Archive | August 27, 2014


Subject To Change

Depth: 118 km

Distances: 30km (19mi) ESE of Port-Olry, Vanuatu
50km (31mi) NNE of Luganville, Vanuatu
309km (192mi) NNW of Port-Vila, Vanuatu
643km (400mi) N of We, New Caledonia
784km (487mi) N of Paita, New Caledonia  

Global view


Large fish kill found in a creek in Baltimore, America

Hundreds of fish reportedly died in Herring Run and one of its tributaries Thursday. Here, a lone live fish swims amid the dead ones.

City officials said Thursday they are investigating a fish kill in a Northeast Baltimore creek that flows through Herring Run Park, where users of the park and streamside trail expressed dismay.

“This is ridiculous,” said Donald Cooper, who stopped while riding his bike to peer at the dead fish littering the stream bottom beneath the Harford Road overpass.

Cooper, 52, who lives nearby, said a couple days before, he’d brought his nephew to the park to see the fish, which he said then were “swimming all over the place…Now they’re all dead.”

David Flores, the Baltimore Harbor Waterkeeper, said a woman reported the fish kill to him late Thursday morning. When he got there around noon, Flores said he found “hundreds and hundreds” of minnow-sized fish and even some large foot-long suckers belly up.

“American eels are struggling to breathe, or basically beaching themselves on stream banks to get out of the water,” he said when he contacted The Baltimore Sun.

Flores said he tracked dead and distressed fish up Tiffany Run, a tributary of Herring Run, until he came to a point where the stream is buried, emerging from a large outfall by Lake Montebello.

Though it wasn’t immediately clear what killed the fish, Flores said it likely was an illicit discharge into a storm drain or into a stream. Sewage leaks and other discharges, either accidental or intentional, are a chronic problem rendering the city’s waters unfit for people and in some cases even fish.

Herring Run empties into Back River, which along with the Patapsco River are the Chesapeake Bay’s most degraded tributaries, according to the latest report from the University of Maryland.  Herring Run’s 30-square-mile watershed drains densely developed Northeast Baltimore and portions of Baltimore County, as far north as Towson.  The stream and its tributaries have long been impaired for fecal bacteria, nutrients and sediment.

Flores said the woman who reported the kill to him said she smelled chlorine; while he detected an acrid odor himself, Flores said he could not identify it. Chlorine is used to make drinking water safe for humans to consume, but it is highly toxic to fish.

The city’s Montebello water treatment plant is near there, but Flores said he understands Tiffany Run is fed by a large underground network of storm sewers there that drain land as far west as York Road.

Jeffrey Raymond, spokesman for the city Department of Public Works, said the cause of the kill is under investigation.  But he said investigators found low levels of chlorine and ammonia in stream water samples taken Thursday afternoon. The spokesman said that would suggest the fish likely weren’t killed by a discharge of chlorinated city water or of raw sewage, another chronic problem in city streams.

UPDATE:Raymond said city investigators found dissolved oxygen levels normal  and no algae noticeable in the area of the fish kill. Large algae blooms often are linked to fish kills, as the aquatic plants consume oxygen in the water when they die and decay, thus suffocating the fish.

Astonishing numbers of dead Salmon washing up along Kobuk River, ‘never seen before’ in Alaska, America

A fish die-off leaves chum salmon carcasses along the shore of the Kobuk River on Sunday, August 17, 2014, about 10 miles above Kiana in northwest Alaska

For the last week, from Shungnak all the way down to Kotzebue, people are reporting dead fish washed up on the banks of Northwest Alaska’s Kobuk River in astonishing numbers. The fish appear to have been healthy and unspawned. Some have mysterious white welts dotting their backs.

Carolyn Ballot, mayor of Ambler, said when she first heard about the fish, she suspected bears were pulling salmon out of the water, which is nothing unusual. But the huge number of fish washing ashore quickly became concerning. She wondered whether warm weather in the region was causing the die-off.

“There is something going on,” she said.

The explanation may be somewhat mundane, though: The Alaska Department of Fish and Game suspects the die-off is related to this year’s extremely strong chum salmon run, to the point that the fish are practically clogging the waterway.

“It’s one of the greatest runs of all of time,” said Jim Menard, Alaska Department of Fish and Game area management commercial fisheries biologist for the Kotzebue and Norton Sound region.

Menard said with so many salmon choking the river there is “low dissolved oxygen” in the water, likely the cause of the die-off. Some fish are being pushed into the shallows, Menard said, where the water is warmer and less oxygen-rich.

Menard said being in the shallows also exposes the fish to more sunlight, which could be causing the welts — essentially fish sunburn, he said.

