Skip to main content


Showing posts from August 13, 2012

Invasive Fungi Wreak Havoc on Species Worldwide ...

[Slide Show]

Human activity like trade has helped launch a deadly wave of fungal disease

By Erica Rex

WHITE NOSE: Little brown bats and other species of the flying mammal have been devastated by a fungal disease, known as white nose syndrome.Image: Alan Hicks

In 2008 Matthew Allender, a wildlife veterinarian affiliated with the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, noticed something wrong with some of the rattlesnakes he'd been studying as part of a population-monitoring program near Carlyle, Ill. 

His team had found three eastern massasauga rattlesnakes (Sistrurus catenatus catenatus) with severe facial swelling and disfiguration. 

Allender brought them back to his lab for observation. The lesions ulcerated and progressed beneath the skin. 

When the snakes died just three weeks later the disease had deformed their mouths, nasal passages and fangs beyond recognition.

Allender described a fungus,Chrysosporium, as the culprit. In 2010 Allender's team found another infected snake, …

MERCOSUR ???: Incinerados cerca de 899 kilos de cocaína en Amazonas ...

lunes 13 de agosto de 2012 09:42 PM 

AVN / Caracas

El Ministerio Público (MP) coordinó y supervisó la incineración de 899 kilos con 864 gramos de cocaína en el estado Amazonas, procedimiento realizado de acuerdo con lo previsto en la Ley Orgánica de Drogas.

De acuerdo con una nota divulgada por el MP, la droga incautada corresponde a distintos procedimientos realizados en el mes de agosto en el sector El Meta, municipio Pedro Camejo, estado Apure.

La incineración autorizada por el Tribunal 2º de Control de esa jurisdicción, se llevó a cabo en el horno incinerador del Destacamento 99 de la Guardia Nacional Bolivariana (GNB), ubicado en Puerto Ayacucho, estado Amazonas.

La droga estuvo resguardada en la Sala de Evidencias del Cuerpo de Investigaciones Científicas, Penales y Criminalísticas (Cicpc) y en el referido destacamento de la GNB, refiere el texto.

En el acto estuvieron presentes las fiscales superior y auxiliar de Apure, Carmen Padrón y Amarilis Infante, respectivamente, así como la f…

London to New York in an hour? Key test today ...

Agencies | Aug 14, 2012, 06.04AM IST

LONDON: London to New York in one hour?US military is ready to test a radical newhypersonic aircraft that can reach a speed of 4,500 mph within seconds. 

The aircraft, called the X-51A Waverider, is currently being prepared at Edwards Air Force Base in the Mojave Desert.

It uses a revolutionary 'scramjet' engine that allows it to travel at hypersonic speeds and it will be dropped from a B-52 bomber in its latest test on Tuesday, the 'Daily Mail' reported.

Attached to a B-52 bomber's wing, it will be taken from Edwards to about 50,000 feet over thePacific Ocean near Point Mugu. Hypersonic flight is seen as the next step for aircraft. The WaveRider program is estimated to cost $140 million, according to, a website for military policy research.

It has had a mixed history, with previous tests being aborted after the engine stalled. The latest test will see the craft freefall for four seconds over the Pacific before its…

New bird species discovered in 'cloud forest' of Peru ...

by Staff Writers

Ithaca NY (SPX) Aug 13, 2012

The Sira Barbet, Capito fitzpatricki, has been discovered and named by Cornell University graduates following an expedition to the remote Peruvian Andes. Credit: Cornell University.

A colorful, fruit-eating bird with a black mask, pale belly and scarlet breast - never before described by science - has been discovered and named by Cornell University graduates following an expedition to the remote Peruvian Andes.

The Sira Barbet, Capito fitzpatricki, is described in a paper published in the July 2012 issue of The Auk, the official publication of the American Ornithologists' Union.

The new species was discovered during a 2008 expedition led by Michael G. Harvey, Glenn Seeholzer and Ben Winger, young ornithologists who had recently graduated from Cornell at the time.

They were accompanied by co-author Daniel Caceres, a graduate of the Universidad Nacional de San Agustin in Arequipa, Peru, and local Asheninka guides.

The team discovered the barbe…

El Nino may be under way: Japan weather agency ...

by Staff Writers

Tokyo (AFP) Aug 10, 2012

An "El Nino" weather phenomenon is presumed to be under way in the tropical western Pacific and is expected to last until winter, Japan's meteorological agency said Friday.

