Tamil Nadu – Nagercoil – Life-jackets for tourists

In the wake of Thekkady tragedy, Minister issues orders

Nagercoil: Tourism Minister N.Suresh Rajan has asked Collector Rajendra Ratnoo and Tourism officer Hari Radhakrishnan to ensure safety measures for those who visit Vivekananda Rock Memorial and Thiruvalluvar Statue in Kanyakumari following the boat tragedy at Thekkady.

SAFETY IS PRIORITY: A distant view of Vivekananda Rock Memorial and Thiruvalluvar Statue in Kanyakumari

SAFETY IS PRIORITY: A distant view of Vivekananda Rock Memorial and Thiruvalluvar Statue in Kanyakumari

The boats, owned by Poombuhar Shipping Corporation, carrying both domestic and foreign tourists to the Memorial and Statue would be equipped with additional life-saving equipments, particularly life jackets. Similarly the district administration has directed the officials to provide life jackets to those who wanted to go for boating at Thirparappu Falls.

The Collector, who participated in the gram sabha meeting at Vazukkamparai Government primary school on October 2, asked the Fire and Rescue Service personnel to conduct mock drill in the coastal areas along with the villagers. It should be made mandatory in all village panchayats, said the Collector.

Staff Reporter – From THE HINDU

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Global Warming – Australia – Shrinking Bird Life

AUSTRALIAN birds are getting smaller and global warming is probably to blame, new research suggests.

An Australian National University and CSIRO study of museum specimens of eight bird species found they had shrunk between 2 and 4 per cent over the past century.

Chief researcher Janet Gardner, from the ANU’s research school of biology, said the results reflected that animals tended to be smaller in warmer climates.

Glabal Warming - Danger to Australian Birds

Glabal Warming - Danger to Australian Birds

Proportionally, small animals have a greater surface area compared to volume, allowing faster cooling and minimising heat stress.

But Dr Gardner said the extent of change in the south-eastern Australian species examined, including the grey-crowned babbler, hooded robin and speckled warbler, was surprising. Bird sizes found in Brisbane before 1950 were now common in Sydney, seven degrees of latitude to the south.

She said the results, published in British journal the Proceedings of the Royal Society B, suggested birds might have adapted to global warming of about 0.6 degrees since the late 1800s.

Another possibility for the change being caused by a decline in food supply or quality was all but ruled out after it was found that feather growth rates had not changed.

”Global warming is affecting fundamental biological processes and it is leading to significant changes in our wildlife,” Dr Gardner said. ”The predictions are that warming is going to increase in rate over the coming decades. Whether species can change rapidly enough and how much they can change in response to the temperature rise is of great concern.”

Other species examined in the initial study were the brown treecropper, jacky winter, yellow-rumped thornbill, white-browned scrubwren and variegated fairy-wren.By Adam Morton – THE AGE