Date: August 2nd, 2016 | Comments : none | Categories: China, conservation, Cultures, Design, Historic significance, Series, Travel, Unusual Interest.

Terracotta Warriors and crowds of tourists, Xi'an, ChinaTerracotta Warriors, Xi’an, China. Archaologists are still unearthing, reassembling and documenting miles and miles of terracotta statues. Bones of the terracotta artist/sculptors have been found among the ruins.

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Terracotta Warriors, Xi'an, China Terracotta Warriors, Xi'an, China Terracotta Warriors, Xi'an, China

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Terracotta Warrior's horses, Xi'an, China

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Terracotta Warriors, Xi'an, China

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Archeaologists at the Terracotta Warriors site, Xi'an, China Terracotta Warriors unearthed, Xi'an, China Bones of Terracotta Warriors artists found on site, Xi'an, China

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Terracotta Warriors site, Xi'an, China

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One of three main buildings of Terracotta Warriors sites, Xi'an, China

 

Date: July 31st, 2016 | Comments : none | Categories: Architecture, China, conservation, Cultures, Design, Green, Historic significance, Landscape, Leaves, Mountains, Series, Summer, Travel, Trees.

Landscape seen from a turret on The Great Wall near Bejing, China

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The Great Wall near Bejing, ChinaThe Great Wall of China – portion near Bejing that has been rebuilt since its original construction during the Ming Dynasty (1368–1644).

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The Great Wall landscape near Bejing, China The Great Wall landscape near Bejing, China The Great Wall near Bejing, China

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The Great Wall landscape near Bejing, China

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Elm tree, The Great Wall of China Preserving part of the original construction on The Great Wall near Bejing, China

 

Date: July 7th, 2015 | Comments : none | Categories: conservation, Design, Environmental issues, Green, issues, Landscape, Oregon, Summer, Travel, Travel USA, Trees, USA.

Shepherd's Flat Wind Farm near Arlington, ORStorm near Echo, OR on the Oregon TrailShepherd’s Flat Wind Farm near Arlington, OR and storm over flat terrain near Echo, OR on the Oregon Trail, just before crossing the Wallowa Mountains.

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Greenwood Tree Farm, Columbia Basin, Hwy 84, OregonDriving past the perfectly aligned poplar trees on the Greenwood Tree Farm, Columbia Basin, Hwy 84, eastern Oregon. Large sections of trees at various ages can be seen from the highway. The company specializes in the hybridization of fast-growing, high yield poplar trees, and managing sustainable tree farms with the aim to help reduce reliance on natural forests and non-renewable energy sources.

 

Date: January 25th, 2013 | Comments : none | Categories: Arizona, conservation, Environmental issues, Landscape, Seasonal, Travel, Travel USA, Trees, Urban and State Parks, USA, winter.

Cottonwood-Willow forest, The Hassayampa River Riparian Area, Peoria AZ Endangered Cottonwood-Willow Riparian forest, The Hassayampa River area, Peoria AZ. A local legend says that people who drink from the Hassayampa River will never tell the truth again.

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Cottonwood-Willow forest, The Hassayampa River Riparian Area, Peoria AZCottonwood-Willow forest, The Hassayampa River Riparian Area, Peoria AZ

 

Date: April 22nd, 2012 | Comments : none | Categories: beach, conservation, Landscape, Oregon, Oregon beaches, seascape, Spring, Travel USA, Urban and State Parks, USA.

Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach ORHaystack Rock, on the beach by the town of Cannon Beach, Oregon, was formed by lava flows occurring about 15-16 million years ago. The rock was granted Marine Garden status by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife in 1990 because it is a nesting site for many seabirds, in particular the Puffin. During early Summer, wildlife officers and volunteers are there to answer questions about the birds and many forms of marine life living in its tidal pools, plus they stand guard to ensure that no one climbs the rocks to disturb nests.

Haystack Rock is featured as scenery in U.S. advertising, and movies such as ‘The Goonies’, ‘1941’, and ‘Kindergarten Cop’.

Oregon beaches are rugged, and due to the inconsistent, unpredictable weather, are not so much tourist destinations for tanning, but are perfect for recreation like walking, hiking, kayaking and wind-surfing. Campfires are permitted on many of the Oregon beaches – not Cannon Beach though – and are great for family gatherings and picnics. Cannon Beach is generally warmer and less windy than many of the coastal locations not far from Portland.

 

Date: August 22nd, 2011 | Comments : none | Categories: Animals, conservation, Oregon, Smile, USA.

