Tag Archives: National Geographic

WALK ON WATER ~ CAPTIVATING!!! ~ COMPELLING!!!

 

WALK ON WATER

When a life-altering skiing accident left Greg Mallory’s legs paralyzed, he turned to kayaking to help him escape his wheelchair. Andy Maser and NRS Films presents this wonderful film ‘Walk on Water’ about this man now Class V whitewater paddler. A creation to discover in the article in video.

YouTube video, published on Feb 17, 2013 ~ ” Walk on Water: A Kayaking Film”

Some great insight into this memorable and inspiring man from a Q &A session of National Geographic article – “A skiing accident left Greg Mallory paralyzed. And though he lost the use of his legs, he did not lose his sense of adventure. Greg found new life on the river in kayaking—and the loyal friends who help him do it. He also returned to skiing and has competed in the Paraolympics twice.  Right now Greg is on a two-year road trip from Oregon to Patagonia with a bunch of friends. Their caravan consists of four luxe Sprinter vans with kitchens, queen-size beds, solar powers, outdoor showers, and, of course, kayaks.”

GREG PHOTOI urge you to read Greg Mallory‘s comments in an interview with Ralph Raymond of rollingpix.blogspot.com ~ enlightening!

More Q&A links ~

http://www.fubiz.net/2013/06/03/walk-on-water/

http://adventureblog.nationalgeographic.com/2013/03/14/walk-on-water-film-greg-mallory-finds-kayaking-after-a-life-altering-accident/

WATER CONSERVATION TIPS

    WATER CONSERVATION

I am reblogging the following National Geographic article, ‘Water Conservation Tips’, and the link may be found at the end of the article.  Please read the full article as I am certain that you will find many new suggestions for conserving water in and around your home.

TOILETS, TAPS, LAUNDRY, SHOWERS AND DISHES
•1994 was the year that federally mandated low-flow shower heads, faucets, and toilets started to appear on the scene in significant numbers.
•On average, 10 gallons per day of your water footprint (or 14% of your indoor use) is lost to leaks. Short of installing new water-efficient fixtures, one of the easiest, most effective ways to cut your footprint is by repairing leaky faucets and toilets.
SHOWERHEAD•If you use a low-flow shower head, you can save 15 gallons of water during a 10-minute shower.
HOT WATER TANK•Every time you shave minutes off your use of hot water, you also save energy and keep dollars in your pocket.
running bath water•It takes about 70 gallons of water to fill a bathtub, so showers are generally the more water-efficient way to bathe.
TOILET•All of those flushes can add up to nearly 20 gallons a day down the toilet. If you still have a standard toilet, which uses close to 3.5 gallons a flush, you can save by retrofitting or filling your tank with something that will displace some of that water, such as a brick.
washing machine•Most front-loading machines are energy and water-efficient, using just over 20 gallons a load, while most top-loading machines, unless they are energy-efficient, use 40 gallons per load.
•Nearly 22% of indoor home water use comes from doing laundry. Save water by making sure to adjust the settings on your machine to the proper load size.
DISHWASHER•Dishwashing is a relatively small part of your water footprint—less than 2% of indoor use—but there are always ways to conserve. Using a machine is actually more water efficient than hand washing, especially if you run full loads.
ENERGY STAR SYMBOL•Energy Star dishwashers use about 4 gallons of water per load, and even standard machines use only about 6 gallons.
•Hand washing generally uses about 20 gallons of water each time.

FOOTPRINTYARDS AND POOLS
•Nearly 60% of a person’s household water footprint can go toward lawn and garden maintenance.
LAWN•Climate counts—where you live plays a role in how much water you use, especially when it comes to tending to a yard.
SWIMMING POOL•The average pool takes 22,000 gallons of water to fill, and if you don’t cover it, hundreds of gallons of water per month can be lost due to evaporation.

