The end of days, Ragnarök, Armageddon, the apocalypse… we’ve all heard the predictions of a catastrophic end-of-the-world state of affairs, or a minimum of the end of the world as we know it. The biblical Guide of Revelation predicted it. The Mayan Calendar predicted it. And last weekend, the woolly bear caterpillar predicted it.
Norse mythology provides us a take a look at the end of our world in an occasion referred to as Ragnarök, which begins with an enormous named Eggther who wakes up the gods of the 9 Worlds to organize for a ultimate battle to end all battles. Earth is one of the Nine Worlds, which suggests interplanetary or galactic warfare.
As with the biblical apocalypse, things get really ugly before the forces of good and evil start duking it out, with humans caught in the center as pawns. Earth is plunged into three years of winter the place it snows and snows with no signal of summer time, and this is where the woolly bear prediction comes in.
Woolly bear caterpillars, scientifically named Pyrrharctia isabella for the Isabella tiger moth, have been predicting the harshness of the upcoming winter as far back as the Colonial days. Their spiny black bodies have a band of orange or reddish-brown in the middle, and it’s this band of orange that determines what variety of winter will probably be.
The previous wives’ story alleges that the smaller the orange band is, the harsher the winter. By this indicator, the winter of 2015 into 2016 goes to be a doozy, as a result of the woolly bear that I found last weekend was strong black. There wasn’t a spot of orange on him — not a single spike.
Woolly bears hibernate as caterpillars all winter long, freezing strong if temperatures warrant, after which they thaw out in the spring to proceed their life’s journey. In the arctic, a single caterpillar can stay up to 14 years, freezing strong every winter and thawing out again to renew eating, until it has lastly eaten enough to pupate. A single meals season just isn’t lengthy enough for him to fill his stomach with enough power to spin himself into a moth.
In 1914, entomologist Frank Lutz experimented with woolly bears at the Carnegie Station for Experimental Evolution, and decided that as the caterpillars have been growing, the degree of humidity did indeed affect their colour bands. The amount of rainfall influences the colour bands as properly, so there’s a correlation between the orange band and weather patterns.
This yr, the meteorologists should have been anticipating woolly bears, too, as a result of they are predicting a “colder than average winter” for the Southern U.S. stretching from the East Coast halfway by means of Arizona. In fact the climate males can’t credit the woolly bear so as an alternative they pin it on El Niño, and like several good politician, they’ve included an out, just in case El Niño swings the other means. If we do get blasted, nevertheless, it gained’t be till later in the winter.
However the woolly bear, referred to as a woolly worm by some, has no such qualms. He cares nothing for politics or protecting his status. When his band of orange says that we’re going to get blasted with a wicked, frigid winter, you’d better be stocking up on firewood and ear muffs.
No one tells us what a strong black woolly bear represents, but a endless winter comparable to the Ragnarök end-of-days where it snows and snows for three straight years may qualify.
The Norse Armageddon continues after the three-year winter with ominous portents in the cosmos. The sun turns black, and the moon and stars seemingly disappear, which means that something will darken the sky reminiscent of volcanic ash. Earth shakes so violently that the very mountains topple over. Oceans stand up and turn into disastrous floods. In all places you look, flames and steam shoot proper up into the heavens until Earth grow to be poisonous.
Puny people will run for their lives, however there’s no place protected to go. Individuals will flip towards one another different, and no man may have mercy for his neighbor.
Simply if you assume it may possibly’t get any worse, the sky splits in two and out come the Hearth Giants with their shiny battle troops, here to wage warfare on everybody and all the things in sight. Different extraterrestrials be a part of in the battle, corresponding to the Aesir gods whom we know by their all-father god Odin and his son Thor, preventing on our behalf. That’s the Norse version of doomsday.
The Mayan calendar ended in 2012 and since the world did not fold in on itself abruptly, the prophecy was discarded. However think about it… scientists are weighing in with ominous predictions about every part from a mass extinction event to a worldwide meals and water crisis.
We’re operating out of recent water. Bees (that pollinate all of our meals) are dying off at an alarming price, and so are butterflies. Earth has lost half its wildlife in the previous 40 years. The large cats corresponding to lions and tigers are dealing with extinction, and so are many other huge recreation animals. Glaciers are melting. We’re finding plenty of lifeless animals resembling 134,000 antelope who mysteriously died all of a sudden, and lifeless whales washing up on shore at alarming charges. The inhabitants in Africa will double in the next 35 years, triggering an enormous food and water scarcity and the demise of the huge recreation animals. These don’t even begin to cowl what scientists and assume tanks are warning us of.
Doomsday doesn’t happen all of sudden in an enormous bang, not in line with the numerous Armageddon situations. First it tortures us for an excellent long whereas, creeping up from every path to take potshots at the puny humans.
Native American tradition similar to the Navajo and Aztecs consider that Earth has already been by way of a number of cycles of destruction and rebirth. We have been destroyed by a rain of hearth throughout the Rain Solar, and by hurricanes during the Wind Sun, and by a worldwide flood during the Water Sun, and the next ending will come by earthquakes, because we are living in the Earthquake Sun.
