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by Craig Jacocks
An Alien Abductee Shares Proof That We are Not Alone
Aware of Their Presence is Craig Jacocks’ startling true story of his lifelong abductions by aliens

Cleveland, OH (PRWEB) July 9, 2006 -- Craig Jacocks’ Aware of Their Presence is set to be the first major book about alien abduction since Whitley Streiber’s best seller Communion. But, Jacocks has something even Streiber did not: proof.

In the book, Jacocks recounts details from the many times he was abducted by aliens, beginning when he was a young child. He details how the encounters grew in intensity and how he began to realize he was dealing with humanoid beings with amazing abilities. Gradually, he began to hear their voices and see them. Recently at work, a scanner reacted to an unknown code inside his body. X-rays revealed two needle-like objects, which he now believes to be tracking devices. These experiences, Jacocks suggests, are not only real, but they should be explored as proof of alien existence, rather than mocked or hidden away in secrecy.

An in-demand speaker on alien abduction, Jacocks has also written articles about his experiences for both UFO Magazine and Mysteries Magazine. Aware of Their Presence has been considered as recommended reading by the highly influential Mutual UFO Network state director, Richard Lee. We can’t deny the existence of alien abduction any longer, says Jacocks, and this startling, frank, and brutally honest book can prove it.

For more information, please contact the author at

Aware of Their Presence is available for sale online at Amazon.com, Borders.com, BookSurge.com, and through additional wholesale and retail channels worldwide.

About the Author Craig Jacocks has been abducted by aliens since he was a child. He’s been interviewed on Fox TV about his experiences. Married, he lives in Cleveland Ohio and works in a men’s suits retail outlet.

Editor's Notes: Craig's book is a must read for all who are interested in the UFO / Alien mystery. It is a very compelling account of one man's reluctant trip into the unknown world of alien abduction. You will feel like you are there as you read his riveting account of being taken against his will by beings not of this Earth. If you are not a believer, you will be after following Craig on his journey to a place most of us we can only imagine. (B J Booth)

"Alien Fingerprints" on Bed

Craig's X-Rays

"Aware of Their Presence"

SOURCE: UFO Casebook Magazine #215 07-17-06 http://www.ufocasebook.com/072406.html 


Blue Mountains, New South Wales --This stunning footage was from a passenger jet, shortly after take-off from Sydney. Estimates suggest it was taken near to the Blue Mountains. She had been filming for several minutes when this white cigar object passed just above there horizon and below the end of the wing. The object is difficult to see (especially in the Windows version of the clip) but it is there. In the first part of the clip, it flies from right to left, behind the wing. In the second half of the clip, it rises from the cloud, before flying to the left. The object is tiny at this point, but just about visible. Thanks to HBCC UFO Research Note: Video footage and photos are © 2006 http://www.australianufowave.com/

SOURCE: Filer's Files #28 - 12 July 2006


I admit the possibility that I viewed an airliner, at low altitude, as it disappeared into a cloud bank on July 7, 2006. This said, I am a high time pilot. I am familiar with illusions of flight and I found everything about this viewing experience as odd!

I was turning onto a heavily trafficked road heading west. As I turned right, at a four way intersection, a bright reflection caught my attention off to my left. The object was likely 1 mile distant, to the south, at an altitude of around 4,000 feet. I think it was heading west. I thought the object was unusually bright, even compared to an airliner with a completely unpainted surface; the light was sparkling.

I also had difficulty focusing on the craft as I tried to determine what was so peculiar about what I was seeing. I kept an eye on the craft for about 10 seconds. I was so momentarily distracted, because of the traffic, that when I looked back within seconds the craft disappeared. It didn't appear to be traveling at a speed that would have hidden it in a cloud bank at the moment that I was distracted. It was as if it blinked out of view!

Another oddity was that its relationship to the local airport was not consistent with normal arriving and departing flights. It was too large to be an over flight. It was the size of the craft that made me think airliner, but all other indications seemed other than an airliner. I continued looking back in the direction of the craft for a considerable amount of time without a recurring sighting. Thanks to MUFON CMS

SOURCE: http://www.ufocasebook.com/071706.html
and Filer's Files #28 - 12 July 2006


Dallas was getting a large storm brewing about 5:30 pm on July 4th 2006. Evidently the passenger jets flying to Lovefield and DFW airports were being diverted to miss it and were flying low and right over my house here in Kaufman. I was taking advantage of them flying so low and started taking some photos of them as they flew over heading north. I didn't notice anything out of the ordinary at the time, but when I downloaded them on the computer, I noticed one of the jets drew a lot of attention from several objects in the sky. I took close to two dozen photos in burst mode of it as it passed and in most of them there were objects appearing to be in fairly close range of the jet, which was a Southwest Airliner. -- Thanks, Larry
- - -
Thanks to Larry for some more excellent photographs.
Note: Larry compiled the video below from still images.

View video clip Jet & UFOs- Windows, (streams in new window)

Download Windows Media File, 2.5 MB

Report, & Multimedia © lawwalk 2006

SOURCE: UFO Casebook Magazine


John Callahan states, "I was the Division Chief of the Accidents and Investigations Branch of the FAA in Washington DC for six years. This particular incident started with a phone call from the people in Alaska... I said, "What’s the problem?" He said, "Well, it’s that UFO. The UFO was bouncing around the 747 here"...FAA Administrator, Admiral Engen, told me to attend a briefing the next day where the FBI, CIA, President Reagan’s Scientific Study Team, as well as others attended. When we gave the presentation to the Reagan staff, they had all those people swear that this never happened. I've been involved in a lot of cover-ups with the FAA, but they never had me swear it never happened...

For those people who say that if these UFOs existed, they would some day be on radar and that there'd be professionals who would see it, then I can tell them that back in 1986, there were enough professional people that saw it. What I can tell you is what I've seen with my own eyes. I've got a videotape. I've got the voice tape. And I've got the reports that were filed that will confirm what I've been telling you. In 1986 Japanese Airlines 747 flight was followed by a huge UFO for 31 minutes over the Alaskan skies. The UFO also trailed a United Airlines flight until the flight landed. There was visual confirmation as well as airborne and ground-based radar confirmation."

Captain Terauchi the pilot of the JAL 747 was featured on numerous radio and TV programs and in People Magazine.


Within a few months of these events he was grounded, apparently for his indiscretion of reporting a UFO, even though he was a senior captain with an excellent flying record. Thanks to the Disclosure Project

SOURCE: Filer's Files #29 - 19 July 2006

Spain News: Costa del Sol 12 July 2006

The remains of an Archaic Era Phoenician city have been unearthed in Mezquitilla, Vélez Málaga. Archaeologists say it is the largest settlement from that period in Andalucía, and also one of the largest in the Mediterranean.

The excavations have uncovered the remains of a block of houses, covering an area of 40 x 12 meters, although the whole city is said to have covered more than six hectares. Kitchen utensils and dishes have also been discovered intact.

The site is what remains of the Phoenician city of Las Chorreras, founded in the 8th century BC, and abandoned a hundred years later.

The Mayor of Vélez, Antonio Souvirón, has announced that the Town Hall has agreed to purchase the land from its owner so an area of archaeological protection can be established. He has asked the regional government’s cultural department to include the site on the cultural heritage list.
SOURCE: http://www.typicallyspanish.com/news/publish/article_5345.shtml

Mammoth Skeleton Found in Russia's Voronezh Region

Archaeologists of the St. Petersburg Material Culture Institute found almost a whole skeleton of a mammoth last summer. The remarkable event happened in Russia's Voronezh region, not far from the village of Kostenki. Twenty-six objects of the paleolith era have been found in that area since 1879. Every object that was found there, was in a very good condition: hearths, animal bones, constructions made of mammoth bones, stone and bone things, decorations, and works of art.

