This video from the USA is called A Red Palm Weevil in Virginia Beach.
On 28 July 2014, Dries Mulder found a beetle in Haaften in the Netherlands.
It turned out to be a red palm weevil. That species had never been seen in the Netherlands before.
This video from the USA says about itself:
31 August 2011
These tiny baby birds were found by caring citizens in the aftermath of Hurricane Irene. They were brought to Evelyn’s Wildlife Refuge, a non- profit wildlife rehabilitator in Virginia Beach, VA. They are expected to make a full recovery and be released back into the wild.
From eNature Blog in the USA:
How Do Birds Deal With Hurricanes Like Arthur?
Posted on Thursday, July 03, 2014 by eNature
Hurricane Arthur is working its way up the East Coast, threatening the beach vacationers from Florida to Maine with bad rain, highs winds and big surf.
While Arthur’s wind, rain and storm surge will certainly affect many people, some folks are also wondering about the effects the hurricane may have on birds.
Numbers are hard to come by, but it’s clear that many birds are killed outright by hurricanes. This is especially true of seabirds, which have nowhere in which to seek shelter from these storms. Beaches may be littered with seabird carcasses following major storm events. Most Atlantic hurricanes occur in late summer and early fall—and fall storms coincide with bird migration and may disrupt migration patterns severely.
Many birds get caught up in storm systems and are blown far off course, often landing in inhospitable places or simply arriving too battered and weakened to survive. Others, while not killed or displaced by storms, may starve to death because they are unable to forage while the weather is poor. The number of birds that die as a result of a major hurricanes may run into the hundreds of thousands.
Healthy bird populations are able to withstand such losses and have done so for eons. However, hurricanes can have severe impacts on endangered species, many of which occur on tropical islands, often among the places hardest hit by hurricanes. For example, Hurricane Hugo in 1989 killed half of the wild Puerto Rican Parrots existing at that time. The Cozumel Thrasher, found only on Mexico’s Isla Cozumel, was pushed to the edge of extinction by Hurricane Gilbert in 1988. Hurricane Iniki may have wiped out the last survivors of as many as three bird species when it hit Hawaii in 1992.
Apart from the direct, physical effects hurricanes may have on birds, they also can have detrimental effects on bird habitats. Cavity-nesting species can be especially hard hit because the trees in which they nest often are blown down or snapped off at the cavity. Hurricane Hugo, which hit the Carolinas in 1989, destroyed most of the area’s nest trees of the endangered Red-cockaded Woodpecker; one forest lost 87 percent of its nest trees and 67 percent of its woodpeckers. Only through the installation of artificial nest boxes have these populations been restored to pre-storm levels.
Although birds blown out of their normal haunts by storms often don’t survive, bird-watchers by the hundreds may flock to see them. Usually, such sightings involve seabirds blown inland and appearing on lakes and reservoirs. First state records of many species have been obtained in this way. Some birders even head into hurricanes to see lost birds.* Others raptly study weather maps to try to predict where hurricane-swept birds will wind up. A few years back, during Isabel, birders were staked out in an organized fashion around New York’s Cayuga Lake to see what showed up. Land birds blown out to sea typically perish unnoticed.
It’s important to remember that the long-term effects of hurricanes on birds aren’t necessarily negative. Every disturbance event is bad for some species but good for others. For instance, hurricanes create gaps in forests, creating habitat for species that require a brushy understory. Birds blown off course occasionally establish entirely new populations; such events may be responsible for much, if not most, colonization of remote islands by birds. Furthermore, hurricanes have been around for a long time and are part of the system in which birds evolved. It is only when they have impacts on species already pushed to the brink by humans, or if hurricane activity is increased by global climate change, that there is cause for concern.
*Epitaph for a hurricane-chasing birder (not original):
Here he lies
A little wet
But he got
His lifelist met.
Have you noticed changes in bird or other animal populations in the wake of hurricanes or other disturbances?
We’re always interested to hearing (or read) your experiences and stories.
Where do the birds go for protection during severe weather such as blizzards, hurricanes, and tornadoes? Here.
What You Need to Know About Hurricane Arthur, the July Fourth Party-Crasher: here.
Glittery dress deprives girl of her high school gala
The 17-year-old Clare Schlaudt has been expelled from a school dance, because the glittery dress which she wore could cause ‘impure thoughts’ among the boys present. …
Schlaudt did not understand that all. As the dress fitted exactly within the dance’s theme “Twilight in Paris“, and was consistent with the only dress code rule; dresses were supposed to cover the hips. Yet, shortly after she arrived she was told that she could go home again. The dress had been characterized as ‘offensive’ by some fathers present.
