Archive for the ‘Nature’ Category

Australia’s Best Rated Beach, one small problem, it is located on an Island 2,100 miles off the Australian Mainland   Leave a comment


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This is an A-1 Gold Star Paradise located in the Indian Ocean, roughly midway between Australia and Sri Lanka. The Territory of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands, also called Cocos Islands and Keeling Islands, is a territory of Australia. The beaches are spectacular.

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Daily Mail Online

Did your favourite make the cut? Incredible beach that you’ve probably never heard of is named Australia’s best – as Bondi fails to make the top 20

  • Beach expert Brad Farmer released his book, 101 Best Beaches 2017, with Cossies Beach taking the top spot
  • It is a remote beach in the Indian Ocean, 3,000 km north-west of Perth, and can be reached by a 4.5hr flight
  • Cossies was named after Australian Governor-General Peter Cosgrove in the Cocos (Keeling) Islands  

Natural beauty has landed a remote beach in the Indian Ocean the prestigious title of Australia’s best beach.

Tourism Australia’s beach ambassador Brad Farmer released his book on Saturday, 101 Best Beaches 2017, crowning Cossies Beach – named after Governor-General Peter Cosgrove – in the Cocos Islands as the country’s top sandy shore.

‘It’s as near to perfect as a beach can be,’ Farmer said, comparing it to the Whitehaven Beach in the Whitsundays.

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Farmer has been writing about beaches for the past 30 years and has seen about 4,000 Australian beaches in his lifetime.

With his colleague Professor Andy Short, a coastal geomorphologist, Farmer spent almost half a year trekking around Australia’s coastline to assess the nation’s top beaches.

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Territory of Australia
• Annexed by the
British Empire
1857
• Transferred to
Australian control
1955
Area
• Total
14 km2 (5 sq mi)
• Water (%)
0
Population
• July 2014 estimate
596
• Density
43/km2 (111.4/sq mi))

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Posted January 3, 2017 by markosun in Nature

National Geographic’s Best Photos of the Year   Leave a comment


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Kirill Vselensky perches on a cornice in Moscow as Dima Balashov gets the shot. The 24-year-olds, risktakers known as rooftoppers, celebrate their feats on Instagram.

This photo was originally published in “Why Many Young Russians See a Hero in Putin,” in December 2016.

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As an evening storm lights up the sky near Wood River, Nebraska, about 413,000 sandhill cranes arrive to roost in the shallows of the Platte River.

This photo was originally published in “What Happens to the U.S. Midwest When the Water’s Gone?,” in August 2016.

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Ye Ye, a 16-year-old giant panda, lounges in a wild enclosure at a conservation center in China’s Wolong Nature Reserve.

This photo was originally published in “Pandas Get to Know Their Wild Side,” in August 2016.

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Tempted by the fruit of a strangler fig, a Bornean orangutan climbs 100 feet into the canopy. With males weighing as much as 200 pounds, orangutans are the world’s largest tree-dwelling animals.

This photo was originally published in “Inside the Private Lives of Orangutans,” in December 2016.

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In Flint, Michigan, siblings Julie, Antonio, and India Abram collect their daily allowance of bottled water from Fire Station #3, their local water resource site.

This photo was originally published in “Intimate Portraits of Flint Show Frustration, Fear, Perseverance,” in February 2016.

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Russia’s Bovanenkovo natural gas field, on the Yamal Peninsula, was deemed too expensive to develop until President Vladimir Putin made it a priority.

This photo was originally published in “In the Arctic’s Cold Rush, There Are No Easy Profits,” in March 2016.

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The colors of Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone come from thermophiles: microbes that thrive in scalding water.

This photo was originally published in “Learning to Let the Wild Be Wild in Yellowstone,” in May 2016.

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Steven Donovan, flipping into a pool, took a seasonal job at Glacier National Park to sharpen his photography skills.

This photo was originally published in “Can the Selfie Generation Unplug and Get Into Parks?” in October 2016.

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Kirk Odom was convicted of rape after an expert testified that a hair on the victim’s nightgown matched his. He spent years in prison before DNA tests proved his innocence.

This photo was originally published in “How Science Is Putting a New Face on Crime Solving,” in July 2016.

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In Alaska, a mother grizzly and her cubs cause a “bear jam” on Denali’s 92-mile-long Park Road, open to private vehicles only five days each summer.

This photo was originally published in “How Can 6 Million Acres at Denali Still Not Be Enough?” in February 2016.

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On a mountainside in Yosemite National Park, photographer Stephen Wilkes took 1,036 images over 26 hours to create this day-to-night composite.

This photo was originally published in “How National Parks Tell Our Story—and Show Who We Are,” in January 2016.

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Dressed for Mars, space engineer Pablo de León tests a prototype space suit at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, where fine soil and fans simulate conditions on the red planet.

This photo was originally published in “Mars: Inside the High-Risk, High-Stakes Race to the Red Planet,” in November 2016.

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Villagers in Bagaran, Armenia, sing of cultural endurance and survival while picnicking at night beneath apricot trees—and a giant cross that shines defiantly into Turkey.

This photo was originally published in “A Century Later, Slaughter Still Haunts Turkey and Armenia,” in April 2016.

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These rhinos on a South African ranch have recently had their horns trimmed. Unlike elephant ivory, rhino horn grows back when cut properly. The rancher is stockpiling the horn in hopes that selling it will soon be legal.