The layers of eruptive ashes were found in the mentioned area about 50 years ago. This was a unique finding itself, for the Voronezh region is located very far from any active volcanic zones. Scientists believed that those ashes were erupted from Caucasian volcanoes, although specialists of the Volcanology Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences came to another conclusion in the 1980s. The Kostenki ashes turned out to be similar to the ones that were found in South Italy, in bottom sediments of the Adriatic Sea. As volcanists believed, the ashes were erupted by the volcanic system of South Italy, in the area of the up-to-date city of Naples.

The time, when the Kostenki ashes were laid, was determined with the help of the radiocarbon analysis. Their layer is located between two cultural layers. The age of the upper layer is 27-32 thousand years, while the age of the lower one is 33-37 thousand years. This means that the ashes were erupted around 32 or 33 thousand years ago. Scientists know the eruptions of this age: they found that eruptive ashes like that on the territory of Central and East Europe. However, it turned out that those ashes were different from the ones that were found in the Russian settlement of Kostenki. In addition to the chemical structure difference, the layers of the Kostenki ashes were thicker than the ones in Central Europe.

Volcanists believe that the eruption of volcanic ashes in Kostenki was the result of a more powerful and a more ancient eruption. It was so grand, that the volcanic ashes reached the stratosphere. This made the ashes fall down on the ground long after that, on a relatively local territory. Specialists say that the ashes concentration was immense - hundreds of thousands of tons. Most likely, the eruption led to a climate change. Even if such a vast mass of ashes stayed in the air, it might cause a nuclear winter effect. Scientists introduced this notion several years ago at a discussion of possible consequences of nuclear catastrophes. The science of volcanology was used to model such consequences.

That eruption was a total disaster for the ancient people. However, it was a treasure for up-to-date scientists. The sites of catastrophes are basically richer with archaeological material than the ones that were simply left by ancient people. That is why there were so many valuable things found in the summer of the year 2000 not far from the settlement of Kostenki. A layer of volcanic ashes contained numerous flint and bone tools, animal bones, various decorations. These things can hardly be found in other places. Archaeologists found three shell pendants and four pendants made of polar fox bones, trimmed with spiral cutting. Those things were found on the square of about ten square meters. Furthermore, those decorations are very important findings, for they are typical for ancient human beings that already looked like present-day people. This is very important.

According to the scientific opinion of our times, a sudden population change took place on the territory of Europe 34 or 35 thousand years ago. Neanderthal people had to give way to Homo sapiens that migrated from the Middle East. The things that were found in the Kostenki settlement, were found on the extreme eastern point of that migration outburst.

Speaking about the mammoth skeleton that was found during the excavations, the bones definitely refer not to archaeology, but to paleontology. Yet, the skeleton was found on the site, which was inhabited by ancient people 20 thousand years ago. This is a very rare and unique finding, not typical for the European territory. The skeleton was not dismembered, which means that the animal died itself.
- - - - - -
A.Sinitsin, Candidate of archaeological sciences
Science and Life Magazine
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov

SOURCE: http://english.pravda.ru/science/tech/23-01-2003/1794-mammoth-0

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ATHENS, Greece (6 June 2006) -- For decades, researchers have been baffled by the intricate bronze mechanism of wheels and dials created 80 years before the birth of Christ. The "Antikythera Mechanism" was discovered damaged and fragmented on the wreck of a cargo ship off the tiny Greek island of Antikythera in 1900.

Now, a joint British-Greek research team has found a hidden ancient Greek inscription on the device, which it thinks could unlock the mystery. The team believes the Antikythera Mechanism may be the world's oldest computer, used by the Greeks to predict the motion of the planets.

The researchers say the device indicates a technical sophistication that would not be replicated for millennia and may also be based on principles of a heliocentric, or sun-centered, universe - a view of the cosmos that was not accepted by astronomers until the Renaissance.

The Greek and British scientists used three-dimensional X-ray technology to make visible inscriptions that have gone unseen for 2,000 years.

Mike Edmunds, an astrophysicist at Cardiff University, who is heading the British team, said: "The real question is, 'What was the device actually for?' Was it a used to predict calendars? Was it simply a teaching tool? The new text we have discovered should help answer these questions".

The mechanism contains over 30 bronze wheels and dials and was probably operated by hand, Mr. Edmunds said. The most prominent appraisal of the mechanism's purpose was put forward in 2002 by Michael Wright, the curator of mechanical engineering at the Science Museum in London, who said it was used to track the movements of all the celestial bodies known to the Greeks: Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter and Saturn.

Mr. Wright's theory is that the device was created in an academy founded by the Stoic philosopher Poseidonios on the Greek island of Rhodes. The writings of the 1st-century BC orator and philosopher Cicero - himself a former student of Poseidonios - cite a device with similarities to the mechanism.

Xenophon Moussas, a researcher at Athens University, said the newly discovered text seems to confirm that the mechanism was used to track planetary bodies. The researchers are looking at whether the device placed the sun, not the earth, at the centre of the solar system.

He said: "It is a puzzle concerning astronomical and mathematical knowledge in antiquity. The mechanism could rewrite certain chapters in this area."

Yanis Bitsakis, also of Athens University, added: "The challenge is to place this device into a scientific context, as it comes almost out of nowhere ... and flies in the face of established theory that considers the ancient Greeks were lacking in applied technical knowledge."

Mr. Edmunds said the researchers were prepared for an onslaught of conspiracy theories. "There's no indication that the device is anything we wouldn't expect of the Greeks or something that would require an extra-terrestrial explanation.

"I think it is a great testament to the sophistication of the Greeks and how far they advanced before the jackboot of the Romans came through."

A time shift in the history of astronomy
IF THE Antikythera Mechanism turns out to have been a machine for showing the movements of the planets around the sun, it would greatly alter our understanding of the history of astronomy.

Although at least one Greek thinker posited a heliocentric view of the solar system, the dominant view at the time was Aristotle's - that the Earth was the centre of the universe and that everything rotated around it in perfect, circular orbits.

It was not until 1,400 years later that Copernicus and Galileo conclusively proved the heliocentric view, which greatly altered man's understanding of his importance and position in the universe.

Their work was met with stern resistance, as the Church believed the Aristotlean view - which put humanity at the centre of the cosmos - was integral to man's direct relation to God.

Researchers are now searching for clues that the Antikythera Mechanism might have been governed by heliocentric principles. If they are successful, it would suggest the heliocentric world-view was more accepted by the Greeks than thought.

SOURCE: http://www.cdnn.info/news/science/sc060606.html from


Two months ago, we reported on a Stonehenge that has been discovered in Brazil. Now archeologists are learning more about it. Here's what points to the idea that the huge rocks may be a calendar, like Stonehenge is: on December 21, which is the shortest day of the year, the shadow of one of the blocks disappears.

It was important for early humans to keep track of the shortest and longest days of the year, because when the days began to get longer, they knew that the harsh winter was over for another year and that their lives would therefore continue. Scholars say that we don't know the real date of the birth of Jesus, but that December 25 was chosen because it's a date when calendar-watchers would be assured that spring was again coming to the earth.

In LiveScience.com, Stan Lehman quotes archeologist Mariana Petry Cabral as saying, "It is this block's alignment with the winter solstice that leads us to believe the site was once an astronomical observatory."

Just like the overgrown Mayan cities that were hidden deep in the jungles, locals in the area have known about the monument for a long time. Archeologists didn't recognize what it was until the saw it from the air by helicopter and noticed, Cabral says, "the unique circular structure on top of the hill." These days, satellite photos of the earth are often what tip them off.


SOURCE: http://www.unknowncountry.com/news/?id=5452

By Stan Lehman, AP
28 June 2006

SAO PAULO, Brazil (AP) -- A grouping of granite blocks along a grassy Amazon hilltop may be the vestiges of a centuries-old astronomical observatory -- a find archaeologists say indicates early rainforest inhabitants were more sophisticated than previously believed.

The 127 blocks, some as high as 9 feet tall, are spaced at regular intervals around the hill, like a crown 100 feet in diameter.

On the shortest day of the year -- Dec. 21 -- the shadow of one of the blocks, which is set at an angle, disappears.

