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.

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)

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Farming Groups Supporting Dow's Controversial Genetically Modified Corn Have Financial And Executive Backing From Agricultural Biotech Industry

International Business Times, by Ashley Portero, May 12, 2012

Small farmers and public health advocates are protesting the USDA's
expected approval of Dow's new genetically engineered corn, which is
 bred to be resistant to 2, 4-D, arguing it will lead to an increased use of
the herbicide -- one of the active ingredients in Agent Orange.
(Photo: Reuters)


As the U.S. Department of Agriculture readies its decision on whether to approve for widespread use Dow Chemical Co.'s (NYSE: DOW) new genetically engineered corn, the chemical company is touting a broad coalition of support among farmers to increase the likelihood that the agency approves the product.

Dow is taking this step to counter claims that the new corn, called Enlist, could encourage the use of a powerful herbicide found in the Vietnam War defoliant Agent Orange, because Enlist is designed to be resistant to this chemical. Enlist's opponents say that if this herbicide is more widely employed, the environment and public health would be endangered. More than 140 agricultural, consumer, environmental and public-health groups sent USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack a letter, which was signed by 365,000 people last month urging him to reject the crop.

In response to an article we ran in late April about this campaign, Dow dismissed as "hyperbole" criticism surrounding Enlist. The company said the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency determined 2, 4-D (the Agent Orange herbicide) poses "a reasonable certainty of no harm," and that, in fact, a different chemical, 2,4,5-T, is the principal contaminant in Agent Orange.

"The surest way to increase per acre herbicide volume is to do nothing to solve the weed resistance problem," Dow wrote. "Returning to agriculture as it was 20 years ago ... will merely force farmers into additional cultivation connected with increasing erosion, agricultural runoff, soil compaction and fuel use with attendant contributions to air pollution."

To bolster its position, Dow sent us a list of "mainstream agricultural organizations" that the company said concur with its assessment. In a letter sent to the USDA, these groups insisted that further evaluations of 2, 4-D would disrupt the agricultural industry and deny "valuable tools to U.S. farmers by requiring costly and unwarranted environmental reviews."

While Dow has publicized this letter as a means of demonstrating the support for its new corn by industry heavyweights, an analysis of the organizations reveals that they are either backed by or led by key players in the genetically modified organism (GMO) industry. In other words, rather than being a group of unbiased representatives of agricultural interests, these groups stand to benefit from Enlist's successful introduction to the market.

Monsanto Connection

Six of the nine groups on Dow's list have clear connections to Monsanto Co. (NYSE: MON), one of the world's leading producers of GMO seeds and herbicides. The company helped launch the GMO wave more than a decade ago with the release of genetically engineered Roundup Ready seeds manufactured to resist Monsanto's own Roundup herbicide. Among Monsanto's Roundup Ready crops are soybeans, alfalfa, corn, cotton, spring canola, sugar beets and winter canola.

Roundup Ready crops account for 90 percent of the soybeans and about 70 percent of corn and cotton produced in the U.S., according to the USDA. Like Dow, the company is also seeking regulatory approval for crops resistant to multiple herbicides, as its glyphosate-based Roundup continues to lose its potency in the face of so-called "superweeds."

These are the links between the agricultural groups supporting Enlist and Monsanto:

  • The Agricultural Retailers Association -- a Monsanto representative is a member of the board of directors for crop and seed production
  • American Seed Trade Association -- its non-profit "First the Seed Foundation," which promotes seed biotechnology, is funded by the American Seed Trade, which itself is backed financially by Monsanto
  • American Sugarbeet Growers Association -- Monsanto is a financial sponsor
  • Biotechnology Industry Association -- Monsanto officials serve on the executive committee and as vice chair of the food and agriculture governing board
  • National Wheat Growers Association -- Monsanto is a "diamond" level sponsor
  • National Corn Growers Association -- the group's chairman, Bart W. Schott, is a liaison to the Monsanto Grower Advisory Committee
  • In addition, a Dow AgroSciences representative serves on governing bodies of the Biotechnology Industry Association. And Dow is a "bronze" level backer of the National Wheat Growers Association.

The three other signatories to the USDA letter -- the American Farm Bureau Federation, American Soybean Association and the National Cotton Council -- do not appear to have any professional ties to either Monsanto or Dow.

However, all of those organizations specifically describe biotechnology as "the future of modern agriculture" on their websites. Plus, most soybean and cotton crops come from Roundup Ready seeds. Hence, trade groups created around these plants are invested in the creation of new, multi-herbicide resistant seeds that can withstand herbicides such as 2, 4-D.

The Problem of 2, 4-D and Herbicide Resistance

Aside from the potentially problematic connection of 2, 4-D to Agent Orange, disputed by Dow, the chemical may pose its own risks. For example, the herbicide has been known to drift when sprayed, damaging and even destroying neighboring crops that are not genetically engineered to resist it. Dow claims a new 2, 4-D herbicide that it has developed alongside Enlist corn reduces drift by at least 90 percent.

In addition to corn, Dow is also developing soybeans and cotton with 2, 4-D resistance. Critics warn that this is only a temporary fix to the rapidly increasing problem of herbicide resistance, insisting the introduction of new and potentially toxic herbicides will deepen a vicious cycle akin to a chemical arms race with weeds.

"Dow's 2, 4-D crops are no 'solution' to glyphosate-resistant weeds. After at best temporary relief, they will trigger an outbreak of still more intractable weeds resistant to both glyphosate and 2, 4-D," wrote the coalition of critics in their letter to the USDA.

What's Next?

Dow hopes the USDA will approve Enlist soon and that the product will be available to farmers by 2013.

For its part, Dow insists that impeding the sale and use of its new Enlist products could have drastic impacts for both the American agricultural industry and the international community.

"The recommendations that pesticide opponents are making today would make farming less efficient at a time when global crop production is barely keeping pace with food demand driven by a word population expansion," Dow wrote in a statement. "It would also further impair U.S. farm productivity in a difficult economy at a time when agricultural exports are one of the single greatest contributors to our nation's balance of trade."

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