Lake Tobias Wildlife Park: A Don’t Miss Attraction in Central Pennsylvania

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Family owned and operated since 1965, Lake Tobias Wildlife Park has fascinated thousands of people each year with all the wonderful exotic animals and their wildlife safari. Located in Halifax PA, the park is home to many animals from all over the world. When you arrive, the one thing that stands out right from the very beginning, are the columns of deer antlers that mark the entrance to the park, and the large lake that you can fish from if you desire. The park has a very farm like appearance to it, with it’s dirt roads and buildings that resemble barns. You can stroll around the park and view the animals including Zebra, Gemsbok, Black Bears, Monkeys, Lemurs, Mountain Lions, Snow Leopards, Wallaby, Ostrich, Ducks, Prairie Dogs, Bobcats, Tortoises, Arctic Fox, and many, many more.

Lake Tobias Wildlife Park also offers a petting zoo, where you can feed the animals the park’s regulated diet food and crackers are sold to feed the animals for 25 cents. The petting zoo is open from 10am-6:30pm on weekends, and from 10am-5:30pm on weekdays. As a personal note, you may want to visit a camel in the back of the petting zoo area. You will have to make a mad dash past the goats, sheep, fawns, and deer, as they will come to nibble for some food. There is a camel in the one area to the right inside the petting zoo. This camel is incredibly friendly and loves to be petted. He is extremely gentle and seems to enjoy a good neck scratch. If I could speak camel, I would have swore he was asking me to take him home with me. There are a few other animals back there too, such as Llamas, and other camels as well. Admission to the petting zoo is included with your park admission.

Another excellent feature about this park is the reptile building. The reptile building is open Tuesday through Sunday from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day. They have half hour presentations throughout the day for those who like to gain more information about the animals there. The animals vary from time to time, but you can find Pythons, Boa Constrictors, Anaconda, various other snakes, lizards, turtles, Argentine Horned Frog, even baby alligators. You will also find parrots such as the Cockatoos, and various kinds of Macaws. You can even see a Two-Toed Tree Sloth! Admission is $1 for ages 3 and up.

By far, the most exciting aspect of Lake Tobias Wildlife Park is their safari tour. This tour takes you across 150 acres of land in a bus that has the top cut off of it. There is approximately 500 animals to view on this tour. Here you will find Buffalo, Yak, Texas Longhorn, Elk (some of the most magnificent), various types of deer, Barbado and Mouflon Sheep, Rhea, Emu, Scottish Highland Cattle, Watusi, and Llamas. You can see herds of animals grouped together doing what they would do naturally in the wild. These animals come right up to the bus, and some even step up onto the stairs, for some food from the driver. Truly amazing! You don’t realize how large these animals are until you have one standing within 2ft of you. Numerous tours are given throughout the day, each about 45 minutes in length. Tickets are sold at the refreshment stand located near the entrance to the park. The cost is $5 for adults and $4 for children, under 3 years old is free. This is such a great price for the amount of animals you get to see and …

Climate

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Even when the climate
is very hot and you’re tired
of preaching and you
feel no one is listening-

Keep going! 
Drink the water of God’s Word 
and continue.

Walk by faith, 
knowing that a harvest will come.

You are only the seed planter, 
God is the One Who will make it 
bear fruits.…

Padre Island Wildlife

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The best show on North Padre Island isn’t in a night club, or in a playhouse, but rather right outside by a canal that’s part of Laguna Madre. I suppose that this is a relative opinion, as some people don’t care much for nature or the out-of-doors. However, for those of you who love watching nature, you may find this an amusing story and will perhaps be inspired to look for such comedy in your own backyard. Just this morning I stopped at the Whataburger on North Padre Island for breakfast. For those of you who don’t know, Whataburger is a fast food chain that’s primarily located in Texas, and was started in Corpus Christi. They have fairly good food, for a fast food chain, and if you’re looking to grab a quick meal while you’re vacationing on North Padre Island, then you might want to stop there.

So what does the Whataburger on the Island have to do with the best show on the Island? Well, right behind the Whataburger is a canal with some public spots to moor your boat. So, if you happen to be cruising around Laguna Madre and want to get a burger, you could come over and park your boat behind the Whataburger. And of course, where there’s water at the coast, especially with summer coming on, there’s wildlife. And wild it is. I parked behind the Whataburger this morning to eat a biscuit, and lo and behold there is this giant crane-like bird. He had to be at least three feet high and he had a really long neck. He was brown and tan in color, and his feathers were very smooth and neat. The immediacy of him was a little astonishing, he was only about five feet from my car when I first pulled up, although he did retreat a few feet in response to a two ton car pulling up so close to him. After shimmying a few feet away down the wall of the canal, he just sat there eyeing me, and attempting to look superior to all the other creatures. He seemed to be saying “I’m so much better than the rest of you.”