"It is this block's alignment with the winter solstice that leads us to believe the site was once an astronomical observatory," said Mariana Petry Cabral, an archaeologist at the Amapa State Scientific and Technical Research Institute. "We may be also looking at the remnants of a sophisticated culture."

Anthropologists have long known that local indigenous populations were acute observers of the stars and sun. But the discovery of a physical structure that appears to incorporate this knowledge suggests pre-Columbian Indians in the Amazon rainforest may have been more sophisticated than previously suspected.

"Transforming this kind of knowledge into a monument; the transformation of something ephemeral into something concrete, could indicate the existence of a larger population and of a more complex social organization," Cabral said.

Cabral has been studying the site, near the village of Calcoene, just north of the equator in Amapa state in far northern Brazil, since last year. She believes it was once inhabited by the ancestors of the Palikur Indians, and while the blocks have not yet been submitted to carbon dating, she says pottery shards near the site indicate they are pre-Columbian and maybe older -- as much as 2,000 years old.

Last month, archaeologists working on a hillside north of Lima, Peru, announced the discovery of the oldest astronomical observatory in the Western Hemisphere -- giant stone carvings, apparently 4,200 years old, that align with sunrise and sunset on Dec. 21.

While the Incas, Mayans and Aztecs built large cities and huge rock structures, pre-Columbian Amazon societies built smaller settlements of wood and clay that quickly deteriorated in the hot, humid Amazon climate, disappearing centuries ago, archaeologists say.

Farmers and fishermen in the region around the Amazon site have long known about it, and the local press has dubbed it the "tropical Stonehenge." Archeologists got involved last year after geographers and geologists did a socio-economic survey of the area, by foot and helicopter, and noticed "the unique circular structure on top of the hill," Cabral said.

Scientists not involved in the discovery said it could prove valuable to understanding pre-Columbian societies in the Amazon.

"No one has ever described something like this before. This is an extremely novel find -- a one of a kind type of thing," said Michael Heckenberger of the University of Florida's Department of Anthropology.

He said that while carbon dating and further excavation must be carried out, the find adds to a growing body of thought among archaeologists that prehistory in the Amazon region was more varied than had been believed.

"Given that astronomical objects, stars, constellations etc., have a major importance in much of Amazonian mythology and cosmology, it does not in any way surprise me that such an observatory exists," said Richard Callaghan, a professor of geography, anthropology and archaeology at the University of Calgary.

Brazilian archaeologists will return in August, when the rainy season ends, to carry out carbon dating and further excavations.

"The traditional image is that some time thousands of years ago small groups of tropical forest horticulturists arrived in the area and they never changed -- (that) what we see today is just like it was 3,000 years ago," Heckenberger said. "This is one more thing that suggests that through the past thousands of years, societies have changed quite a lot.

SOURCE: http://www.livescience.com/history/060628_ap_brazil_stonehenge.html

UCLA and University of Colorado Scientists
Date: July 20, 2006
Contact: Stuart Wolpert

Download high-quality images for this release:

Ten years ago, an international team of scientists reported evidence, in a controversial cover story in the journal Nature, that life on Earth began more than 3.8 billion years ago—400 million years earlier than previously thought. A UCLA professor who was not part of that team and two of the original authors will report in late July that the evidence is stronger than ever.

Craig E. Manning, lead author of the new study and a professor of geology and geochemistry in the UCLA Department of Earth and Space Sciences, painstakingly mapped an area on Akilia Island in West Greenland where ancient rocks were discovered that may preserve carbon-isotope evidence for life at the time of their formation. Manning and his co-authors—T. Mark Harrison, a UCLA professor of geochemistry, director of UCLA's Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics, and University Professor at the Australian National University; and Stephen J. Mojzsis, assistant professor of geological sciences at the University of Colorado, Boulder—conducted new geologic and geochemical analysis on these rocks. Their findings will be reported in the new issue of the American Journal of Science. Harrison and Mojzsis were co-authors on the Nov. 7, 1996, study in Nature.

"This paper shows, with far greater confidence than we ever had before, that these rocks are older than 3.8 billion years," said Manning, who has conducted extensive research in Greenland. "We have shown that the rocks are appropriate for hosting life.

"Everything from the basic geology to the analysis in the original report (in Nature) has been challenged," said Manning, who has expertise in areas that have become central to the debate, including the chemistry of water and the interaction of water and rock. "The chemical evidence for life has been challenged, as have been the minerals to determine whether life was present, whether the rocks have the origin that was originally attributed to them, and whether the rocks were as old as originally envisioned. We didn't go to Greenland in response to the criticism. We went to learn the age of the rocks and to make a better geologic map of the area than any that existed."

At the time of the 1996 Nature paper, there was no reliable map showing the geology of the area, Manning said. So he created one.

"I wandered around that outcrop for two-and-a-half weeks—it's not a big area—with a clipboard, maps, a compass and grid paper. We mapped it like an archeologist would map it," Manning said. "It became clear that these rocks that hosted life line up into two beautiful, coherent layers. They are not randomly distributed, as you might expect if the alternative interpretation is right. I'm very confident about that. I went to Greenland with some skepticism, but I became more and more confident as time went on that the original interpretation was right."

"It could have gone any way," Harrison said. "We could have placed the claim on much firmer footing, or we could have proved ourselves wrong. We found a much more compelling cross-cutting relationship in the rocks than we originally thought."

The new research is a comprehensive response to the critics, Harrison said.

"We've been holding our fire rather than fire away at each criticism in a piecemeal way," he said. "We've gone back to Greenland and done the study from the ground up, with much more data than existed at the time of the original paper. I'm much more confident today than I was in 1996 about the likelihood that this is evidence of early life. This is not 'smoking gun' evidence—we are not seeing fossils—but in every case, the model has come through with flying colors."

Manning agrees, saying he is confident the rocks contain evidence of ancient life, but "it's not a slam dunk."

Why is there doubt? After more than 3.8 billion years, the rocks are severely damaged. "They have been folded, distorted, heated and compressed so much that their minerals are very different from what they were originally," Harrison said.

Why Akilia Island in Greenland?
"Akilia Island was not the best place to search for evidence of early life; it's simply the place where it turned up," Harrison said.

"There's nothing special about Akilia Island," Manning said. "If life was there, it should have been abundant on Earth 3.83 billion years ago. The only place where that's been tested so far, also in Greenland, has come up positive."

One of the key methods for dating the rocks is by carefully analyzing cross-cutting intrusions made by igneous rocks, Manning said, adding, "Whatever is cross-cut must be older than that which is doing the cross-cutting. We went there to find these cross-cutting relationships, which we did."

The research on the Akilia rocks is federally funded by the National Science Foundation
http://www.nsf.gov/ and the NASA Astrobiology Institute http://nai.arc.nasa.gov/, a partnership between NASA, 12 major U.S. teams and six international consortia.

Scientists look for evidence of life in ancient rocks like those from Akilia Island by searching for chemical suggestions and isotopic evidence. The very strong isotopic evidence for ancient life found in the 1996 study included a high ratio of one form of carbon—an isotope—to another, which provides a "signature of life," Mojzsis said.

The carbon aggregates in the rocks have a ratio of about 100-to-one of 12C (the most common isotope form of carbon, containing six protons and six neutrons) to 13C (a rarer isotopic form of carbon, containing six protons and seven neutrons). The light carbon, 12C, is more than 3 percent more abundant than scientists would expect to find if life were not present, and 3 percent is very significant, Harrison said.

Carbon inclusions in the rocks were analyzed with UCLA's high-resolution ion microprobe—an instrument that enables scientists to learn the exact composition of samples. The microprobe shoots a beam of ions, or charged atoms, at a sample, releasing from the sample its own ions, which are then analyzed in a mass spectrometer. Scientists can aim the beam of ions at specific microscopic areas of a sample and analyze them.

While critics noted there are ways to make light carbon in the absence of life, Harrison considers those possibilities to be "extremely unlikely," especially in light of another discovery of rocks in Western Greenland, not far away, of the same age, and a similar ratio of 12C to 13C.