DIET
WATER USED IN FOOD•The water it takes to produce the average American diet alone—approximately 1,000 gallons per person per day—is more than the global average water footprint of 900 gallons per person per day for diet, household use, transportation, energy, and the consumption of material goods.
QUARTER POUNDER•That quarter pounder is worth more than 30 average American showers. One of the easiest ways to slim your water footprint is to eat less meat and dairy. Another way is to choose grass-fed, rather than grain-fed, since it can take a lot of water to grow corn and other feed crops.
POULTRY•A serving of poultry costs about 90 gallons of water to produce. There are also water costs embedded in the transportation of food (gasoline costs water to make). So, consider how far your food has to travel, and buy local to cut your water footprint.
PORK•Pork costs water to produce, and traditional pork production—to make your sausage, bacon, and chops—has also been the cause of some water pollution, as pig waste runs into local water sources.
•On average, a vegan, a person who doesn’t eat meat or dairy, indirectly consumes nearly 600 gallons of water per day less than a person who eats the average American diet.
COFFEE•A cup of coffee takes 55 gallons of water to make, with most of that H2O used to grow the coffee beans.

ELECTRICITY, FUEL ECONOMY, AND AIRLINE TRAVEL
ELECTRICITY•The water footprint of your per-day electricity use is based on state averages. If you use alternative energies such as wind and solar, your footprint could be less. (The use of biofuels, however, if they are heavily irrigated, could be another story.) You would also get points, or a footprint reduction, for using energy-star appliances and taking other energy-efficiency measures.
WASH CAR•Washing a car uses about 150 gallons of water, so by washing less frequently you can cut back your water use.
GAS•A gallon of gasoline takes nearly 13 gallons of water to produce. Combine your errands, carpool to work, or take public transportation to reduce both your energy and water use.
FLYING•Flying from Los Angeles to San Francisco, about 700 miles round-trip, could cost you more than 9,000 gallons of water, or enough for almost 2,000 average dishwasher loads.
•A cross-country airplane trip (about 6,000 miles) could be worth more than 1,700 standard toilet flushes.
•Traveling from Chicago to Istanbul is just about 10,000 miles round trip, costing enough water to run electricity in the average American home for one person for more than five years.

INDUSTRY—APPAREL, HOME FURNISHINGS, ELECTRONICS, AND PAPER
•According to recent reports, nearly 5% of all U.S. water withdrawals are used to fuel industry and the production of many of the material goods we stock up on weekly, monthly, and yearly.
COTTON TEE SHIRT•It takes about 100 gallons of water to grow and process a single pound of cotton, and the average American goes through about 35 pounds of new cotton material each year. Do you really need that additional T-shirt?
RECYCLE•One of the best ways to conserve water is to buy recycled goods, and to recycle your stuff when you’re done with it. Or, stick to buying only what you really need.
LAPTOP•The water required to create your laptop could wash nearly 70 loads of laundry in a standard machine.
PAPER•Recycling a pound of paper, less than the weight of your average newspaper, saves about 3.5 gallons of water. Buying recycled paper products saves water too, as it takes about six gallons of water to produce a dollar worth of paper.

Link to article ~ http://environment.nationalgeographic.com/environment/freshwater/water-conservation-tips/

‘CAPTION THIS PHOTO’ CONTEST ~ HAVE FUN!!!

GREEN RUMPED PARROTSWhat does the photo BELOW say to you?
Pictured here is National Geographic grantee Karl Berg
holding a young parrotlet, a New World parrot species.
How would you caption this photo?

PARROT

I just received the above photo of Karl Berg (taken by Soraya Delgado) and the information below in an e-mail from National Geographic, announcing a fun new contest – “Caption This Photo Contest” open until midnight Wednesday, July 31st.

