First fossil great white shark nursery discovered


This September 2014 video says about itself:

Scientists discover a great white shark pupping ground in the Sea of Cortez.

From the University of Vienna in Austria:

First fossil nursery of the great white shark discovered

Paleo-kindergarten ensured evolutionary success millions of years ago

May 22, 2020

Summary: An international research team discovered the first fossil nursery area of the great white shark, Carcharodon carcharias in Chile. This discovery provides a better understanding of the evolutionary success of the largest top predator in today’s oceans in the past and could contribute to the protection of these endangered animals.

The great white shark is one of the most charismatic, but also one of the most infamous sharks. Despite its importance as top predator in marine ecosystems, it is considered threatened with extinction; its very slow growth and late reproduction with only few offspring are — in addition to anthropogenic reasons — responsible for this.

Young white sharks are born in designated breeding areas, where they are protected from other predators until they are large enough not to fear competitors any more. Such nurseries are essential for maintaining stable and sustainable breeding population sizes, have a direct influence on the spatial distribution of populations and ensure the survival and evolutionary success of species. Researchers have therefore intensified the search for such nurseries in recent years in order to mitigate current population declines of sharks by suitable protection measures. “Our knowledge about current breeding grounds of the great white shark is still very limited, however, and palaeo-nurseries are completely unknown,” explains Jaime Villafaña from the University of Vienna.

He and his colleagues analysed statistically 5 to 2 million-year-old fossil teeth of this fascinating shark, which were found at several sites along the Pacific coast of Chile and Peru, to reconstruct body size distribution patterns of great white shark in the past. The results show that body sizes varied considerably along the South American paleo-Pacific coast. One of these localities in northern Chile, Coquimbo, revealed the highest percentage of young sharks, the lowest percentage of “teenagers.” Sexually mature animals were completely absent.

This first undoubted paleo-nursery of the Great White Shark is of enormous importance. It comes from a time when the climate was much warmer than today, so that this time can be considered analogous to the expected global warming trends in the future. “If we understand the past, it will enable us to take appropriate protective measures today to ensure the survival of this top predator, which is of utmost importance for ecosystems,” explains palaeobiologist Jürgen Kriwet: “Our results indicate that rising sea surface temperatures will change the distribution of fish in temperate zones and shift these important breeding grounds in the future.”

This would have a direct impact on population dynamics of the great white shark and would also affect its evolutionary success in the future. “Studies of past and present nursery grounds and their response to temperature and paleo-oceanographic changes are essential to protect such ecological key species,” concluded Jürgen Kriwet.

British schools during COVID-19, parody song


This 22 March 2020 satiric music video from Britain is called The Iain Duncan Smiths – The Deadmaster Ritual.

It is a parody of the song The Headmaster Ritual by The Smiths.

It says about itself:

The #GetBackToSchool single from The Iain Duncan Smiths.

LYRICS:

Belligerent ghouls send kids back to schools
Spineless swines with bald minds
Sir IDS briefing the press
On behalf of Big Big Business
Blair and Blunkett and Alan Johnson
Complete the gegenpress

Don’t want you at home
Get out and learn
Free up your parents to go out and earn

We could even do Fit For School tests
Where we thwack you on the knees
Knee you in the groin
Throw pencils at your head
Give you full marks if you’re not dead

You’ll want to go home
But you’ll have to stay

Belligerent ghouls send kids back to schools
Down with social distancing rules!
Sir IDS is not impressedWith your weakling indecisiveness
Can’t do the military two-step
But I’ll get Mark Francois to stand on your neck

Get out of your homes
Let teachers be heroes
Lay down your lives to give dividends extra zeroes

Please excuse me, you say
I’ve got this terrible cough coming on
I’ll grab you off the beach
And pump you full of bleach
Grab you off the beach and pump you full of bleach
You’ll want to go home
But you’ll have to stay

European workers, footballers fight premature back-to-work


This 20 May 2020 video from the USA is called The murderous pseudoscience of “herd immunity“, with Andre Damon.

By Peter Lazenby in Britain today:

Staff revolt forces Dyson to abandon return-to-work call

DYSON has been forced hastily to retract its “get back to work” order to staff following workers’ defiant mutiny.

Thousands of Dyson staff have been working from home in line with government advice, but managers attempted to force them back in following PM Boris Johnson’s confusing “stay alert – work from home if you can” advice, including those with vulnerable family members.

