Friday, April 22, Buds, bugs and beasts Fern from the garden. Spring has come and gone, it seems, at an astonishing speed. As they unfurl, burst open their chrysalis-like forms and spread out to reveal the real nature of their contents, many buds assume such strange shapes. It is hardly surprising that they have inspired so many artists Ferns by the garden pond.
Certain names then become forever associated with death and destruction. The naming process. Areas of landfall have also been used, for example the Galveston Hurricane of , as have latitudelongitude identifications. Australian meteorologist Clement Wragge — , known as Wet Wragge to his friends, was the pioneer of naming storms.
Later, he chose only female names. George R. The National Hurricane Center started to officially name storms in , using the old phonetic alphabet Able, Baker, Charlie, etc. From a new list of female names was adopted, to which male names were added from The first two have six alphabetic lists that are used in rotation and recycled every six years.
The latter is made up of four lists. Some of the names opposite, earmarked for the Atlantic, will be hitting the headlines in the future. Will you have the misfortune of having a hurricane named after you? Some famous names are notable for their absence. The reason for this is simple. They are retired and replaced. Seventy-six names were retired between and The now infamous words of BBC weatherman Michael Fish were delivered just hours before Britain was hit by its worst storm since The Great Storm of did untold damage, taking the lives of eighteen people.
Weather prediction can be a challenge, even for the wisest of meteorologists. Historically, those whose livelihoods and lives depended on the weather used rhyming couplets and proverbs based on observations. Below are examples of weather lore from around the world.
They may seem far-fetched, but give them a go; some are more reliable than others. When grass is dry at morning light, Look for rain before the night. Ants that move their eggs and climb, Rain is coming anytime. Haloes around the moon or sun Mean that rain will surely come. Year of snow, Crops will grow.
Rainbow in the south, heavy rain and snow, Rainbow in the west, little showers and dew, Rainbow in the east, fair skies and blue. If the cock crows going to bed, He will certainly rise with a watery head. Onion skins very thin, Midwinter coming in. They are not expensive or as rare as you might imagine.
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When placed in a sheltered area, low humidity makes it brittle, indicating the next day is likely to be dry. It goes limp when there is dampness in the air. These small flowers close when rain is due. Having struck in the afternoon in a region where earthquake-resistant buildings had been constructed, the death toll was relatively low at 1, The five deadliest earthquakes of the 20th century may not have been as powerful, but their wrath accounted for a total of , human lives.
Striking the most populated region of the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere meant that Haitian residents had a low chance of survival. An estimated one in every fifteen people affected died. The five deadliest earthquakes for this decade alone accounted for , deaths. The deadliest earthquake ever recorded hit Shaanxi Shensi , China on 23 January The tremor caused fissures, landslides, liquefaction, sandblows, subsidence, and uplift. City walls, civilian houses and temples were demolished. A staggering , lives were lost. Howard introduced basic cloud types: cirrus curl , cumulus heap , stratus spread out , nimbus rain cloud and their derivatives cirrocumulus and cirrostratus.
This science trickled into artistic thinking. In and Constable combined his meteorological interest with detailed observations recorded in his Hampstead cloud sketches. These substances come in the form of proteins and chemical compounds. Poison has long enjoyed a reputation as an agent of murder and suicide. History has been laced with famous victims. Athens, bc. Greek philosopher Socrates was found guilty of heresy. His sentence was death by hemlock at his own hand. By the Middle Ages, poisoning had become quite the fashion.
In Venice, members of the Council of Ten carried out murder by poison for a fee. Lucrezia Borgia — , of the House of Borgia, also gained a reputation as a femme fatale who poisoned the wine of family enemies during banquets. Deadly potions are also prevalent in the works of William Shakespeare — : henbane Hyoscyamus niger , aconite Aconitum , and deadly nightshade Atropa belladonna all make appearances.
Thy drugs are quick. Thus with a kiss I die. The notorious Death Cap Amanita phalloides bears a striking resemblance to the edible Paddy Straw Volvariella volvacea. Due to this mistaken identity, it still accounts for 90 per cent of all fungi fatalities today. Poison became a weapon for warfare, mass murder and espionage from the 20th century. Nazi Germany later turned to hydrogen cyanide in their gas chambers, with devastating effect.
Members of the Third Reich favoured cyanide capsules to take their own lives. The demise of Bulgarian dissident Georgi Markov — , days after being at the sharp end of an umbrella on Waterloo Bridge, revealed that ricin-filled pellets were the choice of the KGB. Twenty-eight years later, the poisoning and slow death of Alexander Litvinenko — suggested that the Russian secret services had by then turned to radioactive polonium All this talk of deception, murder and death is a bit scary, but fear not. The CDC found that of the 41, poisoning deaths in the United States in , 76 per cent were unintentional and 8 per cent undetermined.
