Demand grows for public composting facilities

first_imgA growing number of people are requesting grass and hedge cutting compost centres, according to Letterkenny councillor Gerry McMonagle.The council is being called on to provide composting facilities in local recycling centres or a stand-alone service to take in garden waste.Cllr McMonagle said there is a demand for a service which would take in cuttings and turn it into mulch to sell back to gardeners. Speaking at this week’s Letterkenny-Milford MD meeting, he questioned why there are no facilities to recycle garden waste for the benefit of helping gardens grow.Currently, Donegal’s six public recycling centres accept garden waste at a cost of €2 per bag. The council also provides a subsidised rate of €13 on home composting units.Cllr Donal Coyle, who seconded the motion, said that dumping is a problem in this area; “When grass is dumped in a particular spot the next thing is you see other rubbish being added to it.“If there was composting at recycling centres it would cut out a lot of that.”  Demand grows for public composting facilities was last modified: November 14th, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Citizen science to toads’ rescue

first_imgVolunteers brave dangerous roads and cold, wet nights to help hundreds of these beautiful amphibians reach their watery breeding sites, and find their way home safely once the breeding season is over. Education initiatives and creating awareness about the plight of the toads, particularly as the breeding season approaches, is another important part of Alison Faraday and her conservation colleagues’ work. For a number of years committed volunteers and supportive communities in the Cape Town area have been working hard to ensure Western Leopard toads have a chance of survival in the wild.(Images: Alison Faraday) Western Leopard toads are classified as threatened on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s Red List.(Image: blog.noordhoekvillage.co.za)MEDIA CONTACTS • Alison FaradaySpots co-ordinator+27 82 771 6232Wilma den HartighConservation efforts by a group of dedicated volunteers and the City of Cape Town’s Environmental Resource Management Department are helping to protect South Africa’s endangered Western Leopard toads.Every year around August, when the Western Leopard toads’ breeding season begins, volunteers from the greater Cape Town area spend many hours ensuring that the little creatures survive their annual migration to breeding sites.Saving as many toads as possible is a labour of love for the volunteers, who brave dangerous roads and cold, wet nights to help hundreds of these beautiful amphibians reach their watery breeding sites, and find their way home safely once the breeding season is over.Suzie J’Kul, a founder of Noordhoek Unpaid Toad Savers and its subsidiary, South Peninsula Outstanding Toad Savers (Spots), says volunteers and members of the public are contributing to citizen science to ensure the species survives.“Through volunteering we are saving an endangered species from becoming extinct, as well as ensuring that our children’s children will inherit this biodiversity that they very much deserve to be a part of,” J’Kul says.Every night, at 18h15 when it gets dark, the first team of volunteers heads out onto the roads, armed with flashlights and reflective gear, to look for toads. The first group works a four-hour shift until 22h15, and then the next team takes over.“It is hard work, but worth it,” says Alison Faraday, co-ordinator of Spots.Threats to survivalWestern Leopard toads (Amietophrynus Pantherinus) are classified as threatened on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature’s Red List.They are endemic to a small area of the South Western Cape region, Cape Peninsula and Agulhas Plain.Also known as the August frog, they are easily identified by their beautiful markings of chocolate to reddish-brown patches with a bright yellow or black edging on a pink or grey background.Faraday says urban development, habitat degradation and road traffic are some of the biggest threats to the long-term survival of local populations.During the breeding season toads have to navigate road traffic, walls, embankments, swimming pools, drains and storm water canals, and often many don’t survive.Breeding usually takes place during August, but has also been recorded in late July, September, and some breeding calls have even been heard in early October. The start of the season depends largely on rainfall and temperature and sometimes occurs during warmer weather followed by periods of rain.These variables make the work of volunteers even more difficult as only the toads know exactly when the breeding migration will take place.While breeding generally takes place in larger, more secure water bodies, urban development has caused changes to traditional breeding sites, restricting the foraging area and movement of toads. This reduces population size and interrupts gene flow between populations.Faraday says July and August are the most dangerous months for the toads.“This is when most of the mortalities happen, when they are hit by cars and killed,” she says.“Busy roads in the urban areas where they live are death traps, and this animal needs all the help it can get to survive. What we do is pick up as many of these little guys as we can.”Committed volunteersFor a number of years committed volunteers and supportive communities in the Cape Town area have been working hard to ensure Western Leopard toads have a chance of survival in the wild.“This is something that untrained volunteers can do something about. It is incredibly rewarding,” Faraday says. “We have amazing volunteers.”About 18 suburbs and 100 volunteers are currently involved in the initiative. Ahead of each breeding season, volunteers receive training and they are rostered for four-hour shifts at a time to drive up and down the busiest roads, picking up toads.An important part of their work is also to keep records of the number of toads they see and rescue, noting whether they are dead, alive, male or female and their approximate age. This helps the toad conservation organisations assess the success of their work, and where they can improve.Noordhoek volunteers have gathered six years of records for the area, and neighbouring suburbs have been collecting data for three years.“We need at least 10 years of statistics to clearly determine the increase or decrease in Western Leopard toad numbers as well as to confirm suspected theories on breeding patterns,” says J’Kul.Rehabilitating breeding areasRecently the City of Cape Town’s Environmental Resource Management Department successfully rehabilitated a breeding site for the toads in Kommetjie, a suburb of Cape Town.The site, known as Skilpadsvlei, is a historic wetland area in Kommetjie that was drained and filled during the 1940s. It was the only known breeding site for the toad in the area.The City of Cape Town provided phased funding to revive the wetland, which included improving the open space around the area for public enjoyment, as well as restoring the ecological functioning of the system. Part of the project also ensured that the water quality was of a high standard and continuously monitored.The restoration of the wetland is an important step forward in the conservation of the endangered toads, and it seems if the amphibians are taking to the rehabilitated area.In June 2012, Western Leopard toads were seen at the new site during the very first breeding season and in November toadlets were recorded.Unfortunately, two of the three adult toads that selected Skilpadsvlei as their preferred breeding site were later killed on the roads adjacent to the wetland, and this is why the work of volunteers patrolling roads is so important.Permanent solutions and creating awarenessThe Noordhoek Unpaid Toad Savers and Spots organisations are always in need of more volunteers to go out at night when the migration period begins.They also invite the public in all areas where the animals are found to inform them of any activity around the time when the breeding season is expected to start.However, Faraday says that they are looking into finding a more sustainable, long-term solution to protect the toads.“Ultimately we need something that is permanent,” she says.This year the Noordhoek volunteer organisation plans to test a small barrier system, involving sunken buckets that are to be installed on one of Noordhoek’s busiest roads.The buckets will be lowered into the ground at areas of the road where toads usually cross. As they approach, the toads will fall into the buckets, and at intervals volunteers will carry them across the road.“This will hopefully help to save even more toads. It is a good start,” Faraday says.Even though the buckets will delay the frogs for a short while, at least they will be protected and reach their breeding sites safely.Education initiatives and creating awareness about the plight of the toads, particularly as the breeding season approaches, is another important part of Faraday and her conservation colleagues’ work.“It is absolutely essential to get kids aware and we also have bumper stickers that volunteers stick on their cars,” Faraday says. She regularly presents talks at schools to inform children about the toads and how they can help to protect them.Every year they run an awareness campaign to appeal to local motorists to drive more slowly in the affected areas at night and early in the morning, while the migration is underway.last_img read more

