Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global
5.7 earthquake hits Hokkaido, Japan.
5.6 earthquake hits near the west coast of Honshu, Japan.
5.1 earthquake hits the Flores Sea.
5.0 earthquake hits Chiapas, Mexico.
5.0 earthquake hits the Volcano Islands, Japan.
Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:
There are no current tropical storm systems.
DR Congo – The government of the province of South Kivu in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DR Congo) reports catastrophic flooding has caused widespread damage and loss of life in the province over the last few days. Media reports suggest between 60 and 70 bodies have been recovered, with many more feared dead. In a statement, the provincial government said heavy rains on 04 May 2023 caused several rivers including the Cibira/Cabondo and Nyamukubi to overflow, flooding villages including Bushushu and Nyamukubi in the Kalehe Territory. The town of Kalehe sits on the shore of Lake Kivu, around 50 km (30 miles) across the lake from the Western Province of Rwanda where over 100 people have died in floods and landslides over the last few days.
Freshwater Turtle Doomed to Extinction
The largest freshwater turtle species is doomed to extinction after the last female washes up dead. The known population of the Yangtze giant softshell turtle is now just two males. Experts said that if the female had survived, she could have “laid a hundred eggs or more a year.”
Twilight Zone Fish Washes Up on Oregon Coast
Oregon State Parks said several lancetfish have washed up on beaches in recent weeks in a highly unusual spate of strandings. Bizarre, rarely seen cannibalistic fish with giant eyes and dagger-like fangs have been washing up along the Oregon coast, leaving experts stumped. Longnose lancetfish (Alepisaurus ferox) normally live in tropical and subtropical waters. While they can be found in shallow waters, their preferred habitat is the twilight zone — around 650 to 3,300 feet (200 to 1,000 meters) beneath the ocean surface. One of the lancetfish recently found in Oregon was still alive when it washed up and was helped back into the ocean and it was able to swim off, Oregon State Parks wrote.
Lancetfish are extremely strange creatures(opens in new tab). They are one of the largest deep-sea fish, growing up to 7 feet (2 m) long, and they have a sail-like fin that extends across almost the entire body. They are hermaphrodites (having both male and female sex organs), they have gelatinous muscles and their bodies are covered in pores. They are also notorious cannibals(opens in new tab), as evidenced by small lancetfish often cropping up in the stomachs of larger ones.
The World Health Organization no longer considers COVID-19 a public health emergency of international concern and has brought an end to an emergency declaration that has been in place since January 2020.
Lassa fever – Ghana
Health Service announced this week the end of the Lassa fever outbreak which began in February. On Friday, 24 February 2023, the Greater Accra Regional Health Directorate was notified of two confirmed cases of Lassa fever at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital in Accra. No new case has been recorded since the 1st of March, 2023. A total of 27 confirmed cases of Lassa fever and one death (CFR: 3 %) were reported.
Leptospirosis – Philippines
Health officials in the Philippines reports a 135 percent increase in leptospirosis cases year to date, according to the latest data from the Epidemiology Bureau. From January 1 to April 8, 1,152 leptospirosis cases have been reported nationally, up from 490 cases during the same period last year. 15 of the country’s 17 regions. More than 100 deaths have been recorded.