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Archive for June 4th, 2012

Nature till I die

Posted by Admin on June 4, 2012;_ylt=AggUbEpT.Sm0.xab.CfiKNfPfNx_;_ylu=X3oDMTN2cWhmZ2tnBG1pdANMYXRlc3QgbmV3cyBwaG90b3MEcGtnAzdhN2UwZjc1LTFkZTYtM2JiMy05MDhmLTg3NTIwNGNjNzY4ZARwb3MDMwRzZWMDdG9wc3RvcnlfZ2FsBHZlcgM0OTdjNzVmMi1hYmQ2LTExZTEtYjFjZi0xNTY4NjkzNjNiM2Q-;_ylg=X3oDMTJwaG9tNDFsBGludGwDaW4EbGFuZwNlbi1pbgRwc3RhaWQDMDFjYzgzYzMtZDY0Yi0zMDg2LTg0NTQtMmYzMWM2MWY0ZDU3BHBzdGNhdANhdXRvcwRwdANzcy1nYWxsZXJ5;_ylv=3

Nature till I die

My art and the environment, Yahoo’s original series tracks what loving the environment means for an ordinary person with extraordinary commitment. These are people who love an art form and from that vantage have explored the environment. In mainstream media, we hear too many ideological voices of activists, partisan NGOs and biased industry players, but sometimes it starts with what piques an individual’s curiosity. Today meet 18 year old Archith Sridhar. When he was 10, his mother caught him lovingly caressing a centipede on his palm, examining its glossy colors and its numerous legs. For him, this beautiful creature was fascinating – as was the injured migratory stork that he helped rescue and leave at the Blue Cross, an animal rescue centre. Leisure reading for him as a twelve-year-old was ‘Microcellular organisms’, a biggie with glossy illustrations. He’s currently pursuing a Bachelor’s in Veterinary Sciences in Pondicherry. The camera has been his favorite gadget – from a trip with family(much to his chagrin) to Bandhavgarh’s tigers to flying solo to Gir and Agumbe or enrolling as a docent at the Madras Crocodile Bank. Ask him what he wants to become – he is not sure. Ask him what he wants to do now – and he would probably pick up his Canon 7D and his backpack. Hear him tell you about his photos and experiences with passion, enthusiasm and humor.

Nature till I die

Tigress, Bandhavgarh: MP
This striped and endangered majesty of an animal is forever in conflict with human habitation. This picture to me perfectly captures that conflict. The tigress is stepping onto a dirt road criss-crossed with jeep tyre marks.

Nature till I die

Tarantula, Agumbe
Walking through Pit viper terrain, wading through a pond in shorts and floaters without a torch (I didn’t want to scare the tarantulas away), my group and I came here specifically to see these tarantulas creeping out of their nests burrowed into mud embankments.

Nature till I die

Spectacled cobra, Chennai
Snake hunting with the Irulas was an unforgettable experience and spotting this Spectacled Cobra made my day. My usual camera was at service and I had to make do with a point and shoot, and thus had to get really close to this guy for such a shot. The thrill of looking at a cobra in the wild was like a dream come true.

Nature till I die

Jaws III, Croc Bank: Chennai
Meet Jaws III, the largest captive saltwater croc at in India at over 18 feet. He is a massive and fierce dominant male who keeps complete control over his territory, even refusing to allow mating females into his murky waters. You wouldn’t want to meet him on a Sunday swim, snout to snout.

Nature till I die

Golden frog, Agumbe :Karnataka
The toughest customer – He kept jumping away, out of the line of my lens. Believe me, he almost missed his chance to be covered here, at Yahoo! He was the typical celeb guy being chased by this lens man. Had to crouch very low, get my camera a foot away from his eye level and click, using the flash.

Nature till I die

A Pair of Jungle babblers, Gir : Gujarat
What makes this photograph special for me is that one bird was grooming another. They looked like they were in love with each other, totally immersed in the mood of the moment. You take the pick on who the male is, and who the female is.

Nature till I die

Shield bug, Chennai
On a snake walk with Irulas, this flashy bug distracted me from my main quarry. Instead of looking for snakes, I began looking for more of these bugs. Little did I know then that they were capable of releasing pungent chemicals in self-defense. I am happy I did not have to find out the hard way.

Nature till I die

Indian scops owl, Gir, Gujarat
Perfectly blending with the bark, he was patiently posing for a long while. Unusually, instead of the animal tiring of me, it was my turn to walk away. I loved his expression and his patience.