The governmental agency said the phenomenon usually causes Japan's weather to be relatively cooler in summer and warmer in winter, but such a pattern might not become evident until October this year.

El Nino can lead to severe disruption in the world's weather patterns with widespread effects including drought in countries such as Australia, Indonesia and India and heavy rainfall on the US Gulf Coast and in parts of South America.

The phenomenon is caused by an invasion of warm water into the surface of the Pacific Ocean off the coast of Peru and Ecuador every four to seven years.

There was no significant anomaly in July in weather over the Japanese islands, the meteorological agency said in a statement.

"It is highly possible that the El Nino phenomenon…

FedEx to Offer US Staff Buyouts As Demand Slows ...

Mark Szakonyi, Associate Editor | Aug 13, 2012 2:05PM GMT

The Journal of Commerce Online - News Story

Majority of eligible employees will be non-operational staff at FedEx Express, FedEx Services

FedEx said it will offer voluntary buyouts to some U.S.-based employees, as the parcel giant works to cut costs as demand slows.

The company said the majority of the employees eligible for the buyouts will be non-operational staff at FedEx Express and FedEx Services. FedEx said more details of the buyout initiative will be given at the annual shareholders’ meeting on Oct. 9–10 in Memphis.

The announcement of the cost-cutting efforts comes after FedEx announced in June plans to retire older planes and take delivery of fewer newer aircraft

The world’s second-largest package transporter saw profit in the fiscal fourth quarter slip 1.4 percent year-over-year, and said it would pull back annual capital spending to $3.9 billion.

Contact Mark Szakonyi at Follow him on Twitter @szakonyi…

A.P. Moller-Maersk to Restructure Management ...

Peter T. Leach, Senior Editor | Aug 13, 2012 4:22PM GMT

The Journal of Commerce Online - News Story

Six-member executive board to manage company, effective Jan. 1

A.P. Moller-Maersk plans to give up its partnership structure and turn management responsibility over to its six-member executive board on Jan. 1.

The Danish parent of Maersk Line, Maersk Oil and Gas and APM Terminals said it would abandon the partnership, the company known as A.P. Moller-Maersk, which was established in 1914 and now consists of three partners, and has served as its registered management since 1965, and replace it with the executive board, Reuters reported.

The change is a technical move that will not affect its strategy. It follows the April death at age 98 of Maersk Mc-Kinney Moller, the Danish shipowner who helped build Maersk Line into the world’s biggest ocean container carrier.

Moller was CEO of the Copenhagen-based group until 1993 when he stepped back from daily management to serve as its chairman, a post …


Billed as Florida's first commercial tourist theme park,[1] Cypress Gardens opened on January 2, 1936 as a botanical garden planted by Dick Pope Sr. and his wife Julie. 

Over the years it became one of the biggest attractions in Florida, known for its water ski shows, lush gardens, and Southern Belles.

It became known as the "Water Ski Capital of the World" because it was the site of many of the sport's landmark firsts and over 50 world records were broken there. 

Numerous movies were filmed at the park, including portions of  This is Cinerama, the first feature filmed in the wide-screen format, and a string of  Esther Williams films and TV specials in the 1950s and 1960s.[2]

In the 1950s the Southern Belles attraction was introduced, in which young women dressed in the crinolines reminiscent of the Antebellum South. 

During the American Civil War Centennial young men dressed in Confederate uniforms would be photographed with the Southern Belles. 

In the early 1960s a cust…

Outside View: Of horses and narco-kingdoms ...

by Avi Jorisch

Washington (UPI) Aug 10, 2012

disclaimer: image is for illustration purposes only

Following a 2-year investigation, U.S. prosecutors have submitted a mindboggling 30,000 pages of documentation and 2,000 recorded phone calls that paint an extensive picture of how one of Mexico's most powerful drug-trafficking organizations raises, moves and eventually washes its illicit funds.

The indictment, issued by the Northern District of Texas, charges 15 people with laundering millions of dollars in drug profits on a sleepy Oklahoma ranch on behalf of the Los Zetas cartel, the most powerful syndicate in Mexico.

In a trial scheduled for October in Austin, Texas, the Internal Revenue Service and other federal authorities will present findings based on thousands of financial records and recorded conversations and dozens of witness interviews that provide information on how the Zetas conduct their business.

The case became public in June when federal agents carried out a sweep of seven …

Colombia exporta mangoTommy Atkins a Japón ...

