carrying the bacteria. Symptoms of pertussis usually develop within 7–10 days after being exposed, but sometimes not for as long as 6 weeks.

While pertussis vaccines are the most effective tool available to prevent this disease, no vaccine is 100% effective. If pertussis is circulating in the community, there is a chance that a fully vaccinated person, of any age, can catch this very contagious disease. For those vaccinated, the infection is usually less severe.

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Strong Quake Strikes near Ninetyeast Ridge

Posted by feww on June 15, 2014


M6.4 Event Occurs SW of Sumatra

Centered at 10.056°S, 91.056°E, the event 0curred at a depth depth of 7.1km (4.4mi), prompting Australian authorities to to issue a tsunami warning for Cocos Island, which has since been canceled.

EQ Details

Magnitude: 6.4Mw

Event Time: 2014-06-14 11:11:00UTC

Location: 10.056°S 91.056°E depth=7.1km (4.4mi)
Nearby Cities:

  • 671km (417mi) WNW of West Island, Cocos Islands
  • 1418km (881mi) WSW of Bengkulu, Indonesia
  • 1439km (894mi) SW of Padang, Indonesia
  • 1442km (896mi) SW of Sungaipenuh, Indonesia

An undersea earthquake of magnitude 6.6 occurred at 9:11 PM EST on Saturday 14
June 2014 [2014-06-14 11:11:00UTC] near (?)  SOUTH INDIAN OCEAN (latitude 10.12S, longitude 90.91E) posing a
tsunami threat to Australia.

EQ Location Map

90east ridge quake
Source: USGS/EHP


The next detailed FIRE-EARTH Earthquake Forecast will be released together with Bulletin NO. 107  on Monday June 16, 2014.



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