Instagram Is Sorry, But It Has To Make Twitter Worse

first_imgGuide to Performing Bulk Email Verification Instagram disabled Twitter Cards. Now, when you click an Instagram link from Twitter, you might see a cropped, weird looking preview instead of the whole picture. That’s because Instagram wants to just send you straight to its website, but Twitter won’t let it, so now you have to click twice. Isn’t Web 2.0 just the best? Do you know what Twitter Cards are? I don’t blame you. Here’s the gist: When you view a tweet on Twitter’s official apps or site, and it contains a link to a photo or article or other piece of media, the publisher can build a little preview that displays right on Twitter, so the person clicking it doesn’t have to leave Twitter and go to the original. Why would publishers want that? I don’t know.As we can now see with Instagram, the alternative to building nice-looking Twitter Cards is a vastly crappier, “pre-Cards” version of a similar experience. On the desktop version, you can carefully click the URL and go straight to Instagram.com, but not on mobile. So you either build Twitter Cards, and the user doesn’t click through to your site, or you look crappy on Twitter, and the user gets pissed off for having to click another time.At LeWeb on Wednesday Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom apologized to users, acknowledging that the changes are “really confusing,” but explaining that this is “the correct thing for our business to do at this time.”And it is. For Instagram users, of whom there are many, we want to click through to Instagram.com so we can like or follow someone on Instagram. This Twitter crap is an obstacle. Twitter has every right to create that obstacle and keep people on its property, but that doesn’t mean it’s “fun” or “delightful” or one of those other Web 2.0 words.Twitter has been messing with Instagram for months. It cut off the ability for Instagram users to find their Twitter friends on the service in July. Last month, the New York Times reported that Twitter is building its own Instagram-style filters. Systrom has to insist otherwise on stage, of course, but this spat has been going on for a while. In a stupid, juvenile way, Instagram is justified in striking back.But we actual Web-using humans do not care about this fight. We don’t care about companies fighting. We want our things to work well and be fun. In a less cynical world, we could have a better experience for sharing photos of our lives with each other. I should get over that, though.This kind of slap-fighting between companies is what we get for paying for these communication services by letting them mine our eyeballs. It’s the status quo. If we don’t like it, we could try paying for it and see how that goes.UPDATE: 12:26 p.m.: This article has been corrected to clarify Twitter’s functionality. Initially, it reported that you can’t click straight through to Instagram.com from a tweet. On mobile, this is true. On the desktop Web, however, you can click the URL and go directly to Instagram.com, but clicking elsewhere on the tweet still expands the image in line. The Dos and Don’ts of Brand Awareness Videos Tags:#Instagram#twitter Related Posts center_img Facebook is Becoming Less Personal and More Pro… jon mitchell A Comprehensive Guide to a Content Auditlast_img read more

