Showing posts with label California. Show all posts
Showing posts with label California. Show all posts

Strange Events Continue Around the World

Raising the ire of scientists, mysteries continue to happen. A year ago people in Arkansas experienced an omen for the new year. Thousands of redwing blackbirds fell from the sky, dead. Investigators came to the odd conclusion that fireworks scared them to death. Apparently they flew around blindly in the night, crashing into the walls of buildings.

In Altona, Germany, a large number of toads were found dead in a strange way. They had holes in their backs and their livers had been removed. It was concluded that crows had developed a way of getting at the nutritious livers without consuming poison from the toads. Taking the "myth" a little further "experts" said with livers removed the toads' lungs had inflated causing them to explode. Darn clever these scientists. They always have an answer.

They do seem to get some things right, however. In Alaska 55 musk oxen were frozen to death despite having two layers of fur. A tidal surge followed a storm at sea which cracked the frozen ice and the oxen fell into the freezing ocean. Surface sea water later refroze around the dead animals.

Odd events continue around the world with seabirds washing up dead on California beaches and swarms of ladybirds in Colorado.
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World Cypress Disease Came From California

California may be a great place to live with its good weather, but it is the source of a dangerous tree-killing fungus. Seiridium cardinale actually began its spread across the world from the San Joaquin Valley. Cypress trees are dying by the thousands from cypress canker disease. Ninety five per cent of pine plantations primarily of cedars and junipers are affected.

The fungus jumped the Atlantic to France about 80 years ago when seedlings were imported from California. Italian cypress planted there were devastated. This pretty tree occurs all over southern Europe. Landscapes have been changed irreversibly.

Cracks in the bark are entry points for the disease that produces toxins obstructing the flow of sap, water and nutrients. The fungus clones itself asexually as well as reproducing sexually. There are two variants of the fungus. Only one of these variants is found in Europe. The second variant has found its way to the southern hemisphere. Work to develop resistant strains of cypress is proving difficult. The best way to fight the damage its to monitor the movement of trees through trade.
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