This superior attitude could have been in response to all of the rather mad seagulls that were flying around the canal. When I say mad, I mean stark raving crazy. Some of the seagulls were sitting on the dock posts, but never for very long. The reason being was because another seagull would dive bomb the one sitting on the post, forcing him to move quickly so that the kamikaze seagull could alight on the dock post instead. This happened more than a few times, with one of the seagulls (who apparently wasn’t paying very much attention) almost falling backwards off of the post and into the water. He managed to catch himself just before taking a dunk into the canal and flew away as if nothing had happened.

After some time, the seagulls got tired of kamikaze attacking each other and decided instead to pick on some small birds that were in the field beside the canal. A few of the seagulls flew over to the smaller birds and started chasing them all over the place, until finally the small birds gave up and left. There didn’t seem to be any reason for this, it wasn’t over food or at least it didn’t appear to be. As soon as the little birds left, the seagulls went back to sitting on the dock posts. It was as if they had just run the little birds …

Climate Crowd Can’t Cope

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Green campaigners are losing the debate on global warming. Alarmists have lost the lure of climate catastrophe. With increasing desperation, they seek to draw public attention back to global warming and its supposedly dire effects, despite that predictions are overstated or just plain false.

More pressing public matters exist, such as exponentially rising national debt, the stagnant economy, the lack of jobs, opportunity, and innovation in America, and the flight of progress and prosperity from a once great nation forever. If these are the public’s worst worries, why do alarmists worry about climate so much?

Answer: Alarmists are invested in catastrophe. Academic livelihoods depend on it. Reputations rely on it. Governments collect billions of tax dollars on it, supporting a network of subservient scientific societies to promote the hoax.

In the meantime, radicalized conservation associations push climate change instead of solving real environmental problems. Crony capitalists get rich on it by feeding at the public trough, peddling products like windmills and solar panels that could never survive in the marketplace without taxpayer money. Yes, climate ideology is a profitable business for special interests, lining particular pockets at the expense of everyone else.

Yet with all this power and money at their disposal, the alarmists are losing the battle for public attention. Opinion among scientists is turning against the alarmist doctrine too. People worry less about global warming than ever before with air pollution and nuclear power emerging as the most pressing problems, not climate. Why is this?

Word is getting around that warming has stopped, despite mainstream media efforts to suppress the facts. No global warming has occurred for nearly 20 years. Global temperature has flatlined despite that hot places and cold places exist all the time. Sorry to poke holes in ignorant populist beliefs, but Mother Nature attends to neither alarmist agendas nor catastrophe claimers who chugged the climate Kool Aid.

The climate agenda costs dearly at a time when the world suffers economic stagnation and recession. Funds that flow freely to save the environment from unrealized temperature rise ought to flow toward saving jobs, business, and trade. Public sentiment has turned toward saving itself instead of spending on disaster that never comes.

No longer able to cope with the rejection, global warming activists are now claiming that anyone who disagrees with them must be a racist or mentally ill. Pathologising dissent rings of Orwellian reality and a misanthropic regime of radical environmentalists. Every storm, dry spell, and molecule of ice melt — even the cold — is now blamed on global warming. Such nonsense is propagated by mainstream media with no sense of investigative journalism and an alarmist clique that has lost its senses and can no longer cope.…

Top Climate Scientist Argues for 6 Percent Annual Reduction in Greenhouse Gasses by 2012

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A recent paper by NASA’s premier climate scientist James Hansen calls for a 6% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions each year starting in 2012. Noting that current greenhouse gas levels have already caused dangerous levels of warming, Hansen is calling for urgent action now to stabilize the world’s climate.

Hansen noted that the .8 degree Celcius increase in global temperatures since 1900 has already resulted in a number of dangerous climate impacts. Increasingly rapid polar sea ice decline, increasing melt in Greenland and Antarctica, receding mountain glaciers, a 1-2 percent yearly decline in coral reefs, the movement of habitable climate zones northward or to higher elevations, the expansion of deserts and dry zones, increased drought, excessive heat and fires, and the increased frequency of mega heat waves like those in Europe in 2003 and Russia in 2010 are all current effects of human-caused global warming and increased greenhouse gasses.

