To Survive Without Water: Guide for Lost Tourists

Thousands of outdoor enthusiasts go away from civilization to the forests, mountains and other remote areas every summer. Unfortunately, sometimes they can’t find the way back, and in this case, the main enemy is dehydration. How to use simple gadgets in extreme conditions, drink water and hold it in the body? Read our tips – maybe one day they will be useful!

To find and to stock up

So, after hours of useless wandering, attempts to navigate by the sun, moss and other tweaks you have made a clear conclusion – you were lost. Most importantly, don’t panic. You should start of course, with finding water. Our body can live pretty long without food, but you have maximum a few days with no moisture.

001Fortunately, we have not so many deserts and often tourists get lost in the woods or in the mountains. There is enough moisture, but it is not easy to be obtained. In the forest, if the terrain is hilly, come down: there is a high probability of finding a river, stream, lake or swamp. Well, if a saving rain begins, just tie the cleanest piece of clothing around the tree trunk, and then press it into the prepared container. Read more

Lake Effect on Display: Cold Winds Over (Relatively) Warm Waters

I’ve touched on lake-effect snows, the classic pattern in the Upper Midwest and western New York State in which frigid winds blowing over relatively warm Great Lakes waters generate persistent cloud bands and lots of snow.


Cold air streaming over relatively warm Great Lakes waters produced streaming bands of clouds and so-called “lake effect” snow this week. Credit NASA / University of Wisconsin

The image above, to which I was directed by a Dot Earth reader, Mike Mangan, was posted earlier today by the Michigan television meteorologist Bill Steffen. Read more

A New Study Clarifies Treatment Needs for Water from Fracked Gas and Oil Wells


A diagram shows how water is used in hydraulic fracturing of gas and oil wells.Credit Environmental Protection Agency

A good post on InsideClimate News last week explored a new study of organic compounds and other constituents in the briny water that emerges from gas or oil wells created using the high-pressure process called hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. (This “produced water” is a mix of fracturing fluid and water from the rock layers being drilled.) Read more

What Makes Day Old Water Taste Funny?

You might have noticed that water can taste a bit off sometimes, especially if you leave a glass or open bottle out over night. But is that odd taste is an indicator that the water has gone bad? That’s hard to answer, Esther Inglis-Arkell explains for io9.

waterglassWhen you drink from a glass, you introduce microbes from your lips, mouth and saliva into the water and its container, Inglis-Arkell writes. “They’ll often be joined by whatever is riding around on the dust swirling in your house,” she notes. These microbes beget more microbes in environments with balmy temperatures. The colder the room the longer the bottle or glass of water will keep. Read more

Water Bears Are the Master DNA Thieves of the Animal World

Tardigrades are animals that thrive in extremes. Also known as water bears or moss piglets, the aquatic, microscopic invertebrates can survive freezing and boiling temperatures as well as the harsh conditions of outer space. A dried-out tardigrade can be reanimated just by adding water—even decades later. They’re found on every continent including Antarctica, and they live in environments ranging from the deepest ocean trenches to the hottest deserts to the tops of the Himalaya.

001Now scientists have discovered that tardigrades possess yet another extreme claim to fame: Their genome contains the most foreign DNA of any animal species known.

Rather than inheriting all of their genes from their ancestors, tardigrades get a whopping one-sixth of their genetic makeup from unrelated plants, bacteria, fungi and archaeans, researchers report today in PNAS. The bizarre mashup highlights the fact that species can take shape in much less linear ways that commonly imagined. Read more