Who is Barbie?

” Barbie is a fashion doll manufactured by the American toy company Mattel, Inc. and launched in March 1959. American businesswoman Ruth Handler is credited with the creation of the doll using a German doll called Bild Lilli as her inspiration.

Barbie is the figurehead of a brand of Mattel dolls and accessories, including other family members and collectible dolls. Barbie has been an important part of the toy fashion doll market for over fifty years, and has been the subject of numerous controversies and lawsuits, often involving parodies of the doll and her lifestyle.

Mattel has sold over a billion Barbie dolls, making it the company’s largest and most profitable line. However, sales have declined sharply since 2014.[1] The doll transformed the toy business in affluent communities worldwide by becoming a vehicle for the sale of related merchandise (accessories, clothes, friends of Barbie, etc.). She had a significant impact on social values by conveying characteristics of female independence, and with her multitude of accessories, an idealized upscale life-style that can be shared with affluent friends.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barbie

 

What is Procastination?

” Procrastination (from latin’s “procrastinare”, that translates in to : the prefix pro-, ‘forward’, and suffix -crastinus, ’till next day’ from cras, ‘tomorrow’) is the avoidance of doing a task that needs to be accomplished. Sometimes, procrastination takes place until the “last minute” before a deadline. Procrastination can take hold on any aspect of life—putting off cleaning the stove, repairing a leaky roof, seeing a doctor or dentist, submitting a job report or academic assignment or broaching a stressful issue with a partner. Procrastination can lead to feelings of: guilt, inadequacy, depression and self-doubt.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Procrastination

What Does Pachamama mean?

“Pachamama is a goddess revered by the indigenous people of the Andes. She is also known as the earth/time mother. In Inca mythology, Pachamama is a fertility goddess who presides over planting and harvesting, embodies the mountains, and causes earthquakes. She is also an ever-present and independent deity who has her own self-sufficient and creative power to sustain life on this earth. Her shrines are hallowed rocks, or the boles of legendary trees, and her artists envision her as an adult female bearing harvests of potatoes and coca leaves. The four cosmological Quechua principles – Water, Earth, Sun, and Moon – claim Pachamama as their prime origin, and priests sacrifice llamas, cuy (guinea pigs), and elaborate, miniature, burned garments to her. After the conquest by Spain, which forced conversion to Roman Catholicism, the figure of the Virgin Mary became united with that of the Pachamama for many of the indigenous people. In pre-Hispanic culture, Pachamama is often a cruel goddess eager to collect her sacrifices. As Andes cultures form modern nations, Pachamama remains benevolent, giving, and a local name for Mother Nature. Thus, many in South America believe that problems arise when people take too much from nature because they are taking too much from Pachamama.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pachamama

What is Atlantis?

“Atlantis (Ancient Greek: Ἀτλαντὶς νῆσος, “island of Atlas”) is a fictional island mentioned within an allegory on the hubrisof nations in Plato’s works Timaeus and Critias, where it represents the antagonist naval power that besieges “Ancient Athens”, the pseudo-historic embodiment of Plato’s ideal state (see The Republic). In the story, Athens repels the Atlantean attack unlike any other nation of the (western) known world, supposedly giving testament to the superiority of Plato’s concept of a state. The story concludes with Atlantis falling out of favor with the deities and submerging into the Atlantic Ocean.

Despite its minor importance in Plato’s work, the Atlantis story has had a considerable impact on literature. The allegorical aspect of Atlantis was taken up in utopian works of several Renaissance writers, such as Francis Bacon’s New Atlantis and Thomas More’s UtopiaOn the other hand, nineteenth-century amateur scholars misinterpreted Plato’s narrative as historical tradition, most notably in Ignatius L. Donnelly’s Atlantis: The Antediluvian World. Plato’s vague indications of the time of the events—more than 9,000 years before his time—and the alleged location of Atlantis—”beyond the Pillars of Hercules”—has led to much pseudoscientific speculation. As a consequence, Atlantis has become a byword for any and all supposed advanced prehistoric lost civilizations and continues to inspire contemporary fiction, from comic books to films.

