2024年5月29日水曜日

OWL NEST AT TELOK BLANGAH DRAWS CROWDS, NPARKS ADVISES PUBLIC TO KEEP THEIR DISTANCE - SINGAPORE

OWL NEST AT TELOK BLANGAH DRAWS CROWDS, NPARKS ADVISES PUBLIC TO KEEP THEIR DISTANCE - SINGAPORE


@Jackie San


SINGAPORE – The National Parks Board (NParks) has cordoned off an area in Telok Blangah after crowds started gathering near a nest of owls, which sparked concern from some about the well-being of the cute creatures.


The owls – identified as Otus lempiji, or Sunda scops owls – are native to Singapore, and known to nest in natural tree hollows and cavities. In this case, the nest was located next to a bus stop in Telok Blangah Rise, which made it easy for passers-by to spot.


The Singapore Wildlife Sightings Facebook group began seeing a deluge of photography posts featuring the baby owls – called owlets – around May 6, with the posts revealing the location of the nest.


On May 6, Facebook user Alvin Lim posted images of a large group of people attempting to photograph the owls. “Can we give some space for the birds?” he asked.


Commenting on another post, user Lim Khieng Siong said that while members of the Facebook group love to share and enjoy sightings of wildlife, he hoped everyone would keep a distance from the nest. “After all, most of the photographers are equipped with a good camera and lens, and should be able to capture photos from afar,” he wrote.


Echoing similar sentiments, another group member called Catherine Paul said it would be sad if the owlets died because their parents are “too scared” to approach the nests.


On May 7, the Animal Concerns Research and Education Society (Acres) advised people to keep their distance from wild owls in Singapore.


“While it’s incredibly tempting to capture those enchanting moments of wild owls in our urban jungle, their peace and quiet is very important when they are at a crucial phase of parenting – when the baby owls fledge and leave their nest,” said Acres.


“Approaching a wild owl’s family, especially during these moments, can put their well-being at risk – when they take those important steps to learn from their parents to fly, to feed and hunt!”


In response to queries from The Straits Times on May 9, NParks said that after it learnt of the nest on May 6, it cordoned off the area near the tree and installed signs to advise the public to maintain a safe distance.


It also urged people to refrain from visiting the site as large crowds and the resulting noise could disrupt the owls’ natural behaviour and cause undue stress.


“NParks would like to advise the public to appreciate wildlife from a distance and avoid disrupting their natural behaviours,” said NParks’ group director of wildlife management How Choon Beng.


“When photographing nesting birds, one should keep a distance to give them space and observe them in their natural state. Refrain from feeding or the use of artificial lures and calls to attract them and do not shine light or use flash photography as it may cause the birds to become stressed.”


People can call the NParks helpline at 1800-476-1600 if assistance is required.


As at May 9, there were more than 30 posts in the group on the owl nest, with the majority of them being photographs of the owlets and some debating the actions and intentions of those crowding around the area.


However, there were those who saw the increased human presence there in a positive light. “We need to come together and not point fingers at any one group,” commented Ng Jasmin on various posts. “Each has a role to play. To take images of our wildlife as documentary and data keeping.”


A post in the group by Art Toh also featured a video shared by his friend at the scene, showing a member of the crowd returning to the nest an owlet that had fallen out at about 2am on May 8.


“The few birders on site at this ungodly hour managed to return the owlet back to its nest, thus (preventing) a potentially tragic outcome,” he said.


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@Jackie San

2024年5月28日火曜日

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YOKOHAMA - 15 YEAR OLD HIT AND KILLED BY TRAIN 


@Jackie San


A 15-year-old girl was hit and killed by a train in Yokohama on Monday.


The incident occurred at around 10:45 a.m. on a crossing on the Sotetsu line in Asahi Ward, Kyodo News reported.


According to police, a passerby saw the girl walk onto the crossing after the gates went down. The driver of the train was quoted by police as saying he saw the girl and applied the emergency brake but couldn’t stop in time.


Sagami Railway said 31 train services were suspended, affecting about 8,100 people.

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@Jackie San

THE NAGASAKI MUSEUM OF HISTORY AND CULTURE

  
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2024年5月27日月曜日

JAPAN GOLDEN WEEK - WRAPS UP AS TRAVELERS RETURN HOME

JAPAN GOLDEN WEEK - WRAPS UP AS TRAVELERS RETURN HOME 


@Jackie San


Train stations and airports were bustling with travelers returning from trips Monday, the last day of the Golden Week holidays, with people experiencing the first spring holiday period completely unaffected by coronavirus-related travel restrictions in four years.


Despite higher costs resulting from the yen's sharp decline against other currencies, many travelers opted for overseas destinations nearly a year after the government downgraded COVID-19 to a lower-risk disease category.


Shinkansen bullet trains reached peak congestion Monday as carriages with unreserved seats were overcrowded, with occupancy reaching 100 percent on some trains, according to Japan Railway companies.


At Tokyo Station, where an announcement alerted passengers that some shinkansen services were delayed due to overcrowding, Mariko Ohira from Tokyo's Ota Ward expressed relief that she had reserved seats for herself and her son on their return trip from her parents' home in Yamagata Prefecture.


