tagged w/ power lines
Dead Birds Fall in Italy, Sweden, U.S. (AR, LA, KY) | Millions of Dead Fish Found in Brazil, New Zealand, U.S. (MD, SC) | Constant Updates | Photos | Videos------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
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Dead Birds Fall From Sky In Sweden, Millions Of Dead Fish Found In Maryland, Brazil, New Zealand
The Huffington Post | Travis Walter Donovan First Posted: 01- 5-11 09:11 AM | Updated: 01- 5-11 06:16 PM
UPDATE: Wildlife officials say that even more previously unreported dead birds were found in Kentucky last week.
Millions of dead fish surfaced in Maryland's Chesapeake Bay in the U.S., Tuesday, while similar unexplained mass fish deaths occurred across the world in Brazil and New Zealand. On Wednesday, 50 birds were found dead on a street in Sweden. The news come after recents reports of mysterious massive bird and fish deaths days prior in Arkansas and Louisiana.
The Baltimore Sun reports that an estimated 2 million fish were found dead in the Chesapeake Bay, mostly adult spot with some juvenile croakers in the mix, as well. Maryland Department of the Environment spokesperson Dawn Stoltzfus says "cold-water stress" is believed to be the culprit. She told The Sun that similar large winter fish deaths were documented in 1976 and 1980.
ParanaOnline reports that 100 tons of sardines, croaker and catfish have washed up in Brazilian fishing towns since last Thursday. The cause of the deaths is unknown, with an imbalance in the environment, chemical pollution, or accidental release from a fishing boat all suggested by local officials.
In New Zealand, hundreds of dead snapper fish washed up on Coromandel Peninsula beaches, many found with their eyes missing, The New Zealand Herald reports. A Department of Conservation official allegedly claims the fish were starving due to weather conditions.
While all three events are likely unrelated, they come after recent reports of mysterious dead birds falling from the sky in both Arkansas and Louisiana. Thousands of dead birds were found in Beebe, Arkansas on New Year's Eve, and a few days later, around 500 of the same species were found 300 miles south in Louisiana. A Kentucky woman also reported finding dozens of dead birds scattered around her home. In the days prior to New Year's, nearly 100,000 fish surfaced in an Arkansas river 100 miles west of Beebe. Officials are now saying that fireworks likely caused the Arkansas bird deaths, and power lines may be to blame for the death of the birds in Louisiana.
Some remain skeptical of the explanations. Dan Cristol, a biology professor and co-founder of the Institute for Integrative Bird Behavior Studies at the College of William & Mary, told the AP that he was hesitant to believe fireworks were to blame unless "somebody blew something into the roost, literally blowing the birds into the sky."
Wednesday, officials in Sweden reported the finding of 50 dead birds on a street, suggesting that cold weather or fireworks were the likely culprit.
Bird deaths and fish kills at smaller numbers aren't all that uncommon, though the size and proximity of some of the recent events have led people to allege their relation, though officials deny the frequency of these wildlife deaths as being anything other than coincidence.
In August of 2010, tens of thousands of dead fish were reported washing ashore in two separate occasions, 200 miles apart on the East Coast.------------------------------------------------------------------------------------... more
Western states facing 'all-day onslaught' from massive winter storm
By the CNN Wire Staff
December 19, 2010 1:04 p.m. EST
California's bleak weekend weather
* Up to 10 feet of snow is possible in the Sierra Nevadas
* Lower elevations will see up to 18 inches of rain
* Mudslides are a possibility in southern California
(CNN) -- A huge winter storm was affecting the West Coast on Sunday, poised to dump up to 10 feet of snow in some higher elevations, and causing flooding and potential mudslides in lower spots while impacting driving conditions and air travel, forecasters said.
A winter storm warning remained in effect through Monday afternoon for California's Sierra Nevada mountains, from Yosemite to Kings Canyon, according to the National Weather Service. "Storm totals of 5 to 10 feet above 7,000 feet are likely," the weather service said, and periods of heavy snow will continue through Monday. High winds are also forecast for the region.
"Travel into the high country of the southern Sierra Nevada may be difficult, if not impossible," according to forecasters.
"It's going to be an all-day onslaught," CNN meteorologist Reynolds Wolf said. Areas from Denver westward will see rain, he said.
At lower elevations, heavy rain was causing flash flooding in a number of locations. Flood advisories and watches were posted almost the entire length of California, from Redding to San Diego. Los Angeles had received 2 to 3 inches of rain as of about 2:30 a.m. Sunday, and "more significant rain" was on the way, forecasters said.
Flooding in the San Joaquin valley, which includes Fresno and Sacramento, is a "firm possibility," Wolf said. Footage from Sacramento showed drivers creeping through water on roadways.
And with the heavy rain comes the threat of mudslides, especially in areas near Los Angeles affected by this year's wildfires, where there is no vegetation to hold the soil in place, Wolf said. The soil becomes saturated, and gravity pulls it downward.
"Some minor debris and rock slides have already been reported early this morning," said a Southern California flood advisory issued by the National Weather Service, "and this threat will likely continue through this morning." The threat could also be delayed, meaning it will not abate when the rains stop and could occur later, Wolf said.
The storm -- actually a series of storms -- were triggered by "deep persistent moisture" originating from the subtropical Pacific and surging northeastward, CNN meteorologist Sean Morris said. The phenomenon is often called the "Pineapple Express," he said, because the moisture originates near the Hawaiian islands.
The series will affect the region through Wednesday, with the strongest portions yet to come, Morris said Saturday. Rainfall amounts could reach 10 to 12 inches in some spots and 18 inches in isolated areas, he said.
The storms could be the strongest to hit southern California since January 2005, he said, when up to 32 inches of rain came in a five-day period.
On Saturday, there were more than 260 freeway crashes in Los Angeles County and unincorporated areas because of the rain, said California Highway Patrol Officer Ed Jacobs. That is compared with 48 last Saturday, when it was not raining, he said.
Most of the crashes were "minor fender-benders," he said, but two people died in a crash in Santa Clarita. "We think the driver was just going too fast in that case," he said.
About 5,000 customers lost power in southern California, said Steve Conroy of Southern California Edison, but he noted that is a small percentage of the company's 5.4 million customers.
The biggest problem the company faced Saturday was drivers traveling too fast and sliding into poles, causing some service interruptions, Conroy said. The company serves some of the mountain areas and has crews in place there, he said. "Overall, we're in good shape."
About 2,100 customers lost power early Sunday in the Highland Park area of Los Angeles, but power had been restored as of about 6:30 Sunday morning, said Maychelle Yee, spokeswoman for the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. The outages were probably weather-related, she said.
Further north, high winds affected Seattle, downing trees and power lines, and knocking out power to about 100,000 people. Most of those had been restored as of Sunday. Footage from Spokane, Washington, showed drivers crashing as they slid down a snowy hill.
Besides the potential for road closures, air travel could be affected in cities including San Francisco; Los Angeles; Seattle; Portland, Oregon; and Salt Lake City, Wolf said. Those delays could have a ripple effect elsewhere as a busy holiday travel week approaches.
As of 8:20 a.m., the only delay posted on the Federal Aviation Administration's website was in San Francisco, where arriving flights were experiencing a delay of more than an hour.
CNN's Nick Valencia contributed to this report.
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BERLIN (Reuters) - A German couple had a lucky escape after their light aircraft hit a 380,000 volt power line and then hung upside down from a wheel for nearly three hours.
"They had a very, very lucky accident," said police officer Edmund Martin at the scene in Durach, southern Germany.
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