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)

Friday, January 4, 2008

Villagers commit to saving forest and water sources

Wahyoe Boediwardhana, The Jakarta Post, Batu, East Java

A small mosque sits atop a spring in Toyomerto hamlet, Pesanggrahan village, Batu district in Batu city, East Java. It is used for religious activities and also as a meeting place for local villagers.

The water source is one of 11 spread around the village, located between 900 to 1,000 meters above sea level, on the slopes of Mount Panderman.

According to community figure Syaifuddin, better known as Gus Udin, thanks to the small mosque, 277 household heads have united in a mission to save 11 water sources at risk of being exploited by outside parties.

Local residents are aware of the importance of reforestation and protection of the production forest area owned by the Perhutani state forestry company, spanning 21,640 hectares around the village, from illegal loggers.

According to Gus Udin, people initially opposed the conservation effort, which began in 1997. Farmers and firewood sellers depended on the trees in the production forest, which they felled and sold to make a living.

The forest is a catchment area which feeds 11 springs that people rely on for their daily needs.

The slopes of Mount Panderman at one point appeared barren due to uncontrolled logging, which triggered floods and landslides during the rainy season in 1998 and 1999. Recurrent droughts occurred during the dry season, thus affecting water quality in the 11 springs.

Residents also became prone to illnesses, such as diarrhea.

"The situation is better now. The residents have found other ways to make a living, such as raising dairy cows and cattle for meat, the results of which are starting to show," said Gus Udin.

In 1997, a rumor that a prominent businessman from Jakarta was interested in purchasing the village, including the 11 springs, prompted the local community to protect the forest and water sources in their village. They eventually formed an environmental study group called Yayasan Iqro.

"I also heard that a significant amount of gas was located in the ground below our village," said Gus Udin, who also heads the foundation.

During meetings, residents were made aware of how to preserve the surrounding environment. They were taught to change their habit of felling trees in the forest, shown how to live a more healthy lifestyle through planting trees and learned the importance of preserving their water sources. Even children were taught to cherish the environment by planting trees in the forest.

After three years, the group imposed stiff regulations in the form of customary law, which residents mutually agreed on.

The punishments are quite stern; anyone caught felling a tree is required to pay a fine of a truck-load of sand, while those found felling five trees are fined 100 sacks of cement.

"Harsh punishments have been cast on the community," added Gus Udin.

The customary law is currently effective and acts as a deterrent to those who destroy the environment in the village. So far, residents have been able to protect the 11 water sources, which each supply four liters of water per second.

Each family pays a monthly fee of Rp 7,500 (approximately 83 U.S. cents) toward operational funds to manage the springs. From each fee, Rp 1,000 is set aside to fund the building of schools, roads, houses of worship and other community facilities.

To help improve people's welfare, the foundation offers credit for dairy cows and cattle. It has so far distributed 600 heads of cattle to residents without collateral.

This scheme has somewhat been able to change the look of Pesanggrahan village, which is evident from the 3,600 dairy cows and cattle already raised by the villagers.

The residents can now even fulfill their household energy needs by turning cattle dung into butane biogas to light their stoves and lamps.

"Residents can finally save on fuel and electricity," said Gus Udin.

A villager, Lasmi, 50, said she was able to make use of biogas from cattle manure after receiving a grant from the Indonesian Forum for the Environment (Walhi) for a pilot project in 2005.

Gas is channeled through a small pipe to her stove and lamps from the back of her home, which is directly next door to a cattle shed.

Two structures resembling septic tanks are stored inside the cow shed; one is used to store the manure, which is connected to the other that collects gas.

"We no longer buy kerosene because we can use biogas derived from cattle dung," Lasmi said.

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