He noted the assessment is preliminary, and the department is still looking into the cause of the die-off. Menard said the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is heading to the river this week to conduct tissue sampling of the fish. He added there have been reports of other species of fish also dying — albeit in smaller numbers — and it appears the die-off is not an infection.

The 2014 chum fishery on the Kobuk is one of the strongest ever. The commercial fishery in Kotzebue alone has caught over 600,000 fish, far exceeding pre-season estimates of no more than 275,000. Menard said Fish and Game estimates the catch is 50 percent higher than the record catch of last year.

There are so many fish in the river, people can see fins near the banks, according to Kiana resident Thomas Jackson. That never happens, he said, since the fish usually move through the deep river channels.

Last week, Jackson went fishing for whitefish at the Coal Mine Camp on the Kobuk, 20 miles upriver from Kiana. When he got there, he said, elders warned him that all he was going to catch were dead chums. He suspected he had missed the run, since on his trip up the river he’d seen only a few dead fish.

But when he hauled in his seine net after only a few minutes of fishing, he was shocked to find 50 dead salmon in it.

“I’m 51 years old and I’ve never seen this in my whole life,” Jackson said from Kiana Monday.

He said the fish have started to wash up in the village of Kiana, an Inupiat community of about 400 at the confluence of the Kobuk and Squirrel rivers. He wasn’t sure how many fish were on the shore, but it was starting to stink.

“If it’s starting to smell, it’s a lot of fish,” he said.

Hundreds of dead fish found floating on a lake in Arkansas, America

Fish Kill Alert

There’s a smelly situation in Crittenden County, Ark., between Marion and West Memphis, where hundreds of dead fish are floating on a lake.

That lake is in the middle of a mobile home park, and people say they can’t bear to go outside because of the stench.

“Oh Lord, that smell is foul. You can smell it way back here,” said Debbie Metzger.

She lives a stones throw, or make that a “dead fish toss,” from the mess.

Hundreds of lifeless fish are floating atop the lake in Lakeshore Estates mobile home park in Crittenden County.

“Some of them are bass. That’s a catfish. The brown ones are brims,” said Metzger.

People here said dead fish started surfacing a couple of days ago, and the smell keeps getting worse.

One of those complaining is Nancy Nelson, who has family living in Lakeshore Estates.

“My daughter said, ‘Mom, it smells like sewer.’ And I said, ‘No, that’s dead fish, dead fish. Only that smell is dead fish,’” said Nelson.

The Arkansas Game and Fish Commission have been to the lake to investigate.

We’re told the fish appeared to have died from a lack of oxygen in the water, something that occasionally happens during the summer on residential lakes or ponds when water remains still for an extended period.

However, inspectors did take water samples to check for any signs of contamination.

Jeff Cayton said this sort of thing has happened before on the lake.

Cayton used to live in Lakeshore Estates, but is now on a mission to clean up the community and hates to see the lake looking and smelling the way it does.

“At one time you could come out here and you’d see people all around that lake fishing and boating. You don’t see nothing out there but dead fish now. And that’s pitiful that anybody’s got to live around that,” said Cayton.

We’re told there are no plans to remove the dead fish; instead, they’ll just have to go through a natural decaying process.

That, unfortunately, means the smell won’t go away anytime soon.

Massive fish kill ‘due to manure spill’ affecting 20 MILES of river in Iowa, America

Fish Kill Alert

It’s being called one of the biggest fish kills in recent history
A massive kill which started in O’brien County, caused by a manure spill from Summit Dairy, has impacted more than 20 miles of river, including Mill Creek. Now, it’s the DNR’s job to step in and investigate.
“We’ve been on a number of fish kills during my tenure with the department, this is probably one of the larger, lengthier fish kill investigations that I’ve been involved with,” said Fishery Biologist Mike Hawkins.
As a huge portion of the fish population suffers, the fisheries bureau of the DNR has to get total death counts, by hand.
“We use some statistical methods to do that we obviously can’t walk all of this stream in an efficient manner to be able to access it all and do a total enumeration of fish. So, what we have to do then is to take sample counts,” Hawkins added.
But they’re also counting how many of each fish species died, so the responsible party can potentially be charged fish restitution. Parts of the stream are chosen and then the DNR gets to work, getting muddy and wet, counting fish as they go.
It’s not an easy job.
“Especially this time of the year, it’s awfully hot, the conditions in the river can be pretty bad, and of course we’ve got thousands of dead fish around us,” Hawkins said.
The DNR will continue to take tallies daily until they can confirm the bacteria is diluted and the fish kill is over. They add the most important things Iowans can do is report fish kills when they see them, in a timely manner.

