Category Archives: PEOPLE

India Plants a Record 50 Million Trees in 24 Hours -Jungle or Forest?

More than 800,000 volunteers planted saplings in public spaces in the state of Uttar
Pradesh hoping to reduce greenhouse gases and reforest the countryside

india_forest.sun-streaming image www.pythonjungle.com

There’s no question that volunteers make a huge impact, but last week the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh undertook a 24-hour volunteer project that could one day be measured from space. The state coordinated the planting of almost 50 million trees by 800,000 volunteers in public spaces.

The tree planting frenzy is the beginning of a reforestation effort the nation of India agreed to during the 2015 Paris Climate Talks, reports Brian Clark Howard at National Geographic. During those talks, India made a commitment to reforest 12 percent of its land by 2030, a $6.2 billion commitment.

“The world has realized that serious efforts are needed to reduce carbon emissions to mitigate the effects of global climate change. Uttar Pradesh has made a beginning in this regard,” Uttar Pradesh chief minister Akhilesh Yadav told volunteers before the planting, reports Biswajeet Banerjee at the AP.

The planting is not just a publicity stunt, though the organizers do hope it raises awareness of reforestation efforts. Though the record won’t be validated for several months, it’s likely that Uttar Pradesh Guinness World Record has blown away the standing record for the most tree plantings in one day. That went to Pakistan in 2013, when volunteers planted 847,275 trees out of the water, reports Howard.

While Banerjee reports that there is usually a 60 percent mortality rate for saplings planted in these kind of projects, state officials say they are committed to monitoring the trees to make sure they survive.

Edward Parson, an environmental law professor at the University of California, Los Angeles, tells Christina Beck at The Christian Science Monitor that the 50 million trees is at best just a “small contribution” to India’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. But it is one more sign the nation is moving in the right direction. Beck points out that besides the reforestation program, India has also implemented an ambitious solar-power program.

As Anit Mukherjee, policy fellow with the Centre for Global Development tells Adam Boult at The Telegraph “It addresses many of the big issues for India: pollution, deforestation, and land use.”

If 50 million trees sounds like a lot, this is likely just the first of many tree planting events on the subcontinent. In May, the country’s Environment Minister announced plans to increase the nation’s forests from 21.34 percent to 33 percent of its land area  with a bill that’s been passed by the Parliament of India’s lower house and is now pending approval from the upper house.

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Henry Sapiecha

Worker Stacey Konwesier killed in tiger attack at Palm Beach Zoo

An employee at the Palm Beach Zoo died in a Malayan tiger attack while performing a routine procedure on Friday afternoon, a zoo spokeswoman said.

Zoo officials confirmed tiger handler Stacey Konwesier was killed by a tiger.

Zoo worker killed by tiger

Palm Beach Zoo worker Stacey Konwesier died on Friday after being attacked by a Malayan tiger during a routine procedure in the tiger’s enclosure.

Zoo spokeswoman Naki Carter said Konweiser was preparing a male tiger for a show at the zoo called Tiger Talk just before 2pm when the attack happened.

Konweiser, a three-year veteran of the zoo and tiger expert, was doing normal procedural actions with the tiger when it attacked her. Her husband also works for the zoo.

Killed-by-tiger-Stacey Konwesier-image www.pythonjungle.com

Killed: Stacey Konwesier. Photo: Brianna Soukup/Palm Beach Post via AP

“Stacey was an expert,” Carter said. “She dedicated her life to her mission of protecting tigers.”

The male tiger was quickly subdued, allowing officials to reach Konweiser. She was taken to St Mary’s Medical Center, where she died.

“This is a family who is in mourning right now,” Carter said of the zoo employees. “We all, myself included, doubled over. We’re a close-knit group here at Palm Beach Zoo. There were tears.”

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission will be investigating the death. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and grief counsellors were at the zoo.