However, staff, including workers from factories at Hullavington and Malmesbury in Wiltshire and London offices, rebelled and continued to work from home.

From the World Socialist Web Site, 22 May 2020:

UK Dyson engineering workers defy back-to-work order

Management at the Dyson engineering firm were forced to rescind a back-to-work order sent out Friday after a revolt by its UK workforce. The action took place independently of the Unite trade union.

Owned by the UK’s richest man, Sir James Dyson (total wealth £16.2 billion), the company order breached government guidelines “to work from home, if you can.” Workers were expected to return to Dyson’s Wiltshire factories in Hullavington and Malmsebury from Monday on a two-shift rotating pattern.

A worker told the Guardian, “Everyone was very unhappy. … As a company we were pretty proud of James [Dyson] a few weeks ago, trying to make a difference with the CoVent project [a plan to manufacture ventilators].

“…in a few weeks it’s all turned around. If they’d had their way, there would have been 2,500 people in the office and I’d estimate 60% of those could work from home.”

The campus stayed open during the pandemic, with 450 employees working on the Dyson CoVent (ventilator). The Johnson government initially ordered 10,000, before informing Dyson last month that they would not be required.

Walkout by postal staff in Peterborough, England, over COVID-19 fears

Royal Mail workers at Peterborough delivery office walked out on May 16 after a line manager tested positive for COVID-19.

The Communication Workers’ Union (CWU) members were concerned that the manager was operating in the delivery office while failing to abide by social distancing. Following the walkout, several other staff were tested and found to be positive for the disease.

Since the COVID-19 outbreak, there have been actions by postal workers to protect themselves. In March, walkouts took place in Southwark, London, and Bridgwater in the south-west, and on April 17, by postal workers at Bury St. Edmunds delivery office, Suffolk, for 90 minutes.

Also in April, postal workers took unofficial action over safety at Chatham, Southampton, Stoke-on-Trent, Warrington, Didcot, Edinburgh, Alloa and Fife. …

Last month, a 25-year-old Bpost employee died from COVID-19. The worker was at the time the youngest victim of the coronavirus pandemic in Belgium’s Limburg province.

Belgian health staff turn backs on prime minister in protest

On Saturday, doctors and nurses at Saint-Pierre university hospital in the Belgian capital, Brussels, turned their backs on Belgian Prime Minister Sophie Wilmès.

Wilmès was making an unofficial visit to the hospital. Scores of medics and nursing staff lined the road leading up to the hospital. One by one, the workers turned their backs on the prime minister as her car entered the hospital grounds. After coming to a stop, Wilmès quickly alighted from the car and went into the hospital building without attempting to speak to health staff.

The health care staff were protesting the government’s handling of the COVID-19 crisis. Belgium, with 55,000 confirmed cases and over 9,000 deaths, has one of the worst mortality rates in the world.

Workers were particularly angered by legislation brought in May 4 whereby unqualified staff could perform nursing duties during the pandemic. Nurses are calling for the legislation to be overturned, backed by the General Union of Belgian Nurses. …

Strike threat by tram drivers in Swedish city of Gothenburg

Swedish tram drivers in Gothenburg threatened to walk off the job at 3 p.m. Tuesday over concerns about insufficient protection from coronavirus infection. Cabs are not sealed off, allowing contamination to take place.

The defence of ASOS workers’ lives requires a fight against the veto that such corporations enjoy over workplace safety: here.

”We want to be back, but not at the costs of people’s lives”. UK teachers speak on government’s back-to-school plan. By our reporters, 22 May 2020. The WSWS spoke with teachers this week about their opposition to the Johnson government’s reopening of schools.

Nathan Blake

By Kadeem Simmonds in Britain today:

Men’s football: It’s ‘crazy’ that black players are returning to football, says Nathan Blake

EX-WALES striker Nathan Blake said that unless the coronavirus is eliminated, it would be “crazy” for black players to return to the field, be it for training or games.

With the Bundesliga returning last weekend and Premier League clubs welcoming back players to training over the past 48 hours, a sense of normality for football is well underway.

However, Watford’s Adrian Mariappa has tested positive for Covid-19 and teammate Troy Deeney is refusing to go back to work.

