Sunday, June 30, 2013

Finally got a decent shot......

As far as is known, male hummingbirds do not take part in nesting. Most species build a cup-shaped nest on the branch of a tree or shrub, though a few tropical species normally attach their nests to leaves. The nest varies in size relative to species, from smaller than half a walnut shell to several centimeters in diameter.

In many hummingbird species, spider silk is used to bind the nest material together and secure the structure to its support. The unique properties of silk allow the nest to expand with the growing young. Two white eggs are laid, which, despite being the smallest of all bird eggs, are in fact large relative to the hummingbird's adult size.

Incubation lasts 14 to 23 days, depending on species, ambient temperature, and female attentiveness to the nest. The mother feeds her nestlings on small arthropods and nectar by inserting her bill into the open mouth of a nestling and regurgitating the food into its crop.

Why can't people understand I got a short attention span...

Fat Wreck Chords - Short Music For Short People

Go on Sid spray the beast........

BLM Threatens Mesa Verde with Oil and Natural Gas Drilling

The Bureau of Land Management is proposing to offer eight parcels near southwest Colorado’s Mesa Verde National Park in a November oil and natural gas lease sale, a move that has sparked concerns from local government leaders who fear drilling could degrade air quality and other natural resources in the region.

Bureau of Land Mismanagement

Cambodian jungle graveyard mystifies experts

Over a hundred 'burial jars' and a dozen coffins arranged on a ledge in remote Cambodian jungle have for centuries held the bones—and secrets—of a mysterious people who lived alongside with the Angkor era.

Cambodian archaeologist Tep Sokha studies bone from a jar in a cave at Phnom Pel, southwest of Phnom Penh, on March 24, 2013. Ten jars, dating from the 15th to the 17th centuries, and twelve coffins—the earliest from the 14th century—have been found at the site.

A skull and bones in broken jars in a remote Cambodian jungle, on January 7, 2013. Why the bones were placed in jars on a cliff some 100 metres (320 feet) high in the Cardamom Mountains, or indeed whose remains they are, has long puzzled experts.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Friday, June 21, 2013

I know where I will be tomorrow.........

Parowan Gap is a unique, ancient Fremont Indian, petroglyph site. The canyon contains thousands of petroglyphs mostly created by the Fremont Indians. Many passers by including the Hopi, Paiute and settlers have also left their marks as well. The layout of Parowan Gap has made it a naturally formed Stonehenge. The ancient people recognized the significance of the layout and marked it with petroglyphs of the various astronomical events. Solar and lunar calenders mark the daily, monthly and seasonal cycles. They put a cairn system in place to mark the events of Solstice and Equinox. They even marked rare events that take place only once in 18 years. The site is sacred to American Indians and is a site worthy of study and protection. It is hoped that through education visitors will respect Parowan Gap and help to protect and preserve it.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Duckbilled Platypus, 1799

In 1799 the naturalist George Shaw, Keeper of the Department of Natural History at the British Museum, received a truly bizarre animal specimen from Captain John Hunter in Australia. It appeared to be the bill of a duck attached to the skin of a mole.

Shaw dutifully examined the specimen and wrote up a description of it in a scientific journal known as the Naturalist's Miscellany, but he couldn't help confessing that it was "impossible not to entertain some doubts as to the genuine nature of the animal, and to surmise that there might have been practised some arts of deception in its structure."

Despite Shaw's doubts about the reality of the animal, he gave it a name: Platypus anatinus, or flatfoot duck. The scientific name was later changed to Ornithorhynchus anatinus, but it popularly remained known as the Duckbilled Platypus.

Other naturalists were equally suspicious that the creature was just a hoax. The surgeon Robert Knox later explained that because the specimens arrived in England via the Indian Ocean, naturalists suspected that Chinese sailors, who were well known for their skill at stitching together hybrid creatures, might have been playing some kind of joke upon them.

"Aware of the monstrous impostures which the artful Chinese had so frequently practised on European adventurers," Knox noted, "the scientific felt inclined to class this rare production of nature with eastern mermaids and other works of art."

It was only when more platypus specimens arrived in England that naturalists finally, grudgingly, granted that the creature was real. This made the platypus one of the more famous instances of a hoax that proved not to be a hoax after all.

Preposterous Delusions.....

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

European Music Archaeology Project

Modern Europeans will hear again the music and the instruments of their distant ancestors – from dwellers in caves to audiences at Greek and Roman amphitheatres – thanks to a £3.5 million project in which a University of Huddersfield lecturer plays a key role.