Hi,

A picture can often be worth a thousand words, but a photo with a great caption can help us see an image – and often the world – in a whole new way.
Share your caption for the photo above and you could be our July Caption This Photo Contest winner.
If your entry is selected, your caption will be shared with National Geographic supporters in our August email.
So what does this photo say to you? Don’t be afraid to be creative.
It’s easy to enter. Simply submit your caption before our deadline – midnight, Wednesday, July 31st. Only one entry per person please.
Pictured here is National Geographic grantee Karl Berg holding a young parrotlet, a New World parrot species. Dr. Berg is studying communication among green-rumped parrots in Venezuela.
He and his team have recently discovered that parrot parents use slight variations in their calls for each of their offspring. Baby parrotlets appear to recognize the specific calls designated for them.
But don’t limit yourself to what is actually depicted in the photo. There are no limits to what direction your caption can take.
Also, don’t delay. You only have a few days to enter your caption before the July 31st deadline.
And if you don’t want to submit a caption, but want to read the winning caption, just sign up here.
Thank you for making it possible for groundbreaking researchers like Dr. Berg to make important discoveries about wildlife communication and enabling us to share inspiring photos with you.
Sincerely,
Nancy Rehman
Vice President, Development

LINK TO ENTER CONTEST ~

https://donate.nationalgeographic.org/SSLPage.aspx?pid=1493&utm_source=NatGeocom&utm_medium=Email&utm_content=development_20130720&utm_campaign=Content

Did you know?
The National Geographic Society is a non-profit organization that relies on the generous contributions of individuals to help us inspire people to care about the planet.  Donations to Mission Programs – the core scientific and education programs of the Society – support the research and exploration behind the stories in National Geographic magazine, on the National Geographic Channel, and other media.Your donation helps us expand our efforts to fund the world’s top and emerging scientists, explorers, researchers, and adventurers.

Have fun with your captions and good luck to all. 

Please share your captions with us here at Rainsoft Ottawa, Eternally Pure Water Systems, Inc.

RAINSOFTHOUSEWITHLOGO

AUSTRALIA ~ TO CREATE MARINE HAVEN ~ PART 2

In the following breathtaking video, “Australia Great Barrier Reef“, you get a glimpse into the magnitude of the thousands of species that inhabit Australia‘s surrounding ocean ~ Uploaded by on Oct 3, 2009; Music: Tiesto-A Tear in the Open, Chilling Crew-For Better Moments, Tribal Trance-Orance Leopard Moon. Quote from YouTube video information: “My intentions were to make a quality trip video. We took a 4 day liveaboard with Mike Ball Dive expeditions ending up at the amazing Osprey Reef. The diving was incredible.”
This is a truly spectacular video and a must see in FULL SCREEN.  I am so envious of the divers who experience this thrill of a lifetime!

Some interesting data about the species that inhabit the waters of Australia’s ocean and the Great Barrier Reef ~

The Great Barrier Reef is the largest coral reef in the world. It consists of more than 2,900 coral reefs, 600 continental islands, 300 coral cays and thousands of species making it one of the world’s most complex and diverse ecosystems. The animals of the Great Barrier Reef include some 1500 species of marine fish, 360 species of hard corals, between 5000 and 8000 species of mollusks, 600 species of echinoderms, 17 species of sea snakes, 1500 species of sponges, 30 species of whales and dolphins, 6 species of marine turtles, 22 species of seabirds and 32 species of shorebirds which breed on the reef’s many small islands.

Marine Fish of the Great Barrier Reef

There are more than 1500 species of fish that inhabit the Great Barrier Reef. They range in size from the tiny gobies, some of which weigh less than one gram, to the larger bony fishes such as the tuskfish and potato cod, to the massive cartilaginous fishes such as manta rays, tiger sharks and whale sharks. Damselfish, wrasses and tuskfish are among the most abundant fishes on the reef. Other fish of the Great Barrier Reef include blennies, butterfly fish, triggerfish, cowfish, pufferfish, angelfish, anemone fish, coral trout, seahorses, sea perch, sole, scorpion fish, hawkfish and surgeonfish.

Hard Corals of the Great Barrier Reef

The Great Barrier Reef is home to about 360 species of hard corals including bottlebrush coral, bubble coral, brain coral, mushroom coral, staghorn coral, tabletop coral and needle coral. Hard corals, also known as stony corals, are a group of marine animals that live in shallow tropical waters and are responsible for building the structure of a coral reef. Colonies of hard corals grow in various shapes and sizes such as mounds, plates and branches. As previous coral colonies die, new ones grow on top of the limestone skeletons of their predecessors. Over time, this growth creates the three-dimensional architecture of a coral reef. Colonies of hard corals consist of thousands of small individual invertebrates referred to as coral polyps. Each polyp is radially symmetrical with a tube-like body that has a tentacle-rimmed mouth at the tip that it uses to feed.