377 birds dead in wetland due to outbreak of disease in Gasteiz, Spain


The Provincial Council of Alava Vitoria and keep activated the protocol established to try to eradicate the possible outbreak of avian botulism that affects mainly the wetland Salburua in particular Arkaute the raft, and laying have already collected a total of 377 dead birds. It is expected that the final results from the reference laboratory of the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Environment in Algete (Madrid) to confirm that it is an outbreak of avian botulism arrive this week.

Hundreds of dead fish appear at the mouth of Serpis River in Gandia, Spain

Detalle de peces muertos que aparecieron este fin de semana en la playa de Venecia. :: lp

Hundreds of fish found dead this weekend at the mouth of the river Serpis Gandia. Neighbors noticed Sunday morning that copies as smooth bass floating in the waters of Venice and Marenys Rafalcaid and also many other species had flooded the shores of these beaches south of the city.

The causes of this mortality is unknown at this time but it appears that the sewage was pouring some type of harmful bacteria to animals. On Monday there were only remnants of dead fish, so the green flag, that allows the bathroom was installed, which shows that there is no longer any danger.

The president of the Association of Residents of Venice Beach, Ernesto Mico, yesterday lamented this event: “It is not nice to see so many dead fish in the mouth. We are waiting to tell us what could have happened. ”

He was a resident who realized what happened on Sunday and gave immediate notice to the competent authorities. Attended by members of the local police and Seprona. The beach cleaning workers collected the morning fish and placed in garbage bags in a container of Venice. But neighbors complained, nobody pulled up early yesterday, causing “a strong odor of rotting fish was perceived even from the festival was being celebrated on the occasion of the celebrations of the district.”

The mayor Grau, Toni Rodriguez, said yesterday that the beaches of Venice and the mouth Marenys and had returned to normal and there were no dead fish. Sources Confederation Júcar (CHJ) indicated that an environmental agent, after finding the death, prepare a report to determine whether the facts are matters for Costas or CHJ.

This incident adds to the middle of July, in which the government of Gandia closed the bathroom for two days Venice Beach after detecting high levels of enterococci in water. It is a fecal bacteria which is found in some coastal areas and can affect swimmers, because sometimes causes itchy eyes and stomach damage. This decision was made after learning the analysis by each day the General Water of the Generalitat Valenciana.

This organism is found in the coastal area because is near the mouth of the river Serpis and in the area of ​​influence of the outfall of the wastewater treatment plant. Venice Beach opened the bathroom days later after checking the water quality fit.

From Compromís yesterday showed concern about the “deficiencies” in the outfall and wastewater treatment plants. “Another summer have been many dead fish and South Beach has had to close the bathroom on more than one occasion. We again require the Generalitat investments “remarked spokeswoman Gandia, Lorena Milvaques. The mayor added that make a parliamentary question in les Corts to the Department of Infrastructure. Compromís recalled that for many years about the situation of the outfall and sewage.

Plane crash leaves two in hospital; Amity, Pennsylvania

Plane crash in Amity #2
Two people have been taken to the hospital following the apparent crash of a small plane in eastern Berks County. An “aircraft emergency” was initially reported shortly after 3:30 p.m. in the 100 block of Amity Park Road in Amity Township. First responders arrived on the scene to find the charred skeleton of a small aircraft in a field. The grass beneath the plane was also burned.
Two people, officials said, were taken to the hospital for treatment of unspecified injuries, but it was not immediately clear whether both victims were aboard the plane when it went down.
Refresh this page for updates as information becomes available and tune in to 69 News at 5:30 and 6 for the latest in live reports from the scene.

Plane makes emergency landing at Edinburgh Airport, Scotland, UK

Plane Emergency Landing

A plane has made an emergency landing at Edinburgh Airport after reportedly suffering a pressurisation failure

The Virgin Little Red flight took off from Edinburgh at 5.21pm en route to London Heathrow, but had to turn around and return to the airport half an hour later due to technical problems.

Passengers disembarked and the airline made arrangements to book them onto later flights to London.

A spokeswoman for Virgin said: “Virgin Atlantic Little Red flight VS3008 operated by Aer Lingus, departing Edinburgh bound for London Heathrow, experienced a technical difficulty on board and the Captain made the decision to turn back and return safely to Edinburgh Airport.

“Virgin Atlantic is looking into the matter and would like to apologise to customers for the delay to their journey and is doing everything to get them on their way as soon as possible.

“The airline places the safety and security of passengers and crew as its top priority.”

