When Jim Dutcher was just a teenager, he worked a dream job in Wyoming in the summers as a horse wrangler. One day when he was looking for strayed horses he had an experience that made a huge impact on him and would play a part in his life in the future.

He came across a lone gray wolf that day and the two of them observed each other quietly before the wolf moved on. He noticed that the wolf seemed unafraid and not at all vicious like all the stories had portrayed wolves. He never forgot that day.

Then as an adult, being the nature lover that he was, he became a wildlife film maker. He had a unique style in that he believed that the only way you could really capture the true nature and life of a wild animal on film was to live among that animal. He would set up camp in a tent very close to the animal that he was filming.

He filmed all different types of wildlife. But once again during this time, he had another silent encounter with a wild wolf one day and it was then that he knew that he had to find out what the wolves were really all about. At that time there were only about 50 wild wolves left in the U.S. as several million had been exterminated by the government by the 1940's.

So in 1990, the Wolf Project was born and it soon became a labor of love for Jim Dutcher as he worked to show to the world on film that the wolf is none of the scary stereotypes often portrayed. During this time he lived in a tent for 6 years studying and filming the wolf pack that he had put together in the wilds of Idaho. This fascinating story also had tale of love between Jim and fellow wildlife lover, Jamie.

They would eventually marry and continue to work together with the wolves that became known as the Sawtooth Pack. Over the 6 years, many changes happened in the wolf pack, and the Dutchers were thrilled to learn that the wolves were actually a very close knit family unit that loved and cared for each other. They also followed a very strict hierarchy to maintain order and loyalty in the pack. Many of what they learned about the wolves was unknown up to this time.

The story of the Dutchers and the Sawtooth wolf pack is a very heartwarming and informative film that will hold your interest to the end. It is a must see for wolf and wildlife lovers especially during this time of great fabrication by anti-wolf groups in the same parts of the western U.S. where the Dutchers did their study. The wolves are once again under great threat by humans so it is wonderful to be able to see them as they really are and not as they are so ruthlessly portrayed.


25 years ago on April 26th, 1986 a catastrophic event took place that shook the globe. It was on that very day that a nuclear power station at Chernobyl in the Soviet Union, exploded in the world's worst nuclear accident. A plume of radiation was sent across much of Europe. But for several days, no one even knew about it because Soviet officials delayed reporting the accident. More than 30 people were killed in the immediate aftermath of the explosion but many others died at a later time due to radiation caused illnesses such as cancer. No one really knows the exact number of deaths that were caused by the explosion. Hundreds of thousands of people were evacuated in the Ukraine, western Russia and Belarus after the incident.

At first there was lot's of panic and lot's of talk about what went wrong as people in the world felt quite helpless as to what to do. But eventually time went on and Chernobyl became a radioactive monument to the worst case scenario in nuclear power. People naively thought that the lessons had been learned about the dangers of nuclear power. But the leaders of the world's countries did not heed the lessons and once again they thought that man could control it all. So they started building more nuclear power plants again. Even in earthquake prone countries and even on fault lines. 25 years later and once again history repeats itself with the Fukushima plant in Japan. And once again the severity of the situation was hidden from the public. Only later did Japanese officials admit that Fukushima was at the same level of an atomic catastrophe as was Chernobyl.

But even before Fukushima, several countries in Europe were starting to realize that nuclear power was just too big of a gamble for the world to bet on. Germany is currently the leader of the anti-nuclear movement and has staged recent protests within it's borders at many of it's nuclear power plants. Tens of thousands of people have marched at these protests. At the same time leaders in the United States kept insisting that nuclear power is safe and had plans of opening up to 30- 40 new nuclear power plants in the near future. This was in addition to the current 100 plants already in operation there.

But Monday on the eve of Chernobyl's nuclear accident's 25th anniversary, people in both Germany and France had decided that enough was enough! Thousands of people from both countries have staged protests calling for an end to nuclear power. Some of the marches were held on several river bridges between France and Germany over the Rhine. There were also further protests at many of the German nuclear plants. Banners were carried with anti-nuclear slogans and people chanted: "Chernobyl, Fukushima, never again!" In a symbolic "die in", protesters threw flowers onto the Rhine and lay down on the pavement of the bridge as a siren wailed in the background. They were also calling for the closure of France's oldest nuclear power station at Fessenheim.

One of the organizers of a demonstration, Erhard Renz, was quoted as saying "After Fukushima it's now clear enough that the danger of nuclear power is real. We can not allow the business needs of the very few to destroy our world - like what happened 25 years ago," he told German broadcaster Deutsche Welle. And recently Russia's President, Dmitry Medvede, was quoted as saying "I think that our modern states must see the main lesson of what happened at Chernobyl and the most recent Japanese tragedy as the necessity to tell people the truth”.

The anti-nuclear movement is beginning to gain momentum around the world as protesters in India plan to march on the site of a planned six-reactor nuclear power plant. In Germany, where the movement began, the issue has become political and has helped the German Green party to win in regional elections, therefore causing further damage to the standing of Chancellor Angela Merkel. The movement is also spreading rapidly on several of the social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter where many petitions are being signed against nuclear power.

With so many other alternative methods of clean power available and being refined, it is time for the nuclear power industry to be shut down and forever silenced. The time is now before even one more catastrophic nuclear accident threatens to destroy our world, the only home that we have.

1-Ban Nuclear Energy: SIGN THIS PETITION

2-We Share Heaven-Inspect&Stop Nuclear Power Plants SIGN THIS PETITION


A most amazing event took place in China this past week. Amazing because China has a well deserved reputation for being one of the cruelest countries when it comes to it's treatment of animals. China is leading the way in the world as being the largest producer and exporter of inexpensive goods. But it's brutal treatment of animals ranging from it's taste for shark fin soup to it's bear bile farming to endangering animals on the verge of extinction with it's support of poaching has greatly tarnished it's image in the eyes of the world.