Staff at the zoo have been left devastated by the death of Stacey Konwesier-image www.pythonjungle.com

Staff at the zoo have been left devastated by the death of Stacey Konwesier. Photo: Damon Higgins/Palm Beach Post via AP

“It’s very new and all the details are still coming in,” said Carol Lyn Parrish, spokeswoman for the wildlife commission. “Because it’s an active investigation for us, we are not releasing any information.”

Malayan tigers are “an endangered species – less than 250 in the wild. Four live here at Palm Beach Zoo,” Carter said.

Zoo keepers help breed the tigers to make sure they don’t go extinct, Carter said. “So that’s what was going on with this keeper here today, and this is just an unfortunate situation,” she said.

At no time was any guest at risk of injury, and immediately after the attack, all guests were escorted out of the zoo, Carter said. The zoo remains closed.

“The tiger never escaped,” Carter said. “We have safety protocols for when incidents like this occur. We initiated those safety protocols.”

Officials put the zoo on lockdown and were conducting security sweeps to make sure the zoo’s 500 animals are in their rightful places, Carter said.

Alena Rodriguez, 25, said she was at the zoo with a friend when she heard of an emergency underway. As the emergency unfolded, there was a commotion of the tiger potentially being on the loose, she said.

“We were trying to exit and they forced us into the gift shop,” she said.

Rodriguez and about 25 people, eight of them children, were herded into the gift shop, she said.

“It was very sporadic,” she said. “People didn’t know what was going on.”

Rodriguez saw the tiger at its exhibit at 1pm and decided to come back for the scheduled 2pm feeding. She came back to the tiger cage at 1:50pm and saw a trainer run by and say, “We need to evacuate.”

Rodriguez said that she and her friend tried to exit the zoo and were told to stay in the gift shop. She said she didn’t know what was going on, but she heard sirens. She wasn’t frightened, but was worried for the children, she said.

Then 20 minutes later, she heard from a zoo employee that the tiger was secure and the zoo was closed for the day. The zoo gave attendees a free pass to go back.

PPO

Henry Sapiecha

MAN FIGHTS GIANT SNAKE IN UNDERWATER VIDEO

Published on May 9, 2013

This guy is the only one I have seen who jumps in the water and fights with Giant Anacondas with his bare hands. His name is Ross Allen and he has to be one of the pioneers of this kind of thing. He started catching Alligators when he was just a kid. He started his own Reptile attraction at Silver Springs Florida way back in 1929. But you have the give him credit. There was very little info back then on how things or done, or very much safety back up. Allen made it up as he went along. Although he was bit by snakes more than 30 times, he never lost his love of reptiles until his death in 1981 by natural causes. Old School? You bet? But very cool never the less.

BIOGRAPHY

Ensil Ross Allen (1908–1981) was an American herpetologist and writer.[2] Born in Pennsylvania, Ross relocated to Florida with his family when he was a teenager. As a young man, Allen made a hobby of capturing turtles, snakes and other reptiles near his home in central Florida.

Allen began the Reptile Institute in Silver Springs, Florida in November 1929.[3][4] The center was once known for its reptile demonstrations, including alligator wrestling and rattlesnake milking, but is now recognized for its research on native Floridian reptiles.[5] Allen often procured the specimens for the Institute himself, often with the help of swimmer and Silver Springs celebrity Newton Perry. In 1935, a replica of an entire Seminole village was added to the park on Allen’s initiative.[6]

Because of his expertise in handling the animals, Allen was featured in numerous film shorts and newsreel clips. He also served as stuntman and reptile handler on several movies that were filmed in Silver Springs, including Tarzan Finds a Son and The Yearling He worked at Silver Springs for 46 years, leaving in 1975. He began work on a new attraction that was to be called Alligator Town, U.S.A. After his death in 1981, however, the project was abandoned.[8]

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Henry Sapiecha

The Evolution of Venom – Which is The Most Poisonous? [Full Video Documentary]

Henry Sapiecha