Ancient Triassic woodlouse discovery in Dutch Winterswijk


Winterswijk quarry with reconstruction drawing of Gelrincola winterswijkensis.  © Photo: Herman Winkelhorst, drawing by Erik-Jan Bosch (Naturalis Biodiversity Center)

Gelrincola winterswijkensis, A: Light microscope photo. B: Fluorescence microscope photo. C: Interpretative drawing. © Mario Schädel & prof. dr. Joachim Haug, Bulletin of Geosciences

Translated from Utrecht University in the Netherlands today:

Oldest woodlouse in the Netherlands discovered in Winterswijk quarry

A fossil woodlouse from the Triassic age, aged between 247 and 242 million years, has been discovered in the Winterswijk quarry. Never before has such an old woodlouse fossil been found in the Netherlands. It also turns out to be a new species. The find is extra special because fossil woodlice are extremely rare: until recently only nine species from the Triassic were known worldwide. The special fossil can be admired from 8 June on in Naturalis Biodiversity Center.

Woodlice do not only live in dark places or under stones: about half of all woodlouse species live in the sea. This in itself is not remarkable since woodlice are closely related to crabs and lobsters. The Winterswijk woodlouse also lived in the sea. The researchers named the new species Gelrincola winterswijkensis after the fossil site.

Gelrincola means ‘inhabitant of Gelderland province’.

The first woodlice appeared about 300 million years ago, during the Carboniferous. There are not many remains as ancient as Gelrincola winterswijkensis. Only ten species of woodlice are known from before the Triassic. More woodlice species are known from the eras after the Triassic. Today, more than ten thousand species of these crustaceans live.

The Winterswijk animal originates from the middle Triassic, a period of 247 to 242 million years ago. Back then Winterswijk was located on the edge of a large inland sea, the so-called Muschelkalk Sea. Along the coast of this Muschelkalk Sea there were extensive tidal plains where many remains of animals have been preserved in the lime mud. In Winterswijk you will find fossils from the sea as well as remains of animals that lived on land.

This yields a wide variety of fossils, including marine reptiles (such as Nothosaurus), fish, seashells, snails, ammonites, lobsters, a horseshoe crab, plant remains, pollen grains, footprints of terrestrial reptiles, and even fossil insects. So now a marine woodlouse can be added to this fossil biodiversity. This creates an increasingly complete picture of the ecosystem of the time. …

In our country, rocks from that interesting period only occur in the Winterswijk quarry.

This summer Naturalis Biodiversity Center and Utrecht University will continue to search for fossils there. A new visitors centre will be built next to the quarry, where the most important fossils from the quarry will be exhibited.

COVID-19 disaster in Trump’s, Musk’s USA


This 22 May 2020 video from the USA says about itself:

The REAL Reason Elon Musk Is Threatening California

Elon Musk is really no different than any other right-wing billionaire. Cenk Uygur and Ana Kasparian discuss on The Young Turks. Read more here.

“The California Tesla factory that reopened this week has a long history of racking up environmental violations, government records show.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk threatened to move the Fremont, CA, factory to Texas or Nevada, after county officials refused to let him reopen despite the state loosening its coronavirus restrictions. The county later struck a deal with Musk that allowed the factory to reopen with a slate of safety measures in place.

The battle quickly took on political overtones, as Musk reportedly downplayed the pandemic, winning President Trump’s support, and echoed right-wing rallying cries. Tesla workers protested the reopening, warning that work conditions will be unsafe.

Documents detail 42 violations as recently as February and as far back as 2017. Officials told The Young Turks this week that the violations are still pending.”

‘TRUMP LIES, PEOPLE DIE’: PROTESTORS LEAVE BODY BAGS OUTSIDE WHITE HOUSE Activists laid body bags outside the White House to protest what they consider to be Trump and Republicans’ catastrophic response to the pandemic. The demonstration started with a mock 200-car funeral procession passing by the Capitol building, and ending at the White House, where demonstrators dumped body bags onto the sidewalk. “Trump Lies, People Die,” read signs affixed to the body bags, meant to symbolize the nearly 100,000 people in the U.S. who have died so far in the pandemic. [HuffPost]

EXPERTS WORRY TRUMP’S HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE CLAIMS MAY HAVE MAJOR CONSEQUENCES Trump and his administration may not be worried about the grave risks associated with taking hydroxychloroquine to ward off the coronavirus. However, experts are. Dr. Megan Ranney, a professor of emergency medicine at Brown University, told HuffPost that she would not prescribe hydroxychloroquine — sometimes called HCQ — to treat or prevent COVID-19. “First, we don’t know whether it works,” she said. “Second, although it certainly has been used for years for some diseases, it also has well-known life-threatening side effects.” [HuffPost]

