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Scientist Tied to Global Warning Being Investigated for ‘Scientific Misconduct’

JUNEAU, Alaska (The Blaze/AP) — A federal wildlife biologist whose observation in 2004 of presumably drowned polar bears in the Arctic helped to galvanize the global warming movement has been placed on administrative leave and is being investigated for scientific misconduct, possibly over the veracity of that article. Newser has more:

Charles Monnett is being investigated for unspecified “integrity issues” apparently linked to his report that polar bears could face an increased threat of death if they’re forced to swim farther as Arctic ice recedes.

Monnett, an Anchorage-based scientist with the U.S. Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement, or BOEMRE, was told July 18 that he was being put on leave, pending results of an investigation into “integrity issues.” But he has not yet been informed by the inspector general’s office of specific charges or questions related to the scientific integrity of his work, said Jeff Ruch, executive director of Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility.

(Related: New study of NASA data may debunk global warming predictions)

On Thursday, Ruch‘s watchdog group plans to file a complaint with the agency on Monnett’s behalf, asserting that Obama administration officials have “actively persecuted” him in violation of policy intended to protect scientists from political interference.

Monnett, who has coordinated much of the agency’s research on Arctic wildlife and ecology, has duties that include managing about $50 million worth of studies, according to the complaint, a copy of which was provided to The Associated Press.

The complaint seeks Monnett’s reinstatement along with a public apology from the agency and inspector general. It also seeks to have the investigation dropped or to have the charges specified and the matter carried out in accordance with policy. The complaint also says that investigators took Monnett’s computer hard drive, notebooks and other unspecified items from him, which have not been returned.

A BOEMRE spokeswoman declined to comment on an “ongoing internal investigation.” Ruch said BOEMRE has barred Monnett from talking to reporters.

Documents provided by Ruch’s group indicate questioning by investigators has centered on observations that Monnett and fellow researcher Jeffrey Gleason made in 2004, while conducting an aerial survey of bowhead whales, of four dead polar bears floating in the water after a storm. They detailed their observations in an article published two years later in the journal Polar Biology; presentations also were given at scientific gatherings.

In the peer-reviewed article, the researchers said they were reporting, to the best of their knowledge, the first observations of polar bears floating dead offshore and presumed drowned while apparently swimming long distances in open water. Polar bears are considered strong swimmers, they wrote, but long-distance swims may exact a greater metabolic toll than standing or walking on ice in better weather.

They said their observations suggested the bears drowned in rough seas and high winds and “suggest that drowning-related deaths of polar bears may increase in the future if the observed trend of regression of pack ice and/or longer open water periods continues.”

The article and presentations drew national attention and helped make the polar bear something of a poster child for the global warming movement. Al Gore’s mention of the polar bear in his documentary on climate change, “An Inconvenient Truth,” came up during investigators’ questioning of Gleason in January.

In May 2008, the U.S. classified the polar bear as a threatened species, the first with its survival at risk due to globalpolarswim warming.

According to a transcript, investigator Eric May asked Gleason his thoughts on Gore referencing the dead polar bears. Gleason said none of the polar bear papers he has written or co-authored has said “anything really” about global warming.

“It’s something along the lines of the changing environment in the Arctic,” he said. Gleason said others put their own spin on research or observations.

The complaint alleges Gleason and Monnett were harassed by agency officials and received negative comments from them after the article was published. Gleason eventually took another Interior Department job; he didn‘t respond to an email and a BOEMRE spokeswoman said he wouldn’t be available for comment.

Ruch also claimed the investigation is being done by criminal investigators with no scientific background, even though the case is an administrative matter.

Source:  The Blaze

July 29, 2011 Posted by | animal abuse, Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Just One More Pet, Political Change, Stop Animal Cruelty, Toughen Animal Abuse Laws and Sentences, Unusual Stories, We Are All God's Creatures, Wild Animals | , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Only In Montana

Only in Montana!

A family that lives on the outskirts of  Missoula , Montana decided to build a sturdy, colorful playground for their 3- and 4-year-old sons. They lined the bottom with smooth-stone gravel all around to avoid knee scrapes and other injuries.

They finished building it one Friday evening and were very pleased with the end product.

The following morning, the mom was about to wake the boys up and have them go out to play in their new play center.. This is what she saw from the upstairs window.

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July 23, 2011 Posted by | animal behavior, Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Just One More Pet, On The Lighter Side, Unusual Stories, Wild Animals | , , , | Leave a comment

Knut Earned More Than $140 Million

BY HELIN JUNG  -  Thursday June 02, 2011 01:35 PM EDT

Knut Earned More Than $140 Million

Knut, grown up and as a cub in 2007  -  Michael Kappeler/Colourpress/JPI; Markus Schreiber/AP

He was a precious baby, with doll-like button eyes that charmed the public, but Knut the polar bear also made them pull out their wallets.