Furthermore, 91 per cent of unintentional deaths were caused by prescription painkillers, cocaine or heroin. As you might imagine, this is quite a challenge for the taxonomists involved. These then appear on an annual Top Ten New Species list. Here is the list of species described in 1. A snub-nosed monkey from Myanmar, Burma, that sneezes when it rains.
Name: Sneezing Monkey Rhinopithecus strykeri. A nematode measuring just half a millimetre found at a depth of 1. The first night-blooming orchid.
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It grows in the tropical forests of Papua New Guinea. Name: Night-blooming Orchid Bulbophyllum nocturnum. A small parasitic wasp that attacks and deposits eggs into unsuspecting desert ants in less than 0. Name: Small Attack Wasp Kollasmosoma sentum. A sponge-like mushroom that resembles a popular cartoon character.
Name: Spongebob Squarepants Mushroom Spongiforma squarepantsii. A yellow poppy that blooms in the autumn monsoon season. Found hidden away miles into the Himalayan wilderness. Name: Nepalese Autumn Poppy Meconopsis autumnalis. Name: Wandering Leg Sausage Crurifarcimen vagans. A fossil of an extinct creature that may have used its bristly legs to capture prey. Name: Walking Cactus Diania cactiformis. Go on, be honest. You will be in good company. Scientists continue in their attempts to prove plants have feelings.
In German researchers found that plants release ethylene when attacked. Plants have feelings too. When the storm-ravaged ship ran ashore and the captain died, the remaining crew made shelters and survived by eating sea cows, seals and sea otters. Pixiu is fierce that it loves to eat evil creatures and then turn them into wealth. It works in the heaven and prevents evil creatures and diseases attacking the heaven. There are two different kinds of Pixiu. There is also other wordings said that it can be used for distinguish good and bad Pixiu.
Hou is a monster that has deer horns, camel head, cat ears, shrimp eyes, donkey mouth, lion hair, snake neck, sea serpent stomach, carp scales and eagle forepaws and tiger hind paws. It is the son of the King of Dragon and has a habit of being guardian. Therefore, I will place all the photos here.
Its shape is similar to a yellow pocket. Its color is red which is similar to a fire. It has six legs and four wings. It has no face but can sing and dance. It has human face, monster body and only one hand and one leg. Its sound is similar to yawning. It has human face and dragon body. It has horse body, human face, tiger stripe and bird wings. It often flies through the four sea and passes the message from the Emperor of Sky. Its sound is like a pumping water windlass. Its shape is similar to human and it has a tiger tail.
It can emit magical light. It can change the Qi of the world. It has another name of God of Auspicious. It is the leader of all poisonous insects in the world. Its shape is similar to human but has two heads. Tuowei is a God that looks like human but has sheep horns and tiger claws. When Tuowei gets out of the water, it will shine. It has human body and dragon body.
It has competed for the throne with the Emperor of Sky and lost. Xingtian uses breasts as its eyes and navel as its mouth. Left hand is holding a shield and right hand is holding an axe. It never stop brandish them. Rushou is the God of metal in the west. It has white hair and tiger claws. There is a green snake on its left ear. Its right hand is holding a tomahawk. It uses two dragons as its mounts. It is very fierce.
It has nine heads and snake body. It can eat at nine mountain at the same time. When it comes to a place, that place will become a poisonous swamp. It has human face and snake body. Its body is red in color and miles long. Its eyes are upright. When it closes its eyes, the world will become at night.
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If it opens its eyes, the world will become daytime. It needs not eat, sleep and breathe. It just swallow winds and rains. It has monster body, human face and large ears. There are two green snakes on its ears. Its movements are like wriggling. Its shape is like a monster and it has eight human heads, eight feet and eight tails. The color of its hair on its back is green and has a little yellow inside it. Yushiqie people have black skin. They are holding two snakes in their hands. Left ear has a green snake and right ear has a red snake on it.
Its right foot is locked and its hands are locked by its own hair. Leishen is the God of Thunder. It has dragon body and human head. It always beats its belly and so thunder is generated. It can be human or monster. It is the shape of Thunder God in ancient time. It has nine head, human face and bird body. Nine-head bird is red in color. Its shape looks like a duck. They share the same sound. It has tiger head, human body, four hoofs and long elbows. Its mouth is holding snakes and its hands are also holding snakes.
Its look is terrifying.