This observation that world climate systems are already undergoing substantial stresses at an .8 degree temperature increase led Hanson to conclude that sustained warming above 1 degree C was an intolerable risk. Hansen noted that, to stabilize world temperatures at a safe level, massive CO2 emission reductions need to start in 2012 at the latest.

If Hansen’s plan of 6% annual reductions were enacted by next year, temperatures would stabilize at around 1 degree C warming for the next thirty years and then slowly begin to drop off. If emissions draw-downs were delayed another 8 years to 2020, world temperatures would exceed the dangerous threshold for an entire century. Waiting until 2030 results in temperatures above 1 degree C for the next 500 years.

Hansen notes that a prolonged period of global temperatures exceeding the 1 degree C limit will likely result in passing certain climate tipping points. The higher heat is, therefore, much more likely to create a runaway warming scenario precipitated by a series of events that, once started, are outside of the control of human beings to reign back.

A runaway warming would likely start with the melting of arctic sea ice. The reduced reflectivity of ice during the summer would then cause the oceans to warm. Warmer oceans would destabilize methane frozen on the ocean floor. A portion of these massive stores would reach the atmosphere, convert to CO2 and further warm the climate. Other methane stored in lakes and in permafrost would also be released. Rising temperatures would cause more water vapor to be stored in the atmosphere. Water vapor is a powerful greenhouse gas. The result would be further temperature increases. Finally, all the world’s ice at the poles would convert to water and water vapor adding fuel to the already vicious cycle.

Hansen’s study also noted that expensive methods designed to use technology to remove CO2 from the atmosphere would likely be less effective than envisioned. Hansen notes that the cost of removing 50 parts per million of CO2 from the atmosphere would reach 60 trillion dollars by the end of this century.

Hansen’s warning is that current warming needs to be kept to near or below 1 degree C and that warming be turned back as soon as possible. Prolonged warmth at or above that threshold results in a high risk of starting a feedback effect similar to the one described above. And if feedbacks kick in, the world will change drastically into a dangerous place humanity is not at all accustomed to.

 

Source:

http://www.columbia.edu/~jeh1/mailings/2011/20110505_CaseForYoungPeople.pdf…

Oceans and Climates

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It is a proven fact that the climate of our earth is influencing the oceans on this planet. The point to ponder is to evaluate the negative effects of these climatic changes. It is only possible when all the factors influencing the oceans are known. Oceans of the world are the major factor in the ecosystem of the earth. They maintain balance on the surface of the earth. Only the oceans are responsible for stability of the climate of the earth. It would not be an exaggeration to proclaim that they are the parameters of the change on the surface of the earth.

The climate change is more upsetting for marine life as compared to land life. A warming world is a thorn in the flesh of the oceans and is becoming the major source of disturbing the biodiversity.

At the AAAS, William Cheung of the University of East Anglia in Norwich, UK, and his team revealed a model to calculate the influence on 1000 species of fish and shellfish all over the world by 2050 due to this obnoxious climate change. The model shows that the fish would shift towards poles at least forty kilometers in a decade. The shift in oceans temperature and climate would be unbearable for many of these species. They are worried about the extinction of many polar species. One aspect they have not mentioned is the Acidification of oceanic waters due to alarmingly high quantity of carbon dioxide.

Patrick Halpin of Duke University, says that high latitudes are the areas expected to be worst affected by global warming and other environmental changes. The oceans are overdone due to temperature; acidity and nutrient loading. Oceans are much vulnerable to chemical changes which are taking place rapidly due to climate change. The experts are comparing the present chemical change with the change of13 million years ago and this would definitely not be the positive change at all. CO2 will change the amount of calcium and other elements in ocean salts. They are of the view that too much carbon dioxide would result in the freezing of the oceanic waters and the surface of the oceans might drop.

The environment of the oceans gets colder resulting in the expansion of ice sheets. The ice sheets ultimately would lower down the surface of the ocean which ultimately leads to the changes of land weather. Acidification of oceanic waters has grown and has become a threat to the coral reefs and other water species. Industrial greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and a gradual increase in global temperatures are also affecting the oceans directly.