TRUMP DITCHES MASK AT FORD PLANT President Donald Trump was without a mask at the Rawsonville Components Plant in Ypsilanti, Michigan, even though Ford’s policy requires everyone to wear PPE to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Ford officials wore facial coverings while Trump, senior adviser Hope Hicks and chief of staff Mark Meadows went without masks for the public portion of the tour. The president has been notoriously resistant to following the CDC guidelines regarding masks. Trump claimed he wore a mask privately — and at least one photo caught him wearing one adorned with the presidential seal — but he took it off before appearing in public because he “didn’t want to give the press the pleasure of seeing it.” [HuffPost]

TRUMP SLAMMED FOR PRAISING ‘GOOD BLOODLINES’ OF HENRY FORD Trump faced backlash online after he praised Henry Ford, the founder of Ford Motor Co., as having “good bloodlines,” following his tour of a Michigan tour plant. Henry Ford was among the most influential anti-Semitic figures in the U.S. in the early 20th century. He held deeply prejudiced personal views, and his anti-Semitic writings were admired and praised by Adolf Hitler. Through his Michigan hometown newspaper, The Dearborn Independent, Ford disseminated hundreds of articles that claimed the existence of an international Jewish conspiracy that served as a rationale for anti-Semitism. [HuffPost]

Trump likes Henry Ford’s “bloodline”. So did Charles Lindbergh, by PJ Grisar.

Awesome Blogger Award, thank you, thebibliophilewriter!


Awesome Blogger Award

My dear blogging friend thebibliophilewriter of the thebibliophilewriter blog has been so generous to nominate Dear Kitty. Some blog for the Awesome Blogger Award.

Thank you so much for this kind gesture!

Rules:

1. Thank the blogger who nominated you and link to that blog.
2. Answer the questions you were asked, and ask some yourself.
3. Nominate at least five bloggers and inform them of their nomination.

The nominees are under no obligation to accept the award.

Thebibliophilewriter’s questions are (my questions are the same as thebibliophilewriter’s):

1. Favourite place to visit? Little auk nesting colony in Spitsbergen.

2. Describe life in three words. Superior to money.

3. Describe love in three words. The greatest feeling.

4. Choose one, loyalty, sympathy, superiority or equality, and why? Equality, because of this.

5. If someone is showing ego then what will you do? Avoid.

6. How about art? See my almost 5,000 blog entries here.

7. What is your dream destination? Antarctica.

8. What is your favourite quote? The trouble with liquor is that one drink makes a new man out of you, and then the new man has to have another drink; by United States actor Alvy Moore.

9. What is your favourite flower, tell about the characteristics? Orchid; as there is so much variation among the many orchid species.

10. What is your favourite colour, tell about the characteristics? Green; of plants which are the basis for animal life.

My nominees are:

1. ChasingART

2. SAMUEL NJAGI NGARI (ENVIRONMENTALIST)

3. PeoPlaid

4. FROM BAROQUE TO BRIOCHE

5. Fun with philosophy

6. Human rights & activism

7. The Lightning Seed

8. NUFC hotspot

9. Kate Lunsford

10. Aggressiveness

11. Notes from Albania

12. Elaine Howlin

13. The Red Alert Blog

COVID-19 disaster in Bolsonaro’s Brazil


This 14 May 2020 video says about itself:

Brazil now epicenter of outbreak in Latin America

Brazil has set a grim new record. The country confirmed a daily increase of more than 11,000 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday, more than any other single day so far. The death toll in the country now exceeds 13,000 with more than 180,000 infections in total, making Brazil the epicenter of the outbreak in Latin America. #COVID-19 #coronavirus

Strikes and protests by Brazilian nurses amid explosion of COVID-19 cases. By Tomas Castanheira, 22 May 2020. Over the last 15 days, there have been dozens of protests and strikes by health care workers across Brazil, as more nurses are dying than anywhere else in the world.

By Letícia Silva, 20 May 2020:

Food delivery workers call for a national strike in Brazil

Since April, workers for food delivery apps controlled by large transnational companies have engaged in a series of strikes and job actions in a number of countries including Brazil, Spain, Ecuador and Argentina. Their demands are the same: better delivery rates, safer working conditions and for the multimillion-dollar companies to supply essential protective equipment that has been paid for by the workers themselves.

In Brazil, these mobilizations are deeply connected to the strikes by other workers, such as call center operators and health professionals, whose jobs have been decreed essential services during the coronavirus pandemic but have been denied safe working conditions.