Nature till I die

Moth in my backyard
I have been unable to identify this patterned moth, which I one day clicked in the backyard of my house. Note that it appears to have eyes, an open mouth and a flowing moustache – giving the appearance of a face looking at you. Imagine further, and you can see arms and a body to this creature.

Nature till I die

Web, Agumbe
Beautifully created, carefully designed and perfectly executed, this spider web is doomed to be destroyed for it fell right in the middle of a road entering the Agumbe Rainforest Research Station. The effort and toil of one whole night would be gone with the next motor vehicle.

Nature till I die

Peacock, Gir
My camera got wet in a sudden shower and began to malfunction. I missed most of the beginning of his spectacular dance, but luckily, was able to manage a few shots towards the end.

Nature till I die

Dew on Branches
What better time than dawn to capture beads of dew? Indeed my first time and to me it seemed that the dewdrops formed in a second, showcased their beauty for another second, then fell to their death. Poetic.

Nature till I die

Jungle babbler, Gir : Gujarat
I was roundly cursed by this feathery friend for disturbing his peace.

Nature till I die

Calotes versicolor, Chennai
This male of the species(identified from its elongated dorsal spine above its head) is common lizard that you spot in your garden. Often mistaken for the chameleon, this lizard possesses the ability to change colour as well. In the breeding season, the male acquires a bright red coloured throat(like in this picture where it is faintly seen in between the black) and thus, is often referred to as a ‘blood sucker’.

Nature till I die

Black faced Langur, Bandipur, Karnataka

Nature till I die

Black faced Langur, Gir, Gujarat

Nature till I die

Calotes rouxii, Agumbe, Karnataka

Nature till I die

Chital, Gir, Gujarat

Nature till I die

Gharial, Crocodile Bank, Chennai

Nature till I die

Signature spider, Bandipur, Karnataka.

Photo credit : Archith K.Sridhar
Contact him at:

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World’s longest suspension bridges

Posted by Admin on June 4, 2012


Yangluo Bridge

With a main span of 1,280 metres (4,200 ft), it is tied with the Golden Gate Bridge for the ninth longest suspension bridge in the world.

By Bighandking [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons.

Golden gate

Golden Gate Bridge

The Golden Gate Bridge is a suspension bridge spanning the Golden Gate, the opening of the San Francisco Bay into the Pacific Ocean. It has been declared one of the modern Wonders of the World by the American Society of Civil Engineers. The Frommers travel guide considers the Golden Gate Bridge “possibly the most beautiful, certainly the most photographed, bridge in the world”.

By Aslak Raanes from Trondheim, Norway (Flickr) [CC-BY-2.0 ( via Wikimedia Commons


Verrazano-Narrows Bridge

The bridge furnishes a critical link in the local and regional highway system. Since 1976, it has been the starting point of the New York City Marathon.[4] The bridge marks the gateway to New York Harbor; all cruise ships and most container ships arriving at the Port of New York and New Jersey must pass underneath the bridge and thus must be built to accommodate the clearance under the bridge.

By Ibagli (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons .



The bridge was named after two of the islands at its ends, namely Tsing Yi and Ma Wan . It has two decks and carries both road and rail traffic, which also makes it the largest suspension bridge of this type.

By [2] ([1]) [CC-BY-SA-2.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons.


Jiangyin Suspension Bridge

It connects the cities of Jiangyin and Jingjiang. The main span of the bridge is 1,385 metres (4,544 ft) meters long, making it the sixth-longest span suspension bridge in the world.

By Yawn823 at en.wikipedia. Later version(s) were uploaded by Masterdudeyo at en.wikipedia. (Transferred from en.wikipedia) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.


Humber Bridge

The Humber Bridge, near Kingston upon Hull, England, is a 2,220 m (7,283 ft) single-span suspension bridge, which opened to traffic on 24 June 1981. It is the fifth-largest of its type in the world.

By Lee Jackson (Own work (Photograph taken by myself)) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons


Runyang Bridge

The Runyang Bridge is a large bridge complex that crosses the Yangtze River in Jiangsu Province, China, downstream of Nanjing. The complex consists of two major bridges that link Zhenjiang on the south bank of the river and Yangzhou on the north. The bridge is part of the Beijing-Shanghai Expressway.

By Andy Zang (originally posted to Panoramio) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons.


Great belt bridge

The Great Belt Fixed Link (Danish: Storebæltsforbindelsen) is the fixed link between the Danish islands of Zealand and Funen across the Great Belt. It consists of a road suspension bridge and railway tunnel between Zealand and the island Sprogo, as well as a box girder bridge between Sprogo and Funen

By Tone V. V. Rosbach Jensen [CC-BY-SA-2.5 (], via Wikimedia Commons.


