Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Fortean / Alternative News: Monster Anaconda, NSA Verifies ET Contact and Armadillos Pass Leprosy to Humans

Monster Anaconda Sparks Fear in Brazilian City

estadao - In the metropolitan area of Grajau, Parque Residencial Lagos (Residential Park Lakes), on the banks of the Billings reservoir a snake more than 5 meters in length is scaring the 1,2 thousands of families living on site. The monster, an "Anaconda", better known in English as "Anaconda"(probably a Eunectes murinus) is considered one of the largest and most robust amid all snakes in the world.

For now, she only managed to attack animals from small to medium size, such as capybaras, chickens and ducks, but nothing prevents that she can to capture a human being, especially the smaller, such as children and adolescents.

President of the Association of Friends of the Park, Mrs. Vera Lucia baseline, 61 years (in 2011) account: This is a monster. It sticks his head out of the water and then, dives, lifting gigantic tail. Even a dog, she eaten. In the main pier of the park, a plate that was placed warns – Danger: Anaconda. Herself Basali identified the animal: I was born in Mato Grosso. This snake appears there only in the Amazon ... (but this is the anaconda pilgrim of Grajaú ...).

For unknown reasons, far from its original environment, the Anaconda found a home in Billings Dam and nobody knows how the animal got there. Amid the mystery surrounding the origin of the creature, have appeared different versions of its presence in the area.

The tongue of the people puts the blame on an unidentified Japanese. He would have taken the snake to Grajaú and began to create it. Finally, he decided to put it in the pond. The time of appearance of the snake in the water is also controversial: the majority says that it appeared about 20 days but Mrs. Janet Marques da Silva, 53, says: There is talk on this snake since 2003. Mrs. Silva believes that the snake has even some offspring: Ten, at least, the oldest to have about ten years now.

The young marketer Elanes Santos Moreira, 16, was almost a victim of the monster. Even alerted he gone to fish in the Dam. He reports: Suddenly, it appeared, put his head above water. I felt blood to fled of my face.

Mrs. Basali even tells that tried to photograph the creature but complains of fatigue, because of the vigil, day and night. Still not got the picture and describe: She's too ugly. His head has the size of a ball handball. Informed, the firemen were on standby to try to capture the animal. But the beast is unpredictable and only with a patient ambush, will can surprise the creature. Let us follow the case and await a flagrant photo of the monster of the Billings Reservoir.

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Lair of the Beasts: Creatures of the Crop

Nick Redfern examines the existence of strange creatures seen in and around crop circles. Go to Lair of the Beasts: Creatures of the Crop

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Official NSA Document Verifies Contact By Extraterrestrials

An incredible potentially groundbreaking document relating to the fact that we have intercepted extraterrestrial signals been made public by the NSA. On its own official nsa.gov website the document is entitled “Key To Extraterrestrial Messages” – by Campaigne.

In the documents index it cites ”Recently a series of series of radio message have been heard coming from outer space. The transmission was not continuous, but cut by pauses which could be taken as units, for they were repeated over and over again. The pauses show here as punctuation.“

Click here to download the document

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Uranium rush grips Zimbabwe

There is a massive scramble for old cast iron coal-heated irons around the country, as people claim the gadget is fetching a fortune on the market.

People from all walks of life are combing both urban and rural areas for the ‘treasured’ iron. “We buy the iron for an average $50 and resell it at private markets elsewhere for anything above $800. We mainly buy the irons inscribed Rhodesia, Germany and other countries, provided the item is magnetic.

“The magnetic characteristic of the iron is a result of uranium used in its manufacture. Buyers extract the uranium elements from the iron and use them for various important purposes,” said a middle-class iron buyer scouting for the gadgets in rural areas surrounding Marondera.

The scramble for the irons has gripped the country so much that former refuse dumping areas and the remotest of villages have been thoroughly combed by the fortune seekers. The old iron is the ‘talk of the moment’, but the final market remains a jealously guarded secret by buyers.

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Armadillos pass leprosy to humans, study finds

They're cute. They're often roadkill. Some gourmands say they're tasty, whether baked or barbecued.

