Gelatinous blobs found in a park on Cairns street in Queensland, Australia, after rainy weather have some experts wondering if it’s a jellyfish.
But a scientist could not identify them from photos taken by Peter Burgess, who was sitting on his back veranda at his Smithfield home on a rainy Saturday, when weather conditions became more intense and what he described as a “mini tornado” hit, News.com.au reports.
“Suddenly it was extremely windy to the point where I was frightened and ran inside,” he said.
“It was exactly what I’d experienced in Sydney [in December 2005] and what was reported after ex-tropical cyclone Oswald, which created mini tornadoes sporadically down the coast.
“There were incredibly strong winds and a noise like a jet engine.”
The mini tornado went on for about a minute and affected a 656 foot stretch of a Smithfield road.
Photos of uprooted and snapped trees and two unidentified, translucent blobs, which Burgess believes are jellyfish, were captured on his phone.
If that’s what it is, they may have traveled about 2 miles inland but a leading stinger expert from James Cook University, Jamie Seymour, couldn’t identify them.
According to Robin Nataniela, forecaster at the Bureau of Meteorology, there was no official record of a mini tornado taking place in Smithfield on Saturday, but it was theoretically possible.
“It could have been a landspout, waterspout or a funnel cloud,” Nataniela said.
The substance was likely “star jelly,” which occurs after rain, and has caused quite a stir, according to the Huffington Post. The goo has been identified as frog spawn or slime mold by the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds.
“Shark tornadoes” have never been reported, but there are various accounts of tornadoes and waterspouts lifting animals like fish, frogs and even alligators and dropping them ashore, reports the Mother Nature Network.
According to a report, jellyfish, about the size of a shilling, allegedly rained by the thousands in Bath, England, in 1894.
A woman who pleaded guilty to groping and slapping a male flight attendant on an international flight last year was ordered to pay just $232 in court costs and write a letter of apology to the victim.
Alexandra Rose Williams, 36, appeared in Melbourne Magistrates Court in Australia this week and pleaded guilty to offensive and disorderly conduct on a July 19, 2013, Philippines Airlines flight from Manila to Melbourne.
Williams allegedly drank on the flight while taking sleeping pills. She lied to a flight attendant so that she could sneak into the first class cabin, telling him she wanted to a visit a friend.
He was surprised when she never returned to her coach seat and found her sitting in a first class seat listening to music on her phone.
When a flight attendant told her to return to her seat, she danced up to him and slapped him on the buttocks while attempting to kiss him. When he spurned her advances, she slapped him across the face and said, “Nobody tells me what to do.”
Her attorney, Alex Lewenberg, said the incident was out of character for Williams. He told magistrate Timothy Walsh that the mixture of drugs and alcohol heightened her already “very friendly” personality.
But on Thursday Williams was rebuked by the magistrate for dancing her way out of the courtroom.
“Pull your head in,” Walsh said. “It’s a courtroom, not a pub.”
Walsh placed her on a three-month $500 good behavior bond, ordered her to pay $232 in costs and write letters of apology to the victim and another member of the cabin crew.
A 16-foot-long great white shark dubbed “Joan of Shark” was spotted near Australia’s most popular beaches recently, detected by a satellite monitoring system that warned residents to stay clear of the water.
The shark is the largest to ever be tagged in Australia.
On Tuesday, a picture of the shark was released. Researchers had flipped the shark on its back, which induced a state of tonic immobility, or sleep. Researchers were then able to perform a small surgery to implant an acoustic tag inside the shark’s gut cavity.
The shark was rolled back onto its stomach and immediately swam away.
"The shark came almost instantaneously back to life so she was quickly released," Mark Kleeman of the Department of Fisheries said.
Authorities believe the shark, and others that have recently been spotted, were attracted close to the coast because of the carcass of a humpback whale that died of natural causes. The carcass was removed in order to prevent a feeding frenzy.
An Australian man created an inch-wide hole in his head after he applied a black salve ointment that he thought would help treat his skin cancer.
After applying the ointment for four months, a small hole developed on the side of his head and he admitted himself to a local hospital. Doctors were shocked when he entered the ward.
Initially, doctors believed they would have to operate, but the man was sent home with orders to tend the wound. It healed after three months.
The man admitted that he had applied Black salve to his head, which is an alternative type of medicine derived from bloodroot and mixed with zinc chloride. The mixture generally has a corrosive effect and destroys skin tissue, leaving behind a black scar.
Black salves were popular in the early 1900s to treat skin lesions but have since been deemed a “fake cancer treatment” by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. The organization has attempted to ban the ointment since 2004.
The Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration has warned that there is no scientific evidence that black salve can cure cancer. However, it is still secretly used in the country.
Australia has prevailed over Japan in a case held in international court. The case called into question Japan's whaling practices in the Southern Ocean.
The UN court ultimately ruled that Japan’s whaling hunt can not be considered a scientific program, despite the country's efforts to describe the practice as such. Peter Tomka, one of 16 judges serving on the panel for the case, which was heard by the International Court of Justice, elaborated on the court’s ruling.
“The court concludes that the special permits granted by Japan for the killing, taking and treating of whales in connection with JARPA II are not for purposes of scientific research,” Tomka said.
According to SBS News, the vote by the judges passed 12 to four in favor of Australia. The country had requested that the court ban Japan’s annual whaling hunt, which had been operating based on a loophole in the 1986 International Whaling Commission that allowed for the animals to be killed for the purpose of collecting scientific data. The court claimed that the practice should cease "with immediate effect."
