Dinosaurs Lived in Vast Ecological Zones

first_imgDon’t think of dinosaur species living in small ecological zones.  Their habitats covered vast areas, according to a new study: “Researchers at McGill University are unlocking the mysteries of the little-known habits of dinosaurs in discovering that the entire western interior of North America was likely once populated by a single community of dinosaurs,” reported Science Daily.    Dinosaurs in North America inhabited ecological niches comparable to those of mammals today.  They were mobile and adaptable: “They were able to colonize and dominate the landscape over very large distances, and were not nearly as constrained as we might have once thought,” said Matthew Vavrek, a PhD student at McGill.  The team compared “alpha diversity” (diversity within an area) to beta diversity (diversity between areas) and found that beta diversity was low – comparable to wide-ranging mammals.  This speaks of homogeneous communities covering the entire Western interior.    The team recognized that they are “just beginning to scratch the surface of dinosaur ecology.”  This initial study raises many new questions about gene flow, migration, and affects of the dinosaurs on other megafauna and plant communities.To the extent the conclusions in this study are reliable, they raise interesting questions about climate as well.  Today’s western interior is highly stratified into biomes characterized by temperature, rainfall, flora and fauna.  There are deserts, riparian zones, grasslands, chaparral, arboreal forests, and timberline meadows.  Does the presence of dinosaur species across nearly continent-sized regions indicate that the climate or geography was radically different in the past?  If so, what would that imply about earth history as well as political debates over human impact on the environment?  These are questions that can be posed, not answers we are proposing.    One needs to be cautious with concepts, techniques and inferences in studies like this.  Some terms that are taken for granted in science become rather slippery when one has to pin them down.  Take ecological niche, for instance, or predator.  The differences between elements of these set can arguably outweigh the things they have in common.  A wolf spider and a grizzly bear can both be considered predators, for instance, and a human and a bedbug can both inhabit the same ecological niche.  Terms like these are useful for human theories and conversations.  It is difficult to defend the notion that they refer to realities that are actually “out there” in the world, independent of human reasoning.  To what does alpha diversity and beta diversity refer?  Sounds Greek.  The Greeks were humans, after all, not dinosaurs; although they were mammals.    The authors themselves admit that they are barely scratching the surface of dinosaur ecology.  Let’s let them scratch some more.  There can be surprises in lower layers.  Maybe they are not even scratching the right surface.(Visited 8 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Neighborly fence care

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Christine Gelley, Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator, OSU Extension Noble CountyFence care can make tempers flare between neighbors. Typically, when neighbors have similar goals, an agreeable strategy for fence maintenance can be worked out easily. When land use pursuits differ, there is a higher likelihood for conflict.One of Ohio’s oldest rural laws is built around the care of partition fence. Ohio R.C. Chapter 971 defines a partition fence or “line fence” as a fence placed on the division line between two adjacent properties. In 2008, the law was updated to state “Partition fence includes a fence that has been considered a division line between two such properties even though a subsequent land survey indicates that the fence is not located directly on the division line.”If both neighbors utilize the fence for similar purposes then the responsibilities are typically split evenly, which includes keeping the fence line clear of brush, briers, thistle and weeds within four feet of the fence.Historically, in all cases, the responsibility of maintaining the fence fell on both landowners equally, but revisions made in 2008 determined that the responsibility of existing (prior to 2008) fence can be divided more fairly by considering six factors:The topography of the property where the fence is or will be located.The presence of streams, creeks, rivers or other bodies of water on the property.The presences of trees, vines or other vegetation on the property.The level of risk of trespassers on either property due to the population density surrounding the property or the recreational use of adjoining properties.The importance of marking division lines between the properties.The number and type of livestock that each landowner may contain with the fence.If new fence is constructed, the responsibilities are different than in decades past. By definition, a “new” line fence is one constructed where a partition fence has never existed. In this case, the construction and maintenance responsibility are wholly the initiating landowner’s responsibility, unless the neighbor uses the fence for livestock containment within 30 years of construction. In that case, the landowner who built the fence could seek reimbursement from their neighbor by filing an affidavit with the county recorder.To be compliant with state law, a new partition fence containing livestock must meet the standards of “preferred partition fence.” The following are considered preferred:A woven wire fence of either standard or high tensile wire and topped with one or two strands of barbed wire that is at least 48 inches from the ground.A nonelectric high tensile fence with at least seven strands of wire constructed in accordance with NRCS standards.A barbed wire, electric or live fence to which the adjoining landowners agree, in writing.Neighbors who wish to construct new fence must be granted ten feet on the adjoining property to perform construction and maintenance. However, the fence builder is liable for damages caused by the entry onto the adjoining property, including damages to crops.Alternative landowner agreements are tools that can allow neighbors to create their own fence line agreements that alter how state law applies in their situation. In order to be considered valid and binding the agreement must:Be in writing.Include a description of the land where the fence is located.Include a description of the purpose and use of the fence.Be filed with the county recorder in the county where the land is located.If a dispute regarding partition fence cannot be resolved between neighbors, there are two ways to proceed through resolution. A complaint may be filed with the board of township trustees or directly in the court of common pleas. Working through a resolution in these manners can be lengthy and complicated. Details on appropriate procedures for filing a complaint can be found in R.C. 971.09.By far, the easiest way to decide on a plan for fence care is communicating with your neighbor. Openly stating your intentions and wishes in a courteous and polite manner with each other is best. Once you have reached an agreement, seal it with a handshake, but also, put it in writing and file it appropriately.The information communicated in this article is gathered from Ohio Revised Code Chapter 971 and OSU Extension’s Fence Law Factsheet by Peggy Hall, which can be accessed online at: http://go.osu.edu/aglawlinefence.last_img read more