Everything You Need to Know When Filming Food Videos

first_imgFrom setting up your camera to picking the right music, this roundup shows you everything you need to know to produce your cooking videos.Top image via Cinecom.net.Top-down cooking videos are one of the most popular genres of content for YouTube and Vimeo. Whether you’re making the content for YouTube, Instagram, or your own personal website, you can put together and shoot each kind of video in different ways. There’s no formula. This roundup will show you a few different techniques to put it all together with the right equipment. Here are few ways you can approach a cooking video.Creating a Cooking Video From the Ground UpAll you need for this type of shot is a C-stand for your camera. Now, this isn’t the only way you can pull off this shot. If you’re using a bigger bodied camera, you can use two C-stands and have them meet in the center for your camera. Or, you could build one of these…Building a Cheap Overhead RigSo as you can see, all you need are a couple pieces of wood, some screws, and a drill. The dimensions for this specific type of rig will vary based on your studio or garage setup. Unlike the C-stand (which is meant for moving around from shoot to shoot), this rig is stationary. This way you can come back and have your setup always ready to go.Also, the sides of this build can also hold poster board or any type of backdrop, making it easy for food or product photography. This is perfect for after you’ve made your meal on camera. You can get some nice slo-mo steaming shots of the final product without transporting the food or prepping a new lighting setup.How to Make Stop-Motion Food VideosSo this style is a little old-school and non-traditional for the cooking genre. But, this type of video is entertaining and a good way to attract views to your channel. The setup is simple. Just make sure you have an evenly lit, solid-colored backdrop and a camera that you can operate remotely. Remote operation will save you from accidentally changing the camera’s position, and you can freely begin to animate your food.As you can see in the video, this style of fun, light-hearted content pairs well with Rocketstock’s new video pack, “Yum.”The pack features over 120 food animations, logo reveals, lower thirds, and icons for anybody just starting their own company or YouTube channel. The assets are simple to use and don’t require a hefty knowledge of After Effects. You can download the new pack here.So what else do you need for your next cooking series?Music. Music can be one of the most crucial parts to making a good video for YouTube. We’ve curated a playlist for cooking videos to match the calm, breezy feeling that these videos bring to the table. Check out the playlist here.What other type of playlists and instructional videos would you like to see in the future? Share the wealth in the comments.last_img read more

Two Hizb militants, local resident killed during Army operation in Pulwama

first_imgTwo Hizb-ul-Mujahideen militants, including a ‘commander’, were killed and two soldiers injured during an anti-militancy operation by the Army in Pulwama on Monday.Shahid Ashraf Dar, a resident of Arihal village, was killed in clashes with security forces during the operation. An Army spokesman said two rifles were recovered from the site of operation, which began in the morning at Drabgam in Pulwama.“The operation is still on,” said the spokesman. The militants were trapped in the hometown of Hizb commander Sameer Bhat alias ‘Tiger’, who is also believed dead in the encounter.’Tiger’ was wanted in many attacks on security forces. Another militant was identified as Aqib Khan of Rajpora, according to the locals. Around 16 protesters also sustained injuries during the operation. Of them, five were shifted to a Srinagar hospital.Internet services have been suspended in the area and train services stopped in south Kashmir.last_img read more

