By Al Magaw
“On December 26, 2004, an earthquake along the floor of the Indian Ocean was responsible for a tsunami that claimed the lives of thousands of people in Asia and East Africa. In the midst of all the destruction, wildlife officials at Sri Lanka’s Yala National Park have reported no mass animal deaths. Yala National Park is a wildlife reserve populated by hundreds of wild animals including elephants, leopards, and monkeys. Researchers believe that these animals were able to sense the danger long before humans.There has been no conclusive evidence as to how animals may be able to sense earthquakes. Some researchers believe the animals at Yala National Park were able to detect the earthquake and move to higher ground before the tsunami hit, causing massive waves and flooding. ” (copied from various news sources)
Reports of strange behavior from animals were common prior to the tsunami – (the tsunami was caused by an underwater landslide that in itself was caused by an earthquake)
The belief that animals can predict earthquakes has been around for centuries.
In 373 B.C., historians recorded that animals, including rats, snakes and weasels, deserted the Greek city of Helice in droves just days before a quake devastated the place.
Accounts of similar animal anticipation of earthquakes have surfaced across the centuries since. Catfish moving violently, chickens that stop laying eggs and bees leaving their hive in a panic have been reported. Countless pet owners claimed to have witnessed their cats and dogs acting strangely before the ground shook—barking or whining for no apparent reason, or showing signs of nervousness and restlessness.
There have also been examples where authorities have forecast successfully a major earthquake, based in part on the observation of the strange antics of animals. For example, in 1975 Chinese officials ordered the evacuation of Haicheng, a city with one million people, just days before a 7.3-magnitude quake. Only a small portion of the population was hurt or killed. If the city had not been evacuated, it is estimated that the number of fatalities and injuries could have exceeded 150,000.” (copied from National Geographic )
Research into this phenomena is “being held back not because of lack of money but dogmatism and narrow-mindedness” according to one expert
My own belief is that for phenomena like this to be understood, the mindset of 2 + 2 = 4 has to be forgotten and minds have to open to the idea that there are other things happening in the universe that can not be explained by conventional scientific thinking or religious beliefs.
Al Magaw is a musher from Salmo, BC. Al keeps a medium sized kennel of 20 – 45 alaskan huskies as well as several pet dogs of various breeds. Al has been training and racing for the last 33 years. Before becoming involved with sled dogs, Al, along with his family, kept and competed with horses for many years. Al can be reached through his website at http://www.spiritofthenorthkennels.com Al is a guest blogger for Denver Dog Works and can be reached through our website at http://www.denverdogworks.com