Xihoumen Bridge

The 5.3-kilometre-long suspension bridge connection has a 2.6-kilometre-long main bridge with a central span of 1,650 metres.

By Siyuwj (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 ( or GFDL (, via Wikimedia Commons.


Akashi Bridge

Also known as the Pearl Bridge, it has the longest central span of any suspension bridge,[2] at 1,991 metres (6,532 ft). It is located in Japan and was completed in 1998.

Before the Akashi Kaikyō Bridge was built, ferries carried passengers across the Akashi Strait in Japan. This dangerous waterway often experiences severe storms and, in 1955, two ferries sank in the strait during a storm, killing 168 people. The ensuing shock and public outrage convinced the Japanese government to develop plans for a suspension bridge to cross the strait.

Photo by Fotograf: Marcus Tschaut

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The queen, UFOs, Bolt? Fancy an Olympic bet?

Posted by Admin on June 4, 2012–sector.html

By Belinda Goldsmith | Reuters – Fri 1 Jun, 2012

              LONDON (Reuters) – Would you bet on Queen Elizabeth lighting the Olympic flame? Or a UFO appearing above the opening ceremony? Or maybe on Usain Bolt winning the men’s 100 metre race?

With the London Olympics fast approaching, Britons are happily combining two of their favourite pastimes: sports and betting – no matter how ludicrous some of the bets.

“It is deep in the British psyche to have a bit of a flutter when it comes to sports. Sports and betting almost go hand-in-hand in this country,” said Joe Crilly, a spokesman from bookmaker William Hill.

Less than two months away from kickoff, bookmakers are starting to close their books on the most popular bet so far – who will light the flame, the symbol of the Olympic Games, at the opening ceremony on July 27.

The identity of the person who runs the final stretch with the Olympic torch after a 70-day relay is always a highlight at the opening extravaganza. China’s former champion gymnast Li Ning was awarded that honour in Beijing in 2008; at the Atlanta 1996 Olympics, legendary boxer Muhammad Ali lit the cauldron in an emotional show as he struggled with Parkinson’s disease.

Bookmakers William Hill, Ladbrokes, Stan James and Coral all agreed the favourite for that coveted task in London, with odds of 1-3, is former rower Steve Redgrave, 50, Britain’s most successful Olympian who won five gold medals from 1984 to 2000.

Bets were also running on the 83-year-old Roger Bannister, who made history as the first man to run the four-minute mile in 1954; Kelly Holmes, the retired British runner who won two gold medals at the 2004 Athens Olympics; and football star David Beckham.

“We also took some bets on Tom Daley at 16-1, Prince William at 66-1 and, incredibly, the queen at 500-1,” said Stan James spokesman Rory Jiwani.


William Hill has taken some bets on whether London Mayor Boris Johnson would have a mishap when he runs with the Olympic torch, setting his notoriously wild hair on fire, and has odds of 5-2 on it raining on the night of the opening ceremony.

But spokesman Crilly said the weirdest bet yet was a 15 pound wager that a UFO would appear above the Olympic Stadium on the night of the opening ceremony. The odds? A massive payout at 1000-1.

“It is mainly Brits really getting into the spirit of things as the Olympics draw closer and having fun,” said Crilly. “Once the torch arrived on these shores, we have seen people getting involved in the Olympics and betting not just on novelty bets.”

Bolt, the Jamaican sprinter and world record holder, is currently the favourite with odds of 4-7 to win the Olympics showpiece event, the men’s 100 metre race, while fellow Jamaican Yohan Blake is second favourite with odds of 3-1.

Most bookmakers were also running bets on which country would top the gold medal table when the Olympics close on August 12.

Coral spokesman David Stevens said the Olympics were not usually a major betting event but interest was likely to be higher at the London Games due to Britons’ love of gambling.

The most recent independent report by the Britain’s government-sponsored Gambling Commission on gambling participation showed that nearly three quarters of British adults, or 73 percent, had gambled in 2010 compared to 68 percent in 2007.

The Association of British Bookmakers estimates that bookmakers contribute 3 billion pounds annually to the UK economy, which is about 0.5 percent of gross domestic product.

“It will be the biggest Olympics in betting terms but this is starting from a very low base,” said Stevens.

“The Olympics are being held in a nation where betting is a part of everyday life. The real activity will kick off in the fortnight leading up to Games and then during the Games but we’re a bit in the dark over how much interest we will see.”

(Editing by Alessandra Rizzo)

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