The scientists see light carbon inclusions in a phosphate mineral called apatite, which is also the material of which bones and teeth are made.

The form of life the researchers believe they have discovered was probably a simple microorganism, although its actual shape or nature cannot be ascertained, Mojzsis said, because heat and pressure over time have destroyed any original physical structure of the organisms.

Harrison said of UCLA's ion microprobe and the research: "The individual samples are very small, and no other instrument would have been sensitive enough to reveal precisely the isotopic composition and location of the carbon inclusions in the rock."

It is unknown when life first appeared on Earth, which is approximately 4.5 billion years old. The residue of ancient life that the scientists believe they have found existed prior to the end of the "late heavy bombardment" of the Moon by large objects, a period which ended approximately 3.8 billion years ago, Harrison noted.

"Life is tenacious, and it completely permeates the surface layer of the planet," Mojzsis said. "We find life beneath the deepest ocean, on the highest mountain, in the driest desert and the coldest glacier, and deep down in the crustal rocks and sediments."

An unanswered question is how life originally could have arisen from lifeless molecules and evolved into the already sophisticated isotope fractioning life forms recorded in the Akilia rocks.

The American Journal of Science is the oldest scientific journal in the United States that has been published continuously, dating back to the 19th century. While the journal is being published in late July, it will carry a date of May 2006.

California's largest university, UCLA enrolls approximately 38,000 students per year and offers degrees from the UCLA College of Letters and Science and 11 professional schools in dozens of varied disciplines. UCLA consistently ranks among the top five universities and colleges nationally in total research-and-development spending, receiving more than $820 million a year in competitively awarded federal and state grants and contracts. For every $1 state taxpayers invest in UCLA, the university generates almost $9 in economic activity, resulting in an annual $6 billion economic impact on the Greater Los Angeles region. The university's health care network treats 450,000 patients per year. UCLA employs more than 27,000 faculty and staff, has more than 350,000 living alumni and has been home to five Nobel Prize recipients.

SOURCE: http://www.newsroom.ucla.edu/page.asp?RelNum=7203

July 5, 2006

A giant space rock whizzed past the Earth on Monday [July 3] under the close scrutiny of astronomers. The mountain-sized object had been classed as a "potentially hazardous asteroid," but scientists said it posed no danger to Earth.

The asteroid 2004 XP14, as it is has been designated, was visible through good amateur telescopes. Its closest approach to Earth, above the west coast of North America, occurred at 0444 GMT. At this time calculations suggested it was about 432,709km (268,873 miles) from the Earth, only 1.1 times the planet's distance from the Moon.

Radar analysis
Scientists were using the occasion to work out the precise size and shape of the object by bouncing very high frequency radio waves off its surface. It will allow them to calculate precisely how close it came to the planet, as well as its velocity and mass, giving clues to its composition and structure - and future course.

2004 XP14 was discovered in December 2004 by telescopes run by the Lincoln Near Earth Asteroid Research (Linear) project. Funded by the United States Air Force and the US space agency (NASA), Linear aims to survey the sky for potentially dangerous asteroids.

Initially, there were concerns that asteroid 2004 XP14 might hit Earth later this century. But after further monitoring, astronomers ruled out such a collision for the foreseeable future.

"It's not Earth-threatening," said Don Yeomans, who heads NASA's Near Earth Object Program.

SOURCE: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/5133900.stm


Wouldham, nr Rochester, Kent reported 4th July.

Rollright Stone Circle, nr Chipping Norton. Oxfordshire. Reported 2nd July.

Aston, nr Shephall, Hertfordshire. Reported 4th July.

Blofield, Nr Brundall, Norfolk. Reported 6th July.

Boxley, nr Maidstone, Kent. Reported 8th July

Wayland Smithy, nr Ashbury, Oxfordshire. Reported 8th July.

Uffington Castle, nr Ashbury, Oxfordshire. Reported 8th July.

Savernake Forest, nr Marlborough, Wiltshire. Reported 8th July.

Bragbury Lane, Datchworth, Hertfordshire. Reported 9th July.

Kits Coty, nr Burham Kent. Reported 11 July.

Charlbury Hill, nr Hinton Parva, Wiltshire. Reported 11th July.

New Barn, nr Aldbourne, Wiltshire. Reported 11th July.

Townsend Farm, Knott Oak, Nr Ilminster Reported 13th July 2006

Barbury Castle, nr Wroughton, Wiltshire. Reported 14th July.

Coploe Hill, nr Ickleton, Cambridgeshire. Reported 17th July.

Pond Bay, nr Marlborough, Wiltshire. Reported 18th July.

West Overton, nr Avebury, Wilshire. Report 19th July.

Old Hayward Farm, Nr Straight Soley, Wiltshire. Reported 20th July.

Milk Hill, nr Alton Barnes, Wiltshire. 22nd July.

Windmill Hill, nr Avebury Trusloe, Wilshire. Reported 22nd July.

Chartley Castle, nr Stowe-by-Chartley, Staffordshire. Reported 22nd July.

Cheesefoot Head, nr Longwood Warren, Hampshire. Reported 23rd July.

Arreton, Nr Newchurch, Isle of Wight. Reported 25th July.

Overton Hill, East Kennett, Wiltshire. Reported 26th July.

East Field, Nr Alton Priors, Wiltshire. Reported 28th July.

Toot Balden, nr Garsington, Oxfordshire. Reported 30th July.

SOURCE: http://www.cropcircleconnector.com/2006/2006earlyjuly.html

IMAGE: T. rex was one of the dinosaurs the team examined http://newsimg.bbc.co.uk/media/images/41870000/jpg/_41870712_trex_pa_203.jpg

The bigger a dinosaur was, the warmer its blood, a study of the big beasts' fossil remains shows. Dinosaurs were long considered to be cold-blooded reptiles.

More recently, some researchers have proposed that the extinct creatures actively regulated their body temperature like mammals.

A study in the journal Plos Biology now suggests this is not the case, but that bigger dinosaurs may have lost heat so slowly that they stayed warm anyway.

Reptiles tend to be cold-blooded ectotherms, whose internal body temperature is dependent on the outside environment. For example, lizards and snakes will sun themselves on rocks in order to heat themselves up.

Birds and mammals, on the other hand, tend to be warm-blooded endotherms. They can regulate their internal body temperature regardless of external influence.

Their body temperatures tend to be more constant than those of reptiles and higher than the outside environment.

Growth rings
James Gillooly of the University of Florida in Gainesville, US, and colleagues started with an equation showing the relationship between body size, body temperature and growth rate of an animal. They then applied this equation, which has been shown to be valid across a variety of living species, to dinosaurs.

Gillooly's team used measurements of annual growth rings in the bones of eight dinosaur species to estimate the animals' development rates and body size at full adulthood. This information in turn can be used to calculate the dinosaur body temperature if the equation is re-arranged.

The scientists found the smallest dinosaurs had temperatures of around 25C, close to environmental temperatures and similar to those observed for living reptiles. In other words, they did not actively regulate their internal temperature like mammals and birds. But as dinosaurs got bigger, they became less efficient at dissipating heat and this helped to keep them warm anyway. This is known as inertial homeothermy.

According to the scientists' equation, the enormous sauropod Apatosaurus - which at 13,000kg was among one of the biggest dinosaurs - had a body temperature of just over 40C.

Huge variety
Most animals cannot tolerate body temperatures of above 45C, so Apatosaurus is both near the upper limit of dinosaur body size and the more general limits for body temperature. This, the authors say, could suggest that the maximum size a dinosaur could grow to was limited by body temperature.

"The question of whether dinosaurs were warm-blooded or cold-blooded just doesn't have a simple answer," said Dr Angela Milner, associate keeper of paleontology at London's Natural History Museum.

"There's a huge spread of physiological states, from things that were more at the ectothermic end and had no problem keeping warm because they were so large, right through to small meat-eating dinosaurs that were not far short of the endothermic biology seen in birds."

Dr Milner, who is not associated with the authors, pointed out that a group of dinosaurs known as the hadrosaurs apparently switched from being endotherms like mammals and birds in youth to being inertial homeotherms when they were adults.