Corn neutral, soybeans bearish in today’s USDA numbers

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Doug Tenney, Leist MercantileToday’s USDA report had corn production at 13.661 billion bushels, yield of 167.0, and ending stocks at 1.910 billion bushels. Soybean production was 3.550 billion bushels, yield was 46.9, and ending stocks of 475 million bushels.The market has been anticipating this report for weeks. Anticipation can be highly overrated. Yet, it can also be disappointing as the amount of time and energy spent is quickly forgotten once the report is released. Don’t be surprised to just move on.Will USDA finally get it right with corn acres and yield? However, with only 52% of the U.S. corn harvested shown on this week’s progress report, it means even less corn had been harvested when USDA compiled and field reports the beginning of November. Many anticipate the corn yield would decline in the last 20% to 40% of harvest. It could easily be the January 10, 2020 report to get a much better handle on corn yields when final 2019 production and yield are released.Corn has been under pressure in recent weeks due to shrinking export demand. This week it has made several new 30-day lows on the December CBOT contract. Improving weather in South America along with increased acres have combined as negatives for corn. U.S. weekly export sales have been disappointing with actual shipments light as well. Exports could be cut again today. Last month, U.S. corn exports were reduced 150 million bushels to 1.9 billion bushels. It follows a trend which has reduced exports multiple times from the May report when they were projected to be 2.275 billion bushels.Shortly after the report release, corn was 4 cents, soybeans were down 5 cents, and wheat was up 1 cent. Prior to the noon report, corn was down 2 cents, soybeans down 4 cents, and wheat down one cent.The U.S. and China trade talks continue to dominate the news. No one is thrilled with this reality but it is where we are. With the mid-November Chile APEC meeting cancelled, it means a new location must be secured for a trade signing to take place But, first the trade deal needs to be accomplished. The last two days there have been numerous news stories of the tariffs being removed in stages. For word buffs, the word of the day this week has been, “tranche,” defined as slice or portion. It has appeared in multiple news reports. Yesterday, there was even a report in which China denied the idea of slices, instead stating the translation had not been done properly.Trader estimates had the U.S. corn yield at 167.5, last month USDA had 168.4; corn production estimates were 13.643, USDA was 13.779 last month; and corn ending stocks estimates were 1.817 billion bushels, with USDA in October 1.929 billion bushels. Soybean trade estimates had the U.S. soybean yield at 46.6, last month USDA was 46.9; soybean production estimates from traders were 3.510 billion bushels, last month USDA was 3.550 billion bushels, and soybean ending stocks estimates were 428 million bushels, last month USDA was 460 million bushels.The funds have been short corn and long soybeans for many weeks. Their positions have increased both for corn and soybeans this week. It will take a major surprise for them to suddenly change.last_img read more