So when a major rescue of dogs took place on the 15th of April, the world responded with shock and amazement. It all happened rather quickly when a man sent out a call for help on a micro-blogging site after seeing a truck packed with hundreds of terrified dogs on a highway. About 200 people responded to his pleas to help force the driver to release the dogs. The truck contained about 580 dogs that were on their way to be slaughtered for the meat industry in China.

The rescue took place after effectively blockading the truck at a toll booth for 15 hours. The rescuers were able to negotiate the release of the dogs for about $17,000, saving them from being slaughtered and served as food. Many of the dogs (many were wearing collars) were dehydrated, injured and suffering from distemper and parvovirus. Dongxing Animal Hospital in Beijing, treated up to 68 dogs who were very ill and dozens of volunteers were helping Tuesday to clean and disinfect cages and mop floors.

The rescue was a revolutionary case of social activism in China, in a country where authorities are still waging brutal crackdowns on dissent. But over the last decade changes have been taking place in Chinese society where a new middle class with different values has developed because of China's rapid economic growth. Whereas pet ownership was once unheard of before because of affordability and the Communist Party's condemnation of it, now people in China are raising dogs and developing bonds with them.
The sparks of this change brought on by the rescue have set off new discussions of the divide between age-old customs of seeing dogs and cats as food only and China's growing animal rights movement. This time is long overdue but very welcome in the eyes of the world.

Save the Dogs : PETITION

Video : China Dogs' Rescue Shows Growing Animal Activism


Has the delisting of the wolve's protection also taken away the people's rights to question their Government?

Everyone breathed a sigh of relief when on April 14th, 2011, the much awaited for Budget bill was signed into law by President Obama. Now everything can return to normal, the government won't shut down and everyone will still get paid on time. Life goes on as normal.

But unknown to the majority of Americans, something else took place that day that had absolutely nothing to do with the nation's budget. And it was done in such a underhanded way and devious way that no real attention was paid to it. That day HR1473 and an attached rider, called Section 1713, was signed into law after it had been passed by both Democrats and Republicans in Congress.

Rider 1713 had been submitted by both Senators Tester and Baucus from Montana in a desperate attempt to gain political favor for their upcoming elections from special interest groups. These special interest groups are the cattle ranching and hunting organizations that provide monetary backing for the Senators. And that day the wolves of the Northern Rockies lost their protection from the Endangered Species Act which had been instituted in 1974.

What do wolves have to do with the Budget Bill? Absolutely nothing. But the ranchers who graze their cattle on the nation's public land for virtually nothing and the trophy hunters hate the wolves. So wasn't it all very convenient for the Senators to slip through a rider to benefit their political careers at the cost of hundreds of lives of wolves. This decision was not based on science but politics alone.

And the tragedy of it all is that the American people had no say in this. They were not given their rights to question the government because this was all done very quietly. Today the wolves, tomorrow what??? The fundamental basis of America's Democracy is the power of the citizens to question the laws made and actions taken by the government.

The other really tragic effect of this underhanded action is that now the Endangered Species Act is fair game for any politician that decides a certain species is in the way of their political interests. The rider in question was determined in US Federal Court to have not been in compliance with the law. But Congress has taken care of that also because the final line in the anti-wolf rider states: "Such reissuance (including this section) shall not be subject to judicial review." So the U.S. courts can no longer make any judgments on this issue.

This imbalance of power was not what America's forefathers had intended. And it is certainly not what the American people want or would any peoples of a free and democratic country. Please take a minute to let your voice be heard to President Obama and the United States Congress that this is an atrocity not only for the wolves but also for the rights of the people to have a say in what their government is passing behind closed doors.


Nature awakens in Spring, and spring flowers bloom and dance in the warm, lengthening sunshine. Changing seasons have a profound effect on plant and animal life and spring is the time of renewal of plant life.

In spring, plants and trees sprout new leaves and flowers bloom. Life awakens from the deep sleep of winter and gentle pastel colors shyly make themselves known giving us hope of the abundance of beautiful flowers to follow.

Spring flowers arrive just in time to complement the feeling of love that is all around this time of year. Birds sing, animals and people fall in love and flowers perfectly frame the joy that is everywhere!

Video: Spring Flowers


Resembling a creature from mythology, the Narwhal travels every year through narrow fissures for thousands of miles, from the south of Baffin Bay to the high Arctic fjords. They are called the "Arctic Unicorns" because of the long, spiral tusk that protrudes from their jaws. Their appendages can reach more than 2m (7ft) in length and scientists believe males use them to attract potential mates.

This annual journey is an amazing sight to see on their summer migration. Because of their elusive nature, the Narwhal had never been filmed before. Recently however, a BBC camera crew was able to film these magnificient animals in June of 2008.

The filming took place from the air on a helicopter as the Narwhal were following the retreat of the sea ice as they have done for thousands of years. They were initially very difficult to find and it took a dive crew up to 4 weeks to locate them. Even though the Narwhal is a very large animal and the area to be covered was also very large - the size of a country such as Scotland - the dive crew reported that it was like "finding a needle in a haystack."

The Narwhal feeds in the deep water in the central part of Baffin Bay during the winter. In the summer however, they spend their time in front of the glaciers in the Arctic fjords and hardly feed at all. Since they are so connected to the Artic ice, researchers are trying to establish whether or not they have been effected by the rising temperatures of the deep areas and the decreasing of the ice floes caused by Global Warming.

Even though the purpose of the creatures' summer migration still remains a mystery, scientists have not yet seen any direct effects of climate change on the Narwhal. Let us hope that this remains the case.

Photograph by Paul Nicklen

Video : Arctic Unicorns

Just in time for Earth Day, the Lyrid meteors also known as April's shooting stars, will be making a grand appearance on April 22nd.
These spectacular meteors are very bright and often leave trails in the sky. During the years where the moon is out of the way, one can see from 10 - 20 meteors per hour at it's peak. Although these meteor showers are hard to predict they are the reason the Lyrids are so fun to watch.