The teenager thinks that not one of the boys present, but especially one of the fathers thought the dress a little too tempting. “It’s ridiculous that I have become the victim of a 45-year-old pervert who cannot control his lust for a girl with somewhat large buttocks in a glittery dress,” Schlaudt writes indignantly in a blog post.
See also here.
This video says about itself:
19 March 2007
Through painting, a Korean woman breaks her 50 years of silence on being forced into sexual slavery by the Japanese Army during World War II.
S. Korea Denounces Japan‘s Teaching Manuals over Dokdo
SEOUL, Jan. 28 (Yonhap) — South Korea strongly denounced Japan‘s decision Tuesday to state its claim to Seoul’s easternmost islets of Dokdo in the new teaching manuals for Japanese textbooks for middle and high schools.
Earlier in the day, the education ministry in Japan announced its revision to the teaching manuals to claim Dokdo to be part of Japanese territory. The education minister justified the decision, saying it is only natural for a nation to teach its students about their own territory.
The foreign ministry in Seoul immediately condemned the decision, demanding the Japanese ministry withdraw the manuals over the claim to the South Korean islets.
“Through the latest teaching manual revision, Japan’s Shinzo Abe government laid groundless claims again over Dokdo, which historically, geographically and by international law belong to South Korea while trying to teach these wrong claims to its next generation,” the statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said.
“Our government strongly denounced it and demands an immediate withdrawal. If the Japanese government does not answer the demand, our government will sternly take actions against (the manuals).”
The latest Japanese decision only shows that the country is still possessed by its past imperialism, the statement said, also expressing skepticism over the Abe administration’s so-called active pacifist policy.
“If Japan truly hopes to contribute to world peace, it should nurture minds of peace and reconciliation for its next generation, rather than planting the seed of conflict and dispute,” the statement also said.
As part of Seoul’s protest of the new manuals, Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kyou-hyun summoned Japanese Ambassador to South Korea Koro Bessho earlier in the day to lodge a strong complaint over the Japanese move.
“Japan could open a bright future only when it faces up to its history and truth,” the South Korean vice minister was quoted by a foreign ministry official as saying in the meeting with Bessho.
It is worrying that the Japanese administration is misleading the country into its past reclusive nationalism, Kim was also quoted as saying.’
Earlier this month, Japan’s education ministry said it is planning to include its claims to Dokdo in separate guidelines used in making history and geography textbooks for middle and high schools, promoting angry reactions from Seoul.
Dokdo islets, which lie closer to South Korea in the body of water between the Korean Peninsula and Japan, have been a frequent source of Seoul-Tokyo diplomatic tensions.
Tokyo under the nationalist Shinzo Abe administration has bolstered its territorial claims to the rocky islets, driving a wedge between the two countries.
Abe’s visit to the controversial Yasukuni war shrine last month also added fuel to the already strained bilateral relationship, drawing indignation also from Beijing over the series of nationalist acts aimed at whitewashing and glorifying its imperialist history.
South Korea’s rival political parties also denounced Japan’s move in unison.
“Japan has starkly revealed its imperialist ambitions for a second territorial invasion,” Min Hyun-joo, spokeswoman of the ruling Saenuri Party, said.
She also demanded Tokyo withdraw its claims to Dokdo, warning that returning to militarism will have serious implications for Seoul-Tokyo relations and Japan’s future.
The main opposition Democratic Party (DP) lashed out at the Abe administration, demanding it stop all provocative acts that are in violation of peace and order in Northeast Asia.
The revision to the teaching manuals is no different from a decision to teach distorted history to Japan’s future generations and an admission that the Japanese government does not repent for its past aggressions nor that it has any interest in building future-oriented ties with South Korea, DP floor spokesman Chyung Ho-joon said in a press briefing.
In a bid to better fight Japan’s such nationalistic moves, South Korea will push to launch an international project to compile books on Japan’s wartime atrocities, jointly with other nations victimized by Japan’s early 20th-century imperialism, according to the ministry official.
China and some Southeast Asian nations may join the project to look into wartime aggressions by Japan and publish them into books, he said.
From the Daily Press in the USA:
General Assembly: A heated debate in Virginia over the Sea of Japan
Controversy half a world away interests Canon, Japan, Korea, legislature
January 27, 2014
By Travis Fain, email@example.com
RICHMOND – A bill suggesting that there might be two names for a body of water on the other side of the world has somehow managed to cross the line from legislative oddity to raw-wound international incident waiting to happen.
It flared tempers on the Virginia Senate floor last week. The Japanese embassy has hired five lobbyists to press its case. The embassy sent Gov. Terry McAuliffe a letter that reads a good bit like a threat, and its ambassador met with the speaker of the house on the matter.
An executive from Canon – the Japanese camera company with a large complex in Newport News – called a local state senator just to make its position clear on this bill: The company would prefer that Virginia not suggest the Sea of Japan might also be called the East Sea.