a month agoSevilla boss Julen Lopetegui: Chicharito will improve

first_imgSevilla boss Julen Lopetegui: Chicharito will improveby Carlos Volcanoa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveSevilla boss Julen Lopetegui says Javier Hernandez will improve after making his debut in victory over Alaves.The former West Ham striker came on as a second-half substitute.Lopetegui said, “In the moment in which he entered the game, he had to take advantage of the spaces.”It wasn’t difficult, he tried and he has to continue doing what the team is asking for.”A first-half goal from Joan Jordan was enough to give Sevilla their third win out of four matches. About the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Garvey to be Cleared of All Criminal Charges

first_img “We continue to argue that Garvey’s actions were not criminal, but were acts of liberation with moral justification. The Bill should be brought to the House in October to absolve National Heroes, including Garvey, and other freedom fighters of criminal liabilities arising from their acts of liberation and connected matters. Story Highlights Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, says the Government is moving to clear National Hero, the Rt. Excellent Marcus Garvey, of all criminal charges that were laid against him in Jamaica.center_img Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, Hon. Olivia Grange, says the Government is moving to clear National Hero, the Rt. Excellent Marcus Garvey, of all criminal charges that were laid against him in Jamaica.Addressing a civic ceremony to commemorate the 130 th birthday of Jamaica’sfirst National Hero, held at Lawrence Park, St. Ann, on August 17, the Minister said a Bill is being finalised that is aimed at absolving a number of iconic Jamaicans, including Mr. Garvey, of what she described as “acts of liberation”.The Bill will be presented to Parliament.“We continue to argue that Garvey’s actions were not criminal, but were acts of liberation with moral justification. The Bill should be brought to the House in October to absolve National Heroes, including Garvey, and other freedom fighters of criminal liabilities arising from their acts of liberation and connected matters. By including Garvey in this Bill, we are moving to ensure that his record will be totally cleared,” the Minister said.Ms. Grange said despite several failed attempts to get Marcus Garvey’s name cleared of criminal charges in the United States, the Government remains unrelenting in efforts to achieve that goal.“As a country, we have done a number of things to honour this great son of Jamaica and to remove the blots against his name… . We cannot give up this fight to clear his name,” the Minister emphasised.Meanwhile, Ms. Grange said in bad and good times, Jamaicans can take courage from the work of the National Hero as well as the statue which stands tall in Lawrence Park, St. Ann’s Bay.“Garvey’s statue looms large, and is a reminder of his influence on the world stage, a reminder of his determination, not just to uplift black people but to help us understand our innate power. In true Jamaican style, Garvey showed that nothing is impossible, despite opposition,” the Minister added.She praised Marcus Garvey for the role he played in influencing world leaders and power brokers to stop and take a look, not only at him and his work but at Jamaica, the country of his birth.The Minister said that the government of Namibia has advised the Jamaican Government that the main street in that country’s capital, Windhoek, will be renamed in honour of Marcus Garvey, with the ceremony set for later this year.last_img read more

Woman sues after rental home was used to shoot pornography

first_imgAQUINNAH, Mass. – A Massachusetts woman has filed a federal lawsuit accusing her tenant of using her Martha’s Vineyard home to shoot pornographic videos without telling her.The lawsuit filed this week says Leah Bassett had no idea when she rented out her home in 2014 that it would be used to shoot adult films.Bassett says the filmmakers used “nearly every room of her home for their porn production purposes,” including her bedrooms, sofas, dining room table and laundry room appliances.Bassett says the “highly disturbing discovery” has caused her emotional and psychological distress.The lawsuit was filed against the adult film company, Quebec, Canada-based Mile High Distribution Inc., and several individuals. Stephen Roach, an attorney for Mile High, says the matter arose out of a basic landlord-tenant dispute and the allegations in the complaint are “unfounded.”last_img read more