Black Bears, Oregon Zoo

 

Date: May 24th, 2010 | Comments : none | Categories: Birds, conservation, Singapore, Travel, Urban and State Parks.

Scarlet Ibis, Jurong Bird Park, SingaporeA few of the birds at the Jurong Bird Park, Singapore

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Stork grooming above us in a tree, Jurong Bird Park, SingaporePelican, Jurong Bird Park, SingaporeStork, Jurong Bird Park, Singapore

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Jurong Bird Park, Singapore

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Stork feeding in a pond at the Jurong Bird Park, SingaporeFlamingos at the Jurong Bird Park, SingaporeCormorant drying out its wings at the Jurong Bird Park, Singapore

 

Date: January 6th, 2010 | Comments : none | Categories: Animals, beach, California, City Streets, conservation, Smile, Travel, Travel USA, Unusual Interest, USA, winter.

Sea Lions, Crescent City, CASea Lions, Crescent City, CA

 

Date: September 29th, 2009 | Comments : none | Categories: Autumn, conservation, Environmental issues, Flowers, issues, Landscape, New Mexico, Seasonal, Sky, Storms, Summer, Travel, Travel USA, wildflowers, yellow.

Autumn storm near Taos, New Mexico. Wildflowers: Bird's Beak
I recently watched a very interesting documentary about the perilous state of our planet, and things we can do to affect the course of necessary change. Narrated by Leonardo Dicaprio I highly recommend seeing this film,  The 11th Hour

 

Date: August 8th, 2009 | Comments : none | Categories: Animals, conservation, Dallas, Dallas World Aquarium, Reptiles, Texas, Trees.

Iguana, Dallas World Aquarium

 

Date: June 14th, 2009 | Comments : none | Categories: Animals, Aquatic creatures, conservation, Dallas, Dallas World Aquarium, Texas, USA, Water.

Giant River Otter at the  Dallas World AquariumThe Giant River Otters at the Dallas World Aquarium are rarely out, and when they are, there’s such a crowd gathered around it’s difficult to move forward or even try to get past them to go onto the next exhibit. I was lucky to take this photo from the third floor.

 

Date: March 15th, 2009 | Comments : none | Categories: Animals, conservation, Cultures, Historic significance, issues, Reptiles, Seasonal, Series, Spring, Texas, Travel, Travel USA, Unusual Interest, USA.

Thousands of rattlesnakes are caught for the Rattlesnake Roundup in Sweetwater, Texas each year. Here,1 of 4 pits. Thousands of rattlesnakes are caught for the Rattlesnake Roundup each year. The arena is divided into sections for wrangling demos, milking, skinning, crafts etc.

Rattlesnake wrangling You can get your picture taken beside a live snake bearing fangs Children watch the snake wranglers

Individuality - each snake has its own unique skin color and pattern Barrel of snakes that have just had heads cut off, ready for skinning Bloody Snake-skinning hand-prints, proudly signed

Individuality Deep-fried rattlesnake - all bones and grease! Miss Roundup and the rattlesnake eating contest

Taxidermy for sale Fang-bearing snake heads in jars for $11 each Crafty key-rings