It wasn’t a threat, state Sen. John Miller said. More like “a statement of fact,” he said.
This is all about Senate Bill 2, which would require Virginia school books to note that the Sea of Japan is also called the East Sea.
This has been a priority for Korean Americans living in Virginia for some years now. The controversy has its roots in the 1920s, when “Sea of Japan” became the formal name for waters between Japan and the Korean peninsula, according to state Sen. Richard Black, R-Leesburg, one of this bill’s chief sponsors.
At the time, the peninsula was under Japanese control, and Koreans didn’t have a say in the naming, Black argued this week on the Senate floor.
Today, the South Korean government prefers the name “East Sea.”
The Japanese government does not. It also maintains that the “Sea of Japan” name far predates the country’s colonial expansion.
Dozens of Korean onlookers, and some Asian media, watched as the Virgina Senate passed the bill 32-4, a lopsided vote despite the most heated debate of a still-young legislative session. At one point state Sen. Tommy Norment, R-James City, chastized senators for failing to vote yes or no on the bill, in violation of Senate rules, and he forced a second recorded vote on the matter.
Miller, D-Newport News, was one of the no votes. He voted for philisophical reasons, he said.
“Virginia should not be telling textbook writers what to include and what not to include,” he said. “Where’s it going to stop? The next thing we’re going to be putting into is the Civil War is also known as the ‘War of Northern Aggression.'”
Miller said he feels no threat over the bill from Canon, which locals would love to see continue its expansion in Newport News. A local spokeswoman for the company did not return a Daily Press call for comment.
Neither did a spokesperson for the Japanese Embassy in Washington, D.C.
An embassy official assured the Washington Post earlier this week, though, that Japan has no intention of retaliating through trade or business deals.
“The name of the Japan Sea is very important, but [business] is a totally different thing,” Yoshiyuki Yamada told the newspaper.
But the official embassy letter to McAuliffe – sent before he was inaugurated and signed by chief ambassador Kenichiro Sasae – calls the bill “highly problematic.” It says this bill and others like it have gotten a lot of media attention in Japan and “if enacted, I worry that Japanese affinity towards Virginia could be hampered.”
“Japan has been the second largest source of foreign direct investment in Virginia, with almost $1 billion dollars in the last five years,” the letter states.
“I would like to see such cooperation to be further promoted,” it continues. “I fear, however, that the positive cooperation and the strong economic ties between Japan and Virginia may be damaged if the bills are to be enacted.”
The Virginia Public Access Project’s online list of lobbyists shows that the Japanese embassy hired five lobbyists earlier this year, all from the high profile firm of McGuire Woods, and all hired to focus on “matters of interest to the Embassy of Japan.”
It’s not clear what chance Senate Bill 2 stands now that it’s in the House. Del. Monty Mason, D-Williamsburg, said he’s gotten a lot of email in favor it. It seems to be part of a mass-email campaign, he said.
Mason said he hasn’t heard from Canon, and he hadn’t looked at the bill as of Friday afternoon.
The governor’s office said McAuliffe doesn’t have a formal position on the bill, he’ll simply evaluate it when and if it reaches his desk.
This video, from Wales, says about itself:
For more information and support visit http://www.stopblame.org or call the helpline on 0808 80 10 800.
If a woman gets raped in the United Arab Emirates, then she may get arrested. If a woman gets raped in Afghanistan, then she may be jailed. If a girl gets raped in the Maldives, then authorities may have her whipped. If a woman soldier gets raped in the United States armed forces, then she may be persecuted. In Somalia, police may rape a woman, and then jail her.
The problem is more widespread.
By Rebecca Leber in the USA:
August 13, 2013 at 11:18 am
Until last week, Norfolk, Virginia police classified sexual assault claims to be “unfounded” — or not valid — by default. According to the Virginian-Pilot, a 22-year-old woman’s case prompted Norfolk police chief Mike Goldsmith to update the policy so that officers must now assume rape victims are telling the truth.
The woman reported the attack immediately to police, only to be told, “If we find out that you’re lying, this will be a felony charge.” Before giving her a medical examination, officers subjected the woman to interrogations during which they said things like, “You’re telling us a different story than you told … the other detectives,” and “This only happened hours ago. Why can’t you remember?” Having had enough, the woman cut off the interview.
The police eventually arrested and charged the attacker for multiple other sexual assaults and felonies, and Goldsmith apologized for mishandling the woman’s initial allegations. Now that Goldsmith has updated the policy for handling sexual assault cases, the department will also undergo training for post-traumatic stress disorder and rape trauma.