4th PVL MVP award inspires Valdez to push herself more

first_imgCreamline’s Alyssa Valdez hoists her twin trophies, including the Conference MVP, after leading the top performers in the Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference during awards rites at the Philsports Arena in Pasig Tuesday. The former Ateneo star also took the First Best Outside Spiker award while steering the Cool Smashers to third place finish in the season-opening conference of the league organized by Sports Vision. CONTRIBUTEDHer fourth Conference Most Valuable Player award is a reminder for Alyssa Valdez of how much she still wants to continue improving on her craft.“It’s motivating me to really help the team improve in terms of our our skills and listen to our coaches,” she said, moments after securing the MVP plum in the 2017 Premier Volleyball League Reinforced Conference women’s division on Tuesday.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Bali Pure’s Risa Sato and Pocari Sweat’s Jeanette Panaga finished 1-2 in the Best Middle Blocker race, Power Smashers’ Dimdim Pacres was honored as the Best Opposite Spiker, Bali Pure’s Jasmine Nabor was hailed as the Best Setter, and Pocari Sweat’s Melissa Gohing got the Best Libero award.What makes this MVP unique for Valdez was it was her first recognition since formally leaving the auspices of the Ateneo campus.READ: Creamline gets bronze in PVL“After everything I went through, with my stints in Thailand, it really makes me feel old. But for what it’s worth, I’m thankful for the support that I get, that even though I’ve changed through a lot of teams, they’re always there,” she said.But three-time UAAP MVP said that this journey with Creamline is just the start.ADVERTISEMENT WATCH: Firefighters rescue baby seal found in parking garage NBA: Irving bares heartfelt words for LeBron after finals defeat “It makes me think that I shouldn’t stop improving myself. I can stop doing what I’m doing, but I have the choice to pursue and still try to push myself to the limit.”READ: Valdez powers Creamline to 1st winFEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutValdez also won the First Best Outside Spiker with her 20.7 points per match, making her the most decorated volleybelle in the history of the league.Joining the Creamline hitter in the honor roll are Bali Pure’s Grethcel Soltones, who was named as the Second Best Outside Spiker. View comments World’s 50 Best Restaurants launches new drinking and dining guide “Definitely, the goal for every team entering the conference is to get the championship,” she said, as the Cool Smashers ended their inaugural foray in the league at third. “Our goal doesn’t stop here but definitely, this is just the beginning. I hope our journey with the Cool Smashers continue to improve in the coming conferences.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chickencenter_img MOST READ 1 dead in Cavite blast, fire What ‘missteps’? Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Heart Evangelista admits she’s pregnant… with chicken Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Robredo calls for scrapping of ‘Oplan Tokhang’ PLAY LIST 02:34Robredo calls for scrapping of ‘Oplan Tokhang’01:07Nothing wrong with raids on offices of progressive groups—Palace01:29Robredo to gov’t, after accepting anti drug post: Are you ready for me?02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Gameslast_img read more

Naomi Osaka taps into ‘zombie mode’ to advance in Madrid

first_imgJapan’s Naomi Osaka returns the ball during her match against Spain’s Sara Sorribes during the Madrid Open tennis tournament, Tuesday, May 7, 2019, in Madrid, Spain. (AP Photo/Andrea Comas)Naomi Osaka said she switched into “zombie mode” in the final set to swat aside Spain’s Sara Sorribes Tormo in Tuesday’s second-round match at the Madrid Open.Top seed Osaka was taken to three sets by world number 73 Sorribes Tormo before the Japanese star stepped up her game to close out a 7-6 (7/5), 3-6, 6-0 victory.ADVERTISEMENT “In the third set, I just, like, went zombie mode,” said Osaka, who has won the last two Grand Slam titles at the US Open and Australian Open.“I just thought of everything that I had to do to win – not necessarily the outcome, but just like the little things in between every game.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logistics“The match was basically on my racquet, she wasn’t going for winners.“The points ended by me making a winner or an unforced error. But I was a bit unfocused in the second set.” Osaka has struggled since splitting with her coach Sascha Bajin in February while an abdominal injury forced her to withdraw from the Stuttgart WTA tournament recently, creating doubts about her challenge at the French Open later this month. She will meet Aliaksandra Sasnovich of Belarus for a place in the quarter-finals.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games PLAY LIST 00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew MOST READ Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue LATEST STORIES Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid Thunder stars Paul George, Russell Westbrook undergo surgery Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles View commentslast_img read more