Warmer temperatures reduce the capacity of water to intake oxygen and hence make water lifeless. The scientists are of the view that by 2050 the temperature would rise 6 degrees of Fahrenheit, so the present oceanic ecosystem would not be able to maintain itself. Lack of oxygen in waters would reduce the production of water life. Warm waters take in less oxygen, and its impact is disastrous. The bacteria would be replaced by the nitrates and phosphorus filled bacteria. The plankton would not be able to get food from them and starve and a food chain might be lost. Another assumption is that the methane ice won’t melt and after nixing up with free oxygen would make bubbles and consequently increase in temperature.

The solar heat, the diversification of different plants and the discharge of greenhouse gases is alter the temperature and movement map of the oceans and their atmosphere. Even the Artificial change in the flow of wind and temperature directly affect the …

How to Acclimate LPS Corals to Your Saltwater Fishtank

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LPS corals, or large polyp stony corals, are a popular type of corals for the marine aquarium thanks to the incredible diversity of color, shape, and texture that they add to the aquarium environment. Some LPS corals are very difficult to keep in aquariums, while others are quite easy. The most important thing to remember about LPS corals, however, is that they are a form of animal, not a plant or an insect. As such, they do display territorial tendencies, particularly those LPS corals that have “sweeper” tentacles, which are intended to sting and kill any nearby corals with whom your LPS coral may be in competition for space.

It’s generally a good idea when keeping LPS corals to keep them in a saltwater tank that is greater than 55 gallons in capacity. Smaller bodies of water, such as those tanks below 55 gallons, can be easily polluted with chemicals. Even small trace elements on your hands can contaminate your aquarium water and cause your LPS corals to become sick. Tanks larger than 55 gallons, however, with their greater volume of water, can more easily absorb the minor trace chemicals and filter them out before damaging the marine life in the aquarium.

When you add an LPS coral to your aquarium, you have to begin by selecting a spot where the coral can attach or be attached. Once you have found a good place for the coral, you can begin the acclimation process.

When keeping a saltwater aquarium, it is best to keep the water in your tank as close in salinity as possible to the supplier from whom you purchase your tank stock, particularly corals. Many reputable saltwater aquarium suppliers will sell pre-mixed water. When keeping valuable corals, it is best to use this water regularly for water changes. This will prevent the introduction into your aquarium of harsh minerals from your tap water. Match your aquarium to the salinity and temperature of the supplier’s stock tanks, and allow the tank to rest at this level for at least one day.

Like other aquarium specimens, the LPS coral has to be temperature acclimated before it can be added to the aquarium. While the coral is still in its shipping bag, float the entire bag in either your tank or in the sump. This will raise the temperature of the water in the shipping bag (which would have fallen slightly during transport) Fifteen minutes of acclimation time is the absolute minimum. Ideally, the coral should be left to acclimate for between 30 and 45 minutes. Adding the coral immediately to the tank will almost invariably kill it because it will shock the creature’s system. Even a minor fluctuation in the temperature can cause shock.

To acclimate your LPS coral to its new salinity, you will have to add small amounts of your aquarium water to the shipping bag during the temperature acclimation process. Starting at 15 minutes, add a small amount of your aquarium water to the shipping bag. Continue in this fashion every fifteen minutes until the shipping bag is full.

You can now open the bag and place the LPS coral in its designated position, remembering that you have to seat the coral firmly to prevent it from falling from its position. In most cases, you can simply wedge the stone that the LPS coral is attached to into a crevasse in your live rock. With plenty of light and occasional drifting food, your LPS coral will stay healthy, and be as happy as it’s possible for an invertebrate to be.

“The Saltwater Aquarium Handbook”; George Blasiola; 2010…

National Wildlife Week

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Go outside and celebrate for National Wildlife Week April 21-29.

You can get a group of young people or families together and make a difference in your community, says the National Wildlife Federation.

Invite some friends to join in the National Wildlife Watch at nwf.org.

And to enjoy the beauty and wonder of spring all across America, tune in to the series launch of “Spring Watch USA” at 8 p.m. Eastern/Pacific Time April 21st on Animal Planet.

Visit the National Wildlife website listed above to download service projects and Watch information.

Take action then go back and tell them what you’ve done.

In other animal news, Dallas, TX recently okayed dogs on restaurant patios.

Following an 8-5 vote by the Dallas City Council, city food establishments may now apply for a local variance to current state laws that prohibit animals on restaurant premises.

“This is a terrific way to improve the quality of life and respond to greater diversity in our city,” said Council Member Angela Hunt at the time the decision was made.