Sponges and Echinoderms of the Great Barrier Reef

Over 600 species of echinoderms and more than 1500 species of sponges inhabit the Great Barrier Reef.

Echinoderms are bottom-dwelling marine invertebrates. They exhibit a type of radial symmetry called pentamerous symmetry in which their body can be divided into five equal parts around a central axis. The echinoderms of the Great Barrier Reef include sea urchins, sea cucumbers, sea stars, feather stars and brittle stars.

Sponges of the Great Barrier Reef include the yellow burrowing sponge, tubular sponge, thick yellow fan sponge.

Marine Reptiles of the Great Barrier Reef

There are 23 species of marine reptiles that inhabit the Great Barrier Reef including 6 species of sea turtles and 17 species of sea snakes. Occasionally, the saltwater crocodile also ventures out to forage on the reef, although such visits are quite rare.

The sea turtles that inhabit the Great Barrier Reef include the green turtle, loggerhead turtle, hawksbill turtle, flatback turtle, leatherback turtle and the Pacific ridley turtle. Some sea turtle species, such as the green turtle, loggerhead turtle and hawksbill turtle, nest on coral cays. The flatback turtle nests on continental islands and the green and leatherback turtles nest on mainland Australia. When not nesting, these sea turtle species use the waters of the Great Barrier Reef as foraging grounds.

Among the sea snakes of the Great Barrier Reef are the olive sea snake, the turtle-headed sea snake and the sea krait. All sea snakes are venomous.

Marine Mammals of the Great Barrier Reef

About 30 species of whales and dolphins frequent the waters of the Great Barrier Reef including humpback whales, Irrawaddy river dolphins, minke whales and spinner dolphins. Dugongs also inhabit the reef, feeding on the sea grasses that grow in the shallow inshore waters.

Not all of these marine mammals are permanent residents of the Great Barrier Reef. Minke whales and humpback whales visit the reef in winter. Other rorqual whales such as blue whales, fin whales and sei whales also migrate through the Great Barrier Reef region but do not stay for extended periods of time.

Mollusks of the Great Barrier Reef

More than 5000 species of mollusks live in the Great Barrier Reef. These include giant clams, cone shells, nudibranchs, octopus, cuttlefish and squid.
 
 
 
 

In this video, “Australia to create marine haven”, Australia’s Environment Minister, Tony Burke, unveils plans for the world’s largest network of protective marine parks.  Published on Jun 14, 2012 by

 

VIDEO ~ “Australia to build biggest marine reserve“, posted to YouTube by Al Jazeera‘s Andrew Thomas from Sydney, Australia on Jun 15, 2012 ~ The Australian government has announced the creation of the world’s biggest network of marine parks (3.3 million square metres), covering an overall area the size of “India”

This video, “Marine Life off Perth, Western Australia”, just released by the Ocean’s Institute, University of  Western Australia, showing a sequence of video footage captured off Perth, Western Australia.  The marine life shown in this sequence now has a brighter future thanks to the plan for marine sanctuaries off Australia’s South West. Published on Jul 4, 2012 by

 Once again, I hope you all realize how vital the work being done by the World Resources Institute Insights is and will find a way to support their efforts ~ insights.wri.org. 

AUSTRALIA ~ TO CREATE MARINE HAVEN ~ PART1

The following four minute animated video, “Coral Reefs: Polyps in Peril” is presented by WRI Insights ~ insights.wri.org ~ Submitted by Lauretta Burke on July 9, 2012
We strongly recommend you visit WRI’s site to read the full article,”Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Coral Reefs“, . 