Rattlesnake Roundup, Sweetwater, Texas March 13 – 15, 2009

From a cultural standpoint, I was quite curious about the Texan Rattlesnake Roundup. Attending, the view was to try to be unbiased and open-minded without any preset opinions. Still, as an animal rights ally I was interested to know whether the four event-filled days were about rattlesnake-appreciation or rattlesnake-loathing. I remain mystified, because it seems to be a mishmash of both.
Driving the three and half hours it takes to get back to Dallas, I marveled how what is acceptable for some, is taboo and unconscionable for others. Since many customs the world over, and across time, are basically borne of societal needs to collectively overcome threats and various natural causes, did this event begin in a similar way?…only here the rituals include a number of large people walking around eating disgusting, deep-fried rattlesnake that was more bone and grease than meat, and corn on the cob? Were the original celebrations of rounding up rattlesnakes actually efforts toward creating a communal mindset of safety, and have they evolved to dominate, even abuse, a predator that was perhaps more of a concern to the earliest settlers than it is now?
For Sweetwater locals, the occasion is an important part of their heritage and present lifestyle that brings the community together, draws in tourists and boosts their economy annually. Scheduled each year are: a parade, carnival grounds, a Miss Rattlesnake Roundup pageant, a Gun, Knife and Coin Show (because coins are obviously in the same category as knives and guns!), a snake-hunting competition, rattlesnake meat-eating contest, and vendors who earn a living selling various rattlesnake parts, products, and bizarre crafts. Unfortunately for raccoons and turtles it was an opportunity to sell their parts as well.
The demise of the rattlesnakes is undeniably sad and seemingly senseless, but the truth of every matter has many dimensions. It is easy to get caught up in the intrigue, and fall under the spell of groups in a festive state, to the point where I did try the deep-fried snake…but after one nip, threw it in the garbage, on top of others’ waste who had done the exact same thing.
I absolutely love reptiles, but admit to have considered buying one of the open-mouthed, fang-baring, stuffed intact, coiled-up snake souvenirs (not the ones sporting tiny cowboy hats and raccoon tails though). Although, upon guilty reflection, is one by-product any less vulgar than the other? I actually thought the coiled up rattlers ready to strike were really pretty, and only wanted one because I’m not likely to see a living one so up close and personal, hopefully.
Whether we agree or disagree, people earn a living doing things we can’t imagine. Practices and beliefs are incorporated over periods of time and passed down through generations. What was once relevant may have lost all sense currently, or in the future. Our consciousness evolves regardless though, and I wonder if in a distorted sort of way, most people leave the fairgrounds of cotton candy and snake pits every year with a deeper appreciation for the uniqueness of all creatures? I certainly did.
Only a human could come up with something so preposterous as little cowboy hats glued to rattler heads. Only a human would buy them! Generally what every pro/anti-whatever-activist-religious-righteous group is seeking is respect. It’s really about respecting all creatures, including humans, who do strange and unpredictable things.

 

Date: March 12th, 2009 | Comments : none | Categories: conservation, Flowers, Landscape, Mexico, Seasonal, Spring, Texas, Trees, Urban and State Parks.

Redbuds, early March, Coppell TexasOne Sweet World

Excerpt of One Sweet World by Songwriter Dave Matthews

Nine planets around the sun,

the only one with something there

Upon this watered one

American Elm seeds, early March, Coppell Texas

so much we take for granted

If greens all turned to grey

would our hearts still bloody be?

…so let us sleep outside tonight;

lay down in our Mother’s arms

Flowering tree needs positive ID, possibly Senna...Ajijic, Mexicoand here we will rest safely.

(The Dave Matthews Band)

 

Date: February 25th, 2009 | Comments : none | Categories: conservation, Environmental issues, Green, Historic significance, issues, petition, Seasonal, Series, South Carolina, Summer, Travel, Travel USA, Trees, Unusual Interest, Urban and State Parks, USA.

Thanks to individuals rallying together and signing the petition, we are reassured that small efforts can and do make a difference on this planet. The land surrounding the Angel Oak is no longer in jeopardy. http://www.savetheangeloak.org/

~

Update – originally posted September 11, 2008

The 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaThe 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaThe 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaThe 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaThe 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaThe 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South Carolina
This set of photos honors the efforts of a petition to halt construction on John’s Island, South Carolina that would encroach on an area of land boasting an Oak tree estimated to be between 1,400 and 1,500 years old.
Charleston, SC is proud of its heritage and respected for its commitment to preserving history in the area, so residents hope that plans will not proceed to cut down nearby trees and forest in favor of land development. Charleston, SC is proud of its heritage and respected for its commitment to preserving history in the area, and on the Angel Oak petition website, even if you don’t sign (but please do), you will still be able to read pages of interesting comments and pleas from residents who have fond memories of climbing the immense branches as children, and whose children now do the same; how a nearby elementary school carries its’ name, and exclamations by tourists who have visited the area specifically to see the Angel Oak.

The 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaThe 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaThe 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaArbourists have propped and supported the weight of the branches of the Angel Oak with stakes and cables.Arbourists have propped and supported the weight of the branches of the Angel Oak with stakes and cables.Arbourists have propped and supported the weight of the branches of the Angel Oak with stakes and cables.
This summer my husband and I drove through South Carolina and took a short detour to John’s Island. We drove through wicked rains at the edge of Tropical storm Faye, so when we arrived at Angel Oak park no one else was there. The tree trunk and lower branches are so immense, they have been propped up with stakes and heavy cables here and there, which is a little intrusive but obviously necessary. Growth is spread outward more than upward, occupying an enormous space at least 150 feet wide.

