Rare weatherfish discovery in the Netherlands


This video is called European weather loach, Misgurnus fossilis, “chewing sand”.

Translated from the Dutch RAVON ichthyologists:

Thursday, November 27th, 2014

The weatherfish has been found again after 20 years in the Drentsche Aa river area. A single ranger was still able to recall that this loach species occurred about 20 years ago in the catchment area of the Drentsche Aa. Since then, attempts to see the fish were always unsuccessful. On the basis of DNA testing it could be demonstrated that the species fortunately is still present in the area.

Hundreds of thousands of amphibians helped to cross


This video from Massachusetts in the USA says about itself:

Berkshire Amphibian Migration — via Berkshire Oudoors

14 March 2012

Video copyright: Berkshire Outdoors.

Join Rene Wendell, resident naturalist at The Trustees of ReservationsBartholomew’s Cobble in Sheffield, MA, as he takes a group of volunteers into a misty March (2011) night to help migrating amphibians cross a busy road. We encounter: spotted salamanders, spring peepers, wood frogs, four toe salamanders, red backed salamanders, and an American toad.

Translated from the Dutch RAVON herpetologists:

The Netherlands helps over sixteen kilometers of amphibians to cross roads

Post published by RAVON Foundation on Wednesday, November 26th, 2014

A traffic jam from Almere to Amsterdam; so long would the procession of toads, frogs and salamanders be, if all animals helped by volunteers to cross roads in the spring of 2014 would be put behind one another. The toad working groups during the months of March and April are estimated to have helped a total of more than 230,000 amphibians across the roads. These are about 50,000 more than last year but still not as many as in the boom years 2008, 2010 and 2011, when more than 300,000 amphibians were transferred.

The complete spring 2014 report is here.

London Michael Brown solidarity report


This video from England is called Black Lives Matter. Clashes as THOUSANDS of LONDONERS protest racism.

By Joana Ramiro in Britain:

Michael Brown solidarity march shuts down Oxford Street

Thursday 27th November 2014

TRAFFIC in central London came to a standstill on Wednesday night when a protest over the shooting of black US teen Michael Brown sparked a spontaneous march through the streets.

Hundreds of anti-racist activists attending the London to Ferguson solidarity vigil outside the US embassy swarmed between buses on cars on some of the city’s busiest roads.

Demonstrators held placards reading: “Black lives matter” and “Who protects black people from the police?” as they weaved their way down Oxford Street and past Parliament before finishing at Scotland Yard.

Many had been assembling in front of the US embassy since 7pm but the march grew in size as they marched through the city.

One of the marchers, Booey, told the Star she hadn’t come to fight but that as a black person she had to come and show her anger at “racist police.”

She said: “We’ve done being peaceful, we’ve done sitting back and letting things happen, so we thought we should make some noise.”

The march had set off spontaneously when the London to Ferguson rally in Grosvenor Square came to an end.

Tension was palpable, with hundreds chanting: “No justice, no peace” as speakers criticised the cops.

The slogan was also daubed on the walls of a construction site as the march moved through London.

London Campaign Against Police and State Violence speaker Steffney O’Connor shouted: “Ferguson is England — everywhere you look we see Ferguson around us.

“We do not live in a democracy,” she went on to the sound of others screaming “never again.”

Defend the Right to Protest spokeswoman Hannah Dee called for unity in the fight against racism saying: “This is a struggle that knows no borders.”

She added: “This isn’t a moment, this is a movement!”

As the march set off, police officers and vehicles attempted to tail the group, but they were clearly unprepared for the sudden burst of anger.

There were cries of “fuck the police,” but the demonstration remained peaceful.

It all ended a few hours later with a protest at Scotland Yard HQ.

Ferguson: mass arrests at protest in California despite relative calm in Missouri. In Los Angeles and Oakland, demonstrators took to the streets for a third night to show solidarity with the family of Michael Brown: here.

Michael Brown’s killing in August continues to send shockwaves through Ferguson, Missouri, and beyond: here.

St. Louis County prosecutors may have misled the grand jury investigating the police shooting of Michael Brown into believing that Ferguson, Missouri, police officer Darren Wilson was justified in shooting Brown merely because the unarmed black 18-year-old fled from the officer, according to a review of the grand jury documents by MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell: here.

