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Hi! It’s me a fun guy!!

Who doesn’t want to meet a fun guy?

A person with great sense of humor, lots of stories to tell, a personality to be followed enough to make a cult and who is also a person of science. That’s everyone’s dream, right?

Well, we are not going to talk about that fun guy but about few interesting fungi. Unlike their plant cousins fungi lacks chlorophyll despite being eukaryotic and multicellular. This lead them to a sad life unable to prepare food themselves and forcing to live on absorbed nutrients. The misery continues even further, they can’t procreate by making seeds rather have to depend on spores. Alas! The primal purpose of a life on this blue planet has to piggyback on fragmenting and budding. Cutting of a limb and that growing into your offspring, sounds nauseating, ain’t it?

Ahh.. don’t forget, we can eat few of these fungi, few let you to unleash power inside and few can send you to another dimensions, yeah! both literally and metaphorically. These fun guys are serving humanity in other great frontier by doing fermentation 😋😏 and production of antibiotics.

Different types of fungi
Different types of fungi (image source : mycorrhizas.info)

There is a saying, You can skip 1000s of tasks to eat and 500s of tasks to sleep. You may not have heard earlier, I made it. 😏😂 So, let’s start with eating these things. Continue reading “Hi! It’s me a fun guy!!”

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अर्ग्यानिकका अर्ग्यानिक कुरा

(GMO, यसको वैज्ञानिक आधार, विदेश र नेपालमा रहेका नीतिनियमका व्यवस्था र यसैसँग जोडिएका अर्ग्यानिक खेती र कृषिप्रविधि सम्बन्धित लेखश्रृङ्खलामा दोस्रो भाग आज प्रकाशित गरिएको छ, बाँकी भागहरु क्रमश: प्रकाशित हुनेछन्, कृपया  लामो सास  लिएर बस्नुहोला।😏)

GMO, भ्रम र यथार्थ बारे लेखेपछि केही प्रतिक्रियाहरु आएका थिए। पहिले यिनीबारे छोटकरीमा प्रष्ट्याउन चाहन्छु।

१.पढेलेखेका मान्छेहरुमा पनि के भ्रम रहेछ भने ब्याक्टेरिया मार्फत बनाइएको GMO हानिकारक हुन्छ। ‘यसरी बनाइएको GMO के हो के हो, भर पर्न सकिन्छ र!’ भन्ने कुरा मुख्य थियो। मेरो विचारमा चाहिँ यो डर ‘ब्याक्टेरिया’ शब्द सुनेर आत्तिएकोले होला। नत्र, ब्याक्टेरिया हाम्रो मुखमा छन, पेटमा छन, हामीले खाने खानेकुरामा छन, सबैतिर छन। ब्याक्टेरिया हामीले खान्छौँ, उनीहरुले हाम्रो खाना खान्छन…. यो हाम्रो उत्पत्तिदेखि नै चल्दै आएको कुरा हो। त्यसमाथि कतिपय खानेकुरा त ब्याक्टेरिया प्रयोग गरेरै बनाउदछौँ (दही, गुन्द्रुक, आदि)। डर मात्र हो, मेरो विचारमा।

र अर्को कुरा, ब्याक्टेरिया प्रयोग गरेर GMO बनाइएको छ भने यो ब्याक्टेरिया उक्त GMO मा रहने हैन। ब्याक्टेरियाको काम त केवल हामीले घुसाउन चाहेको जीन कोषमा पुर्‍याउन हुलाकीको काम गर्न मात्र हो। यो काम गर्दा ब्याक्टेरियाकै जीन घुस्ने सम्भावना निकै कम हुन्छ। घुसे पनि जेनेटिक प्रविधि (markers) प्रयोग गरेर यिनलाई फाल्न (deselect) गर्न सकिन्छ।

अनि अर्को कुरा, GMO लाई ‘पास’ गराएर खेतसम्म पु-याउने बेलासम्ममा पचासौँ परीक्षणहरु गरेर, लाखौँ विरुवाहरु, करोडौँ बीऊहरु जाँचेर मात्र पठाइन्छ। त्यसैले खानेकुरा हाम्रो थालसम्म आइपुग्दा केही हानिकारक तत्व रहन्नन्। यसरी जाँच गर्दा मानवलाई मात्र पुग्ने हानि नभएर वातावरण (पानी, माटो, हावा) लाई पनि हानि पुग्छ-पुग्दैन, त्यो पनि जाँच हुन्छ। सबैलाई कुनै हानि नहुने पुष्टि पटकौँ पटक भइसकेपछि मात्र GMO लाई आधिकारिक रुपमा बजारतिर जान अनुमति दिइन्छ।