“Animals are their children,” said Deputy Mayor Pro Tem Elba Garcia.

The council’s decision does not apply to cats or other house pets, Karen Rayzer, director of Dallas’ Environmental and Health Services Department told a reporter.

“According to Dallas’ ordinance, restaurants allowed to welcome dogs onto their patios must provide a separate entrance for outdoor patio, post signs that they are a ‘dog-friendly’ restaurant, install curtains separating the inside of a restaurant from its patio, prohibit dogs from going inside the restaurant and sitting or standing on outdoor tables or chairs, and from touching restaurant serving staff,” said writer Dave Levinthal. “Garcia, Hunt, and council members Gary Griffith, Pauline Medrano, Linda Koop, Steve Salazar, Ron Natinsky, and Ed Oakley voted to approve the ordinance.”

Mayor Pro Team Don Hill and Council Member James Fantroy were absent when the vote was taken.

In unrelated animal news, a fourth-grader gave her tooth fairy money to help establish a refuge for creatures.

“Abigail Blake loves animals and wants them to have a good home,” said writer Max Baker. “She donated $3 she received from the tooth fairy and a dollar in quarters she got from her grandmother to a special fund established to help buy land for Eagle Mountain Lake Park.”

Abigail, a fourth-grader at Daggett Montessori School in Fort Worth, TX, wrote to the Tarrant Regional Water District that she loved animals and donated money to save their habitat.

According to records, the water district has raised $14,499.75 from the public toward the estimated $9.6 million it needs to buy 400 acres from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.…

Visiting National Wildlife Refuges in Wyoming

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Visiting National Wildlife Refuges in Wyoming can give you a feeling of pride at being an American. The National Refuge program operates for the purpose of maintaining lands, not recreation, though recreation takes place there, and not for human beings though there are plenty who come and visit at Wyoming National Wildlife Refuges every year. The point of the National Wildlife Refuge is to insure that large parcels of land valuable as habitats for wildlife are maintained. It may be at the same time one of the most selfless and selfish acts coming out of Congress, for in some ways by saving wildlife we save a little bit of who we are as well.

 

National Elk Refuge, Jackson, Wyoming. Set aside as a large game refuge in 1912, the National Elk Refuge has successfully maintained a large herd of one of nature’s most imposing creatures, the elk. The refuge is managed is such a way as to provide a livable habitat for half of a herd of some 14,000 elk in an area just outside of the town of Jackson Wyoming and near Yellowstone and Grand Teton’s National Parks. The unique nature of this very special National Wildlife Refuge and the majesty of its main residents result each year in a visitors and seasonal hunters list that reaches 1 million people.

For visitors coming to visit the National Elk Refuge during the winter months is an experience not to be forgotten. According to the National Elk Refuge website at http://www.fws.gov/nationalelkrefuge the National Elk Refuge is special in several ways . First it is the largest single concentration of wintering elk anywhere in the world. When you visit this refuge you are seeing something very special indeed, 5,000 or more Elk in one area at one time. Second this is not just a refuge for Elk though that is the predominant herd. The refuge is also wintering area for a herd of almost 1,000 bison. Though these numbers don’t equal the size of herds that roamed this part of the country before settlement, a herd of 1,000 bison is very impressive to most human beings today. Third within the refuge there are many other forms of wildlife that are a treat to the eye and the spirit including big horn sheep, mule dear, wolves, coyotes and host of smaller animals.

Finally when you visit the National Elk Refuge you can’t help but leaving with a desire to take better care of all of our natural resources in the way that this refuge is being managed .

Horton Lake National Wildlife Refuge. The State of Wyoming is so filled with beautiful landscape and extensive parklands that some of the smaller refuge areas can get by passed easily. Such is the case of Horton Lake National Wildlife Refuge. According to its website at http://www.fws.gov/refuges Horton Lake National Wildlife Refuge was established so that man could assist with the manipulation of water supply and grazing area to benefit migrating birds.

The location of this wildlife refuge is rather extraordinary in that it is found some 7,000 ft. above sea level. The refuge land area surrounds five natural lakes that give the area special value as a refuge For visitors the draw is always the wildlife. With large concentrations of water and high altitude the refuge has more than its share of raptors and waterfowl passing through on regular basis. There are also several prairie dog towns that allow visitors a chance to see the critters up close and personal and to photograph what they see

Like many National Wildlife Refuges, Horton Lake is open …