Unfortunately this year, the glare of the waning gibbous moon will be obstructing all but the brightest of the of the Lyrid meteors. The best time of night to observe these meteors will be from late night April 22nd until dawn April 23rd, with the greatest number of meteors falling in the hours just before dawn. However, the night before (April 21/22) will be almost as good to witness.

Even though all the meteors will not be seen this year, the chance to see even one of these cosmic wonders makes it well worth the time to check them out. Another reason to watch the sky is that the planets, Venus and Saturn will also be visible during mid - late April. Be ready to be amazed this month!

Photo by Tony Rowell

Watch this video of Meteor Shower (Shot on Canon EOS 7D)


Teide Mountain is a beautiful volcanic mountain found in the Canary Islands right off of Spain. It is the 3rd largest volcano in the world and is considered to be an active volcano although it has been dormant since it's last eruption in 1909.

Teide was a sacred mountain to the aboriginal Guanches, so it was considered to be a mythological mountain with many legends attached to it. The Guanches believed that the mountain held up the sky. It was first conquered by a European in the mid 1600's. Today it is the main attraction of a national park and is the most visited national park in that area with an estimated 2.8 million people every year.

This year between April 4 - 11th, a wonderful time lapse video was shot off of Teide Mountain. It takes you on a wonderful tour of the the area and displays all the beautiful magic and scenery to be experienced on the mountain. There are also magnificent scenes shot of the night sky in all it's glory. As you watch this video you will feel the wonder of this majestic mountain as others have experienced it through time. Teide Mountain is another powerful example of the beautiful world that we live in. A world in which we must do all we can to preserve so that future generations can experience the awe and wonder also.

Photo by Peaceinwisdom

Video : The Mountain


Since 2010, the title “European Green Capital” has been awarded to individual European cities by the European Commission. By awarding deserving cities of this honor, the EU commission is hoping that this award will encourage more European cities to increase their environment-related activities. Through the exchange of environmentally sound ideas and friendly competition with each other, European cities will surely lead the world in environmental protection.

The first city to receive this prestigious award was Stockholm, Sweden in 2010. The title is awarded to cities that have excelled in the field of environmental innovation and practical application. At the European Green Capital Conference in Stockholm, urban decision-makers from Sweden, all over Europe and even a delegation from the U.S. came together to discuss sustainability in urban environments. Experts from the fields of politics, administration and business presented their experience and plans for a greener future.

Hamburg, Germany has deservedly received this award for 2011.
Hamburg has already proven its success as a green city in many ways already. Renewable energy, the city’s fastest-growing economic sector and the goal to significantly reduce CO2 emissions (40% by 2020 and 80% by 2050) are the city's major environmental strengths. The world's leading turbine manufacturer and a major windpower plant have recently relocated to Hamburg. Over the next several years, other wind and solar plants will be relocating to Hamburg also along with Greenpeace which is moving it's headquarters to the city also in 2011. In order to reduce CO2 emissions, there are plans for the expansion of the city’s public transport system, and also to erect a canopy over an existing urban motorway. Hamburg has also agressively sought partnerships with a number of green companies in an effort to make the city emission-free.

Hamburg’s Environment Senator, Anja Hajduk, has stated that European cities are all facing the same challenges and this year Hamburg is dedicated to advance communication among other European cities. The way Hamburg has planned on doing this is through the “Train of Ideas”, an interactive environmental exhibition on a train. This exhibition will also present the best practices from those cities in which the Train of Ideas will stop on its journey through Europe. Beginning in April 2011, the train will pass through 17 European cities, among them Copenhagen, Brussels, Paris, Barcelona and Vienna. Last but not least 2011 will be the year for many high calibur environmental debates and events to be held in Hamburg.

Hamburg’s successors for the following several years have also been announced: in 2012, Vitoria-Gasteiz ,Spain will take over the title, while Nantes, France will follow in 2013. Although the European Green Capital nomination is a new program in Europe, the hope is that the rest of world will soon follow.

There are different opinions about the stars. Some say they are balls of light, others say they are human, but most people say they are living creatures covered with luminous fur or feathers.

One night a hunting party camping in the mountains noticed two lights like large stars moving along the top of a distant ridge. They wondered and watched until the light disappeared on the other side. The next night, and the next, they saw the lights again moving along the ridge, and after talking over the matter decided to go on the morrow and try to learn the cause.

In the morning they started out and went until they came to the ridge, where, after searching some time, they found two strange creatures about so large (making a circle with outstretched arms), with round bodies covered with fine fur or downy feathers, from which small heads stuck out like the heads of terrapins. As the breeze played upon these feathers showers of sparks flew out.

The hunters carried the strange creatures back to the camp, intending to take them home to the settlements on their return. They kept them several days and noticed that every night they would grow bright and shine like great stars, although by day they were only balls of gray fur, except when the wind stirred and made the sparks fly out.

They kept very quiet, and no one thought of their trying to escape, when, on the seventh night, they suddenly rose from the ground like balls of fire and were soon above the tops of the trees. Higher and higher they went, while the wondering hunters watched, until at last they were only two bright points of light in the dark sky, and then the hunters knew that they were stars.


For the first time in history, a group of astronomers have obtained a 3D view of the aftermath of a star exploding. This is also known as a supernova. A very large Telescope was used at the European Southern Observatory in Chile to study the supernova, which lies 168,000 light-years away.

The results of this telescope show the original blast was very powerful and concentrated in one particular direction. It was the first supernova visible with the naked eye to have been observed for some 383 years and was originally seen in 1987.

What is so fascinating is that the first material to be ejected from the explosion traveled at 100 million km per hour. This is about 100,000 times faster than a passenger jet. But even at this incredible speed it took 10 years to reach a previously existing ring of gas and dust puffed out by the star while it was dying. What is also seen from the images is another wave of material that is traveling 10 times more slowly and is being heated by radioactive elements created in the explosion.