El ingreso del mango Tommy Atkins al Japón es el resultado de la iniciativa de pequeños productores nacionales que, cumpliendo con las normas fitosanitarias e invirtiendo en infraestructura para el tratamiento de vapor caliente, eliminan la mosca de la fruta y hacen realidad las agro exportaciones.

El Ministerio de Agricultura, Pesca y Forestal del Japón autorizó el tratamiento cuarentenario de vapor caliente realizado al mango variedad Tommy Atkins, fruta producida en el Valle del Cauca y tratada y empacada en la planta de Asoppitaya en Bogotá, posibilitando así su ingreso al país asiático. 

Se trata de un avance relevante para el agro nacional que permitió iniciar las exportaciones desde el pasado 24 de julio.

Fuente: Lapatria

Fecha de publicación: 13/08/2012


Brasil: Huelga de fiscales dificulta exportación de mango ...

El 95% de los mangos exportados por Brasil salen del Valle del São Francisco

La huelga de los fiscales federales agropecuarios está afectando a la exportación de mango del Valle del São Francisco. 

Algunas empresas necesitaran recurrir a la Justicia para garantizar la continuidad de los trabajadores, reportó Globo rural.

El Valle del Río São Francisco concentra el mayor polo de fruticultura del Brasil. Según la Asociación de Productores y Exportadores del Valle, el 95% de los mangos exportados del país salen de la región del Valle.

De acuerdo al medio brasileño, se espera que más de 30 mil toneladas sean exportadas este año. Además, la huelga de los servidores federales amenaza la comercialización de la fruta para el mercado externo. Sin el trabajo de ellos es imposible emitir los certificados de exportación, lo que impide el embarque de los mangos.

Edis Matsumoto, coordinador de la Cámara de Fruticultura del Valle, cuenta: "La gente tiene miedo, principalmente, de la demora, del atr…

COMMODITY PRICES SPIKE: Commentary from Just-foods ...


For those watching commodity prices, the news took a turn for the worse on Friday.

The US government again cut its forecast on corn yields as the impact of the worst drought in the country for 50 years continues to reveal itself. Washington said the US corn yield is set to be the lowest since 1995-96, sending futures to a record high in Chicago. The US also cut its forecast for soybean production and the revised predictions have pushed up wheat prices.

The new forecasts from the US followed a UN report on Thursday, which said food prices increased 6% in July, thanks to the hot weather in the US, fears wheat production in Russia could be lower and rain in Brazil that has hit sugar production.

All the signs point to another year of raw material pressure for food manufacturers. The industry would have been hoping for some respite from the pricing pressure of 2011 but there seems little prospect of that.

True, we are not seeing the cost pressure of say, 2008, when oil prices were als…

El Niño delays Peru’s mango flowering ..

August 13th, 2012

The presence of El Niño in Peru this winter has had a moderate impact on mango growers with delayed flowering, but the country’s industry body does not expect any critical effects.

Peruvian Association of Mango Growers and Producers (APEM) president Juan Rivera tells while there was a slight delay in the flowering of plants, this would likely correct itself during the spring.

He says the flowering for Peru’s Kent, Haden and Tommy Atkins varieties usually occurs between July and August, while it comes a bit earlier for Edward mangoes.

He highlights the Kent mango, which has the biggest presence in Peru, is sensitive to to climatic variation.

“Proof of that was the poor flowering last year,” he says.

“There are agricultural techniques to manage the phenological cycle, so some medium-to-large growers will have production that is either delayed or advanced in this cycle, depending on their business strategies.

“There is a proportion of small growers who…

Pakistani mango exporters call for more U.S. flight options ...

August 13th, 2012

Pakistan mango exporters are lobbying the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to allow them more flexibility on routes for air freighting their produce into the country.

They are frustrated because it looks as if no exports will arrive in the U.S. this season due to transport difficulties. At the moment the USDA recognized route is to fly from Lahore to Chicago direct with a stop over in Dubai.

However, growers have said this effectively limits them to flying only with Emirates, which Multan Progressive Mango Growers chief executive officer Tariq Khan claims is too restrictive.

“There should be multiple touch downs not just Dubai, and they should allow us to change plane which would allow us to use four, or more, airlines,” he

Importer and owner of Jaidev Sharma, said it looked unlikely that any Pakistani mangoes would arrive this season.

“We have the license valid until Sept. 30 – good mangoes are available until Sept. 15 – at t…