Wednesday, January 18, 2017

2015 National Geographic Photo Contest

The Moeraki Boulders are unusually large and spherical boulders lying along a stretch of Koekohe Beach (New Zealand). These boulders are grey-colored septarian concretions, which have been exhumed from the mudstone and concentrated on the beach by coastal erosion.
The 27th annual National Geographic Traveler Photo Contest was held in 2015. Photographers submitted pictures from around the globe in four categories, including: Travel Portraits; Outdoor Scenes; Sense of Place; and Spontaneous Moments.

Entries are judged on creativity and photographic quality.
Photo was taken from a cliff overlooking Lake Louise in Banff National Park (Canada).

Villarrica Volcano, located more than 700 kilometers south of Santiago, Chile.

Southern Chile, Puerto Varas

Sunrise at Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming. Aerial Image.

Ice cave at the Vatnajokull Glacier in Iceland.

Tornado tracks in open farm land narrowly missing a home near Simla, Colorado.

Lion cub jumping on mother’s head, Naboisho Conservancy, Masai Mara, Kenya, Africa

Volcanic beach at Stokksnes, Iceland

Trollstigen, in western Norway.

Golden Queen Mining - GQM.t

Golden Queen Mining - GQM.t is developing the Soledad Mountain Project, an open pit, heap leach gold and silver project located outside the town of Mojave in Kern County.

The Project will use open pit mining methods and the cyanide heap leach and Merrill-Crowe processes to recover gold and silver from crushed, agglomerated ore.

On December 19, 2016 the company released News
Golden Queen Mining Co. Ltd. (TSX:GQM; OTCQX:GQMNF) (the “Company” or “Golden Queen”) is pleased to announce that commercial production has been declared at Soledad Mountain Project (“Soledad Mountain” or the “Project”) in Mojave, California effective today.

Commercial production at Soledad Mountain has been declared as the process plant is now operating in line with both design specifications and management expectations. Over the past 60 days of operations the process plant has achieved an average of 80% of design throughput capacity. The Company processed an average of 10,500 tons per operating day during the months of October and November.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Dangerous Plants

The English Yew is native to Europe, Northern Africa and South West Asia. It is a small to medium tree that has seeds enclosed in a soft, red, berry like armor. The berry armor is the only part of the fruit that is not poisonous and this allows birds to eat the fruit and spread the seeds without ill effect. It takes a dose of about 50g to be fatal to a human.

Symptoms include difficulty breathing, muscle tremors, convulsion, collapse and finally cardiac arrest. In cases of severe poisoning, death can occur so fast that the other symptoms are missed.
Water hemlock, or poison parsnip, is a group of highly poisonous plants that is native to the temperate regions of the northern hemisphere. The plants all have very distinctive small white or green flowers, arranged in an umbrella shape. Water hemlock is considered to be North America’s most poisonous plant as it is incredibly poisonous to humans. The plants contain a toxin named cicutoxin which causes seizures.

This poison is found in all parts of the plant but is most concentrated in the roots, which is most potent in the spring. Besides the almost immediate seizures, other symptoms include nausea, vomiting, abdominal pains, tremors and confusion. Death is usually caused by respiratory failure or ventricular fibrillation and can occur just a few hours after ingestion.
Wolfsbane, also known as leopard’s bane, or devils helmet, is a plant belonging to the buttercup family. These perennial plants are native to mountainous regions of the northern hemisphere. The plant contains very large quantities of a poison called alkaloid pseudaconitine. In cases of ingestion, symptoms include burning in the limbs and abdomen and sets in immediately.

In cases of large doses, death can occur within 2-6 hours and 20ml is enough to kill an adult human.

Wolfsbane is mentioned in mythology and werewolf lore as being able to either repel the werewolves/lycanthropes, or to induce the wolf state regardless of the moon phase. Hence the name.
The Rosary Pea, also known as Crab’s eye or Jumbie bead, is a slender perennial climber that twines around trees, shrubs and hedges. The plant is native to Indonesia, but grows in most parts of the world. It is best known for its seeds, which are used as beads, and have a bright red to arrange color with a single black spot.

The poison contained in the plant (abrin) is very similar to the poison ricin, found in some other poisonous plants. There is one main difference between these poisons, and that is that abrin is about 75 times stronger than ricin. This concludes that the lethal dose is much less, and in some cases as little as 3 micrograms can kill an adult human.
Belladonna, also known as Devils berries, death cherries or deadly nightshade, is native to Europe, North Africa and Western Asia. It is also one of the world’s most poisonous plants as it contains Tropane alkaloids, some of which cause delirium and hallucinations. Other symptoms of Belladonna poisoning include loss of voice, dry mouth, headaches, breathing difficulty and convulsions.

The whole plant is poisonous, but berries usually play the greatest risk, as they are sweet and tend to attract children. 10 – 20 berries can kill an adult, but it only takes 1 leaf (in which the poisons are much more concentrated) to kill an adult man.
Castor plants are indigenous to the Mediterranean basin, eastern Africa and India, but are widely grown as an ornamental plant. A toxin called ricin is found throughout the plant, but is concentrated in the seeds/beans (which castor oil is made from). One raw seed is enough to kill a human in 2 days, which makes for a long, agonizing and unstoppable death. The first symptoms will be experienced within a few hours and will include a burning sensation in the throat & mouth, abdominal pain, bloody diarrhea and vomiting. The process is unstoppable and the final cause of death will be dehydration.

Strangely, humans are the most sensitive to these seeds, as it takes 1-4 to kill a full grown human, 11 to kill a dog and a whopping 80 seeds to kill a duck. The castor plant currently holds the Guinness World Record for most poisonous plant.

UrtheCast Corp - UR.t

UrtheCast Corp - UR.t is a space technology start up with a bold mission: to provide the world with a near-live stream of the Earth, using HD video and imagery.

For the first time, the world will have access to dynamic, high-resolution video of Earth.

On January 17, 2017 the company released News

UrtheCast Corp. (TSX:UR) ("UrtheCast" or the "Company"), the geospatial and geo-analytics company developing two Earth Observation (EO) satellite constellations, known as OptiSARTM and UrtheDailyTM, today announces that it has entered into a binding agreement with a confidential government customer for the sale and shared operation of the first two satellites in the OptiSARTM Constellation, the world's first commercial EO constellation with integrated optical and Synthetic Aperture Radar (SAR) sensors, for US$180 million. The customer has also agreed to pay an additional US$30 million for other products and services related to the sale of the satellites, contingent on the parties reaching mutual agreement on the final scope of these deliverables.