While present-day philologists and classicists agree on the story’s fictional character, there is still debate on what served as its inspiration. The fact that Plato borrowed some of his other allegories and metaphors—most notably the story of Gyges from older traditions has caused a number of scholars to investigate possible inspiration of Atlantis from Egyptian records of the Thera eruption, the Sea Peoples invasion, or the Trojan War. Others have rejected this chain of tradition as implausible and insist that Plato created an entirely fictional nation as his example, drawing loose inspiration from contemporary events such as the failed Athenian invasion of Sicily in 415–413 BC or the destruction of Helike in 373 BC.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlantis

Strange Solutions That Worked.

 

Weird Hiccup Cure – Hiccups are annoying; they go away as sudden as they come. However, there is a simple solution to this problem, albeit a little bit gross.

Condor Cluster – Giving the Air Force Research Laboratory a low budget did not stop them from building their own supercomputer. Having not enough money to buy a supercomputer, they decided to buy 1760 Playstation 3 units.

Colours to influence behaviours – According to scientific research, some colours are effective in reducing one’s negative thoughts, be it suicidal tendencies or aggressiveness.

Plastic Wishbones – Its Traditional for two people to break apart a birds wishbone after extracting it from a cooked dinner.

Bottled Air & Bags of Dirt – When travelling overseas, it is always a good idea to bring something that reminds you of your home.

Shooter Stopped with a Hug – If you ever encounter a man with a gun, your natural instinct would be to hide or run away as fast as you can.

Black Dyed Water – It is said that the more you prohibit people, the more they are inclined to do it.

Face Masks Fooling Bengal Tigers – Bengal tigers are considered one of the most dangerous predators in India.

Ants for Stitches – Sutures weren’t a thing back as early as 1000BC, so our ancestors had to make do with what they had on their hands. Plant fibres, animal hair, ants…

“Instant” Baggage Claims – Having to wait to claim your baggage is extremely infuriating, especially if you just had a long flight. Using Typewriters Against

Spies – Within days of Edward Snowden’s revelations, Kremlin agents were quick to replace all their high-end computers with something more traditional – typewriters.

Fish Eating Dead Skin – Turkish people came up with a weird solution to treat psoriasis – fish.

Piano Stairs – Ever wish you can have fun while using the stairs? Then piano stairs can do the trick.

Balls to Reduce Evaporation – California often experiences drought spells, so to prevent the Ivanhoe reservoir from getting dried up, they filled it balls – lots of it.

Flame Weeding – Tired of plucking weeds all day? Worried about contaminating the land with pesticides? Well, How about just flame-thrower-ing the ground? Sounds crazy but this solution, called ‘Flame weeding’ is an organic alternative, used by a number of conscious gardeners and agriculturalists around the world.

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Gt_-yO72LI

What are The Grimm Series?

Grimm is an American fantasy police procedural drama television series created by Stephen Carpenter and Jim Kouf and produced by Universal Television for NBC. The series aired from October 28, 2011 to March 31, 2017, for 123 episodes, over six seasons. The series’ narrative follows Portland Homicide detective, Nick Burkhardt (played by David Giuntoli), who discovers he is a Grimm, the latest in a line of Guardians who are sworn to keep the balance between humanity and mythological creatures, known as Wesen. The series features a supporting cast, consisting of Russell Hornsby, Bitsie Tulloch, Silas Weir Mitchell, Sasha Roiz, Reggie Lee, Bree Turner and Claire Coffee.

Grimm was originally developed for CBS, but plans were canceled due to the writers’ strike. In January 2011, NBC opted for the series. It has been described as “a cop drama—with a twist… a dark and fantastical project about a world in which characters inspired by Grimms’ Fairy Tales exist”, although the stories and characters inspiring the show are also drawn from other sources. The series initially garnered mixed reviews from critics, though reception grew more favorably throughout the series’ run. The sixth and final season of Grimm premiered on January 7, 2017 and concluded on March 31, 2017.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grimm_(TV_series)

Who is Ezra Miller?

“Ezra Matthew Miller (born September 30, 1992) is an American actor and singer. He made his feature film debut in the film Afterschool (2008). He starred as the title character in the drama We Need to Talk About Kevin (2011) and co-starred in the film adaptation of The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012). In 2015, he co-starred in the drama The Stanford Prison Experiment and in the comedy Trainwreck. He plays Barry Allen / The Flash in the DC Extended Universe where he first appeared as Flash in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016) and then in Justice League (2017) and also played Credence Barebone in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (2016).” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ezra_Miller

Who is Henry Calvill?