The video zoom shows images of the supernova from the European Southern Observatory telescopes and it ends with an artist's impression of a close-up of the exploding star. As we continue on in the 21st century, we still find ourselves in awe of what the universe has to teach us.

Amazing video of supernova from ESO telescope.


April Full Moon names from different culture

April Moon Names

Leaf Moon (Kiowa).
Yellow Moon (Pima).
Flowers Moon (Pomo).
Growing Moon (Celtic).
Flower, Egg (Cherokee).
Frog Moon (Assiniboine).
(Full Janic), (Dark Janic).
Big Spring Moon (Creek).
Wildcat Moon (Choctaw).
Budding Moon (Mohawk).
Wind Breaks Moon (Hopi).
Leaf Split Moon (San Juan).
Big Leaves Moon (Apache).
Strawberry Moon (Natchez).
Ice Breaking Moon (Arapaho).
Geese Return Moon (Dakota).
Indian Corn Moon (Algonquin).
Green Grass moon (Sioux).
Geese Egg Moon (Cheyenne).
Sugar Maker Moon (Abernaki).
Awakening Moon (Neo Pagan).
Seed Moon (Medieval English).
Spring Moon (Passamaquoddy).
Corn Planting Moon (Winnebago).
Planterâs Moon (Colonial American).
Ashes Moon (Taos Native American).
Broken Snow Shoe Moon (Anishnaabe).
Big Spring Moon, Gray Goose Moon (Cree).
Other Names : Egg Moon, Sprouting Grass Moon, Planterâs Moon, Pink Moon, Fish Moon. 

Video: Gray Goose Moon (CREE)



Russia bans endangered polar bear hunt this year.

Bravo to Prime Minister Putin for setting an example to the rest of the world's leaders of how important it is to preserve our endangered species. Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, a longtime defender of large endangered animals, recently made the decision that Russia will ban the hunting of polar bears this year.

Last year a Russian-U.S. commission had agreed to restrict polar bear hunting to 29 animals per year for each country. Previously officials in Russia had agreed with the U.S. that although the Polar Bear is an endangered species, hunting is vital for the indigenous people in Alaska and in far-eastern Russia. This week Russia has waived its quota for Polar bear hunting.

Prime Minister Putin has also championed the causes of the gray whale and some of the endangered big cats such as the Persian leopards and the Siberian tiger in the past. According to Russian specialists, "the decision this week will help to sustain and boost the population of this beautiful Arctic animal." Currently the Polar Bear is struggling for survival due to the increased melting of the polar ice floes that it depends on to hunt for food. Global warming has been blamed for the destruction of the Polar Bears natural environment.

Fellow leaders of the world stand up and take notice! We need to work together as one world if these very vulnerable and endangered species are going to survive.


Raptor Resource Project is a non-profit organization that specializes in the preservation of falcons, eagles, ospreys, hawks, and owls. They were established in 1988 to establish and strengthen breeding populations of these raptors by creating, improving, and maintaining nests and nest sites. Currently they are managing over twenty-three falcon, eagle, and owl nest sites.

They also provide training in nest site creation and management across the United States. More than 85,000 people each year are reached through their lectures, education programs, and their website. They have developed an innovative program in nest site management and viewing that bring people closer to the world of raptors around them.

At this time they have set up a web cam on a mother bald eagle in her nest high up in a tree at a fish hatchery in Decorah, Iowa. This web cam is available for online viewing 24/7 and at night an infrared light allows for continuous viewing also. The eagle cannot see the infrared light so it does not disturb her.

The world watched as she sat on her eggs and as they hatched one by one. Now that her babies have all hatched, all eyes are on mama Eagle as she guards and keeps them safe and warm. It is also fun to see her feed her hungry babies. Never before have we been allowed a birds eye view like this. It is the use of technology at it's best!

Live streaming video by Ustream


Although the political climate has been very tough for the wolves lately in Montana, the sun was able to shine through the clouds this week. With the help of conservation groups, pro-wolf petitions and some moderate hunters, a bill was stopped in the Montana Legislature this week that would have expanded wolf-killing on private property.

SB 414, the Montana Wolf Control Act, would have made it legal for anyone to shoot wolves on private land, at any time, for any reason without a hunting license or permit. Extreme anti-wolf groups such as Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife were trying very hard to push SB 414 through and take advantage of Congress’s unjustified action which could allow states to manage wolves as low as 100 to 150. This bill would have seriously jeopardized the genetic diversity of Montana's wolves.

Thanks to all those that worked so hard together to make sure that this wolf - kill bill was stopped in it's tracks and that Montana's wolves can still be managed as a part of their valuable native wildlife and not as unwanted vermin.


The Honshū Wolf, is known in Japan as the Japanese Wolf or by it's other name the "Mountain Dog". This wolf is one of the two extinct subspecies of the Gray Wolf once common to the islands of Japan. The Honshū Wolf lived on the islands of Honshū, Shikoku, and Kyūshū in Japan. The Hokkaidō Wolf, was native to the island of Hokkaidō. The Honshū Wolf is the smallest known variety of wolf, probably due island dwarfing, and because of this size difference it's classification as a subspecies of the gray wolf is disputed.

The Japanese wolf also played a part in the Japanese folklore and religious traditions. For example, the clan leader Fujiwara no Hidehira was said to have been raised by wolves. This wolf is also often symbolically linked with mountain kami in Shinto.

Although the Japanese wolf was known on the island for hundreds of years , around the turn of the century in the early 1900's, it soon became extinct. The last known specimen died in 1905, in the Nara Prefecture.
Some of the reasons given for the Honshū Wolf's extinction was the change in local perceptions of the animal: rabies-induced aggression and destruction of the wolf's habitat through deforestation which forced them into conflict with the local farmers.