The Airbus A320 was then checked by engineers.

Edinburgh Airport said the incident caused no disruption to services.

Deadly Ebola Virus: Canadians pulled from Sierra Leone as precaution

Ebola outbreak: Canadians pulled from Sierra Leone

The Public Health Agency of Canada said in a statement late Tuesday it is finalizing plans to bring the three-person mobile team from Winnipeg’s National Microbiology Laboratory home from Sierra Leone.

The team is being recalled after three people staying at their hotel were diagnosed with the Ebola virus. None of the team members had direct contact with those diagnosed, and they are not displaying any signs of illness, officials said.

The team members will remain in voluntary isolation and will be monitored as they travel back to Canada. Those plans have not yet been firmed up, PHAC said.

The United Nations health agency had earlier announced it was pulling staff from a laboratory testing for the Ebola virus in Kailahun, in Sierra Leone, after a Senegalese epidemiologist was infected.

“It’s a temporary measure to take care of the welfare of our remaining workers,” WHO spokesperson Christy Feig told Reuters, without specifying how long the measure would last. “After our assessment, they will return.”

The three Canadians were among six workers at the lab.

There will be an investigation to see whether it was a routine infection, or something to do with the lab’s processes or equipment, WHO said.

Meanwhile, there are five Canadian staff members with Doctors Without Borders who all remain in Sierra Leone, a representative of the organization said, but it was unclear how many are in Kailahun.

The Ebola virus outbreak in Sierra Leone, Guinea, Liberia and Nigeria is the largest ever with at least 1,427 deaths and 2,615 infected since March.

To date, more than 240 health-care workers have developed the disease and more than 120 have died, according to WHO statistics.

The Senegalese worker is under treatment at a government hospital in the eastern town of Kenema and will be evacuated from Sierra Leone.

“This was the responsible thing to do. The field team has been through a traumatic time through this incident,” said Dr Daniel Kertesz, WHO Representative in Sierra Leone, in a release. “They are exhausted from many weeks of heroic work, helping patients infected with Ebola. When you add a stressor like this, the risk of accidents increases.”

Protective equipment supply critical

In a commentary published in Tuesday’s online issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine, U.S. doctors called personal protective equipment designed to shield health-care workers from contaminated body fluids of Ebola patients critical, but not enough to prevent transmission.

“If transmission of Ebola is effectively interrupted with the use of barrier protection, why are so many health-care workers in the current outbreak being infected, particularly this late in the epidemic? Two contributing factors include an insufficient supply of [personal protective equipment] and a lack of emphasis on the process of donning and doffing PPE,” wrote Dr. William Fischer II from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine and his co-authors.

Several other factors contribute, they said, such as:

  • The difficulty health-care workers face in clinically recognizing Ebola virus infection, which often presents with symptoms including fever, fatigue and diarrhea that mirror more common ailments in sub-Saharan Africa such as typhoid fever and malaria.
  • Limited supplies of personal protective equipment including gloves, gowns and face masks.
  • Inadequate training in standard precautions.
  • Poor public health infrastructure.

Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone also have few doctors — fewer than an estimated 0.1 physicians per 10,000 citizens.

Even when health-care workers wear the protective equipment, the commentators said, they are at risk of contamination with infectious fluids if the clothing isn’t removed properly.

The impulse to wipe away sweat in the hot, humid and exhausting environment may also lead to inadvertent infection, they said.

The commentators suggest that treatment sites mitigate the risks associated with removing protective gear by providing a separate exit, physically removed from the entrance, to ensure those donning the equipment don’t come into contact with those who may be contaminated, and that a dedicated person stationed at the exit focuses on guiding all health-care providers through each step of removing the equipment.

Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, was in Liberia on Tuesday. He also  plans to stop in Sierra Leone and Guinea.
“Lots of hard work is happening, lots of good things are happening,” Frieden told a meeting attended by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf on Monday. “But the virus still has the upper hand.”

Frieden told Liberian TV that stopping the spread of Ebola virus “requires tremendous attention to every detail.”

In Britain, a volunteer nurse who tested positive for the virus after working in Sierra Leone has been given the experimental drug ZMapp, according to the London hospital that is treating him.

William Pooley, 29, was flown home on Sunday in a specially adapted Royal Air Force cargo plane. He was taken to an isolation unit at the Royal Free Hospital in north London.

Meanwhile, Ivory Coast’s football federation said Tuesday that it had been instructed by its government to cancel or move next month’s home game against Sierra Leone, one of the most affected countries in the West African Ebola outbreak.

A separate Ebola outbreak emerged over the weekend in Congo.