Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global
5.8 earthquake hits Tonga.
5.5 earthquake hits southeast of the Loyalty Islands.
5.4 earthquake hits southeast of the Loyalty Islands.
5.3 earthquake hits the Solomon Islands.
5.1 earthquake hits southeast of the Loyalty Islands.
5.0 earthquake hits southeast of the Loyalty Islands.
5.0 earthquake hits near the south coast of Honshu, Japan.
Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:
In the Northwest Pacific Ocean: Super Typhoon 02W (Mawar) is located approximately 148 nm southeast of Andersen AFB, is tracking north-northwestward at 07 knots.
Rarest of rare
Residents of New South Wales, Australia, have spotted two extremely rare albino echidnas in the space of just two weeks. Echidnas are shy creatures, and even individuals without albinism are rarely seen in the wild. A local resident found one of the all-white, quill-covered creatures on a road in the Bathurst region, according to ABC News. He helped the echidna cross safely before reporting the sighting to local council officials,
Echidnas are one of two known mammals in the world (along with platypuses) whose females lay eggs but also produce milk. Short-beaked echidnas (Tachyglossus aculeatus) are common throughout temperate Australia and lowland New Guinea, while long-beaked echidnas (three living species belonging to the genus Zaglossus) only live in the highlands of New Guinea, according to the New South Wales Department of Planning and Environment.
Global loss of wildlife is ‘significantly more alarming’ than previously thought
The global loss of wildlife is “significantly more alarming” than previously thought, according to a new study that found almost half the planet’s species are experiencing rapid population declines. Humans have already wiped out huge numbers of species and pushed many more to the brink – with some scientists saying we are entering a “sixth mass extinction” event, this time driven by humans.
The main factor is the destruction of wild landscapes to make way for farms, towns, cities and roads, but climate change is also an important driver of species decline and is predicted to have an increasingly worse impact as the world warms.
The study’s authors analyzed more than 70,000 species across the globe – spanning mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish and insects – to determine whether their populations have been growing, shrinking or remaining steady over time. They found 48% of these species are declining in population size, with fewer than 3% seeing increases, according to the study published Monday in the journal Biological Reviews.
Measles – Mauritania
The measles outbreak, which began in the last week of 2022 in Mauritania, has grown to 285 suspected cases of measles of which 186 cases were confirmed positive to date. In addition, three deaths have been reported.
Cholera – DR Congo
More than 70 cases of cholera were reported in the space of one week, from May 14 to 20, 2023, in the city of Bukavu (South Kivu).
Anthrax – Kenya
The World Health Organization reports on an anthrax outbreak in Muranga County in central Kenya. Since April 10, a total of 15 cases and three deaths (20% case fatality) have been reported. It is not disclosed how it was contracted.
Dengue and Chikungunya update – Brazil: Minas Gerais
Through May 15 this year, health officials in Minas Gerais state report 311,908 probable cases of dengue. Of this total, 149,091 cases were confirmed for the disease. There are 79 confirmed deaths from dengue in Minas Gerais and 118 deaths under investigation. To date, Brazil has reported 1.5 million total dengue fever cases, including 387 deaths, according to the Pan American Health Organization.
With regard to Chikungunya fever, 62,343 probable cases of the disease were registered, of which 29,343 were confirmed. So far, 18 deaths from Chikungunya have been confirmed in Minas Gerais and 17 are under investigation. Through May 6, Brazil has reported 124,270 total chikungunya cases, including 25 deaths.