The date of extinction however, is not without some controversy. The date of the last sighting in 1905 has been called into question. There is a new debate currently in Japan that the extinction date may have been incorrect. There was a Japanese wolf that was supposedly killed in 1910 in Fukii. The zoo staff had examined the animal the day after the shooting in 1910 and came to the conclusion that it was indeed a Japanese wolf. Although that is as far as the examination went. And unfortunately, the body was destroyed in a fire, therefore the classification has been determined to be inconclusive.

So is the Japanese Wolf really gone for good? Sightings of the Japanese Wolf have been claimed from the time of its extinction to the present day, although none of these have been verified. A sad realization because anytime we lose an animal to extinction it is huge loss to the our world!

Video : Wolf Howl in Asahiyama (Hokkaido, Japan)


Driving through northern Arizona along highway I-40, and approximately 43 miles (69km) east of Flagstaff, near Winslow the landscape remains pretty consistent and unimpressive. Lots and lots of scrub brush dotted along mile after mile of flat desert landscape. So what lies just ahead is quite unexpected. Suddenly, out of the blue, the landscape makes a drastic drop off into a gigantic carved out crater. It is the breath-taking result of a collision between a piece of an asteroid traveling at 26,000 miles per hour and planet Earth approximately 50,000 years ago.

Meteor Crater aka Barringer's Crater lies at an elevation of about 5,709 ft above sea level. It is nearly one mile across, 2.4 miles in circumference and more than 550 feet deep.The center of the crater is filled with 700–800 ft of rubble lying above crater bedrock. An interesting feature of the crater is its squared-off outline. Meteor crater was originally thought to be formed from volcanic action which seemed logical because the San Fransisco volcanic field lies just 40 miles to the west.

It wasn't until 1903, that mining engineer and businessman Daniel Barringer came to the conclusion that this was a crater that was created by the impact of an iron metallic meteor. The meteor crater was initially discovered by European settlers in the 19th century and was then brought to the attention of scientists.

The crater was created about 50,000 years ago during the Pleistocene epoch. At that time the local climate on the Colorado Plateau was much cooler and damper. The area was an open grassland dotted with woodlands and inhabited by woolly mammoths and giant ground sloths. Most likely there were no humans living here at that time as the earliest confirmed record of human habitation in the Americas was long after this impact.

Credit Mike Hendren

Today the crater is privately owned by the Barringer family through their Barringer Crater Company which proclaims it to be "the first proven, best-preserved meteorite crater on earth." Although there are other meteorite impact sites around the world, this one stands out because of it's young age, size and lack of vegetation at the site. It is an international tourist venue with outdoor observation trails, air conditioned indoor viewing, wide screen movie theater, interactive discovery center, unique gift and rock shop, and Astronaut Memorial Park at the modern Visitor Center located on the crater rim. It is open to the public from 8 - 5pm daily and is a fascinating example of a time when outer space actually made physical contact with our earth.

It has now been a month since an earthquake and tsunami devastated the country of Japan. At the same time a very frightening situation has developed in the form of a nuclear crisis. Japan has been fighting around the clock to keep three nuclear reactors from a complete meltdown. And the world has watched with horrified eyes.

Because of this many people and countries have started to reevaluate once again the use of nuclear power as a standard energy source. Up until now many countries have relied on this fairly inexpensive form of energy. But the world has found out that the cost is really much higher to our health and peace of mind.

Although some countries have vowed to continue with promoting nuclear power, one European country, has decided to set a goal towards converting to much safer forms of energy. Recently, Jürgen Becker (Secretary of State for the Environment) from Germany made the announcement that they will shut down all their nuclear power stations by 2020. This announcement however has been considered to be at odds with the public stance of the German Government policy. That stance is that no decision has yet been made about the nuclear power stations’ future following the Fukushima disaster.

Although many applaud this announcement, as with everything there will be growing pains. Germany’s main energy suppliers will feel a lot of transitional pain as it will cost them hundred of millions of dollars in expected revenues. The rest of the European energy sector will also feel the impact as several are international players. At this time France is very nuclear friendly. And even though, Germany has recently shut down 8 reactors on a permanent basis with 9 more to follow by 2020, it is currently exporting energy from France's nuclear sources.

Credit-Photo Swissrock

So is Germany just blowing smoke to meet it's proposed goals 2020? Hopefully not. But more realistic is perhaps a suggestion made by the Greenpeace organization that claimed that 90 percent of European coal and nuclear power could be phased out by 2030. One thing is for certain and that is the World community must take a hard look at this issue and work together on finding solutions towards safer and clean forms of energy. We have learned the hard way more than once that when it comes to nuclear energy the risks involved do not just effect one country. It is time that we acknowledge that we really are just one world and that we are all connected. Let's not let history repeat itself one more time!

Video : Nuclear debate heats up in Germany


The State of Idaho declares War on the Wolves!

In a desperate and transparent attempt to give the state of Idaho the ability to kill wolves at the Governor's decree, the Idaho House of Representatives approved a measure on Tuesday that declares the state's wolves a "disaster emergency". The bill was approved by 65 to 4 vote. On Wed., the Idaho senate also passed this bill. It now heads to the desk of Governor Butch Otter to be signed. Supporters say it just adds another way for the state to control its wolves, while opponents say wolves aren’t an emergency and it just allows Governor Otter to declare open season on the wolves.

All of this is in response to exaggerated claims that Idaho's approximately 800 wolves are a threat to public safety, killing off big game elk herds and ruining the hunting and agricultural industries.

Under existing Idaho law, a state of emergency allows the governor to use his police powers to lessen the impact of a declared threat for a natural disaster as in the case of a flood or wildfire. To use this clause in the case of the wolves is a real stretch and not what the powers of an emergency were originally intended for. It was brought on because of the state's frustration of not being able to manage the wolves through hunting due to the Federal protection of the Endangered Species Act.

The passage of a bill like this basically declares war on the state's wolves and the Leaders of the Republican-dominated Idaho legislature have stated that they couldn't wait to reduce wolf numbers. They claim that the state's wolf numbers far exceed the number required for species survival and that licensed hunting is needed to control an animal preying on cattle, sheep and game favored by hunters.