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It has tiger body, nine tails, human face and tiger claws. It is located in south overseas. The people there have black monster body. They can shoot fire from their mouths. Their shape looks like a black ape. Yumin Kingdom is located in southeast overseas. The people there have long head and feathers. They can fly but cannot fly for a long distance. They are oviparous. The people there have human face, beak and wings. They fish for living.
It was exiled to south overseas then committed suicide. Its offspring then reproduced there. The people there have a hole on their breast. Dayu could not bear so he treated them. Therefore, they have a hole on the breast forever. The people there are crossing their shins. Their height has about four feet. There are also statements saying that they are crossing necks, toes or thighs.
For crossing necks, this means two people are crossing their necks together to walk. The people there have one body and three heads. The three heads themselves have each respiratory tract. If one of the heads has eaten enough, other heads are also eaten enough. Their shape is really strange. The people there have a pair of arms which is very long that can touch the ground. When they fish, it is easy to use their hand to catch the fish. Although they have medium build, their sleeves have thirty feet long.
The people there have one arm only and three eyes. There is another statement saying that they can make flying card which can fly by the winds. The people there have long feet and long hair. Wuqi means no offspring. The people there live in caves and eat soil. They are regardless of gender. After they die, their hearts will not rot. After years, they will revive so they do not care about reproduction. The people there have only one eye.
They eat broomcorn for living. There also have Yimu people. It is located in the west of Yimu Kingdom. The people there have only one hand and only one foot. The knee is bending and the foot is on top of the knee. Their offspring do not have any bones. The people there have very long ears. As the long ears make them go out inconveniently, they always use their hands to hold their ears. Every single person in Wuchang Kingdom has two giant spotted tigers.
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They can order the tigers at will. The people there have human face, long lip and black hair which cover on their body. When they see people, they will laugh or smile. Their lips can cover their eyes. They can order four kinds of wild beasts. Dayu knows that Chuoren was innocent so he secretly constructed a kingdom for Chuoren which was Maomin Kingdom.
Maomin people have a body which has arrowhead-like hair on it. The people there have human face, fish body and no feet. They can fly in the sky and walk on the ground. The people there have the height of three feet. Another statement said that they have one feet and five inches. There are also other statements said that they have only seven inches or just 0. The people there have only one arm, one eye and one nostril.
Yibi people are the same type of that. They have human head but three faces on the three sides. They have only one arm. They will not die forever. The people there have hair under their knees. Their feet are horse hoofs so they can run fast without riding horse. Their male offspring looks like dogs and their female offspring is beauties. The people there are tall and have black skin. The old men there, especially the ones who have over years old, just look like young men. In legend, there are trees which after people eat their fruits, they can have longevity.
The people there have deep eye sockets. They always lift one of their hands and look like greeting. The people there are faultless in form and very polite. They have a sword in their waist. They eat wild beasts for living. Each of them has two spotted tiger to order at will. When the people there walk, their heels will not touch the ground.
They use their soles of the feet to walk. There is another statement said that their feet were grown reversely. Their footprints will turn towards north when they walk towards south. The people there are tall. They usually hold a green snake in their right hands and a yellow snake in their left hands. They are offspring of Kuafu who has raced with the sun. The people there have black teeth. They eat rice for staple food but use snakes for dishes. They always have a red snake and a green snake with them. The people there have Sarcoma on their necks. They always use one of their hands to hold their sarcomas.
The people there have black thighs. They wear clothes made by fish skins. They eat gulls for food. They usually hold two birds under their arms. In the mountain, there are people who have three bodies. They eat broomcorn for food. There is another statement said that they have one head, three hands and three bodies. The people there have black skin.
They eat wild fruit and strawberry for food. Inside the kingdom, there is a kind of bird which has two heads. The people there have white skin and white hair. Its ears are white in color. It can creep and also walk. Its shape is like a horse. It has white head, tiger stripes and red tail. Its animal call is like a person who is now singing folk song. Its shape is like a wild cat and there is hair on its head. It is hermaphrodite that can mate by itself. If human eats its meat, it can cure jealousy.
It looks like goat. It has nine tails and four ears. Its eyes grow on its back. When people wear its skin, those people will not be feared. It looks like fox but has nine tails. Its sound is like crying of a baby. It will eat human but if people eat its meat, they can ward off evil. Its shape looks like a long-tailed monkey. It has four ears.
Its sound is like moaning. If it appears in a place, there will be flood. If it appears in a place, there will be forced labor. Its shape looks like human. It has mane on its body. It lives in cave. When it is winter, it will hibernate. Its shape is like monkey. Its body looks like tiger. It has ox tail. Its sound is like barking. It will eat human. It can live without eating food. It cannot be killed.
It looks like an eagle. There is horn on its head.