Methane gas continues to leak in Montney Basin finds recent study

first_imgVANCOUVER, B.C. – A new video has been released showing methane leaking from gas wells in the Montney Basin.In December, non-profit organization Earthworks and the Pembina Institute used optical gas imaging cameras to document methane leaking from polluting gas wells and other facilities.According to scientists, methane is a greenhouse gas that traps 84 times as much heat as carbon dioxide. It is invisible to the human eye but responsible for 25 percent of already observed changes to Earth’s climate. “With the release of the CleanBC climate plan this month, the government re-energized its global leadership on climate change.  We trust that B.C. will apply that same ambition and strengthen the draft methane pollution framework to ensure industry is a responsible partner in the province’s climate plan.”Although there are strong elements to reduce reported and vented emissions, the B.C. Oil and Gas Commission’s draft regulatory framework would exempt 93 percent of sites from frequent leak detection and repair and 35 percent of sites from modern instrument-based inspection.The B.C. Government plans to finalize methane regulations in 2019.You can view the methane gas leak video below. The images of leaking methane come in the wake of the David Suzuki Foundation’s peer-reviewed research showing methane pollution from B.C.’s oil and gas industry is much higher than reported. According to the research, 47 percent of active oil and gas wells in the study area were found to emit methane-rich plumes.Jan Gorski, of Pembina Institute, says oil and gas projects release methane pollution into the atmosphere through intentional venting and unintentional leaks.“Oil and gas operations, including those that will supply future LNG projects, release methane pollution into the atmosphere through intentional venting and unintentional leaks. B.C.’s draft regulations do not address the full scale of the province’s methane pollution problem.”In early 2018, the B.C. Oil and Gas Commission said it would be developing new ways of monitoring methane emissions and implementing a fugitive emissions management program after a report from the David Suzuki Foundation confirmed the findings of a study released in 2017.The report suggests the regulations under development should include more frequent site inspections of oil and gas operations and stronger policies to address intentional methane venting.Ian Bruce, David Suzuki Foundation science and policy director, says the Foundation trusts that the Province strengthen the draft methane pollution framework to ensure the industry is a responsible partner in the province’s climate plan.last_img read more