No word on whether Governor Butch Otter will sign the bill, but
Otter has indicated quite often that he believes wolves should be under state, not federal, control. God save the Wolves from the state of Idaho!

PETITION Save Idaho's Wolves from being Slaughtered by a State Emergency Plan!
The state legislature of Idaho has passed a measure that declares the state's wolves an "Emergency Disaster". This is not what this act was originally intended for. It was set up to be used in the case of a critical situation during an event such as a natural disaster as in the case of a flood or wildfire.
To use this act of an "Emergency Disaster" in the case of allowing the state to hunt it's wolves is just plain wrong. It is being fueled by exaggerated and scientifically unproven claims that the numbers of big game wildlife such as the Elk are being critically reduced by the wolves. This is a transparent and ill conceived attempt to circumvent the federal protection and management of the wolves that is currently in place by the Endangered Species Act.
To allow the state to manipulate a well intended act such as the "Emergency Disaster" plan that was intended to protect it's human population just cannot be allowed to take place. This attempt is a mockery of the use of legislative state power.
Help Save Idaho's wolves! Urge Governor Otter not to sign this bill and ask President Obama and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to challenge the legality of this "Emergency Disaster" action to be used to hunt the state's wolves while ignoring in place federal protections.


Video Idaho Wolf Hunters


Roaming the very wild and remote wilderness of the Himalayan Mountains is a little known wolf. The Himalayan Wolf was until recently one of the least known animals to humans. There are currently only about 300 of these small and light colored wolves left on the planet.

Until the last century the Himalayan Wolf was thought to be a subspecies of the gray wolf called the Tibetan Wolf. However, it was recently discovered that the Gray Wolf is the direct ancestor of the dog. In contrast the Himalayan Wolf is distinctly genetically different from the dog. Therefore in 2009, the Latin binom Canis Himalayensis was proposed as the classification for the Himalayan Wolf.

Another break through study in 2004 revealed that this wolf might just be the most ancient representative of all the animals anywhere in the world. The analysis done from one of the wolves from it's genetic material showed that its lineage stems back around 800,000 years. To lose an animal this valuable would be such a tragedy to our world.

Despite all these revelations about this ancient species of wolf, they have not gotten the protection that they desperately need. This wolf is on the verge of extinction and the number of 300 wolves is just a guesstimate since the last known count was taken in 1995. In 1998, the Indian govt. did add this wolf to the Endangered Species List but it still lacks the global conservation attention that is needed to keep this wolf from becoming extinct.
India is basically acting on it's own to preserve the Himalayan Wolf. It has set up a captive wolf breeding program that currently has only about 30 wolves in it.

But there are two major threats that continue to bear down on this vulnerable wolf species. The first and foremost is the human factor. The local people in the region continue to persecute and kill this wolf because they sometimes prey on their livestock. Although they are legally protected in India, they are not in Tibet even though most of it's other charismatic vertebrates are under it's protection.

The second major threat to the Himalayan Wolf is global warming and climate change. Because of this, the glaciers are being reduced and the temperature is rising. To make matters worse, the remote wilderness is also being disrupted by human activities and pollution which also threaten the existence of the wolves.

Unless some action is taken soon by world conservation groups and governments to protect this rare wolf, it will soon be gone from the earth. It has been proven that all wolves play an important role in the health of an ecosystem. The loss of this wolf species would have a very dramatic and negative impact on the other animals and plants in that environment. Urgent action is needed to make sure the Himalayan Wolf is with us forever.

Photo Credit sir_watkyn

SIGN PETITION : Save Himalayan Wolf LINK

The wilderness of the Himalayan range is home to some critically endangered species of the planet. One of them is the less known but gorgeous Himalayan Wolf. This beautiful animal was one of the least known animal to the humans, till some studies have been done very recently. These studies have revealed many intertesting facts about this animal which was unknown to science for years. Unfortunately this rare animal is surviving in few hundreds only in the wild and need quick attention to save them from extinction.

Video : Himalayan Wolf


The bond between man and dog is one of the oldest, long lasting and most rewarding in history.

But where did the dog come from? Canis Familiaris is the scientific name for the dog. It is now the consensus through various genetic studies that the first dog was a domesticated wolf. The dog belongs to the same genus as the wolf, Canis Lupus.

About 10,000 to 12,000 years ago, wolves were domesticated by different human tribes around the world. Remains of the dog have been found in pre-Columbian North America, Europe, central & east Asia during the same epoch.

Previously it was assumed that the dog was a combination of the wolf and the jackal. However due to recent studies by researcher Herre and his colleagues and based on a large number of samples on the size and structure of skull and brain, numbers of chromosomes and blood factors, the consensus is that all dogs no matter what breed are descendants of the domesticated wolf.

Scientists believe that somewhere in early history, humans domesticated wild wolves to make them useful companions that would help with the hunting, guarding and herding. Ever since that time, selective breeding has produced the many varieties of domestic dogs to the count of over 800 true breeding type dogs in the world.

Most of these dog breeds are very un-wolflike in appearance and habits. Because humans had thousands of years to selectively breed mutations that appeared in the dog populations, they have come up with an incredible diversity in the dog species. The only other species on earth with this much diversity is the human species.

The wolf and the dog share 99.8% of their DNA and in actuality, a tiny chihuahua, as with any purebred dog, has innumerable wolf genes since they share a close common ancestry. Wolves and dogs can be interbred whereas a fox and a dog cannot. All this goes to prove that we as humans who love our companion dogs so much, owe the wolf much gratitude and respect. There are many people in the world who do grant the wolf this honor, yet the wolf remains one of the most misunderstood and persecuted animals on this planet. The wolf, the ancestor of our beloved dogs, has more than earned the right to be left alone to live it's life in peace.