It occurred to me that this tree has lived through one serious chunk of history, and wondered what was happening on our planet when The Angel Oak was knee-high to an acorn? 1400 years ago it was the year 608 A.D., Common Era. Almost everything we are familiar with; our collective modern identity has been shaped by many of the events and people who lived and died since the Angel Tree established its first roots in the earth.

Some branches measure at least two feet in diameter near the main trunk on the 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaSome branches measure at least two feet in diameter near the main trunk on the 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaSome branches measure at least two feet in diameter near the main trunk on the 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaBranches extend over thirty feet away from the trunk on the 1500 year old Angel Oak on John\'s Island, South CarolinaBranches extend over thirty feet away from the trunk on the 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaSome branches measure at least two feet in diameter near the main trunk on the 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South Carolina

Angel Oak’s parent-tree was undoubtedly alive for centuries before and during the year 476 A.D. when the last of the Roman emperors died, bringing about the Fall of Rome. Around the 7th Century A.D. an acorn falls from one of the magnificent Oaks on the southeastern shores of a land only known to the indigenous peoples; a land we now refer to as North America. The acorn sprouts along with many others…but this one will outlive the rest, seasoning hurricanes, wars, and countless generations of playful children climbing it’s branches; it sprouts in conjunction with the collapse of Teotihuacan, one of the major cities in Mesoamerica with widespread influence in central Mexico. The Toltec civilization was unheard of, and would not flourish for another 500 years (1100-1521). Aztecs did not seize power until the 13th century.

When this tree was 300 years old during 901 A.D., the Vikings discovered Greenland. In 1066 William the Conqueror and the Norman troops conquered England altering the English culture forever by bringing French rule and rivalry with France until the The French Revolution occuring from 1789 – 1799. Circa 1100 A.D. the famous Buddhist temple, Angkor Wat in Cambodia is constructed to house the Hindu faith. Around 1275 A.D. Marco Polo, the Venetian explorer and trader visits China via the The Silk Road, returning to Europe with new foods and goods from the Orient which impact modern culture, medicine and dietary habits today.

Healthy ferns support other organisms on the branches of 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaHealthy leaves continue to thrive on the 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaHealthy leaves continue to thrive on the 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South Carolina
The Black Death devastates Europe around 1348 A.D., while the 740 year old Angel Oak thrives. Columbus and other adventurers would not claim to discover America for another 144 years (C. 1592). Leonardo da Vinci, a man light-years ahead of his time in the field of science and medicine through his various studies. By the time he would paint the Mona Lisa and Michelangelo would paint the Sistine Chapel, the Angel Oak has lived for 900 years. The Tree continues growth beyond the life of Galileo, father of modern Astronomy, and through the life of Shakespeare, who established some of the most famous English literature in our era (c. 1564 – 1616).

Healthy ferns support other organisms on the branches of 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaHealthy ferns support other organisms on the branches of 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South CarolinaHealthy ferns support other organisms on the branches of 1500 year old Angel Oak on Johns Island, South Carolina
Year 1776 – Angel Oak is 1,166 years old when the U.S. breaks free from British rule and establishes the first Independence Day In 1895, and by the time the Angel Oak had already survived for 1,287 winters Sigmund Freud would bring modern medicine and humanity into a new open-minded age by announcing his theories of dream psychoanalysis and studies of the human psyche.

The First World War between 1914-1918 was followed by WWII, 1939 -45/51.
According to after the Category 5 Hurricane Hugo hit the coast of in 1989, Governor Carroll Campbell is reported to say that the storm destroyed enough timber in South Carolina to frame a home for every family in the state of West Virginia. All those trees and forests obliterated, yet The Angel Oak survived. It has since healed injuries inflicted by Hurricane Hugo.

The petition page has so many interesting comments left by those who signed the petition.

 

Date: January 14th, 2009 | Comments : none | Categories: Animals, conservation, Elements, Environmental issues, Landscape, Summer, Texas, Travel USA.

Wildorado Wind Ranch near Adrian, TexasWildorado Wind Ranch near Adrian, TexasWildorado Wind Ranch near Adrian, Texas
Wildorado Wind Ranch
Creating fields of renewable energy themselves, a herd of cattle leisurely does what cows do best on a warm summer day, twenty five miles west of Amarillo, just outside Adrian, Texas at the Wildorado Wind Ranch where there are 70 wind turbine generators spanning the horizon. Each turbine measures 450 ft. from ground to the tip of one of three blades. Wind will generate power to parts of eight southern States: Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana.

 


 

 
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