SOURCE: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/5166518.stm

(Some web sites report this as a UFO)

Papua -- Intermittent expeditions to Umboi Island, in New Guinea, from 1994 through 2004, resulted in the compilation of eyewitness testimonies that substantiated the hypothesis that ancient flying pterosaurs creatures may not be extinct. Investigation of reports of a pterosaur-like giant bird creature in New Guinea has produced some promising findings. According to standard models of science, all pterosaurs became extinct by about 65-million years ago. But due to research of Jonathan Whitcomb, a forensic videographer who interviewed native Umboi Islanders in 2004, who call the long-tailed pterosaur-like creature "Ropen." His book, Searching for Ropens, examines a 2004 investigation by the explorers Garth Guessman, a California firefighter; and David Woetzel, a New Hampshire businessman. The expedition of Whitcomb’s, uncovered native tradition point to a huge bird that may be the pterosaur. The anatomy seems to be very similar to the ancient pterosaurs but this is not the first time fossils millions of years old are found alive.

SOURCE: Filer's Files #30 - 26 July 2006


Cryptomundo pal David Pescovitz over at Boing Boing, on July 27, 2006, posts news of the latest beaching of a relative of the ribbonfish and oarfish. These types of fish may infrequently have been mistaken for Sea Serpents.


David writes: Huge fish washed up in Oregon
This huge King-of-the-Salmon fish, nearly six feet long, washed up on the shore near Seaside, Oregon last weekend. These rarely-spotted fish, Trachipterus altivelis, usually are found at depths of 1600 feet.

Pescovitz shares more in his blog on this:


Despite such a comparative remark on my part, the appearance of these animals on shore may not be so Sea-Serpent-like in the ocean. From The Field Guide to Lake Monsters, Sea Serpents, and Other Mystery Denizens of the Deep:

There are…very real animals that people might mistake for Sea Serpents…. One is the Oarfish. Reaching lengths of 36 feet (perhaps even 50 feet), this pale silver fish with blue streaks is the longest bony fish in existence. The oarfish is found in subtropical waters and has two long narrow pelvic fins. But aside from its size, the oarfish cannot extend its head above the water, and along its spine is a bright red crest—two factors that reduce the likelihood of misinterpretation as a Sea Serpent. Furthermore, the oarfish spends most of its time swimming in a vertical position, not a horizontal one, as would be expected from a Sea Serpent look-alike.

Photos: The full-body and head only images of the actual new beached fish are from the Salem News and Beach Connection. The two older photos with scientists comparing themselves to the length of previously found Trachipterus altivelis are official United States government public domain photos. I guess you’d do the same thing in a similar situation, right?

SOURCE: http://www.cryptomundo.com/cryptozoo-news/trachipterus/


Inexplicata-The Journal of Hispanic Ufology-July 11, 2006

In late June 2006 on the edge of Provincial Route No. 7 (km 158) in the jurisdiction of Colonia Ines y Carlota, some 50 km NE of Santa Rosa, La Pampa, 5 bovines were found dead, presenting clear signs of mutilation.

The time of death had been estimated at some 15 days and the carcasses showed signs of missing udders, ears and tongues; incisions in the genital region were also reported.

The animals were predominantly black Aberdeen Angus and Shorton cattle with an approximate weight of 300 kg. The discovery of elements with these characteristics, albeit sporadically, is proof of the phenomenon's continuity. At the same time, the lack of elements of discernment have kept a formal complaint from being brought to the authorities.

The need to "distance oneself" from these animals arises from the possible impact on the cattle rancher's livelihood, since potential livestock buyers are reluctant to make purchases from estates on which mutilation episodes have occurred.

(translation (c) 2006. S. Corrales, IHU. Special thanks to Raul Oscar Chaves)
Source & References: Raul Oscar Chaves, Ciufoslapampa

SOURCE: UFO Casebook On-line Magazine #214 07-17-06

John Roach for National Geographic News
July 28, 2006

Argentinean scientists have discovered gigantic neck, back, and tail bones from one of the largest dinosaurs ever to roam the Earth.

Photo gallery: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2006/07/060728-dinosaurs-photos.html

Most impressive is a back vertebra that measures 3.48 feet (1.06 meters) tall and 5.51 feet (1.68 meters) wide, according to Fernando Novas. The paleontologist announced the find at the Argentine Museum of Natural Sciences in Buenos Aires on July 21.

The new species is one of the titanosaurs, a group of plant-eating sauropod dinosaurs that walked on four feet and are known for their long necks and tails. Based on analysis of the vertebrae and comparison with smaller, better-known titanosaurs, the paleontologist believes the new find was 115 to 131 feet (35 to 40 meters) long and weighed between 88 and 110 tons (80 and 100 metric tons). Its chest alone was nearly 16 feet (5 meters) in diameter, about the size of an entire modern-day elephant.

Novas led the research team that discovered the 70-million-year-old bones in Argentina's Santa Cruz Province, located in the country's southern Patagonia region (map of Argentina). He named the species Puertasaurus reuili in honor of two fossil hunters who discovered and prepared the specimen: Pablo Puerta and Santiago Reuil.

"Puertasaurus is one of the biggest dinosaurs ever found," Novas, who is also a researcher with Argentine science organization CONICET, said in an email interview.

Novas said that only one of the titanosaurs rivals Puertasaurus in size: Argentinosaurus huinculensis, which was found in northwestern Patagonia and lived 90 million years ago.

The newly described fossils, which also include a neck and two tail vertebrae, were excavated in 2001. Novas and colleagues Leonardo Salgado, Jorge Calvo, and Federico Agnolin describe the species in the current issue of the journal Revista del Museo Argentino de Ciencias Naturales "Bernardino Rivadavia."

Other team members include Novas's students Gastón Lo Coco, Juan Canale, Alejandro Haluza, and Juan Goroso. The National Geographic Society helped finance the research. (National Geographic News is part of the National Geographic Society.)

Big Bones
The new species is "definitely big," said Kristina Curry Rogers, curator and head of the paleontology department at the Science Museum of Minnesota in St. Paul. After reading the description of the back vertebra, she took out her tape measure and stretched it across her desk to better visualize the size.

"It's a huge sauropod," she said. "I'm not sure it's the biggest sauropod, but based on what we know about sauropods, it's probably one of the biggest sauropod bones ever found [from the size of the neck bones]."

According to Curry Rogers, who specializes in titanosaurs, size is always "a bit tricky" to gauge from the few fossils paleontologists have recovered from the group. Other huge titanosaurs, including Argentinosaurus, are primarily known from limb bones, she says.

"When comparing vertebrae to limbs, you have to extrapolate, no matter what," she said. "But that's part of this science. You have to make this leap to imagine what they were like."

Long-Lived Species
Puertasaurus significantly extends the time giant titanosaurs were known to roam the Earth, research leader Novas says.

"It was suggested that the heyday of these animals was around 90 to 100 million years ago and that the end of the Cretaceous was reserved for smaller sized titanosaurids," he said. The Cretaceous period extended from 144 to 65 million years ago.

"Through the discovery of Puertasaurus, now we know that the giant titanosaurids survived in southern Patagonia up to the end of the Cretaceous."

Curry Rogers, of the Science Museum of Minnesota, says this finding adds weight to the notion that sauropods were an amazingly diverse and successful group. "Here are dinosaurs that [contain both] giants and dwarfs, living on every continent," she said. "They are innovative and diverse at a time that is late in terms of the dinosaur calendar."

Social Creatures?
According to Novas, 70 million years ago southern Patagonia was periodically inundated with seawater from both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, since the Andes mountains hadn't yet formed. Large fossilized logs were also found in the same beds (known as the Pari Aike formation) as Puertasaurus, indicating the region was once forested.

Other regional dinosaur contemporaries included small titanosaurs, an unnamed meat-eater, and the ornithischian (bird-hipped dinosaur) Telankauen santacrucensis.