NDP leaning in to Jagmeet Singhs ethnicity targeting resources strategically

first_imgBut the NDP also spent $1.4 million more than it had in revenues last year.New Democrats are facing a number of uphill battles that have blunted the competitive edge they had the start of the 2015 election race, when the party began in a virtual three-way-tie with the Liberals and Conservatives — the first time ever the NDP was in true contention for government.After peaking early in that campaign, New Democrats suffered a devastating loss of dozens of seats across Canada, bottoming out notably in Quebec — the region of the country that helped the “Orange Wave” of 2011 deliver them to Official Opposition status.The party’s fortunes were further hampered after members unceremoniously ousted their leader, Thomas Mulcair, at the 2016 party convention in Alberta, but then left him in place as a lame duck for more than a year.A steady stream of recognized and well-respected NDP MPs have since left their seats or decided not to run again. In total, 11 sitting NDP MPs are not running in this race — the highest attrition rate of any party with official status in the last six elections. This, coupled with a turnover of trusted internal staff, hasn’t helped morale.But despite all of this, party executives insist they have every reason to enter the race with a spring in their steps.Members and volunteers have been bolstered by Singh, who won a seat in the House of Commons ahead of the election, offering Canadians a glimpse of a confident leader at work in Parliament, ready to go head-to-head with Trudeau and Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer.Supporters are drawn to Singh’s youthful energy, his unabashed style of brightly coloured turbans and bespoke suits and his passion for riding his bicycle to political events, New Democrats say.“I think the opportunity in front of them is real,” says outgoing NDP MP Nathan Cullen, who, after 15 years in office, decided not to seek re-election.Voters upset with Trudeau’s record on issues like Indigenous reconciliation, climate change and health care represent an opening for New Democrats, he says. He also believes Scheer’s political troubles on ideological issues like abortion and same-sex marriage make him vulnerable.“I think Jagmeet represents something completely different in politics, and why not lean into that?”While the party is quick to sing the praises of their leader, Singh’s race and religion — he is a practising Sikh — have been an issue the party has had to stickhandle from the time he ran for the leadership.Howard says she believes Singh’s ethnicity is an asset.“I think lots of people are excited to be working on the campaign of the first-ever person of colour who is running to be prime minister of the of the country.”The party’s decision to run an ad in Quebec that explicitly opens a dialogue about his religion allows Singh to show voters how his multicultural identity is part of what sets him apart, Cullen says.Even the party’s challenges could actually be a strength for the NDP.“With expectations, I would argue, being low right now in terms of the party and his performance, this is a real opportunity,” Cullen says.“I think Mulcair suffered from too-high expectations, in the debates and the outcome, where even 44 seats looked like a failure. But I think with Jagmeet going into these debates and his performance on the campaign, he could far exceed expectations and maybe surprise people and have people surprise themselves.”—Follow @ReporterTeresa on TwitterTeresa Wright, The Canadian Press “We will be making some choices where we will be focusing our resources more.”Planes and buses will be used to tour NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh all around the country. Areas with key candidates or where the party believes it has the best opportunity to win seats will be the primary focus, however. Those include vote-rich areas with populations most likely to have become disenchanted with Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau on issues of affordability, housing, transit and pharmacare.Expect to see Singh spend much of his time in British Columbia and in Ontario, especially in areas around Toronto such as Brampton and the union heartland of Hamilton. The party hopes especially to appeal to factory workers and farmers upset over the impacts of trade disputes with the U.S. and China. “We are going to be spending the campaign talking to Canadians who are concerned with those issues and talking to them about what the NDP would bring — that we would be a government that would be on the side of people and not on the side of wealthy corporations,” Howard says.Organizers plan to deliver this message not just through traditional television ads, but by buying more digital advertising. The party will also try to speak directly to their audiences through direct social media content.Dedicated social-media staff will be on the leader’s tour to capture pictures and videos of Singh interacting with voters on the ground — something Singh has already been doing on his own with regular behind-the-scenes videos on platforms like Instagram. OTTAWA — As Liberals and Conservatives prepare to launch their well-funded election machines to fight for the highest political office in the land, federal New Democrats are taking a much less ambitious approach: try to outperform lowered expectations.The party will run a national campaign, with promising a full roster of 338 candidates. But with fewer resources than its two main political rivals, the plan is to be more targeted in areas where the NDP can get the best bang for its buck.“I think it just means being more focused, more strategic, more effective,” says Jennifer Howard, the party’s campaign director.center_img Being more creative with party resources during this race will be necessary, due to a dismal party balance sheet.The NDP finished 2018 with nearly $4.5 million in negative net assets, the third year in a row the party has filed an annual financial return with total assets that were less than overall liabilities.It is the worst balance sheet the party has had since 2001, which is the earliest year for which the reports are available online.Donations and contributions were up a little, with the NDP receiving about $5.2 million in 2018, compared to $5.1 million the year before — thanks in part to a return to the “Jagmeet-and-greets” that proved popular fundraisers during his leadership campaign.last_img read more