Many other areas have this same problem. In light of a Baltimore investigation on the city’s high number of unfounded cases, the Police Executive Research Forum noted, “Unwarranted ‘unfounding’ of cases can result in offenders remaining free — and in victims losing trust in the justice system.” This classification also leads to lower reports of rape, because “unfounded” cases are not included in crime stats.
For law enforcement to assume that rape victims are usually lying is a gross misunderstanding of the number of false rape accusations. Only two to eight percent of reported rapes are false reports, and even fewer ever include a specific false accusation. In fact, the real problem is that most rapes go unreported.
Nearly one in four young men in Scotland still blame rape victims for drinking or dressing “provocatively,” alarming new research found today: here.
From the Williamsburg Yorktown Daily in the USA:
Eighth-Grade Archaeology Camper Finds Revolutionary War Button at Yorktown
August 1, 2013 By Brittany Voll
The rain on June 24 did more than just water the plants. It likely loosed a Revolutionary War-era button from a bank of land after more than 230 years, planting it in full view of an eighth-grade archaeology camper.
As Finney Lynch, an eighth-grade student at The Covenant School in Charlottesville, walked the path from the Archer Cottage next to Cornwallis’ Cave at Yorktown to the Watermen’s Museum on June 25, she spotted a button in the muddy ground.
“I picked it up and didn’t think it was anything at all,” Lynch said.
She gave the button to the Watermen’s Museum Archaeology Camp leader Jason Lunze, and he knew what she had found: an 18th-century button made of copper alloy, like bronze, from the Revolutionary War.
The button has been researched and is believed to be a collar or sleeve button from the 85th Saintonge Regiment Infantrie, a French unit based in the West Indies that traveled to Newport, R.I., and marched to Yorktown to aid George Washington’s troops during the 1781 Siege of Yorktown.
“I was actually really surprised, kind of shocked, because I don’t usually find stuff like that,” Lynch said. “I’m good at finding stuff on the ground like necklaces and coins but I’ve never found something from the Revolutionary War so that was really exciting.”
Due to the rarity of the button – the last button of the same time period was found 20 years ago — and its good condition, conservation efforts began immediately.
“I have buttons in my own dresser that do not look as good as this button does in person,” said the Watermen’s Museum Executive Director Dr. David Niebuhr.
Because the button was found in close proximity to the water, the first step in conservation was to purge the button of any potential salt contamination. Niebuhr explained when an artifact is exposed to salt water and is taken out of that environment it can deteriorate into nothing over time, sometimes within weeks.
After purging the salt water from the button, it will be stabilized using a strong solvent to prevent it from deterioration.
A dental wax mold will be made of the button so a resin cast can be manufactured for Lynch to have as a keepsake. Lynch said she isn’t sure when her button cast will arrive, but she’s excited to receive it.
“I think I’m going to put it somewhere really safe and special so I can have it for, like, ever,” she said.
PAUL REVERE AND SAMUEL ADAMS TIME CAPSULE CONTENTS REVEALED “Early residents of Boston valued a robust press as much as their history and currency if the contents of a time capsule dating back to the years just after the Revolutionary War are any guide. When conservators at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston gingerly removed items from the box Tuesday, they found five tightly folded newspapers, a medal depicting George Washington, a silver plaque, two dozen coins, including one dating to 1655, and the seal of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.” [HuffPost]
Wildlife Extra writes about this:
Northern Right whale caught in fishing gear
July 2013. Local Virginia Beach fishermen, Captain “Pat Foster” and Mate “Adrian Colaprete”, who run a charter fishing boat based out of Rudee Inlet, rescue endangered Northern Right whale that had become entangled in some rope or fishing gear.
They were about 50 miles off the coast of Virginia Beach helping a team of scientists conduct research studies offshore. Pat spotted a whale swimming irregularly in the distance and decided to have a closer look. The team identified the whale as an endangered species … the Northern Right whale and noted the whale was in serious danger. The whale was tangled in some sort of fishing ropes or trap line and was slowly dragging the fishing gear behind it.
Pat and Adrian decided they would have to try and assess the situation a little further and find out if they could do something to help the whale. After identifying the whale’s movement pattern the team decided Adrian would get in the water with the whale and take a closer look. When Adrian swam up to the whale he sensed the whale was welcoming his help and he made the decision to cut the rope tangling the whale to the line of fishing gear. After the rope was cut the tangled fishing gear sank to the bottom of the ocean and the whale swam away free.
World’s most endangered whale
The North Atlantic right whale is the most endangered great whale, with a population of less than 400. Human activity-particularly ship collisions and entanglement in commercial fishing gear-is the most common cause of North Atlantic right whale deaths. Because females do not become sexually mature until ten years of age and give birth to a single calf after a yearlong pregnancy, populations grow slowly.
The most common causes of mortality for Northern Right whales is due to getting tangled in fishing gear and ship collisions.