The case is seen as a victory by environmental and animal activists that have long criticized Japan’s practice of hunting whales. Many claim that Japan used the guise of scientific research in order to carry out large-scale commercial killings of the animals.
According to Al-Jazeera, Japan has killed over 10,000 whales since 1988 as a part of the program, which it continued to defend despite the ruling.
An Afghan refugee living in Australia had all charges against him dropped after a Geelong judge said that “cultural differences” made it difficult to find the registered sex offender guilty of attempted kidnapping.
Ali Jaffari, 35, faced a judge in Australian court on charges of child stealing, attempted child-stealing, and unlawful assault. The Muslim man stated during the proceedings that his attempt to kidnap a 4-year-old girl would have been acceptable in his native Afghanistan, so he wasn’t aware he was doing anything wrong. Jaffari was already found guilty of two separate indecent assault charges this past August, stemming from a November 2012 incident, and had to register as a sex offender.
This attempted kidnapping happened in January 2013 when Jaffari tried to steal a four-year-old girl at a park in front of her father and brother. According to reports, Jaffari approached the young girl, took a cricket bat out of her hand, and started to drag her away from where she was playing.
“He then grabbed the child’s hand and began to lead her away before she looked up, saw it wasn’t her father, started crying and pulled her hand away,” said Sergeant Brooke Shears. “The victim’s father turned, saw what was happening and yelled at Jaffari, “What do you think you’re doing? The victim ran crying to her father and he comforted her while Jaffari walked off around the oval.”
Shears said that despite Jaffari’s claims that cultural differences were the reason behind the attempted kidnapping, it’s clear that he knew exactly what he was doing.
“He took the child by the hand and led her four or five steps away from her father before the child realized [sic] and started crying,” said Shears.
The judge said that there was reasonable doubt in this case, and even though Jaffari is already a convicted sex offender, anyone would have a hard time proving that he was guilty.
Just 24 hours after a student committed suicide, his former teacher took to Facebook to call the boy a “brat” and a “bully.”
“You were a moody, disrespectful little brat,” Australian teacher Simon Cox wrote of the 16-year-old student.
In the same post, Cox criticized the boy’s parents for making excuses about his behavior and described the boy’s death as unimportant.
“Nothing special,” Cox wrote. “Now I’ve got to wash my hair.”
In response to the Facebook rant, the student’s uncle Peter Britten claimed the insults were unjustified. He described his nephew as a stay-at-home kind of kid and loved by all.
Dozens of parents who saw the post called for Cox to be fired.
According to the Northern Territory’s Education deputy chief executive Susan Bowden, Cox has turned in his resignation, which will be effective April 14.
In a statement, the Department of Education apologized for Cox’s behavior.
On Monday, Senator Lee Rhiannon of the Greens announced she will introduce a bill to ban all animal-tested cosmetics in Australia, including those imported from countries that test on animals. In June, a survey done by the Humane Research Australia showed that 81 per cent of Australians support such a ban in the country.
This follows closely the introduction of a bill by U.S. Senator Jim Moran this month which bans all cosmetic testing on animals in the United States.
Labor's deputy leader Tanya Plibersek will speak separately about a proposed national plan for Australia to phase out the importation, manufacture, sale and advertising of cosmetics or cosmetic ingredients tested on animals.
Another goal is to have an impact on the Chinese government regarding the potential loss of importation from mainland China, where animal testing it is still mandatory for all cosmetics before being sold.
While no cosmetic companies actually test on animals in Australia now, many import ingredients from countries where animal testing is routine. This week, Ms Plibersek announced "To make sure we get this right, we will be working through all the issues carefully. Legislation must be drafted for best effect and we need to bring the community with us.” She said she will be consulting with groups including Choose Cruelty-Free, the Humane Society International (HSI), Humane Research Australia, industry figures and scientists.
Sao Paolo, Brazil, introduced the first ban in Latin America on animal testing. India followed them. The European Union and Israel also have similar bans. Brazil’s ban covers both the finished products and ingredients. Additionally, Sao Paolo instituted a fine of $435,000 per animal for any institution or research center that refuses to comply with the law.
A 20-year-old Australian man was thrown out of a nightclub in Alawa on Sunday for “reckless dancing” and later arrested for attacking a police van.
The unidentified man was intoxicated, kicking over signs and screaming as he left.
"He was intoxicated and apparently incensed that he was asked to leave a nightclub for reckless dancing," Duty Superintendent Louise Jorgensen told NTNews.
He even punched a police van.
"As a result, he kicked over signs and property in his path. When police caught up with him, he began yelling and, out of the blue, bashed his fist on the bonnet of the police van," she added.
He was then arrested for damage to property.
"Bad moves all round. Some people should not drink and dance," Jorgensen said.
An Australian Maltese terrier’s life was saved during the first weekend of March when veterinarians decided to give him large amounts of vodka.
Charlie, the dog in question, arrived at Animal Accident and Emergency in Melbourne with a case of Ethylene Glycol poisoning. The chemical, found in radiator and brake fluids, is sweet to the taste but fatal to the kidneys.
The only cure doctors could think of? Alter the chemical reaction with alcohol.
Charlie had a tube placed through his nose and into his stomach for about 48 hours as veterinarians pumped vodka into his system. Vodka was chosen because it was the easiest form of alcohol to find.
“He was definitely drunk,” Jacinta Rosewarne, Charlie’s owner, said. “I’d go to pat him and he’d push me away like a normal drunk person.”
Charlie is now in good health. Oh, and he is reportedly one-week sober.