Now Louisiana researchers have learned something else about nine-banded armadillos.

"A preponderance of evidence shows that people get leprosy from these animals," said Richard W. Truman, director of microbiology at the National Hansen's Disease Program in Baton Rouge and lead author of a paper detailing the discovery in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Until now, scientists believed that leprosy was passed only from human to human. Every year, about 100 to 150 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with the malady, which is also known as Hansen's disease. Though many have traveled to countries where the disease is relatively common, as many as a third don't know where they picked it up.

Most of those cases are in Texas and Louisiana, where leprosy-infected armadillos live too.

Now, Truman said, "we're able to provide a link."

Leprosy is caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium leprae, a cousin of the microbe that causes tuberculosis. People with leprosy develop skin lesions; severe cases can cause nerve damage or disfigurement in the limbs.

Over the years, M. leprae has proven hard to study, its migration around the globe hard to plot, for a variety of reasons. The bacterium can't be grown in a lab dish. Leprosy has a years-long incubation period and propagates slowly. It is hard to contract — only 5% of humans are susceptible, and even they usually need to have close and repeated contact with M. leprae to develop an infection.

In the past, people with leprosy were confined to leper colonies. Today, it is treatable with a combination of three antibiotics, said Dr. James Krahenbuhl, director of the National Hansen's Disease Program. About 3,600 people in the U.S. have the disease, he added, and they aren't expected to die from it.

"This is a wimp of an organism," Truman said.

Truman and co-workers had wondered for some time whether the small mammal might be transmitting leprosy. For years scientists had known that other than humans, armadillos are the only known natural hosts for M. leprae in the world. The animals get sick from M. leprae infections just like people do, and eventually die from kidney and liver damage. But unlike humans, they are more susceptible to catching the bug: In some parts of the South, more than 20% of armadillos have the infection.

Confirming that the animals could pass the disease to people required sophisticated genetic analysis. It also depended on a wealth of data accumulated over the last decade on similarities and differences among the genes of M. leprae bacteria collected around the world.

Scientists had already determined that leprosy originated in eastern Africa or the Near East, followed human migrations to Europe and, in the last 500 years, moved into west Africa and the Americas.

Building on that earlier work, Truman and his team collected samples from 50 patients with leprosy and 33 wild armadillos in the U.S., then used two types of analysis to look at sites in the M. leprae genome that are known to vary between the mammals.

One analysis, known as "SNP typing," examines single changes in the string of chemical letters that make up DNA. The team found seven different SNP patterns in their samples, but one — called 3I — was abundant, turning up in all of the armadillos and in 26 of the 29 patients with no history of foreign residence.

The scientists used a second method, known as VNTR analysis, to further classify their M. leprae samples. This technique, which looks for places in the DNA where the order of chemical letters carries small repeats, also revealed great similarity between the armadillos and the patients. Putting the two analyses together, the scientists reported that 28 of the animals and 25 of the patients who had lived near armadillos shared a genotype called 3I-2-v1.

This genotype "appears to be unique and highly distinctive," the team wrote. It has not been recorded anywhere else in the world.

The scientists concluded that the data strongly implicated armadillos as a source of human infection.

"This is good, strong genetic evidence," said Varalakshmi D. Vissa, an associate professor of microbiology, immunology and pathology at Colorado State University, who uses genetic tools to study leprosy. She was not involved in this research.

Vissa noted that while the discovery wouldn't have significance for areas of the world where leprosy is a serious health problem, such as India or China — where there are no armadillos — it is significant for fighting leprosy in the U.S.

Knowing that people can get leprosy from armadillos also might help doctors diagnose the disease more quickly.

Truman added that it might help persuade people living near armadillos — their range extends from Texas to the Carolinas — to avoid contact with the animals. That means refraining from touching, playing with and — yes — eating the critters, which are feted at armadillo festivals, cheered on at armadillo races and chased down during armadillo hunts.

"It doesn't mean people need to run away from armadillos the way they do a rattlesnake, but people need to be careful," said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, which helped fund the research. "You shoot an armadillo and try to skin it — that's the worst thing you could do." - latimes