Video: Evolution of Dogs -By Eduardo Durán Haedo-


Every year the magical and mystical Northern Lights or the Aurora Borealis as they are also called, will dance across the northern skies between the fall equinox and the spring equinox (Sept. 21 - March 21st). They are most frequently seen in late autumn and late winter/early spring.

The northern lights are always unique. You may see three green bands across the night sky or they may be seen as flickering curtains or rolling smoke. The color palette is a luminous green, many times with a hint of pink along the edge, and occasionally with a deep violet center. Whatever form they take, they are spectacular!

The cause of the Northern Lights is just as spectacular. The sun is the force that lies behind the creation of the auroras. Huge quantities of particles are thrown out of the sun and into deep space during solar explosions and flares. When these particles meet the Earth's magnetic shield, they are drawn towards a circle around the magnetic North Pole. Here they interact with the upper layers of the atmosphere and are released as energy or the Northern Lights. At approximately 100 kilometers (62 miles) in the sky they are a sight to behold.

The predictability of when they will be visible is quite uncertain though and you are at Nature's mercy. In order to observe them the best you should avoid nights when there is a full moon or in places that are well lit. One of the best places to see them is above the arctic circle in Northern Norway.

One thing is for certain though that whenever and wherever you see them they will be sure to amaze you with their brilliance and beauty in a show that only nature could put on!

Credit : Bjørnar G. Hansen,

Time-Lapse Auroras Over Norway


Five little wolf puppies, three girls and two boys, were giving their mother a bad time. In a cozy den, Mother Wolf had picked before the babies were born, well hidden from danger, the little puppies were running around their mom nibbling at her ears, her nose and her tail. She of course thought that they were the most beautiful and smart puppies every born. In fact the whole pack of wolves, that lived deep in the forest, thought so too. That their father was the leader of the pack had a lot to do with that though. Soon the wolf children would be able to go outside, where in the daytime, the spring sun was bright and warm, and they could run and play. But now she gave each one a little nip to make them settle down. Sleep soon came. In their sleep they wiggled and squirmed as if they were still playing. But Mother Wolf curled up and soon fell asleep herself.
It was one of those very special nights. The moon was so bright it looked like an orbit of pure silver and every star twinkled like pure diamonds. The air was cold and crisp.
Every night creature in the forest was out sniffing the breeze that stole through the huge pine trees causing just the slightest stirring.
All was quiet. So very quiet. Then it came, the shrill piercing howl of a lone wolf. Again and again the wolf howl was heard by all. Soon the air was filled with the sound of a pack of wolves all singing together. The sound filled the forest. Quickly the other animals scurried for the shelter of their homes. Mother Wolf woke from her sleep, got up and stepped outside to hear better. The puppies slept on, their eyes and ears were still shut but soon they would see and hear. Their father’s voice had called out to all. The singing went on for some time then one by one, the pack headed home.
The next morning all the wolves were busy, some helping to find food for the little puppies, some helping Mother Wolf clean them up for the day ahead. For the little ones a strange thing was happening. One by one their eyes and ears began opening. Their eyes were all blue but later they would change to a yellow gold colour.
Father Wolf soon had his children outside in the warm sun showing them bones to play with, feathers that tickled their noses, twigs to bite. He had such fun wrestling each one around and nibbling their ears they were soon wrestling back with him and each other. Father wolf soon noticed that one of the boys seemed to be quicker and stronger than his sisters or brother and was soon seen biting and growling at the old bones. Father Wolf threw the bones up in the air and when they landed the little wolf would pounce on them and growl. Sometimes he caught them in his mouth and would shake them until he dropped them, biting and pawing them on the ground.
Mother Wolf taught her children how to clean themselves and they were soon playing in the shallow river that was a little ways away. With the help of the pack they learned to catch fish and little rodents, they soon learned the grunts and little barks of the wolf language and joined in games, which the pack played, mostly running and wrestling.
Everyone noticed the larger boy pup was quick and smart at learning. He earned the name Bone Catcher by jumping in the air to catch a bone while everyone else waited for the bone to land.

Bone Catcher was a restless wolf and as he grew older he was often seen wandering away and then some one would have to go and find him before danger found him first.
“He is so disobedient some days he puts us in danger of being found here,” Mother Wolf complained to her husband. “You could take the children hunting, they are old enough by now. Show them some of the dangers out there. Especially the boys.”
“Oh they do grow up fast don’t they. I’m sure that Bone Catcher will fill my shoes some day. I’m sure he will challenge me some day when both of us are older. He is already a bossy little fellow. His brother and sisters get angry with him quite often. Well there is a hunt on early in the morning tomorrow so get them prepared to go with the pack.”
Even before the sun was up the wolves were well on their way to find food. Anyone who wandered off received a nip, mostly of course it was Bone Catcher. They hunted until there was enough food for several days and were soon home gorging themselves on a good breakfast.
On a night when the moon was bright, the air crisp and cool, Father Wolf took his family to the top of a steep rocky hill. It was a hard climb for the young ones and it took them some time to reach the top. After a rest Father Wolf said that it was time for them to put all their yelping into the traditional wolf howl. They had heard the pack howling many times but were never able to howl themselves although they had come close. Close that is except for Bone Catcher. He screeched, he whimpered and grunted, he got mad and just plain barked his head off making everyone else mad too. The rest all sounded pretty close to a full out howl, which pleased their parents. No one could understand what was the matter with Bone Catcher.
“Now then, you all take a deep breath, lift your head up and point your nose right at the moon up there. From deep inside just let a big howl come out. Ready, go,” said Father Wolf.