"Interestingly, bones of giant titanosaurs are very abundant in the Pari Aike beds, suggesting that these plant-eating animals were prosperous at the time of deposition of these beds," Novas said. "It is not improbable that Puertasaurus moved in herds, a behavior that was also inferred for other sauropods."

SOURCE: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2006/07/060728-giant-dinosaur.html


NOAA has announced that average temperatures for the first half of 2006 were the highest ever recorded in the US. NOAA scientists say that temperatures for January through June were 3.4 degrees Fahrenheit above average for the 20th century. Previously, NOAA said that 2005 was the hottest year on record, so we're not doing so well, when it comes to battling global warming.

Sara Goudrarzi writes in LiveScience.com that Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska and Missouri set the records for the highest heat. No state had cooler-than- average temperatures, although that's part of global warming too, so that may happen in the future.

SOURCE: http://www.unknowncountry.com/news/?id=5446



By Sara Goudarzi, LiveScience.com
14 July 2006

The average temperatures of the first half of 2006 were the highest ever recorded for the continental United States, scientists announced today. Temperatures for January through June were 3.4 degrees Fahrenheit above the 20th-century average.

Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska and Missouri experienced record warmth for the period, while no state experienced cooler-than-average temperatures, reported scientists from NOAA's National Climatic Data Center in Asheville, N.C.

Scientists have previously said that 2005 was the warmest year on record for the entire globe. Last month the United States experienced the second warmest June since weather record keeping began in 1895.

This warming coupled with less than average precipitation caused moderate to extreme droughts in almost 45 percent of the contiguous United States. However, some areas, such as the Northeast of the country experienced record rainfalls and severe floods.

Many experts believe that such weather anomalies are the result of global warming, an average increase in the Earth's atmospheric temperature caused at least in part by human activities.

Other studies reveal consequences of a warmer climate. According to one study, the amount of land damaged by rising temperature-induced droughts more than doubled in the last 30 years. Meanwhile, dry conditioned have contributed to more than 50,000 wildfires in the first half of this year, an unusually high number. A study earlier this month suggests climate change has in recent years contributed to more wildfires in the Western United States.

Other studies suggest that warmer oceans and increased moisture could make for stronger hurricanes for many years to come.

SOURCE: http://www.livescience.com/environment/060714_record_heat.html

Sara Goudarzi, LiveScience.com Fri Jul 21

The sinking of Louisiana's Gulf coast could be due to the shallowest delta sediments pushing down the underneath layers, a new study suggests.

Louisiana's coastal erosion causes the loss of land at a catastrophic rate of 25 to 35 square miles per year, equivalent to one football field every 15 minutes.

Many scientists believe that the subsidence, as the sinking is called, takes place because as sediment accumulates and the Mississippi Delta thickens, the crust of the Earth as a whole gets pressed downward. The withdrawal of oil, gas, and groundwater are also blamed for the submerging delta. (Similar subsidence has been noted in Southern California and in many other states due to extensive pumping of groundwater, petroleum products and other reasons.)

While erosion is a big problem, the layer 30 to 50 feet beneath much of the Mississippi Delta has been highly stable for the past 8,000 years with negligible subsidence rates. So scientists wondered whether a sinking of the Earth's whole crust was really to blame for the subsidence.

By reconstructing sea level rise and sediment accumulation over the past 8,000 years, the researchers showed that large portions of the Mississippi Delta's basement land are in fact stable and not the reason for the sinking.

"If that were the whole story, there would be major consequences for Louisiana, because subsidence of Earth's crust is a natural process that remains beyond human control," said study leader Torbjorn Tornqvist of Tulane University.

The new study suggests, instead, that compaction of the most recent sediments, near the surface, causes the land to subside.

The young delta sediments, rich in water and heavy, are pressing down and squeezing the water out of the older sediments beneath and allowing the surface to sink, Tornqvist explained.

"Our research could have major implications for rebuilding plans that are currently being debated," Tornqvist said. "Over the long term, comprehensive understanding of subsidence will better support rational coastal management and successful urban and land-use planning for all low-lying areas along the Gulf Coast."

The study is detailed in the August issue of the journal Geology.

SOURCE: http://www.livescience.com/environment/060721_la_wetlands.html


Newswise — A scientist at the Weizmann Institute of Science and his colleagues caused a storm in the atmospheric community when they suggested a few years back that tiny airborne particles, known as aerosols, may be one of the main culprits causing climate change – having, on a local scale, an even greater impact than the greenhouse gases effect. Attempts to understand how these particles influence clouds have generated many uncertainties. A new paper by Dr. Ilan Koren of the Weizmann Institute Environmental Studies and Energy Research Department and Dr. Yoram Kauffman* of the NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center, USA, published in Science Express online, weaves together two opposing effects of atmospheric aerosols to provide a comprehensive picture of how they may be affecting our climate.

Cloud formation is dependent upon the presence of small amounts of aerosols such as sea salt and desert dust. These tiny particles serve as the seeds around which water vapor in the air condenses, forming tiny water droplets that rise as they release heat. As the small droplets rise, they collide and merge with larger droplets. When the droplets reach a critical size, gravity takes over, causing them to fall from the cloud in the form of rain.

One of the controversies surrounding the extent of aerosol impact on climate change is the duality of their influence. On the one hand, Koren and his colleagues previously found evidence to suggest that the extra seeds planted in the atmosphere by the emission of man-made aerosols (pollution, forest fires, and fuel combustion) lead to more, but smaller-sized, water droplets. The formation of larger water droplets by the collision process is less efficient and, therefore, rainfall is suppressed. The smaller droplets are lifted higher up into the atmosphere, creating larger and taller clouds that will persist longer. Not only does this alter the whole water cycle, but the increased cloud cover reflects more of the sun's radiation back into space, creating a local cooling effect on Earth.

But to complicate matters, Koren, in another study, showed that certain types of aerosols – those containing black carbon – can also decrease cloud cover, ultimately leading to a warming effect. This occurs as black carbon absorbs part of the sun's radiation, warming the surrounding atmosphere and reducing the difference in temperature between the Earth’s surface and the upper atmosphere. This combination prevents atmospheric instability – the condition needed to form clouds and rain. A stable atmosphere means fewer clouds; fewer clouds mean less reflection of sunlight; less reflection of sunlight and absorption of radiation lead to warming.

Policy makers have argued that, in the bottom line, the warming effect of the greenhouse gases and the (mainly cooling) aerosol effect may balance each other out so that the net global climate change will be small. Koren argues that it is the local climate change that is problematic: Clouds may persist without releasing their rain over regions where they would normally precipitate, such as rainforests, and move to precipitate over regions where rain is not needed, such as oceans. Or the effect could lead to the warming up of cold and the cooling down of hot regions. These additional effects to the already problematic warming by greenhouse gases could have disastrous repercussions in the long run.

Also controversial is the question of how such tiny localized particles affect weather systems thousands of kilometers away from their sources. There is no doubt that aerosols do play a role, but the skeptics believe it is negligible compared to meteorological key players such as temperature, pressure, the amount of water vapor in the air, and wind strength.

What Koren needed was a way to separate meteorological from aerosol influences – something which was lacking in his previous studies. Together with Kauffman, he used a network of ground sensors (AERONET) to measure the effect of aerosol concentration on cloud cover. Radiation absorption is less affected by meteorology, so if the skeptics are right and meteorology is the main influence, then the correlation between aerosol absorption and cloud cover should have been seen in only a few circumstances. But this was not the case. They observed the duality effect on clouds: As total aerosols increase, cloud cover increases; and as radiation absorption by aerosols increases, cloud cover decreases – for all locations, for all seasons. Backed up with a mathematical analysis, it becomes harder to deny that it is, in fact, aerosols that have the major influence.

"We hope that this study has finally provided closure," says Koren. "Hopefully policy makers will start to tackle the issue of climate change from a different perspective, taking into account not only the global impact of aerosols and greenhouse gases, but local effects too."
- - - - - - - -
* Dr. Yoram Kauffman, one of the leading researchers in atmospheric aerosols, was recently killed while riding his bike near the Goddard Space Center.