” Henry William Dalgliesh Cavill (/ˈkævɪl/; born 5 May 1983) is a British actor. Cavill began his career starring in the film adaptations of The Count of Monte Cristo (2002) and I Capture the Castle (2003). He later appeared in minor and supporting roles in television shows such as BBC’s The Inspector Lynley Mysteries, ITV’s Midsomer Murders, and Showtime’s The Tudors, then crossed to mainstream Hollywood films such as Tristan & Isolde (2006), Stardust (2007), Blood Creek (2009), and Immortals (2011).

Cavill starred as Charles Brandon, 1st Duke of Suffolk in the Showtime television series The Tudors; and in 2008 became the official spokesman for the Dunhill fragrance collection for men.

Cavill gained further prominence and international fame playing the titular superhero Superman in the DC Extended Universe starting with the 2013 reboot film Man of Steel, originally the highest-grossing Superman film of all time until it was surpassed by 2016’s Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, where he reprised his role as Superman; making it his highest-grossing film to date. Cavill later reprised his role in Justice League in 2017. He then co-starred with Armie Hammer in the spy film The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (2015) and the Netflix war drama Sand Castle (2017). ” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Cavill

What are the Hanging Gardens of Babylon?

” The Hanging Gardens of Babylon were one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, a term given to it by ancient Hellenic culture. The Hanging Gardens were described as a remarkable feat of engineering with an ascending series of tiered gardens containing a wide variety of trees, shrubs, and vines. The gardens were said to have looked like a large green mountain constructed of mud bricks.

The Hanging Gardens is the only one of the seven ancient wonders for which the location has not been definitively established. Traditionally they were said to have been built in the ancient city of Babylon, near present-day Hillah, Babil province, in Iraq. The Babylonian priest Berossus, writing in about 290 BC and quoted later by Josephus, attributed the gardens to Neo-Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar II, who ruled between 605 and 562 BC. There are no extant Babylonian texts which mention the gardens, and no definitive archaeological evidence has been found in Babylon.

Because no physical evidence for the Hanging Gardens has been found at Babylon, two theories have been suggested. One is that they were purely mythical, and the descriptions found in ancient Greek and Roman writers including Strabo, Diodorus Siculus and Quintus Curtius Rufus represent a romantic ideal of an eastern garden. If it did indeed exist, it was destroyed sometime after the first century AD. The other theory is that they were actually in the city of Nineveh, constructed by the Assyrian king Sennacherib.

According to one legend, Nebuchadnezzar II built the Hanging Gardens for his Median wife, Queen Amytis, because she missed the green hills and valleys of her homeland. He also built a grand palace that came to be known as “The Marvel of the Mankind”. Stephanie Dalley suggests that the original garden may have been a well-documented one that Assyrian King Sennacherib (704–681 BC) built in his capital city of Nineveh on the River Tigris, near the modern city of Mosul.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanging_Gardens_of_Babylon

 

What is Necromancy?

” Necromancy (/ˈnɛkrəˌmænsi, –r-/) is a supposed practice of magic involving communication with the deceased – either by summoning their spirit as an apparition or raising them bodily – for the purpose of divination, imparting the means to foretell future events or discover hidden knowledge, to bring someone back from the dead, or to use the deceased as a weapon, as the term may sometimes be used in a more general sense to refer to black magic or witchcraft.

The word “necromancy” is adapted from Late Latin necromantia, itself borrowed from post-Classical Greek νεκρομαντεία (nekromanteía), a compound of Ancient Greek νεκρός (nekrós), “dead body”, and μαντεία (manteía), “divination by means of”; this compound form was first used by Origen of Alexandria in the 3rd century AD. The Classical Greek term was ἡ νέκυια (nekyia), from the episode of the Odyssey in which Odysseus visits the realm of the dead and νεκρομαντεία in Hellenistic Greek, rendered as necromantīa in Latin, and as necromancy in 17th-century English.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Necromancy

Brief History of Rome and Jerusalem

This week on Crash Course Mythology, we’re getting urban. Mike Rugnetta is the man with the orange umbrella who’s about to give you a free tour of mythical cities. We’ll talk about a few cities that didn’t exist, but we’re going to focus on real cities with mythical founding stories. We’ll talk about Jericho, Jerusalem, and Rome, among others.

