Blogging Quake conspiracies

Times Online : 'As the death toll in China's Sichuan province climbs, the nation’s bloggers have joined together in the search for a scapegoat. Broadband connections across the country are pulsing with rumours of "earthquake omens" involving toads or butterflies - all allegedly ignored by the authorities. Some even talk of a vast pre-Olympic conspiracy.

One blogger from Shandong province, in eastern China, wrote that more than a month ago, he went to his local earthquake research centre several times to report that his animals had been disturbed and restless.'

Read the complete report here.

Comments

Anita said…
Professor,,

Abnormal animal gestures,besides some others,, are definetly precursors to a calamity.

Somethin similar hpnd b4 the tsunami occurred..

The dogs in the hit areas around the seas/beaches,, went berserk barking incessantly and in another place, a pond after being perturbed for a while went totally dry & then suddenly got watered again. The ppl around mistook it for a miracle:)

Wt i also remember reading,, is that the number of child deliveries in any hospital,On the penultimate day of the earthquake goes up about three to five times, while on the day of the earthquake it is as high as seven to eight times the normal.

u see somethin like this around,or all of the above,assure u they are signs of a 'quake conspiracy'
Prof.Ray Titus said…
Anita, It would be fair for me to assume you beleive in the 'spiritual' mumbo jumbo? No wonder you are the 'beleiver'.... :)


Note what Simon Winchester’s stated in his 2003 book, Krakatoa,

“There is no firm scientific evidence that there is a connection, nor is there a true basis for a new pseudo-science called ethogeographical prediction, which seeks to forecast earthquakes by observing carefully calibrated animal activity.”

He says that while some geologists concede that animals might sense changes too subtle to register on modern instruments, no one has been able to prove a connection between animal behavior and impending earthquakes or volcanic activity.

Nevertheless, a good deal of anecdotal evidence supports this notion, including a particularly interesting tale of a circus elephant that seemingly “predicted” the Krakatoa eruption.

Note this too :

Many species of animals in a number of localities reportedly behave unusually before earthquakes [Kilian, 1964; Lee et al., 1976; Rikitake, 1976; Academia Sinica, 1977a, b; Toksöz, 1977; Tributsch, 1978; Lott et al., 1979a, b]. Few of the reports are more than anecdotes, and some may be due to retrospective enthusiasm of anxious human observers. In addition, some of the strange behavior apparently coincides approximately with the arrival of the main earthquake and may not present true precursors. However, numerous stories do report abnormal behavior which occurs hours to weeks before the event, at times when humans do not sense anything unusual in the environment.

Several problems complicate an analysis of reports concerning anomalous animal behavior prior to earthquakes: the variability of animal behavior, the unreliability of human observations, and the existence of uncontrolled physical factors such as weather [McClellan, 1980].
Anita said…
so now,, do u beleive or dont you??
both the book and the anecdotes say that the signs are ‘incalculable’,, they aint ruling out the thesis altogether.. N nor have I claimed that "I beleive".
jus that the whole theory is more unknown than known,, n wat i read & remembered made a good addendum to ur blog.. Tht dint mean i beleived:)
Prof.Ray Titus said…
Maybe the 'beleiver' comment wasn't fair...

It's just that the 'spiritual' kind are the ones dying to beleive is some paranormal mumbo-jumbo. I guess at some level, we ought to give the animals their credit. :)

Then again, are you the beleiving kind?

Oh, and plus, I do appreciate your comments. :)

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