Tokyo's Haneda airport and Narita airport near the capital saw an influx of Japanese travelers returning home. Takehito Shibuya, a company manager from Shizuoka Prefecture who traveled to Taiwan said, "I was surprised as everything was expensive" because of the weak yen.


On May 8 last year, the government reclassified coronavirus as an infectious disease on par with the seasonal flu, facilitating the normalization of social and economic activities.

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@Jackie San

2024年5月26日日曜日

Nagasaki Penquin Museum SightSeeing

  
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ISSUES APOLOGY FOR BAD TOURIST MANNERS, ADDS MULTILINGUAL SIGNS - MOUNT FUJI CONVENIENCE STORE

ISSUES APOLOGY FOR BAD TOURIST MANNERS, ADDS MULTILINGUAL SIGNS - MOUNT FUJI CONVENIENCE STORE


@Jackie San


The most recently popularized Mount Fuji viewing spot is also one of the most unexpected: the parking lot of a convenience store in the town of Fujikawaguchiko, Yamanashi Prefecture. With a population of less than 30,000, Fujikawaguchiko doesn’t have many tall buildings, and travelers and photography fans have taken notice of the photogenic way that Mount Fuji visually pops up from behind a local branch of the Lawson convenience store chain.


However, despite the tourist-attracting view, this location wasn’t designed as a tourist attraction. In order to get the best viewing angle, large crowds coming to see and snap photos have been congregating across the street from the Lawson, in the private-property space in front of a dentist’s office. Add in tourists jaywalking back and forth across the street, increased littering, and second-hand smoke, and the sudden tourist presence has become a problem for the town and its residents.


In response, at the end of April the decision was made to install opaque black screens between the dentist’s office and road, in order to block the view of Mount Fuji. Now, Lawson itself has issued a statement regarding the situation, posted to its official website on Sunday, which reads:


Thank you for your continued patronage of Lawson.


We wish to deeply apologize to the local residents, store customers, and the many other people who have been inconvenienced and troubled by the Lawson Fujikawaguchiko-ekimae and Fujikawaguchiko-Yakubamae branches becoming popular Mt. Fuji photography spots.


In the interest of strengthening safety measures, we have already dispatched staff from Lawson headquarters to the Fujikawaguchiko-ekimae branch, and as of [May 4] we have put up signs, in multiple languages, stating that crossing the street in front of the store is prohibited.


We are also planning to install multilingual etiquette warning signs stating that it is dangerous to take photos while standing in the parking lot or road, and that littering is prohibited, as soon as possible.


In the interest of preventing accidents, after consulting with the local police department and government, we are also considering posting private security staff at the site.


We are planning to install similar signs at Lawson Fujikawaguchiko-Yakubamae as well.


We will be continuing to consult and coordinate with local authorities and police in order to take measures to maintain the living environment of local residents and safety of our customers.


Thank you for your understanding.


As the most iconic symbol of Japan, Mount Fuji is always going to attract attention, and the mountain’s size means that it’s viewable from countless locations in the surrounding regions. Depending on the angle it’s viewed from and the surrounding scenery, the mountain can take on different atmospheres, especially when it’s paired with features that artistically frame it or incorporate some other aspect of life in Japan. As such, it’s likely only a matter of time before somewhere else becomes the next trendy spot to take photos of Mount Fuji from, but hopefully when that happens those coming to take the photos will be a little more considerate of the people who have been living in the community since before its 15 minutes of Fuji fame.


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@Jackie San

2024年5月25日土曜日

NAGASAKI CITY SCIENCE MUSEUM ( ナガサキシカガクカン(スターシップ)

  
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JAPAN PROBING VIDEO OF MSDF SHIP POSSIBLY TAKEN BY UNAUTHORIZED DRONE - TOKYO

JAPAN PROBING VIDEO OF MSDF SHIP POSSIBLY TAKEN BY UNAUTHORIZED DRONE - TOKYO


@Jackie San


The Japanese Defense Ministry is examining a video that purports to show a Maritime Self-Defense Force vessel in port, suspecting it may have been taken by an unauthorized drone, sources familiar with the matter said Wednesday.


The video, which was posted on a Chinese social media platform, stirred controversy earlier this year as it appears to provide a clear shot from above of the deck of the helicopter carrier Izumo. Defense Minister Minoru Kihara told reporters last month the ministry would investigate whether the imagery was fabricated or authentic.


According to the sources, the ensuing analysis led the ministry to believe the video was possibly taken from a drone that flew without permission above the vessel while it was anchored at an MSDF base in Yokosuka, south of Tokyo.


The video also showed what is believed to be buildings and facilities of the port in the city of Kanagawa Prefecture, which also hosts a U.S. naval base.


Unauthorized drone flights are prohibited near the MSDF's base in Yokosuka.


The ministry will explain the result of the examination to lawmakers in a meeting of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party on Thursday, the sources said.


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@Jackie San

MOUNT INASAYAMA OBSERVATORY PARK NAGASAKI, JAPAN [ONE OF JAPAN 'S THREE ...

 
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PREVIOUSLY KARATSU OLD BANK, SAGA PREFECTURAL JAPAN

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