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Mark Brouwer, Divonne Holmes à Court, Brian Thomas Gossett, Khaled El Shalakany, Indika Siriwardena, Robert Kunz, SR Foxley, Sam Ferguson, Yasenia Cruz, Daniel Baulig, Eric Koslow, Caleb Weeks, Tim Curwick, Jessica Wode, Cami Wilson, Eric Prestemon, Evren Türkmenoğlu, Alexander Tamas, Justin Zingsheim, D.A. Noe, Shawn Arnold, Tom Trval, mark austin, Ruth Perez, Malcolm Callis, Kathrin Janßen, Ken Penttinen, Advait Shinde, Cody Carpenter, Annamaria Herrera, Nathan Taylor, William McGraw, Bader AlGhamdi, Vaso, Melissa Briski, Joey Quek, Andrei Krishkevich, Rachel Bright, Alex S, Mayumi Maeda, Kathy & Tim Philip, Montather, Jirat, Continue reading “Brief History of Rome and Jerusalem” »

Read This Before you see Justice League Movie With Your Kids

The 2017 movie that unites Superman, Batman, Wonderwoman, The Flash and Aquaman in one epic comic book to the big screen story that is blowing people’s minds. It’s always fun to show off your knowledge beforehand. Check out this movie review and get smart before the movie.

Critics Consensus: Justice League leaps over a number of DC movies, but its single bound isn’t enough to shed the murky aesthetic, thin characters, and chaotic action that continue to dog the franchise. – Rotten Tomatoes

Wonder – Probably the best film of 2017

From the way the trailers and critics react, this is probably the next big one, the next paradigm changing film, a new step in this self-morphing art we call cinema.

Based on the New York Times bestseller, WONDER tells the incredibly inspiring and heartwarming story of August Pullman, a boy with facial differences who enters fifth grade, attending a mainstream elementary school for the first time. -IMDB

Wonder doesn’t shy away from its bestselling source material’s sentiment, but this well-acted and overall winsome drama earns its tugs at the heartstrings. -Rotten Tomatoes

What is Taxidermy?

” Taxidermy is the preserving of an animal’s body via stuffing or mounting for the purpose of display or study. Animals are often, but not always, portrayed in a lifelike state. The word taxidermy refers to the process of preserving the animal, but the word is also used to describe the end product, which are often called “mounts”. The word taxidermy is derived from the Greek words “taxis” and “derma”. Taxis means to “to move”, and “derma” means “skin” (the dermis). The word taxidermy translates to “arrangement of skin”. Taxidermy is practiced primarily on vertebrates (mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, and less commonly on amphibians) but can also be done to larger insects and arachnids under some circumstances. Taxidermy takes on a number of forms and purposes, including natural history museum displays, hunting trophies, study skins, and is sometimes used as a means to memorialize pets. A person who practices taxidermy is called a taxidermist. They may practice professionally for museums or as businesses catering to hunters and fishermen, or as amateurs, such as hobbyists, hunters, and fishermen. A taxidermist is aided by familiarity with anatomy, sculpture, painting, and tanning.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taxidermy

 

The Star

A small but brave donkey and his animal friends become the unsung heroes of the first Christmas.

In Sony Pictures Animation’s THE STAR, a small but brave donkey named Bo yearns for a life beyond his daily grind at the village mill. One day he finds the courage to break free, and finally goes on the adventure of his dreams. On his journey, he teams up with Ruth, a lovable sheep who has lost her flock and Dave, a dove with lofty aspirations. Along with three wisecracking camels and some eccentric stable animals, Bo and his new friends follow the Star and become accidental heroes in the greatest story ever told – the first Christmas. Written by Teaser-Trailer.com
Director: Timothy Reckart
Writers: Carlos Kotkin (screenplay by), Simon Moore (story by) | 1 more credit »
Stars: Steven Yeun, Keegan-Michael Key, Aidy Bryant

What are The Benefits Agroforestry?

“Agroforestry systems can be advantageous over conventional agricultural, and forest production methods. They can offer increased productivity, economic benefits, and more diversity in the ecological goods and services provided . (An example of this was seen in trying to conserve Milicia excelsa.)