This photo was originally published in “Special Investigation: Inside the Deadly Rhino Horn Trade,” in October 2016.

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On their first migration to their summer range in southeastern Yellowstone, three-week-old calves of the Cody elk herd follow their mothers up a 4,600-foot slope.

This photo was originally published in “The Yellowstone We Don’t See: A Struggle of Life and Death,” in May 2016.

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Summer attracts sunbathers—clothed and otherwise—to the grassy banks of Munich’s Schwabinger Bach. The meadows here have been popular with nudists since the 1970s.

This photo was originally published in “How Urban Parks Are Bringing Nature Close to Home,” in April 2016.

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A panda keeper in China uses a stuffed leopard to train young pandas to fear their biggest wild foe. A cub’s reactions help determine if the bear is ready to survive on its own.

This photo was originally published in “Pandas Get to Know Their Wild Side,” in August 2016.

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Lounging in inches of warm water, blacktip reef sharks wait for the tide to refill the lagoon at Seychelles’ Aldabra Atoll.

This photo was originally published in “In the Seychelles, Taking Aim at Nature’s Bullies,” in March 2016.


Posted December 18, 2016 by markosun in Nature, World

From out of nowhere, giant rogue waves   Leave a comment


Hawaii

Posted December 7, 2016 by markosun in Nature

Winnipeg Seasons   Leave a comment


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May 2nd

 

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November 20th

 

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Winter

 

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Posted November 20, 2016 by markosun in Nature

Super Moon over Asia   Leave a comment


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Russian launch base in Kazakhstan

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The “supermoon” reached its brightest in Asia on Monday evening.

The Moon was closest – only 221,524 miles (356,509km) away – at 11:21 GMT.

Posted November 15, 2016 by markosun in Nature

Stunning Prairie Sunset   Leave a comment


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Winnipeg, Manitoba

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Other Winnipeg photos

 

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Abnormally warm November in The Peg

 

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Posted November 9, 2016 by markosun in Nature

The Brilliant Sun, Rising and Setting   Leave a comment


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Winnipeg, Manitoba

Rising

 

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Setting

 

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Posted October 20, 2016 by markosun in Nature

An Earth Tree that looks like it comes from an Alien Planet   Leave a comment


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Dracaena cinnabari, the Socotra dragon tree or dragon blood tree, is a dragon tree native to the Socotra archipelago in the Arabian Sea. It is so called due to the red sap that the trees produce.

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The dragon blood tree has a unique and strange appearance, with an “upturned, densely packed crown having the shape of an uprightly held umbrella”. This evergreen species is named after its dark red resin, which is known as “dragon’s blood”. Unlike most monocot plants, Dracaena displays secondary growth, D. cinnabari even has growth zones resembling tree rings found in dicot tree species. Along with other arborescent Dracaena species it has a distinctive growth habit called “dracoid habitus”. Its leaves are found only at the end of its youngest branches; its leaves are all shed every 3 or 4 years before new leaves simultaneously mature. Branching tends to occur when the growth of the terminal bud is stopped, due to either flowering or traumatic events (e.g. herbivory).

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Socotra, also spelled Soqotra, is an island and a small archipelago of four islands in the Arabian Sea. Socotra is part of Yemen. It had long been a part of the Aden Governorate. In 2004 it became attached to the Hadhramaut Governorate, which is much closer to the island than Aden (although the nearest governorate was the Al Mahrah Governorate). In 2013, the archipelago became its own governorate.

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Completely appears to be the surface of an Alien planet light years away.

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Posted October 9, 2016 by markosun in Nature

Morning has broken   Leave a comment


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Posted October 9, 2016 by markosun in Nature

Early-morning earthquake shakes Yorkton, Saskatchewan, area   Leave a comment


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A light earthquake was felt this morning in the Saskatchewan communities of Yorkton, Melville and Langenburg, Natural Resources Canada has reported.

Officials confirm there was a 3.8 magnitude quake centred southeast of Yorkton at 4:40 a.m. CST.

At least one person reported feeling light shaking, but there were no immediate reports of damage.

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SaskPower said the earthquake affected an electrical substation, impacting rural customers in the Esterhazy and Melville regions. Power was restored by 6:30 a.m., but crews remain at the substation to make sure it is ready to go back online.

Not the first time

This is not the first time an earthquake has rattled the region, located about 200 kilometres northeast of Regina.

There have been five others of a similar magnitude in the Yorkton-Esterhazy area in the past 16 years, and 11 since 1981.

“The last one that we recorded was in 2014. It was a 3.1. The time before that was July 8 — 3.7 — in 2013,” said Michal Kolaj, a seismologist for Natural Resources Canada. “Earthquakes in general occur if you have a slip along a fault.”

Kolaj said an investigation into the quake will take place over the next few days to try and determine whether it is consistent with a natural event or whether it’s linked to some sort of human activity.

“We’ll look to see whether the location is in close proximity to active mining or other types of anthropogenic activity. And then we’ll maybe seek to also contact the companies themselves to gather some more information.”

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Further reports and photos have come forward showing some damage.

 

A combine did a nosedive

 

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A tractor on its side

 

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Overturned pick-up

 

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A collapsed barn

 

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Update: upon further review it was determined that the combine and tractor mishaps were due to driver error. The pick-up rollover was due to distracted driving (texting). And the barn collapse was due to old age. Earthquake is rendered completely not at fault.

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Posted September 5, 2016 by markosun in Catastrophe, Nature