Dr. Ilan Koren’s research is supported by the Samuel M. Soref and Helene K. Soref Foundation; and the Sussman Family Center for the Study of Environmental Sciences.

The Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, is one of the world's top-ranking multidisciplinary research institutions. Noted for its wide-ranging exploration of the natural and exact sciences, the Institute is home to 2,500 scientists, students, technicians and supporting staff. Institute research efforts include the search for new ways of fighting disease and hunger, examining leading questions in mathematics and computer science, probing the physics of matter and the universe, creating novel materials and developing new strategies for protecting the environment.

SOURCE: Weizmann Institute of Science;

Sara Goudarzi, LiveScience.com
Jul 27, 2006

One way to curb global warming is to purposely shoot sulfur into the atmosphere, a scientist suggested today. The burning of fossil fuels releases carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, into the atmosphere. It also releases sulfur that cools the planet by reflecting solar radiation away from Earth.

Most researchers say the warming effect has been winning in recent decades.

Injecting sulfur into the second atmospheric layer closest to Earth would reflect more sunlight back to space and offset greenhouse gas warming, according to Nobel laureate Paul Crutzen from the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Germany and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California at San Diego.

Crutzen suggests carrying sulfur into the atmosphere via balloons and using artillery guns to release it, where the particles would stay for up to two years. The results could be seen in six months.

Nature does something like this naturally. When Mount Pinatubo erupted in the Philippines in1991, millions of tons of sulfur was injected into the atmosphere, enhancing reflectivity and cooling the Earth’s surface by an average of 0.9 degrees Fahrenheit in the year following the eruption.

“Given the grossly disappointing international political response to the required greenhouse gas emissions, ... research on the feasibility and environmental consequences of climate engineering of the kind presented in this paper, which might need to be deployed in future, should not be tabooed,” Crutzen said.

This proposal is detailed in the August issue of the journal Climatic Change.

SOURCE: http://www.livescience.com/environment/060727_inject_sulfur.html

July 30, 2006
By JAMES MacPHERSON, Associated Press Writer

STEELE, N.D. (AP) - More than 60 percent of the United States now has abnormally dry or drought conditions, stretching from Georgia to Arizona and across the north through the Dakotas, Minnesota, Montana and Wisconsin, said Mark Svoboda, a climatologist for the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.

An area stretching from south central North Dakota to central South Dakota is the most drought-stricken region in the nation, Svoboda said.

"It's the epicenter," he said. "It's just like a wasteland in north central South Dakota."

Conditions aren't much better a little farther north. Paul Smokov and his wife, Betty, raise several hundred cattle on their 1,750-acre ranch north of Steele, a town of about 760 people.

Fields of wheat, durum and barley in the Dakotas this dry summer will never end up as pasta, bread or beer. What is left of the stifled crops has been salvaged to feed livestock struggling on pastures where hot winds blow clouds of dirt from dried-out ponds.

Some ranchers have been forced to sell their entire herds, and others are either moving their cattle to greener pastures or buying more already-costly feed. Hundreds of acres of grasslands have been blackened by fires sparked by lightning or farm equipment.

"These 100-degree days for weeks steady have been burning everything up," said Steele Mayor Walter Johnson, who added that he'd prefer 2 feet of snow over this weather.

Farm ponds and other small bodies of water have dried out from the heat, leaving the residual alkali dust to be whipped up by the wind. The blowing, dirt-and-salt mixture is a phenomenon that hasn't been seen in south central North Dakota since the Dust Bowl of the 1930s, Johnson said.

North Dakota's all-time high temperature was set here in July 1936, at 121. Smokov, now 81, remembers that time and believes conditions this summer probably are worse.

"I could see this coming in May," Smokov said of the parched pastures and wilted crops. "That's the time the good Lord gives us our general rains. But we never got them this year."

Brad Rippey, a federal Agriculture Department meteorologist in Washington, said this year's drought is continuing one that started in the late 1990s. "The 1999 to 2006 drought ranks only behind the 1930s and the 1950s. It's the third-worst drought on record - period," Rippey said.

Svoboda was reluctant to say how bad the current drought might eventually be.

"We'll have to wait to see how it plays out - but it's definitely bad," he said. "And the drought seems to not be going anywhere soon."

Herman Schumacher, who owns Herreid Livestock Auction in north central South Dakota, said his company is handling more sales than ever because of the drought.

In May, June and July last year, his company sold 3,800 cattle. During the same months this year, more than 27,000 cattle have been sold, he said.

"I've been in the barn here for 25 years and I can't even compare this year to any other year," Schumacher said.

He said about 50 ranchers have run cows through his auction this year.

"Some of them just trimmed off their herds, but about a third of them were complete dispersions - they'll never be back," he said.

"This county is looking rough - these 100-degree days are just killing us," said Gwen Payne, a North Dakota State University extension agent in Kidder County, where Steele is located.

The Agriculture Department says North Dakota last year led the nation in production of 15 different commodity classes, including spring wheat, durum wheat, barley, oats, canola, pinto beans, dry edible peas, lentils, flaxseed, sunflower and honey.

North Dakota State University professor and researcher Larry Leistritz said it's too early to tell what effect this year's drought will have on commodity prices. Flour prices already have gone up and may rise more because of the effect of drought on wheat.

"There will be somewhat higher grain prices, no doubt about it," Leistritz said. "With livestock, the short-term effect may mean depressed meat prices, with a larger number of animals being sent to slaughter. But in the longer run it may prolong the period of relatively high meat prices."

Eventually, more than farmers could suffer.

"Agriculture is not only the biggest industry in the state, it's just about the only industry," Leistritz said. "Communities live or die with the fortunes of agriculture."

Susie White, who runs the Lone Steer motel and restaurant in Steele, along Interstate 94, said even out-of-state travelers notice the drought.

"Even I never paid attention to the crops around here. But I notice them now because they're not there," she said.

"We're all wondering how we're going to stay alive this winter if the farmers don't make any money this summer," she said.

SOURCE: http://www.guardian.co.uk/uslatest/story/0,,-5982542,00.html


Many close encounter witnesses have for years been given the message that it's important to save seed. Now, with genetically modified crops being planted worldwide with essentially no regulation, and the climate changing fast, the wisdom of this warning has become obvious. Norway is planning a large seed bank above the arctic circle and well away from populated areas, which is designed to save pristine seed from essential food crops against a future in which this seed might be needed to restore an agriculture ruined by uncontrolled modification and climate change. The bank will hold over three million different varieties of seed from all over the world. Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg said, `The main aim is to protect the seeds of plants that are important for food and agricultural purposes.' The bank is scheduled to open in September 2007--not a moment too soon!

Read more:
SOURCE: http://www.unknowncountry.com

30 July 2006
More shells located in Gusev Crater

More sea shells have been imaged by Spirit on Sol 913 at the wintering grounds where NASA has parked the rover. The angled hillside provides best sunlight for the solar panels and allows the rover to continue operating well into its second year. These new images show some excellent specimens that are without a doubt some of the clearest sea shells yet imaged on Mars.


The black areas represent data dropouts.
Above images from files 2P207413625EFFAS00P2278L7M1 and 2P207413625EFFAS00P2278R1M1 at the NASA/JPL web site:
http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/gallery/all/2/p/913/2P207413625EFFAS00P2278L7M1.JPG and http://marsrovers.jpl.nasa.gov/gallery/all/2/p/913/2P207413625EFFAS00P2278R1M1.JPG 

I have cropped out the sea shells and combined them in individual, stereo views. The first is a broken open spiral shell and presents its spiral end directly to us. You can see that it is perfectly round, wafer thin, and does indeed spiral at the tip.

Spiral sea shell from Spirit, Sol 913, located at the hillside where Spirit is wintering:

This second one is another species but identical to many terrestrial sea shells. It is on its side and broken open. This is very clear; no other item has this look or structure:

Now compare these side by side. The first image is a terrestrial whelk shell found on a beach. The second image is the Spirit Sol 913 shell shown in the stereo image above. The similarity is unmistakable. This is clearly another Martian sea shell.
From earth:
From Mars:

A third shell exists in the same frame and I have assembled a stereo view of it here. This is to the far left of the "end-on" spiral shell, exactly opposite of the whelk shell.