Past Horizons

Witness the terrifying birth of a supercell thunderstorm......

A supercell near Booker, Texas from Mike Olbinski on Vimeo.


Been waiting to get back in this area for awhile....

Thursday, June 6, 2013

A tread through the talus ........


...and what through my wandering eyes do I see ?....

According to rule, I shun tourist spots......but since I was in the area.......

Bryce Canyon, famous for its worldly unique geology, consists of a series of horseshoe-shaped amphitheaters carved from the eastern edge of the Paunsaugunt Plateau. The erosional force of frost-wedging and the dissolving power of rainwater have shaped the colorful limestone rock of the Claron Formation into bizarre shapes, including slot canyons, windows, fins, and spires called "hoodoos".

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Long ago, and changing over the great spans of time, the rocky area of of Bryce Canyon was once covered by sea, mountains, desert and coastal plain. Over millions of years, the rock and land was subject to violent storms and severe changes. Earthquakes, mudslides and volcanoes roared upon the primitive earth, forcing, molding and reshaping it. Seas and streams came and went, moving sediment and depositing it in layers.

The Hoodoos of Bryce Canyon are 60 million years old. More changes occurred until sand, gravel and sedimentary deposits filled ancient lakes within the Colorado Plateau. These materials compressed and hardened into sedimentary rock. The hoodoos of Bryce Canyon are 60 million year old sculpted claron rock formations which consist of limestone, dolomite and siltstone layers. The Colorado Plateau has risen over a time period of about sixteen million years.

The Paria River and its streams flowed through the area sculpting and eroding the walls. These sedimentary layers contain lignite, coal and fossils, including evidence of the lush mesozoic period when the climate of the area was tropical with lush plants and a variety of unique animals flourished. The location at the plateau rim allows for hoodoo formation because the steep slope gives the environment needed for the structures to form. At the slope, faults and joints form compressional forces that guide the patterns of erosion.

The yearly weather cycle aids the process needed for a hoodoo to form. In Bryce Canyon it freezes at night approximately 360 days of the year. The freeze and thaw cycle loosens the slope surface, allowing debris to be sluffed off by water run-off. When hiking among the hoodoos at Bryce Canyon, look closely at the fins and hoodoos and you will see the vertical cracks. The material carried away works on the softer rock to create gullies, and ultimately canyons. The hard rock that was left behind is further eroded along its vertical cracks, again subjected to the freeze - thaw cycle carving the hoodoos.

Patterns form through a process of freezing and thawing. The patterns of Bryce's rock formations show off their unique crisscross design formed though this long process of freezing and thawing. The process still continues today, and the rock formations continue to be designed by nature. When water seeps into the fractures of the rocks, it dissolves the calcium carbonate that holds the small rock particles together. In cold weather, the water turns to ice as temperatures drop, then the ice expands pushing the fractures open. The overnight freezing and daytime thaw are abundant, occurring two to three hundred times a year, but since different rocks are of varied hardness, erosion takes place at different rates.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Nobody realizes that some people expend tremendous energy merely to be normal.

The Industrial Revolution and its consequences have been a disaster for the human race. They have greatly increased the life-expectancy of those of us who live in "advanced" countries, but they have destabilized society, have made life unfulfilling, have subjected human beings to indignities, have led to widespread psychological suffering (in the Third World to physical suffering as well) and have inflicted severe damage on the natural world. The continued development of technology will worsen the situation. It will certainly subject human beings to greater indignities and inflict greater damage on the natural world, it will probably lead to greater social disruption and psychological suffering, and it may lead to increased physical suffering even in "advanced" countries.

The industrial-technological system may survive or it may break down. If it survives, it MAY eventually achieve a low level of physical and psychological suffering, but only after passing through a long and very painful period of adjustment and only at the cost of permanently reducing human beings and many other living organisms to engineered products and mere cogs in the social machine. Furthermore, if the system survives, the consequences will be inevitable: There is no way of reforming or modifying the system so as to prevent it from depriving people of dignity and autonomy.

If the system breaks down the consequences will still be very painful. But the bigger the system grows the more disastrous the results of its breakdown will be, so if it is to break down it had best break down sooner rather than later.

We therefore advocate a revolution against the industrial system. This revolution may or may not make use of violence: it may be sudden or it may be a relatively gradual process spanning a few decades. We can't predict any of that.

But we do outline in a very general way the measures that those who hate the industrial system should take in order to prepare the way for a revolution against that form of society. This is not to be a POLITICAL revolution. Its object will be to overthrow not governments but the economic and technological basis of the present society.