Biodiversity in agroforestry systems is typically higher than in conventional agricultural systems. With two or more interacting plant species in a given land area, it creates a more complex habitat that can support a wider variety of birds, insects, and other animals. Depending upon the application, impacts of agroforestry can include:

  • Reducing poverty through increased production of wood and other tree products for home consumption and sale
  • Contributing to food security by restoring the soil fertility for food crops
  • Cleaner water through reduced nutrient and soil runoff
  • Countering global warming and the risk of hunger by increasing the number of drought-resistant trees and the subsequent production of fruits, nuts and edible oils
  • Reducing deforestation and pressure on woodlands by providing farm-grown fuelwood
  • Reducing or eliminating the need for toxic chemicals (insecticides, herbicides, etc.)
  • Through more diverse farm outputs, improved human nutrition
  • In situations where people have limited access to mainstream medicines, providing growing space for medicinal plants
  • Increased crop stability
  • Multifunctional site use i.e. crop production and animal grazing.
  • Typically more drought resistant.
  • Stabilises depleted soils from erosion
  • Bioremediation

Agroforestry practices may also realize a number of other associated environmental goals, such as:

  • Carbon sequestration
  • Odour, dust, and noise reduction
  • Green space and visual aesthetics
  • Enhancement or maintenance of wildlife habitat” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Agroforestry

What is Coelic disease?

” Coeliac disease, also spelled celiac disease, is a long term autoimmune disorder primarily affecting the small intestine that occurs in people who are genetically predisposed. Classic symptoms include gastrointestinal problems such as chronic diarrhoea, abdominal distention, malabsorption, loss of appetite, and among children failure to grow normally. This often begins between six months and two years of age. Non-classic symptoms are more common, especially in people older than two years. There may be mild or absent gastrointestinal symptoms, a wide number of symptoms involving any part of the body, or no obvious symptoms. Coeliac disease was first described in childhood; however, it may develop at any age. It is associated with other autoimmune diseases, such as diabetes mellitus type 1 and thyroiditis, among others.

Coeliac disease is caused by a reaction to gluten, which are various proteins found in wheat and in other grains such as barley, and rye. Moderate quantities of oats, free of contamination with other gluten-containing grains, are usually tolerated. The occurrence of problems may depend on the variety of oat. Upon exposure to gluten, an abnormal immune response may lead to the production of several different autoantibodies that can affect a number of different organs. In the small-bowel this causes an inflammatory reaction and may produce shortening of the villi lining the small intestine (villous atrophy). This affects the absorption of nutrients, frequently leading to anaemia.

Diagnosis is typically made by a combination of blood antibody tests and intestinal biopsies, helped by specific genetic testing. Making the diagnosis is not always straightforward. Frequently, the autoantibodies in the blood are negative and many people have only minor intestinal changes with normal villi. People may have severe symptoms and be investigated for years before a diagnosis is achieved. Increasingly, the diagnosis is being made in people without symptomsas a result of screening. Evidence regarding the effects of screening, however, is not sufficient to determine its usefulness. While the disease is caused by a permanent intolerance to wheat proteins, it is not a form of wheat allergy.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coeliac_disease

Let There Be Light – Deepdive into the movie

Let There Be Light stars Kevin Sorbo, Sam Sorbo, and Daniel Roebuck.

A look at the new film “Let There Be Light” with Kevin Sorbo.

After a near-death experience, the world’s most famous atheist must reinvent himself to save his family and his soul, starring Kevin Sorbo.
Tom Trento interviews Dan Gordon who, with Sam Sorbo, co-wrote the screenplay for “Let There Be Light.” Dan provides some behind-the-scenes insight into this inspiring movie that explores the deeps and heights of human nature, morality, and God.

Marcus Pointe Baptist Church presents Kevin Sorbo at the Spirit of Christmas Service.

How do Dolphins Behave?

“Dolphins are often regarded as one of Earth’s most intelligent animals, though it is hard to say just how intelligent. Comparing species’ relative intelligence is complicated by differences in sensory apparatus, response modes, and nature of cognition. Furthermore, the difficulty and expense of experimental work with large aquatic animals has so far prevented some tests and limited sample size and rigor in others. Compared to many other species, however, dolphin behavior has been studied extensively, both in captivity and in the wild.

Dolphins surfing at Snapper Rocks, Queensland, Australia

Dolphins are highly social animals, often living in pods of up to a dozen individuals, though pod sizes and structures vary greatly between species and locations. In places with a high abundance of food, pods can merge temporarily, forming a superpod; such groupings may exceed 1,000 dolphins. Membership in pods is not rigid; interchange is common. Dolphins can, however, establish strong social bonds; they will stay with injured or ill individuals, even helping them to breathe by bringing them to the surface if needed. This altruism does not appear to be limited to their own species. The dolphin Moko in New Zealand has been observed guiding a female Pygmy Sperm Whaletogether with her calf out of shallow water where they had stranded several times. They have also been seen protecting swimmers from sharks by swimming circles around the swimmers or charging the sharks to make them go away.