In response to my woolly bear caterpillar, all of the doom and gloom begins this winter, so mark your calendar as a result of the all-black woolly bear made an appearance on December 6, 2015, in the state of Georgia, USA.
The Ragnarök doomsday prophecy alerts the end of Earth as we all know it, after which there will probably be a new Heaven, a brand new Earth, and humans get divided up between a number of after-worlds. If there’s a “new Earth” and we get divided up to reside on “after-worlds,” does that mean we’re bodily relocated to other planets? Or is that this purely religious? We won’t know the answer till that day arrives.
In fact all of this hinges on whether or not you consider in the woolly bear predictions. Entomologists have just about pooh-poohed all risk of accurate weather predictions. The reasoning is as follows: There are almost 260 species of tiger moth and each caterpillar has a special shade variation. Woolly bears actually shed their skins like a snake six occasions before reaching maturity, and each time their colour pattern modifications, with the older caterpillars having more black and less orange.
From 1947-1956, entomologist Charles Howard Curran of the American Museum of Natural History adopted the legend of the woolly bear predictions and concluded that they have been accurate about 50% of the time. His experiments took him to Bear Mountain State Park in New York, the place he and his associates launched The Unique Society of the Associates of the Woolly Bear.
The November 6, 1950 version of Life Journal reported on the research in an article entitled, “Woolly Prophet.” In Curran’s first yr at Bear Mountain in 1947, only 4 of the caterpillar’s eleven bands have been brown, which means that it was a very slender band. That winter, New York state had its worst recorded snow storm in 76 years. Curious to see if there actually is perhaps fact to the legend, Curran went back to Bear Mountain the following yr. The woolly bears had greater bands and positive enough, it was a milder winter. The next research made information all across the New York state newspapers.
The February 3, 1949 challenge of The Lengthy-Islander newspaper referred to as it “caterpillar meteorology” when a gaggle of entomologists surveyed the woolly bears of Bear Mountain to check the superstition that the caterpillars might forecast the weather.
The April 5, 1951 concern of The North Countryman quoted Dr. Curran as saying, “After all, the fact that the woolly bears have been right three times in a row does not constitute scientific proof.” The following yr nevertheless, the woolly bear was mistaken, and the March 31, 1955 difficulty of The Long-Islander gave the poor caterpillar a break. They noted that in any case, the accuracy of the woolly bear had a “far better average than the Weather Man.”
The October 14, 1954 difficulty of The Lengthy-Islander accused the caterpillar of failure to report. The newspaper employees couldn’t discover a single woolly bear caterpillar, they usually’d searched excessive and low, testing all of the traditional locations the place he’d been found in years passed by. They promised publicly, in the hopes that the missing climate forecaster may hear it via the grapevine, that “a royal welcome is being prepared for him in the Editor’s office.”
In the future later, on October 15, 1954, Hurricane Hazel slammed into a chilly entrance in New York, which reworked the hurricane right into a ferocious and lethal storm — the good storm. The climate workplace in Raleigh, North Carolina said that “all traces of civilization on the immediate waterfront between the state line and Cape Fear were practically annihilated.” Canada referred to as it the “storm of the century.”
Official weather predictions expected the hurricane to remain offshore, nevertheless it took an sudden flip and blasted the East Coast. Climate males predicted that it will dissipate in the Allegheny Mountains, nevertheless it didn’t, it continued on up into Canada and stalled out over Toronto. Maybe previous woolly was smarter than the common bear, choosing to hide out throughout this momentous week.
The October 20, 1956 problem of Ogdensburg Journal accused the caterpillars of “pulling the woolly” over everyone’s eyes, after which Dr. Curran introduced that this is able to be the final yr of the woolly bear research. Nine years’ value of statistics proved that the woolly bear couldn’t be trusted to forecast the weather. Curran had been accumulating knowledge on Bear Mountain since his first trek in 1947, with the final hike being on October 19, 1956 in accordance with the article. They didn’t rely 1947 as a research yr.
Whereas Curran didn’t prove the potential of the woolly bear to predict the weather, he ensured that the woolly bear legacy would reside on in reputation. From Kentucky to Ohio, and Illinois to Pennsylvania, yow will discover fall woolly bear festivals. North Carolina even hosts an annual woolly bear race the place the winner predicts the winter climate to return. This yr Twinkle Toes gained, and his prediction was the actual reverse of my woolly bear — an early blast of snow followed by a light winter.
So what do you assume? Do you belief the woolly bear? Is it going to be one other Blizzard of Ouncesor Snowpocalypse like we experienced in 2011, when 13,000 flights have been canceled throughout 30 states in the USA? Or perhaps we’ll revisit the Blizzard of 1966 where the snow was literally over my head. Is it the three-year winter of Ragnarök? Or are all these predictions just blowing in the wind? And if it turns out that we’re the End Occasions Era, will there be an extraterrestrial evacuation of people?
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