The Berlin Zoo’s most famous resident, who died earlier this year, generated more than $140 million in business globally, according to BusinessWeek.

There were raspberry-flavored Knut gummi bears, books, movies, stuffed animals and more. He even helped make the 167-year-old Berlin Zoo profitable, which happened only for three years while Knut was at the zoo.

PHOTOS: Knut’s Best Moments

But now what happens now to Knut’s brand?
It could still be profitable, but the Berlin Zoo, which owns the rights to Knut’s trademark, is being very selective about licensing, choosing to keep Knut’s messaging about protecting the environment.

But some feel the zoo – and others who could profit – is losing out.

"A dead Knut brand could still make millions," Birgit Clark, a trademark attorney, said. Whether it does or not is yet to be seen.

Source:  PeoplePets

June 3, 2011 Posted by | animal behavior, Animal or Pet Related Stories, animals, Just One More Pet, On The Lighter Side | , , , , | Leave a comment

Polar Bear Attack ;-)

Bear Attack in Churchill , Manitoba , Canada .
          These are pictures of an actual polar bear attack!
The pictures were taken while people watched and

          Could do nothing to stop the attack!
          Reports from the local newspaper say that

          The victim will make a full recovery.

            The photos are below…

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           May your troubles always be smaller than you imagine!

JOMP~

January 19, 2011 Posted by | Animal and Pet Photos, animals, Just One More Pet, Wild Animals | , , | Leave a comment

Canada marijuana growers use wild bears to guard pot

Police said Wednesday they were astonished to find at least 14 wild black bears guarding an illegal marijuana growing operation after a recent raid on the property in westernmost Canada.

Royal Canadian Mounted Police Sergeant Fred Mansveld said police believe two growers arrested in the raid had used dog food to lure the animals onto the remote property in southeastern British Columbia, to deter marijuana thieves.

Police commonly find dogs, human guards or booby-traps on Canadian marijuana growing operations or “grow-ops.” In comparison, these bears did a very poor job as guard animals when five policemen arrived.

“They were tame, they just sat around watching… at one point one of the bears climbed onto the hood of a police car, sat there for a bit and then jumped off,” said Mansveld.

He said the officers involved in the July 30 raid were all familiar with wild animals, and while wary, were not afraid of the bears once they realized the animals were not aggressive.

Black bears are common throughout Canada, and except in the cases of mothers with cubs, usually live solitary lives in the wilderness. It is against provincial law to feed them.

By feeding them, said Dave Webster, a conservation officer with the provincial government who launched an investigation of the case on Wednesday, the marijuana growers delivered “a death sentence for the wild animals.”

Webster told AFP “tame” bears are dangerous, because once they?re fed they commonly seek out other people, frequently destroy property, and in very rare cases attack or even kill people.

“If a bear is deemed to be a safety risk and is habituated to human food and not able to feed itself in the wild, it will be destroyed,” he explained.

Police, citizens or conservation officers kill untold hundreds of so-called “nuisance” bears annually throughout Canada.

“It’s killing animals by kindness,” said Mansveld. “It?s terrible, a real shame.”

Mansfield said when police entered the house on the property, “we also found a pot belly pig and a little raccoon sleeping on the bed… it was friendly, it tried to climb one officer?s leg.”

Police are pictured with two of the 14 wild black bears that were guarding an illegal marijuana growing operation after July 30, 2010 raid on the property in the Christina Lake area of westernmost Canada

Source: Breitbart.com

August 19, 2010 Posted by | animal behavior, Animal or Pet Related Stories, Just One More Pet, Unusual Stories | , | 2 Comments

Smokey? Black bear busts secret Utah pot farm

‘This bear is definitely law-enforcement minded,’ sheriff says

PANGUITCH, Utah – One Utah community is cheering a special bear — but don’t call him Smokey.

Investigators say a large black bear raided a clandestine marijuana growing operation so often that it chased the grower away.

“This bear is definitely law-enforcement minded,” said Garfield County Sheriff Danny Perkins. “If I can find this bear I’m going to deputize him.”

 

Deputies found food containers ripped apart and strewn everywhere, cans with bear teeth marks, claw marks and bear prints across the Garfield County camp on Tuesday.

Perkins said the operation on Boulder Mountain included 4,000 “starter” sacks of pot and 888 young plants.

“This particular bear apparently was not going to give up and basically chased these marijuana farmers away,” Perkins said. “Our county is so tough on drugs that even the wildlife are getting in on the action.”

September 6, 2008 Posted by | Just One More Pet, Pets, Success Stories, Unusual Stories | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment