Tadpole rain in Japan

Tadpole rain in Japan --
Tadpole rain, Hiroshima prefecture, June 15

Over the past few weeks, people in Japan have been witnessing tadpoles, fish and frogs fall from the sky. Ever since the strange phenomenon was first observed in Ishikawa prefecture on June 4, reports of animal rain have been pouring in from prefectures across the country.

So far, nobody has come up with a plausible explanation for the animal rain. Although some people believe the tadpole showers may be the result of weather disturbances such as waterspouts, no meteorological agencies have observed strong wind or unstable weather conditions in any of the areas where the rain has occurred. Others believe birds may be spitting up large quantities of tadpoles, although many ornithologists dispute this claim. Still others have suggested it may be the work of human pranksters, or even extraterrestrials.

Here is a brief timeline of the occurrences reported so far. This page will be updated as new reports emerge.

* * * * *

June 4, Ishikawa prefecture — At 4:30 PM in the town of Nanao, witnesses discovered approximately 100 dead tadpoles in a 300 square meter area in and around the parking lot outside the Nakajima Civic Center. Witnesses described hearing a strange sound outside before finding the tadpoles.

Raining tadpoles --
Tadpoles on car windshield, Ishikawa prefecture, June 4

June 6, Ishikawa prefecture — At 7:00 AM in the town of Hakusan, a 75-year-old resident found a handful of tadpole carcasses on the hood of her car. More were found scattered in nearby yards and parking lots.

June 9, Ishikawa prefecture — In the town of Nakanoto, a number of small fish were found scattered over a residential area. About 10 fish recovered from roadsides and the tops of cars appeared to be Crucian carp measuring 3 to 5 centimeters long.

Raining fish in Japan -- Raining fish in Japan --
Crucian carp, Ishikawa prefecture, June 9

June 13, Iwate prefecture — At about 6:00 PM in the town of Shiwa, a 67-year-old farmer was tending her field when she heard what sounded like hailstones hitting the ground around her. She found 15 tadpole carcasses. The local meteorological agency reported the weather was calm at the time, and a local ornithologist said he found it improbable that birds dropped them.

June 15, Nagano prefecture — In the morning, about 40 tadpole carcasses were found on the premises of an elementary school in the town of Suzaka.

June 15, Hiroshima prefecture — At 8:30 AM in the town of Miyoshi, a 60-year-old resident found the carcasses of 13 tadpoles and one frog scattered in the yard and on the roof of her home. (See photo above.)

June 15, Miyagi prefecture — At about 5:00 PM in the town of Taiwa, a 74-year-old resident heard what sounded like rain outside her home. She stepped outside to find about 50 tadpoles scattered in the yard and on the roof. The tadpoles were wet, but none of them were alive. According to the woman, the sky was clear and there was no wind. She saw no birds in the sky.

Tadpole rain in Japan -- Tadpole rain in Japan --
Left: Miyagi prefecture, June 15 // Right: Iwate prefecture, June 17

June 16, Aichi prefecture — At around 8:00 AM, a 45-year-old company employee was driving through the town of Chiryu on his way to work, when he heard the sound of something pelting the roof of his car. When he arrived at work, he found 25 tadpole carcasses, each about 5 centimeters long, splattered on the top and sides of his vehicle.

Tadpole rain in Japan --
Aichi prefecture, June 16

Some of the tadpoles were bloody and looked as if they had fallen from a great height. According to the man, there were no tall buildings nearby and the sky was clear. “At first I though birds had crapped on my car,” he said. “I was surprised to find tadpoles.”

June 16, Saitama prefecture — At 1:00 PM in the town of Kuki, a 77-year-old man reportedly found over 20 carcasses of tadpoles and small fish in his yard. The man lives about 1 kilometer away from a patch of woods where crows roost. He believes the birds dropped the tadpoles and fish in his yard.

Tadpole rain in Japan --
Saitama prefecture, June 16

June 16, Miyagi prefecture — At around 4:00 PM in the town of Osaki, a 54-year-old resident reportedly found about 20 carcasses of tadpoles and small fish in her yard.

June 17, Iwate prefecture — At 5:00 AM, while walking to his rice field, a 66-year-old farmer in the town of Yahaba heard what sounded like large raindrops hitting the ground around him. He found about 30 tadpole carcasses, each about 3 to 4 centimeters long, on the road. Most of them appeared crushed, as if they had fallen a great distance. He spotted a crow flying in the sky above, but he doubts the bird dropped the tadpoles. He said there was no wind at the time. (See photo above.)

June 17, Fukui prefecture — A 67-year-old resident of the town of Sabae found about 40 tadpole carcasses outside her home in the morning. The tadpoles, which measured about 3 to 4 centimeters long, were moist. Some of them were crushed and bleeding. The weather had been fine, and the woman reportedly heard nothing strange the night before.

Tadpole rain in Japan --
Fukui prefecture, June 17

June 17, Toyama prefecture — At 8:40 AM in the town of Asahi, a 59-year-old company worker found about 30 tadpoles scattered on the road in front of his home. The tadpoles measured about 3 centimeters long and had begun to develop legs. The weather was calm and partly cloudy, making it unlikely they were swept up in a gust of wind. A local biologist says that the tadpoles may have died from dehydration after venturing out from a nearby rice field. The man believes they may have been dropped by crows.

Tadpole rain in Japan --
Toyama prefecture, June 17

June 17, Akita prefecture — At 10:30 AM in the town of Ugo, a 37-year-old candy shop manager found about 70 tadpole carcasses in yards and on the streets near her store. Most of the tadpoles, which measured about 2 to 3 centimeters long, appeared crushed. The shop is located in a residential area near rice fields and a river. She blames birds.

Tadpole rain in Japan --
Akita prefecture, June 17

June 17, Kagoshima prefecture — While taking an evening walk, a 58-year-old company employee in the town of Isa came across about 20 tadpole carcasses in the street. According to the man, there were rice paddies nearby, but the road was dry.

[Compiled from multiple sources]

* * * * *

Saitama prefecture, late May — In a loosely related story, an employee at a nursing home in the town of Sakado found a mummified snake on a wooden deck outside the facility one morning. The mummy, which measures about 30 centimeters long and appear to be the dried remains of a baby Japanese striped snake or Japanese rat snake, is coiled up in a strike pose.

Mysterious snake mummy --
Mysterious mummified snake, Saitama prefecture

It is unclear where the snake came from and how it made its way to the nursing home, although it appears to have fallen from the sky (perhaps it was dropped by a bird). The employee, who believes the unusual find is a sign of good luck, put the snake mummy on display in a glass case in the lobby. However, he was forced to remove it after some residents complained.

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Gay penguin couple adopts abandoned egg in German zoo

Two male Humboldt penguins cautiously guard the entrance to their cave in the zoological park in Bremerhaven, northern Germany, where they are foster dads to a six-week-old penguin chick.

Two male Humboldt penguins cautiously guard the entrance to their cave in the zoological park in Bremerhaven, northern Germany, where they are foster dads to a six-week-old penguin chick. (Focke Strangmann/Associated Press)Keepers at Germany's Bremerhaven zoo couldn't get two penguin parents to take care of their egg, so they're trying an experiment — they gave the egg to a gay male penguin couple.

The biological parents "always rolled the egg out of their nest, they kicked it out again and again," zoo veterinarian Joachim Schoene said.

"Then we made the decision not to give it up and instead try to give it two fathers."

So far, the experiment has been a success. The two foster dads incubated the egg for 30 days until it hatched and have continued to care for the newborn chick.

The male penguins, named Z and Vielpunkt, are one of three same-sex pairs of Humboldt penguins at the zoo. That means almost a third of the zoo's 20 penguins who have attempted to mate exhibit homosexual behaviour. Same-sex penguin pairs have also been observed at zoos in Japan and New York.

The behaviour is not considered unusual because homosexuality has been well documented in the animal kingdom.

Scientific observation has shown that most sexual encounters between giraffes are homosexual. Male bottlenose dolphin calves often form homosexual bonds and exhibit bisexual behaviour when they're older. And female Japanese macaques, or snow monkeys, form monogamous relationships with each other that last from days to weeks.

All of these behaviours have been observed in the wild and do not appear to have been influenced by a scarcity of available mates of the opposite sex.

A similar experiment was performed at New York City's Central Park Zoo in 2004. Two male chinstrap penguins named Roy and Silo incubated an egg together and raised the chick, called Tango, when she hatched.

A children's book written about the New York penguins called And Tango Makes Three has been the book with the most requests for removal from libraries in the United States over the past three years, according the American Library Association.

Z, Vielpunkt and their adopted chick have proven a hit with visitors to the Bremerhaven zoo.

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Man decorates basement with $10 worth of Sharpie


When Charlie Kratzer started on the basement art project in his south Lexington home, he was surrounded by walls painted a classic cream. Ten dollars of Magic Marker and Sharpie later, the place was black and cream and drawn all over.

There are fictional detectives Hercule Poirot and Sherlock Holmes, Winston Churchill lounging with George Bernard Shaw — and the TV squirrel Rocky and his less adroit moose pal Bullwinkle.

Says Kratzer of his cartoon of a cartoon: "You appreciate the cleverness more as an adult."

There's Georges Seurat's Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte. There is Blenheim Palace, the birthplace of Winston Churchill, and the Cornell Law School, of which Kratzer is an alumnus. There is Kratzer's dad. There is the harlequin pattern — alluded to in culinary culture today by the Panera bread bag — and a fake fireplace facing a real one.

There are both The Walrus and the Carpenter (from Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There), and William Shakespeare. The Marx Brothers peer around a corner. A flip-top garbage can is transformed via marker art into Star Wars' plucky little beeper R2D2.

Says Kratzer, 53, the associate general counsel for Lexmark: "People are amazed that with something as simple and inexpensive as a Sharpie, you can decorate a whole basement."

How did this Sharpie world start? With a single swipe of the marker.

Kratzer started mid-wall, with the Salon by Picasso. Then he thought, well, taking a design out to the edge of the wall wouldn't be overwhelming.

Then the rest of the basement flared off that first wall.

Kratzer's basement suggests that the great cultural influences wandered out of college humanities class — here a Churchill for eloquence during harsh times, a Joan Crawford for cinematic vampiness, Holmes and Poirot for great literary characterization — and set up shop together in the carefully hand-drawn markings of an educated imagination come to life.

Kratzer might be a lawyer by day, but in his off hours he is a man who has taken the artistic influences and heroes of his life and imagined them onto his walls, that he might keep company with them while he uses the pool table.

Look carefully in this basement o' dreams and you'll see a drawing of the Kratzers' upstairs library — with Claude Monet, the greatest of the Impressionists, at the doorway. It's a tribute to Monet, but it's also a way of living with cultural influences: Kratzer and his wife, Deb, don't just keep them within book covers or admire them in museums. Their Picasso spends each day close to their pinball machine. Agatha Christie's shrewd little Belgian detective and his carefully pruned mustache hover over the deck door.

From the main floor leading down to the basement, there is a color mural inspired by Picasso's The Dream.

But through most of the spacious basement there is black line-drawing — around the pinball machine and the pool table and over the bathtub and toilet.

Why the black marker theme? Says Kratzer: "You can do a lot with it."

Indeed, Sharpie art has its own little corner of the Internet: Artist Justine Ashbee, at, features a gallery of intricate Sharpie art.

Kratzer likes the Impressionists, but he's also inspired by Picasso — in particular the artist's ability to convey a lot of information with just a few lines. A gathering at Picasso's Paris salon in 1919 dominates a far wall, featuring a pantheon of artistic greats including Jean Cocteau, Erik Satie, Clive Bell and Olga Picasso, striking a kind of Sharpie synthesis of marker art between film, music, dance, literature and the muse.

While Kratzer's basement mural art might have started with one mark, he had decided in his 30s that he wanted Impressionist art in his house, quite a lot of it, and that to afford such a stunning variety he'd best produce it himself.

He began to paint, and now there are paintings all over the house — created by Charlie and critiqued and guided by Deb. The two met at Muhlenberg College in Pennsylvania. Deb, now an at-home mom, formerly taught deaf students.

The couple has two sons, one at a Massachusetts engineering college, the other in the pre-engineering program at Lafayette High School.

Says Deb: "I have the coolest husband. He's so bright, and artistic on top of it."

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Fetus Eating Sect in South China

This time is almost like, "Eating-disgusting-things" posts..
But I cannot stand not to post this one, maybe some of you had already heard the story about, Chinese eating babies. This rumor has become popular back then. I was stumbling and I found this one! Very very very disturbing indeed.

I don't know if this is real or not, I've checked on Google, read everything about it, but nobody sure the truth lies behind this story.

This image is really DISTURBING, I've warned you who have weak stomach to not see this one.

of English to Speakers of Other Languages are known for xeno-philiac
eccentricity and bizarre, unstable behavior,
but this is mostly due to the weird and exotic locals in which we often end up plying our trade.

Be that as it may, this story goes beyond the pale. Even a twisted and cynical fan of the outre like the Dowbrigade has certain standards. They may be low, but they are there. Of course, they don’t prevent us from reporting that a TESOL teacher in Guandong
has penetrated a semi-secret sect of - Fetus Eating!

Recently a Guangdong Factory
Owner from Taiwan was discovered partaking in an
appalling new trend; eating babies. For 4000 yuan
a person can order 7-month-old baby stewed for 8 hours with Chinese herbs. This dish is thought to boost the “yang” (as in yin and yang).

The Factory Owner who was interviewed for the story is 62 years old and was having trouble keeping up with his 19 year old wife in the bed room until he found this miracle stew. He says that he depends on the soup to “keep it up” each night for his randy bride.

The restaurant in Foshan, (Guangdong Province, Southern China) code names the dish “ribs”. The chef collects girl babies from the surrounding poor
villagers; sometimes an aborted foetus, sometimes a still born, sometimes the unwanted (and unlawful) second baby. The restaurant pays depending on the size of the baby. Sometimes they would pay a full-term mother 2000 Yuan for her live baby.

Only fresh babies are used, no frozen babies.

from China and Beyond: TESOL Around the World

Even if they said Chinese eat this, please don't put comment like mocking the Chinese (I'm half blood Chinese), not all Chinese eat these! -.-

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