Ocean advocate Céline Cousteau and cartoonist Jim Toomey (creator of Sherman’s Lagoon) teamed up with the World Resources Institute to bring you “Coral Reefs: Polyps in Peril”. This short animated film tells the story of coral reefs with humor and admiration for these wondrous ecosystems.  Learn about the unique biology of coral reefs and their importance to people around the world, as well as the serious threats that they face due to overfishing, pollution, and climate change.  But don’t let that get you down!  The film also explores what individuals can do to help save coral reefs, including supporting sustainable seafood and tourism providers, reducing your CO2 footprint, and promoting coral reef conservation. Published to YouTube on Jul 9, 2012 by

As a prelude to this topic you might like to preview two of my previous blogs on the Great Barrier Reef:
1) “Great Barrier Reef Video” ~ posted March 6, 2012 ~ watch the National Geographic totally awesome and mesmerizing video, “Exploring Oceans: Great Barrier Reef”.

2) “Coral Reefs Are in Crisis” ~ posted May 15, 2012.

In my next blog, “Australia ~ To Create Marine Haven”, I will be including four videos and very interesting data about the species that inhabit the waters of Australia’s ocean and  the Great Barrier Reef: Marine Fish;  Hard Corals; Sponges and Echinoderms; Marine Reptiles; Marine Mammals and Mollusks.

I hope you all realize how vital the work being done by the World Resources Institute Insights is and will find a way to support their efforts ~ insights.wri.org. 

See you back here for Part 2

NUDIBRANCHS – “SAY WHAT?”

 I really don’t know what I’d do without my e-mail account.  I’ve just discovered interesting information that I’d like to share with you about another amazing colourful mollusc-like marine creature, known as a “nudibranch” (pronouced NEW-dih-bronk) 

“Just what are nudibranchs?”, you might ask.

The nudibranchs are ocean bottom-dwelling, shell-less mollusks featuring featherlike gills and horns mostly found on their backs and are part of the sea slug family. They are noted for their often extraordinary colors and striking forms.

Nudibranchs are usually oblong in shape and measure anywhere from ¼ inch to 12 inches.

Nudibranchs are carnivores that graze on corals, anemones, algae, barnacles and sponges. To identify prey, Two extremely sensitive tentacles (‘rhinophores’) on top of their heads help them locate their food sources., called rhinophores, located on top of their heads.

The colour of the nudibranchs is retained from the food they digest.  This colouring and poisons they keep from their prey help the nubdibranchs protect themselves from predators.

Nudibranchs lifespans vary with some living under a month, and others living up to one year.



Related links –

SMH article ‘Underwater Wonders on Mail Run’:

http://www.smh.com.au/victoria/underwater-wonders-on-mail-run-20120507-1y7vw.html

Aquatic Community.com:

http://www.aquaticcommunity.com/sw/nudibranch.php

Article in National Geographic:

http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/invertebrates/nudibranch/

 

AMERICA’S PROTECTED WATERWAYS

We highly recommend “AMERICA’S WILD AND SCENIC RIVERS” – a National Geographic article, published November, 2011 by Joel K. Bourne, Jr., and the associated Gallery of Photos of the Rivers photographed by Michael Melford (stunning!)

Links to the article, Photo Gallery and Michael Melford’s web site are listed at end of blog.

America‘s Spectacular Wild Rivers

These Scenic Waterways Thrive Under Federal Protection
in the United States


More than four decades after it became law, a little-known federal act safeguards hundreds of primordial waterways.

Photographs by Michael Melford

The Middle Fork of the Salmon River gorge is not so much a river as an exuberant expression of water at play… Today it is one of the ultimate white-water experiences in the United States, drawing thousands of visitors each year.

John Craighead, now 95, is legendary in the field of wildlife biology, … Yet the proudest achievement of John Craighead’s long and storied life, he says, is the passage of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act.

 … “It took a decade of reports, lectures, and political wrangling, but when President Lyndon Johnson signed the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act in 1968, much of its language came from the Craigheads. The initial act spared eight rivers and narrow buffer zones around them from dams and development. Today the list has grown to more than 200 rivers in 39 states and Puerto Rico.”

Article link –

http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2011/11/americas-wild-rivers/bourne-text

      Photo Gallery link –

http://bit.ly/rL1Ng4

       Michael Melford’s web site –

http://www.michaelmelford.com/