Spirituality linked to mental health

first_imgPeople who claim to have experienced personal encounters with ‘God’ report positive changes in their psychological health lasting decades, scientists say. Over the millennia, people have reported having deeply moving religious experiences either spontaneously or while under the influence of psychedelic substances such as psilocybin-containing mushrooms or the Amazonian brew ayahuasca. A portion of those experiences have been encounters with what the person regards as “God” or “ultimate reality.” Also Read – An income drop can harm brainIn a survey of thousands of people who reported having experienced personal encounters with God, researchers from Johns Hopkins University in the US report that more than two-thirds of self-identified atheists shed that label after their encounter, regardless of whether it was spontaneous or while taking a psychedelic. Moreover, a majority of respondents attributed lasting positive changes in their psychological health – life satisfaction, purpose and meaning – even decades after their initial experience. Also Read – Shallu Jindal honoured with Mahatma AwardThe findings add to evidence that such deeply meaningful experiences may have healing properties, the researchers said. The study is the first to systematically and rigorously compare reports of spontaneous God encounter experiences with those occasioned, or catalysed, by psychedelic substances. “Experiences that people describe as encounters with God or a representative of God have been reported for thousands of years, and they likely form the basis of many of the world’s religions,” said Roland Griffiths, a professor at the Johns Hopkins University. “And although modern Western medicine doesn’t typically consider ‘spiritual’ or ‘religious’ experiences as one of the tools in the arsenal against sickness, our findings suggest that these encounters often lead to improvements in mental health,” Griffiths said in a statement. For the study, the scientists used data from 4,285 people worldwide who responded to online advertisements to complete one of two 50-minute online surveys about God encounter experiences. The surveys asked participants to recall their single most memorable encounter experience with the “God of their understanding,” a “higher power,” “ultimate reality” or “an aspect or representative of God” They also asked how respondents felt about their experience and whether it changed their lives. The people who said they had a God encounter experience when on a psychedelic reported that these experiences happened at age 25 on average, whereas those whose experience was spontaneous reported having it at an average age of 35. About 75 per cent of respondents in both the non-drug and psychedelics groups rated their “God encounter” experience as among the most meaningful and spiritually significant in their lifetime, and both groups attributed to it positive changes. Independent of psychedelics use, more than two-thirds of those who said they were atheists before the experience no longer identified as such afterward. Although both groups reported a decreased fear of death, 70 per cent of participants in the psychedelics group reported this change, compared with 57 per cent among non-drug respondents. In both groups, about 15 per cent of the respondents said their experience was the most psychologically challenging of their lives. “Continuing to explore these experiences may provide new insights into spiritual beliefs that have been integral to shaping human culture,” said Griffiths. The research team caution that the study relied on self-reported responses to a questionnaire, a method that carries substantial possibilities for biased responses among participants. They don’t advocate that people use hallucinogenic substances on their own because they carry not only legal risks, but also behavioral risks associated with impaired judgment under the influence and the possibility of negative psychological consequences, particularly in vulnerable people or when experience is not safeguarded by qualified guides.last_img read more

Sundaram Ravi among officials for World Cup 2019

first_imgNew Delhi: Sundaram Ravi will be one of the 22 match officials officiating in the upcoming World Cup slated to be held in England and Wales from May 30. Ravi, India’s only representative in ICC’s Elite panel, has officiated in 33 Tests, 42 ODIs and 18 T20Is till now. The 53-year-old recently had to face flak from India skipper Virat Kohli when Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) lost to Mumbai Indians in the ongoing edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over Chandigarh Ravi had failed to notice a no-ball bowled when Bangalore needed seven to win the match off the final delivery. Mumbai’s Lasith Malinga had bowled a dot ball, but replays suggested the paceman had overstepped the line. Mumbai captain Rohit Sharma had also said such mistakes were “not good for the game”. The 22-member list announced by the International Cricket Council (ICC) consists of 16 umpires and six match referees. The opening match between hosts England and South Africa at The Oval will see three World Cup winners officiating. Also Read – Vijender’s next fight on Nov 22, opponent to be announced later David Boon will be the match referee, Kumar Dharmasena one of the two on-field umpires and Paul Reiffel the third umpire. Bruce Oxenford will be the other on-field umpire and Joel Wilson the fourth official for the match. Ranjan Madugalle, the most experienced match referee, will be officiating in his sixth World Cup, while it will be the fourth World Cup for Broad and Crowe. Umpire Dar will be officiating in his fifth World Cup and it will be the fourth and last for Gould, who has announced his retirement after the tournament. The appointments for the semi-finals will be announced at the end of the league stage and those for the final will be finalised after the semi-finals. The match officials for the World Cup are as follows: Match Referees: Chris Broad, David Boon, Andy Pycroft, Jeff Crowe, Ranjan Madugalle, Richie Richardson Umpires: Aleem Dar, Kumar Dharmasena, Marais Erasmus, Chris Gaffaney, Ian Gould, Richard Illingworth, Richard Kettleborough, Nigel Llong, Bruce Oxenford, Sundaram Ravi, Paul Reiffel, Rod Tucker, Joel Wilson, Michael Gough, Ruchira Palliyaguruge, Paul Wilson.last_img read more