The five leaders who failed Ferguson. The crisis in Ferguson has been made worse by serious failures in public administration by police chiefs, regional leaders and even the state’s governor: here.

The grand jury decision has shocked some, dismayed others, and confirmed what many believe — justice for young African American men is applied haphazardly at best. But the more concerning questions for me loom around the lack of transparency and due process. While many in Ferguson, MO and around the world believe nothing short of a guilty verdict would be acceptable, the fact that the accused doesn’t even have to go trial is most concerning: here.

While US retailers are flooding social media with plugs for the latest Black Friday deals, activists angry about the failure to indict a white police officer who shot and killed an unarmed black teenager earlier this year are using that same space to urge a boycott of the big shopping day.Using the hashtags #BlackOutBlackFriday, #HandsUpDontSpend, #NotOneDime and #BrownFriday, Twitter users across the country are showing solidarity with the cause: here.

Rare spectacled hare-wallaby seen in Western Australia


This video from Australia is about the rufous hare-wallaby. They are relatives of the recenttly rediscovered spectacled hare-wallaby.

From Wildlife Extra:

Rare Spectacled Hare-wallaby sighted in Western Australia

The threatened Spectacled Hare-wallaby has been sighted near Broome in Australia after nearly a decade without any recorded sightings in Kimberley region.

Although the species is widespread throughout other parts of northern Australia, the wallaby, which gets its name from its distinctive orange fur that surrounds each eye, is considered very rare in the Kimberley region and numbers here are declining.

“We need to keep a close eye on the threats to this rare and fascinating animal so we get the right information to help it survive into the future,” said Dr Alexander Watson of WWF-Australia.

“Their shelter and feeding requirements make them highly sensitive to habitat changes, so assessing their numbers is a good indicator of overall health of the local environment.”

The Spectacled hare-wallaby uses large grass tussocks for shelter from predators and the extremely hot daytime temperatures. Inappropriate fire regimes and trampling by larger animals can put the wallaby at risk of exposure.

The Spectacled hare-wallaby is well suited for life in extreme arid conditions, having adapted to extract and retain water from their food. However, their population is still at risk from modern threats such as introduced predators, grazing, frequent fires and extreme weather events like droughts.

Alaska Michael Brown solidarity demonstration


Anchorage Michael Brown solidarity demonstrators

From Alaska Public Media:

Anchorage Residents Demonstrate in Solidarity with Ferguson, MO

By Anne Hillman, KSKA – Anchorage

November 26, 2014

About 25 people stood on the corner of C and 7th in downtown Anchorage on Wednesday evening holding signs reading “Black lives matter” and “His name was Michael Brown.” They gathered to stand in solidarity with the people of Ferguson, Missouri. The white police officer who shot an unarmed black teenager in August was acquitted earlier this week. The ruling set off renewed protests and riots in Missouri and around the country.

Michael Patterson put out the call for the gathering on Facebook. He says the shooting of the teen, Michael Brown, impacts him personally and highlights racism against all people of color.

“I’m African-American and I live in a country where property is valued over my life and over my people,” he says. “And I think particularly in Alaska there’s a historical precedence of taking people’s land and then developing it and disenfranchising them from the democratic process.”

Patterson says the reaction of protestors and rioters around the country is understandable. Michael Brown’s shooting was a tipping point. He says the rioters are following a historical precedent.

“Everyone talks about the Boston Tea Party like it’s a great thing. It’s literally the same thing that’s happening” right now in response to the ruling in Ferguson, he says. “People are revolting against the system by destroying property because property is valued more than human life in this country.”

Community member Arenza Thigpen Jr. attended the event. He says the police and justice systems need to change or protests and riots will continue. He suggests starting Community Review Boards to examine police actions, even here in Alaska.

“Allow the community to be involved in a way that has not really been touched off yet. Because after all, police are protecting that community and those residents need to be involved in the process of determining if action was sufficient.”

Thigpen says he thinks race relations between African-Americans and the police are better in Anchorage than in other areas, but he still thinks there needs to be more cultural training within the force.

Many participants said they were at the event because they thought Alaska Natives were sometimes treated unfairly by law enforcement agents in Anchorage. They said all inequalities in the state needed to be addressed.

5 Key Inconsistencies in What Happened During the Michael Brown Shooting. Where the accounts of Darren Wilson and witnesses don’t add up: here.