Robber fly - Nature photographer Thomas Shahan specializes in amazing portraits of tiny insects. It isn't easy. Shahan says that this Robber Fly (Holcocephala fusca), for instance, is "skittish" and doesn't like its picture taken.

Eye-popping bug photos

Nature by Numbers (Video)

"The Greater Akashic System" – July 15, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Caroll) (Subjects: Lightworkers, Intent, To meet God, Past lives, Universe/Galaxy, Earth, Pleiadians, Souls Reincarnate, Invention: Measure Quantum state in 3D, Recalibrates, Multi-Dimensional/Divine, Akashic System to change to new system, Before religion changed the system, DNA, Old system react to Karma, New system react to intent now for next life, Animals (around humans) reincarnate again, This Animal want to come back to the same human, Akashic Inheritance, Reincarnate as Family, Other Planets, Global Unity … etc.)

Question: Dear Kryon: I live in Spain. I am sorry if I will ask you a question you might have already answered, but the translations of your books are very slow and I might not have gathered all information you have already given. I am quite concerned about abandoned animals. It seems that many people buy animals for their children and as soon as they grow, they set them out somewhere. Recently I had the occasion to see a small kitten in the middle of the street. I did not immediately react, since I could have stopped and taken it, without getting out of the car. So, I went on and at the first occasion I could turn, I went back to see if I could take the kitten, but it was to late, somebody had already killed it. This happened some month ago, but I still feel very sorry for that kitten. I just would like to know, what kind of entity are these animals and how does this fit in our world. Are these entities which choose this kind of life, like we do choose our kind of Human life? I see so many abandoned animals and every time I see one, my heart aches... I would like to know more about them.

Answer: Dear one, indeed the answer has been given, but let us give it again so you all understand. Animals are here on earth for three (3) reasons.

(1) The balance of biological life. . . the circle of energy that is needed for you to exist in what you call "nature."

(2) To be harvested. Yes, it's true. Many exist for your sustenance, and this is appropriate. It is a harmony between Human and animal, and always has. Remember the buffalo that willingly came into the indigenous tribes to be sacrificed when called? These are stories that you should examine again. The inappropriateness of today's culture is how these precious creatures are treated. Did you know that if there was an honoring ceremony at their death, they would nourish you better? Did you know that there is ceremony that could benefit all of humanity in this way. Perhaps it's time you saw it.

(3) To be loved and to love. For many cultures, animals serve as surrogate children, loved and taken care of. It gives Humans a chance to show compassion when they need it, and to have unconditional love when they need it. This is extremely important to many, and provides balance and centering for many.

Do animals know all this? At a basic level, they do. Not in the way you "know," but in a cellular awareness they understand that they are here in service to planet earth. If you honor them in all three instances, then balance will be the result. Your feelings about their treatment is important. Temper your reactions with the spiritual logic of their appropriateness and their service to humanity. Honor them in all three cases.

Dian Fossey's birthday celebrated with a Google doodle

Dian Fossey's birthday celebrated with a Google doodle
American zoologist played by Sigourney Weaver in the film Gorillas in the Mist would have been 82 on Thursday (16 January 2014)

Monday, January 14, 2008

RI rubber business set to reach new heights

Rendi Akhmad Witular, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

If booming investment in the rubber processing sector amid tight raw material supply is any indication, the country's natural rubber business is set to reach new heights in the coming year.

The Indonesian Rubber Association (Gapkindo), said 10 new rubber processing plants came into operation by local and foreign firms last year, with the largest being a unit in Jambi owned by Japan's giant trading company Itochu Corporation.

"Last year was marked by ... big corporations with integrated supply chains setting up new processing plants here. The trend is expected to continue this year," Gapkindo chairman Daud Husni Bastari told The Jakarta Post recently.

Last year's newcomers, some of them also owned by big rubber players from Thailand and Malaysia, have a combined installed capacity of 360,000 tons annually, with Itochu's unit alone contributing around 100,000 tons.

In total, the industry now has the capacity to process 3.3 million tons of rubber a year.

Raw natural rubber needs to be processed before it can be exported or transferred into another products. Processing companies are thus the middle chain in rubber trading industry, between producers and manufacturers.

Indonesia is the world's second largest rubber exporter after Thailand. In 2006, the country exported 2.28 million tons of rubber valued at $4.32 billion. In the first 10 months of last year, export reached 1.87 million tons, a 4.9 percent increase from the same period in 2006.

Gapkindo forecasted this year export was likely to increase by at least 6 to 7 percent.

Indonesia, Thailand and Malaysia supply around 70 percent of the world's natural rubber.

Since 2001, Indonesia has seen the highest annual export growth, 8.94 percent, as compared to Thailand's 3.02 percent.

"The growth surely will be promising this year. I cannot cite any vital factors likely to undermine the price and output," said Azrul Latif, investment relations officer for the publicly listed plantation company PT Bakrie Sumatera Plantation.

Azrul cited higher oil prices and demand for automotive products as key factors in maintaining the rubber boom.

Gapkindo believed this growth was likely to trigger another wave of investments in the processing sector this year, as signaled by a plan from at least nine newcomers to set up plants with a combined capacity of 230,000 tons per year.

Investment for setting up a processing plant with a capacity of 48,000 tons a year is estimated at a minimum of Rp 60 billion (US$6.38 million).

For the country's rubber farmers, who are mostly operating in fairly remote villages scattered in Sumatra and part of Kalimantan, these new investments will be among the catalysts for a higher rubber price.

"Amid limited supply of natural rubber, processing companies will be racing to buy rubber ... which will increase the commodity's price. This is good for farmers," said Daud, who manages rubber processing firm PT Badja Baru.

Proceeds from planting rubber have far-reaching effects on people living in remote areas due to the fact that 85 percent of the country's 3.3-million-hectare rubber plantations are managed by farmers, with only 15 percent by corporations.

This is not the case for other booming commodities, such as oil palm, where 65 percent of the plantations are controlled by big companies, leaving only 35 percent for local farmers.

However, not all looks rosy for the rubber industry. Processing companies can only use a maximum of 70 percent of their installed production capacity due to the lack of rubber.

"I am concerned that there will be leeway for big companies, especially those from overseas, to plunder local small and medium-sized processing firms in a price war to buy rubber from farmers," said Daud.

The limited supply is primarily triggered by the inability of rubber farmers to gain capital access in revitalizing their plantations. Most of the farmers have no land certificates, which is a key requirement for applying for bank loans.

Another factor is the lack of access to high quality seeds at affordable prices.

Due to these problems, Gapkindo said productivity in the country's rubber plantations remained low compared to those of Thailand and even Vietnam, a newcomer to the rubber business.

With 3.3 million hectares, Indonesian farmers can only produce 967 kilograms per hectare per year, while Thailand, with only 2.3 million hectares, can produce 1,775 kilograms per hectare per year.

Farmers and companies in Indonesia are also reluctant to expand rubber plantations due to the fact that the oil palm business is considered more lucrative, and also because of an existing deal between major rubber producing countries not to aggressively open up new plantations in order to prevent oversupply.

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