This is a false color view of the spiral shell seen end on. There are many intriguing objects in this frame, and many appear to be shells or coral:

All source files for these images are from the NASA/JPL web site at:

SOURCE: XENOTECH Research http://xenotechresearch.com/SpSol913.htm


Bacteria have been discovered that turn ordinary metal into gold. This sounds great, except that if there is too much gold, it will become worthless—it's valuable because of its rarity. For instance, Diamonds are actually much more common that we think, but they are kept artificially scarce—and thus expensive—by limited mining by a single South African company.

Robin Lloyd writes in LiveScience.com that Australian researcher Frank Reith has discovered a film of bacteria on gold that has been mined in that country. When he grew the bacteria in his lab and dissolved it in a liquid solution containing non-gold metals, the result was gold nuggets. This might be the secret behind seemingly magic legends about ancient alchemists being able to turn ordinary metal into gold.

SOURCE: http://www.unknowncountry.com/news/?id=5453


By Robin Lloyd
LiveScience 18 July 2006

Scientists have discovered that a lowly bacteria that has the Midas touch—it appears to turn dissolved metal into solid gold.

The bacteria, called Ralstonia metallidurans, was identified by Frank Reith of Australian National University and his colleagues as the common denominator among bacteria comprising a dried organic biofilm found on the surface of gold grains collected from a park and gold mines in southern New South Wales and northern Queensland, Australia.

The gold was found in association with pyrite (or fool's gold) in quartz and arsenopyrite. Reith then isolated and grew more of the bacteria in the lab and used a scanning electron microscope to observe gold precipitation in the presence of the microbe. It took just eight hours for a small grain to form.

Testing a theory for how gold grains form when it starts out dissolved in a liquid solution, he confirmed that the bacteria play an important role in the formation of this type of gold nugget. Others thought the grains might come out of solution by some other chemical or leftover process.

"A unique attribute of R. metallidurans is that it is able to survive in concentrations of gold that would kill most other micro-organisms," Reith said.

It is still unknown exactly how the bacteria help to precipitate the gold grains, but is possible that the microbe screens out the gold as part of an effort to detoxify its immediate environment. Metals like gold are toxic to most bacteria.

The finding, published in the latest issue of the journal Science, could suggest opportunities for bio-processing of gold ores, Reith said.

Other researchers had observed gold grains in association with microbes, but no one had found strong evidence for it. And some scientists with Argonne National Laboratory and the University of Wisconsin-Madison reported in 2000 that certain bacteria also found in a biofilm play a role in the precipitation of zinc sulfide minerals.

SOURCE: http://www.livescience.com/othernews/060718_gold_bacteria.html

By Maggie Fox, Health and Science Correspondent
July 21, 2006

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Experts who first managed to tease some DNA out of the bones of a Neanderthal teamed up on Thursday with a gene-sequencing company to try to get a complete Neanderthal genetic code. The Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, and 454 Life Sciences Corp in Branford, Connecticut, said they would use new technology that amplifies tiny samples of the scarce DNA from bones.

"The advent of 454 Sequencing has enabled us to move forward with a project that was previously thought to be impossible," said Svante Paabo, Director of the Department of Evolutionary Anthropology at the Max Planck Institute. Paabo was the first to find DNA in a Neanderthal leg bone, in 1997.

Neanderthals lived in Europe and the Near East until about 30,000 years ago, when Cro-Magnon people, the ancestors of modern humans, moved in. Researchers have been trying to find out if Neanderthals are also our ancestors, or if they were an evolutionary dead end. Paabo's team was able to get a small amount of DNA from some bones that suggested they did not contribute to the gene pool of living people. But such old bones do not yield much DNA, the researchers said.

"When an organism dies, its tissues are overrun by bacteria and fungi. Much of the DNA is simply destroyed, and the small amount remaining is broken into short pieces and chemically modified during the long period of fossil formation," the Institute said in a statement. "This means that when scientists mine tiny samples of ancient bones for DNA, much of the DNA obtained is actually from contaminants such as bacteria, fungi, and even scientists who have previously handled the bones," it added.

"Over the last 20 years, Paabo's research group has developed methods for demonstrating the authenticity of ancient DNA results, as well as technical solutions to the problems of working with short, chemically-modified DNA fragments. Together with 454 Life Sciences they will now combine these methods with a novel high-throughput DNA sequencing that is ideally suited to analyze ancient DNA."

454 Life Sciences Corporation, a majority-owned subsidiary of CuraGen Corporation, said it would use samples from several Neanderthal skeletons, including a 45,000-year-old Croatian bone. They will compare these sequences to those already done on chimpanzees and humans by the publicly funded Human Genome Project.

SOURCE: http://in.today.reuters.com/news/newsArticle.aspx?type=


According to Dr. Steven Greer, yes, SETI has received multiple extraterrestrial signals. This news he says, is confirmed by senior employees within the SETI program.

This is what Greer had to say at a recent Exopolitics Conference:

"We have confirmation - and I'm not going to give the name yet because we are trying to coax this guy out of the closet - but one of the senior people in the SETI project, which is the Carl Sagan Search for Extraterrestrial project, has confirmed to the Disclosure Project that they have received multiple extraterrestrial signals," Greer said, "but that now they are getting external human, probably NRO or NSA jamming of those signals and they are getting very frustrated. "

Greer continued, "The question is why hasn't the SETI project, funded by Paul Alan the co-founder of Microsoft, come forward with this information? I'm a little uncomfortable even mentioning this, except for the fact that the public needs to know that this effort, which has received a great deal of mainstream media attention, has actually confirmed to us from two inside sources that they have received extraterrestrial signals and have confirmed them as being extraterrestrial and that they have become increasing in frequency and number."

Dr. Steven Greer is head of the Disclosure Project, a non-profit organization with almost now 500 former military, intelligence, and government employees who go on record about their various experiences with aliens and alien technology.

Since the National Press Conference of 2001, viewed by millions of people across the globe, Steven Greer has been referred to as the authority on the truth about extraterrestrials.

For Greer to come out and make a statement of this magnitude, something is defiantly up. We will wait patiently to see whether or not these SETI insiders take the stage and become whistle blowers for this monumental secret.

SOURCE: http://www.alienvideo.net/seti-makes-contact.php 


I phoned Jeff Challender regarding the Space Shuttle Discovery flight, STS-121 that launched from Kennedy Space Center, on 4 July 2006. Jeff stated, "The following event was broadcast "live" to the public on NASA Select TV channel, on Flight Day 5, at 8:43 PM CDT the evening of 8 July 2006.

Discovery and the International Space Station were cruising high above Brazil. The Instrument and Communication Officer in Houston - had the low-light black & white camera in Discovery's payload bay pointing to the west. In view were the Western Amazon basin, as well as the Andes Mountains. The crew were in their sleep period when all of this took place. Several hundred miles below, active thunderstorms could be seen, and lightning was flashing randomly.

It was then that SOMETHING very weird was seen moving under the cloud deck below. Subsequently, this object emerged from the clouds at very high speed, and appeared to shoot east towards the bottom of image!

The white object at the bottom center of photo is the saucer. Due to the fact that the Shuttle/Station Complex was orbiting in excess of 220 miles above the Earth, this object MUST have been MANY MILES in diameter!

This is one of the rare cases in which we DO have a frame of reference to judge the actual distance of the anomaly. This because the object rose FROM the clouds far beneath Discovery's camera. This thing is almost certain to be SELF-LUMINOUS, as the event took place near local midnight.

A second later, at very bottom of image the saucer has moved further East. The Sun was NOT a factor here. There was a very bright Moon shining down that night, but Lunar light is hardly strong enough to account for the luminosity of the anomaly. The video should be seen at:

Thanks to Jeff Challender Project Prove© 2006.

SOURCE: Filer's Files #30 - 26 July 2006