Did You Know That? More Etceteras

Published October 2, 2022 by Nan Mykel

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Meet Austria’s young marmot whisperer. Eight-year-old Matteo Walch’s friendship with a clan of Alpine animals has spanned more than half his lifetime.  “When we come, they run straight to him,” Matteo’s mother, Michaela Walch, a mathematics teacher and amateur photographer, told TODAY.com.

The mother-and-son team have been traveling from their home in Innsbruck to Hohe Tauern National Park in Grossglockner to spend time with the large ground squirrels since Matteo was just 3 years old. Like a horse whisperer or dog whisperer, the schoolboy has an uncanny ability to interact with the normally skittish wild animals — even greeting them nose to nose and having them climb in his lap

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The new approved covid shot has now been authorized in the U.S. for a full month, but nearly half of adults have heard little or nothing about it, according to a new report.  (Yesterday I got my new “covid” shot after filling out papers in an empty waiting room at our health department, along with the strong version of the flu shot.)

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The first recorded instance of a talking parrot dates to the fifth century B.C. in Greece. The Greek historian, Ctesias of Cnidus, wrote about a talking Plum-headed parakeet called Bittacus.

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They counted Earth’s ants. It’s a big number.  A team of ecologists released the results of a new global census for ants: There are 20 quadrillion — that’s 20 with 15 zeros. Ants outnumber humans at least 2.5 million to 1.  Their abundance is a boon to ecosystems: They spread seeds, churn up soil and speed up decomposition. They forage and hunt and get eaten. “I would argue most ecosystems would simply collapse without ants,” said Patrick Schultheiss, an ecologist.

Incidentally, apparently ants receive different DNA instructions than humans.  The book ANTS –or is it THE ANT or maybe  just ANT –by the late esteemed Edmund O. Wilson is a real page-turner, if it’s me who is reading.

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I just realized that Mother Earth is a whore, and corporations are her “Johns,” otherwise known as pimps.  Corporations are using, abusing and profiting from her.  I predict she’ll take them with her when she dies.

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While checking on…(it’s ANT–)  I came across Edward O. Wilson’s book Half Earth, the overview of which I found on Thriftbooks:

Book Overview

In order to stave off the mass extinction of species, including our own, we must move swiftly to preserve the biodiversity of our planet, says Edward O. Wilson in his most impassioned book to date. Half-Earth argues that the situation facing us is too large to be solved piecemeal and proposes a solution commensurate with the magnitude of the problem: dedicate fully half the surface of the Earth to nature.If we are to undertake such an ambitious endeavor, we first must understand just what the biosphere is, why it’s essential to our survival, and the manifold threats now facing it. In doing so, Wilson describes how our species, in only a mere blink of geological time, became the architects and rulers of this epoch and outlines the consequences of this that will affect all of life, both ours and the natural world, far into the future. Half-Earth provides an enormously moving and naturalistic portrait of just what is being lost when we clip twigs and eventually whole braches of life’s family tree. In elegiac prose, Wilson documents the many ongoing extinctions that are imminent, paying tribute to creatures great and small, not the least of them the two Sumatran rhinos whom he encounters in captivity. Uniquely, Half-Earth considers not only the large animals and star species of plants but also the millions of invertebrate animals and microorganisms that, despite being overlooked, form the foundations of Earth’s ecosystems.In stinging language, he avers that the biosphere does not belong to us and addresses many fallacious notions such as the idea that ongoing extinctions can be balanced out by the introduction of alien species into new ecosystems or that extinct species might be brought back through cloning. This includes a critique of the anthropocenists, a fashionable collection of revisionist environmentalists who believe that the human species alone can be saved through engineering and technology.Despite the Earth’s parlous condition, Wilson is no doomsayer, resigned to fatalism. Defying prevailing conventional wisdom, he suggests that we still have time to put aside half the Earth and identifies actual spots where Earth’s biodiversity can still be reclaimed. Suffused with a profound Darwinian understanding of our planet’s fragility, Half-Earth reverberates with an urgency like few other books, but it offers an attainable goal that we can strive for on behalf of all life.

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