Well you never heard such sounds as were made that night. The girls did quite well, which pleased their mother, the boys, well let’s just say one screamed and the other was dead silent. Everyone practiced and practiced until four little wolves were howling at the moon. They romped around with joy teasing Bone Catcher as they did so.
Poor Bone Catcher, so quick and smart, couldn’t get a sound out. The little fellow moved to the edge of the pack and when no one was watching, slipped off down the rocky cliff, hurting his paws on the way, and disappeared running into the forest. He didn’t know where he was going he just wanted to et away from the pack, he felt so ashamed. Bone Catcher could see every rock and stump but saw nothing to eat and everything looked peaceful. Besides he was too down in the dumps to do anything but run, and run he did. After some time he changed direction and came to the river where they washed and played. He felt safe here.
Sitting on the bank he thought and thought about why he, of all the wolves could not howl. Well a wolf wasn’t a wolf if he couldn’t howl was he? Whatever was to become of him? He would never lead the pack like his father did.
And so time went by. No one came looking for him which he thought was strange. He didn’t know it but he had wandered down the river so far no one thought of looking for him there and they were all farther upstream. The sun was beginning to show over the tops of the trees so he decided that he might as well go home and face everyone even though he felt shame. The only problem was he didn’t know which way to go. Just then he saw a movement across the river on the other side. Finally they had come for him. But no. Whatever it was it was big. Whatever it was saw him and whatever it was let out a deep rumbling growl. Fear tingled all the way down his spine as this big brown hulk started across the shallow river growling as it came.
Which direction to go didn’t matter now, just go, and go he did as fast as his four legs could run. He knew that whatever was behind him was coming close. Where was home where were his pack? Where could he hide? On and on he ran until he came to a big rocky bluff. He stopped and looked back. He just had to get to the top of the bluff and maybe he could see home. He had just started his climb when he slipped on a sharp rock leaving a huge gash in his paw. Sobbing with pain and fright, he made his way to the top. The sobs poured and poured out, he was exhausted, the pain in his foot was terrible. He couldn’t go any further. The sobs turned to loud cries. The big “whatever it was” came closer and closer and began to climb the bluff. Poor little Bone Catcher just couldn’t go any further. The big hulk was snorting and grunting as it had trouble climbing the sharp rock.
Bone Catcher shook with fear. He tried to stand but his sore foot wouldn’t let him. His cries grew louder. Then a miracle happened. From deep inside Bone catcher’s throat there came the most pure wolf howl anyone had ever heard. It reached higher and higher until the whole forest was filled with the sound. It was the most beautiful sound that had ever been heard by his mother and father. They knew that at last Bone Catcher could howl, in fact he outhowled everyone else. But they sensed that the howl was one of fear.
“It has to be Bone Catcher there is no one else out there, everyone is here,” one of his sisters said.
“But he can’t howl,” reminded another sister.
Father Wolf didn’t wait to wonder, he leapt across logs, dashed between trees with a speed no one had ever seen before. What Father Wolf saw when he came to the rocky bluff filled him with fear but it filled him with such a terrible rage that he attacked the big brown bear advancing on Bone Catcher. Leaping at its throat he sunk his long sharp teeth in and hung on. The bear tried to shake the wolf off but the hold was too strong and he backed down the bluff dragging Father Wolf with him. Finally the sharp rocks made the wolf let go of the bear who turned and ran for the forest just in time for the pack to set chase after him.
The family reached the top of the bluff and surrounded the little wolf that was still crying only now he cried tears of joy. Mother Wolf noticed the gashed paw right away and began cleaning it with her tongue while everyone else was discussing the fact that Bone Catcher had really howled.
“I really did didn’t I,” he said. He hadn’t even realized that he had until now.
“And such a howl. I guess it was there all the time. It took a great fear to bring it out of you,” his father said.
With everyone helping him Bone Catcher made it home. No one asked the others about the bear but you can be sure he had gone a long way before he stopped running from the wolf pack.
After a good meal and a little nap Bone Catcher was up and outside. Going a little way from the den he looked up and there he saw it, a big yellow moon. He was sure the moon was there just for him and throwing his head back he pointed his nose right up at the moon and howled and howled and howled.
by Jimmie Kobayashi

Listen some Wolf Sounds


The Last Wild Wolves is a 3 part documentary of the "Ghosts of the Rain forests" or the coastal wolves of British Columbia's Great Bear Rain forest. This is a temperate rain forest that is isolated from the continent of Canada by a vast mountain range and has been ruled by the wild for thousands of years. This rain forest has been heavily dependent on the yearly return of the salmon for food and fertilization and since it is protected against fires, many of the trees are thousands of years old also.

The wolves of this rain forest have never been studied before. A group of biologists that were studying the bear population here and it's relationship to salmon, kept running into lot's of evidence of the wolves. Since their habitat was slated to be demolished by logging activity, the group called the Rain Coast Conservation Society decided that a study was needed.

Before this study was conducted, the Grizzly Bear was thought to be the Apex predator of the forests. It has since been found that it is actually the wolf that is the Apex predator that keeps the diverse ecosystem in balance. This is because the wolf travels all over the rain forest whereas the Grizzly stays in the coastal valleys. A noninvasive type of research was decided upon so as to not disturb the wolf population. Hair samples and wolf scat were collected to analyze it's contents for types of prey eaten and nutrients found.

What the biologist found was that the wolves were an essential component of the health of the rain forest. Since salmon are the life blood here, the most important role of the wolf was to carry the salmon inland to the forests. Then the salmon remains were used as food for the birds and insects. The release of nitrogen into the soil from the decaying fish bodies then fertilized the lush growth of trees and foliage which produced vast amounts of oxygen. Thus completing the cycle.

It was also found that the wolves here had the most genetic diversity of wolves anywhere in the world since they had been so isolated and undisturbed in the past. This genetic diversity is crucial to be able to adapt to changing conditions in the environment over time. Sadly the biggest threat now is the logging industry which has started to move into this pristine area threatening the natural balance of the the area. It has also created roads which can easily bring in hunters to track the wolves, bears and other wildlife.

In conclusion the research team came to understand that the wolves are a part of a central ecosystem that works together in perfect harmony. Even though industrial destruction is closing in on this highly functioning ecosystem, there is still time to learn the important lessons from nature and to understand that we too as humans play a crucial part in preserving it's balance.

Videos : The Last Wild Wolves in British Columbia's Great Bear Rainforest