Dolphins communicate using a variety of clicks, whistle-like sounds and other vocalizations. Dolphins also use nonverbal communication by means of touch and posturing.

Dolphins also display culture, something long believed to be unique to humans (and possibly other primate species). In May 2005, a discovery in Australia found Indo-Pacific bottlenose dolphins (Tursiops aduncus) teaching their young to use tools. They cover their snoutswith sponges to protect them while foraging. This knowledge is mostly transferred by mothers to daughters, unlike simian primates, where knowledge is generally passed on to both sexes. Using sponges as mouth protection is a learned behavior. Another learned behavior was discovered among river dolphins in Brazil, where some male dolphins use weeds and sticks as part of a sexual display.

Forms of care-giving between fellows and even for members of different species (see Moko (dolphin)) are recorded in various species – such as trying to save weakened fellows or female pilot whales holding up dead calves for long periods.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dolphin#Taxonomy_and_distribution

What are the Threats that Beluga whales Suffer?

” The beluga whale or white whale (Delphinapterus leucas) is an Arctic and sub-Arctic cetacean. It is one of two members of the family Monodontidae, along with the narwhal, and the only member of the genus Delphinapterus. This marine mammal is commonly referred to as the beluga, melonhead, or sea canary due to its high-pitched twitter.

It is adapted to life in the Arctic, so has anatomical and physiological characteristics that differentiate it from other cetaceans. Amongst these are its all-white colour and the absence of a dorsal fin. It possesses a distinctive protuberance at the front of its head which houses an echolocation organ called the melon, which in this species is large and deformable. The beluga’s body size is between that of a dolphin’s and a true whale’s, with males growing up to 5.5 m (18 ft) long and weighing up to 1,600 kg (3,530 lb). This whale has a stocky body. A large percentage of its weight is blubber, as is true of many cetaceans. Its sense of hearing is highly developed and its echolocation allows it to move about and find blowholes under sheet ice.

Hunting

Commercial whaling by European and American whalers during the 18th and 19th centuries decreased beluga populations in the Canadian Arctic. The animals were hunted for their meat and blubber, while the Europeans used the oil from the melon as a lubricant for clocks, machinery, and lighting in lighthouses. Mineral oil replaced whale oil in the 1860s, but the hunting of these animals continued unabated. In 1863, the cured skin could be used to make horse harnesses, machine belts for saw mills, and shoelaces. These manufactured items ensured the hunting of belugas continued for the rest of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century. Between 1868 and 1911, Scottish and American whalers killed more than 20,000 belugas in Lancaster Sound and Davis Strait.

Predation

Killer whales are able to capture both young and adult belugas. They live in all the seas of the world and share the same habitat as belugas in the sub-Arctic region. Attacks on belugas by killer whales have been reported in the waters of Greenland, Russia, Canada, and Alaska.[125][126] A number of killings have been recorded in Cook Inlet, and experts are concerned the predation by killer whales will impede the recovery of this subpopulation, which has already been badly depleted by hunting.[125] The killer whales arrive at the beginning of August, but the belugas are occasionally able to hear their presence and evade them. The groups near to or under the sea ice have a degree of protection, as the killer whale’s large dorsal fin, up to 2 m in length, impedes their movement under the ice and does not allow them to get sufficiently close to the breathing holes in the ice.

Pathogens

Papillomaviruses have been found in the stomachs of belugas in the Saint Lawrence River. Animals in this location have also been recorded as suffering infections caused by herpesviruses and in certain cases to be suffering from encephalitis caused by the protozoan Sarcocystis. Cases have been recorded of ciliate protozoa colonising the spiracle of certain individuals, but they not thought to be pathogens or at least they are not very harmful.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beluga_whale#Threats

Where does Margarine come From?

” Margarine originated with the discovery by French chemist Michel Eugène Chevreul in 1813 of margaric acid (itself named after the pearly deposits of the fatty acid from Greekμαργαρίτης or μάργαρον (margaritēs / márgaron), meaning pearl-oyster or pearl, or μαργαρίς (margarís), meaning palm-tree, hence the relevance to palmitic acid). Scientists at the time regarded margaric acid, like oleic acid and stearic acid, as one of the three fatty acids that, in combination, form most animal fats. In 1853, the German structural chemist Wilhelm Heinrich Heintz analyzed margaric acid as simply a combination of stearic acid and the previously unknown palmitic acid.

Emperor Napoleon III of France offered a prize to anyone who could make a satisfactory butter alternative, suitable for use by the armed forces and the lower classes. French chemist Hippolyte Mège-Mouriès invented a substance he called oleomargarine, which became shortened to the trade name margarine. Mège-Mouriès patented the concept in 1869 and expanded his initial manufacturing operation from France but had little commercial success. In 1871, he sold the patent to the Dutch company Jurgens, now part of Unilever. In the same year a German pharmacist, Benedict Klein from Cologne, founded the first margarine factory “Benedict Klein Margarinewerke”, producing the brands Overstolz and Botteram.

John Steele wrote in his 1850 California gold miner’s journal: “I became acquainted with Mr. Dainels, from Baltimore, who… manufactured butter from tallow and lard, and it looked and tasted so much like real butter, that… I could not tell the difference. However, he deceived no one, but sold it for just what it was. He never explained the process of its manufacturer, and whether he was the originator of oleomargarine I do not know.”

The principal raw material in the original formulation of margarine was beef fat. In 1871, Henry W. Bradley of Binghamton, New York received U.S. Patent 110,626 for a process of creating margarine that combined vegetable oils (primarily cottonseed oil) with animal fats. Shortages in beef fat supply combined with advances by Boyce and Sabatier in the hydrogenation of plant materials soon accelerated the use of Bradley’s method, and between 1900 and 1920 commercial oleomargarine was produced from a combination of animal fats and hardened and unhardened vegetable oils. The depression of the 1930s, followed by the rationing of World War II, led to a reduction in supply of animal fat; and, by 1945, “original” margarine almost completely disappeared from the market. In the United States, problems with supply, coupled with changes in legislation, caused manufacturers to switch almost completely to vegetable oils and fats (oleomargarine) by 1950, and the industry was ready for an era of product development” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margarine

 

Where do Monarch Butterflies habit?

“The monarch butterfly or simply monarch (Danaus plexippus) is a milkweed butterfly (subfamily Danainae) in the family Nymphalidae. Other common names depending on region include milkweed, common tiger, wanderer, and black veined brown. It may be the most familiar North American butterfly, and is considered an iconic pollinator species. Its wings feature an easily recognizable black, orange, and white pattern, with a wingspan of 8.9–10.2 cm ( 3 12–4 in) The viceroy butterfly is similar in color and pattern, but is markedly smaller and has an extra black stripe across each hindwing.

The range of the western and eastern populations of the monarch butterfly expands and contracts depending upon the season. The range differs between breeding areas, migration routes, and winter roosts. However, no genetic differences between the western and eastern monarch populations exist; reproductive isolation has not led to subspeciation of these populations, as it has elsewhere within the species’ range.

In North America, the monarch ranges from southern Canada through northern South America. It has also been found in Bermuda, Cook Islands, Hawaii, Cuba, and other Caribbean islands the Solomons, New Caledonia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Australia, the Azores, the Canary Islands, Gibraltar, the Philippines, and North Africa. It appears in the UK in some years as an accidental migrant.

Overwintering populations of D. plexippus are found in Mexico, California, along the Gulf Coast, year round in Florida, and in Arizona where the habitat has the specific conditions necessary for their survival. On the US East Coast, they have overwintered as far north as Lago Mar, Virginia Beach, Virginia. Their wintering habitat typically provides access to streams, plenty of sunlight (enabling body temperatures that allow flight), and appropriate roosting vegetation, and is relatively free of predators. Overwintering, roosting butterflies have been seen on basswoods, elms, sumacs, locusts, oaks, osage-oranges, mulberries, pecans, willows, cottonwoods, and mesquites. While breeding, monarch habitats can be found in agricultural fields, pasture land, prairie remnants, urban and suburban residential areas, gardens, trees, and roadsides – anywhere where there is access to larval host plants. Habitat restoration is a primary goal in monarch conservation efforts. Habitat requirements change during migration. During the fall migration, butterflies must have access to nectar-producing plants. During the spring migration, butterflies must have access to larval food plants and nectar plants.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monarch_butterfly