तर बुझाउँदा पनि मान्छेमा भ्रम र डर रहन्छ भने यिनीहरुलाई आफैँ बिस्तारै बुझ्न दिनुपर्छ। ☺

२.अचेल ब्याक्टेरिया प्रयोग नगरी GMO बनाउने प्रविधिहरु आइसकेका छन। सबैभन्दा सजिलो र प्रख्यात विधि चाहिँ CRISPR CAS9 भन्ने हो जसबाट क्रोमोजोमको चाहेको ठाउँमै आफ्नो रुचिको जीन घुसाउन सकिन्छ। अचेल त रैथाने जात या पुराना जातमा रहेका जीन, जो नयाँ उन्नत जातमा हुन्नन्, तिनलाई उन्नत जातमा घुसाउने हो भने यो विधिबाट बनेको GMO लाई GMO भन्ने कि नभन्ने भनेर नि बहस भइरहेछन। किनभने एकै species को जीनलाई पुरानो जातबाट नयाँ जातमा ब्याक्टेरियाविना नै सार्दा किन GMO भन्नु? यो बहस एकातिर छ, तर मेरो भनाइ के भने समयसँगै GMO बनाउने तरिका पनि परिष्कृत र सजिला हुँदै गएका छन।

अब यो भाग – २ मा अर्ग्यानिक खेतीबारे चर्चा गर्न चाहन्छु।

भाग-२ अर्ग्यानिक खेती

अर्ग्यानिक खेतीलाई लगभग GMO को विपरितमा राखेर हेर्ने, बुझ्ने गरिन्छ। यो ठीक हो हैन त भनेर खासै के भनिरहनु। तर जसरी अर्ग्यानिक खेतीलाई सेकेन्ड कमिङ अफ जिजस क्राइस्ट जसरी हेरिएको छ, त्यो चाहिँ कसरी बिलकुल गलत छ भनेर २-४ कुरा राख्न चाहन्छु।

केही भलाद्मीहरु उफ्रनुअघि नै यो भन्न चाहन्छु कि हो, मान्छेले कुनै विषादीरहित खानेकुरा खान खोज्दछ भने र किन्ने/पाउने सामर्थ्य राख्दछ भने त्यो उसको हक हो। भलै अरुका अगाडि धाक किन नलाओस्, खोजेको खानेकुरा पाउँछ भने त्यो राम्रो हो।

तर… Continue reading “अर्ग्यानिकका अर्ग्यानिक कुरा”

Citizen Science

What is Citizen Science?

Science is a means of our Understanding the truth of Nature and its marvelous creation and systems. For hundreds of years people of Science have ventured into the abyss of the unknown reality of the universe, whether it’s in Physics, Astronomy or Biology. The curiosity of human mind has drove the chain of knowledge over the extended horizon of evolution of human minds. From the inquisitive minds of early philosophers, great thinkers to primeval scientist and to modern day Scientist, Science has come so far from its early days. The metamorphosis of primitive science to present day and age with advanced Science was brought about by the curiosity of the people.

Over the generation, the scientific exploration was limited to the experts of the related field. But with the dawn of the last two decades or so the concept of Citizen Science has come to light. Citizen Science can be simply defined as the “Involvement of volunteers in Science” unlike the past methods of involving professionals related to scientific field for scientific research in a non-collaborative way. Citizen science deals in a broad arena of society. Citizen science refers to the involvement of non-Scientific community in scientific research. It is often referred to as “Amateur Science” or “Crowdsourced Science”.

According to the Oxford English Dictionary: Citizen Science can be defined as – “Scientific work undertaken by members of the general public, often in collaboration with or under the direction of professional scientists and scientific institutions”

Curiosity is not limited by the availability or core interest in the scientific field. A person can choose not to be a Scientist yet have curiosity about things in Science. Citizen science brings those people into the domain of scientific research. One doesn’t need an advanced degree in Ecology to study the diversity and distribution of a particular birds of an area. They can work as a citizen Scientist. Citizen science is all about collaboration of Scientist with the general public who are interested to work/volunteer on scientific works. Their involvement can be limited to collecting data to analysis or even at times getting published.

 

Within the framework of  relation to the Biological science and Environment, knowledge of local people is powerful, not just in mapping the biodiversity of the area but even to understand the habitat use and behavior of those animals. This collaboration of scientists and general public not only brings the local knowledge into the play but also helps to raise awareness among the general public. At times the local knowledge is even better than the knowledge of the Scientist because they have been using or observing any biological resources within area for many generations. The local knowledge of Ethno-biology can surpass the knowledge of an Ethno-biologist. It is for this reason, any research in Science, can be very useful with the involvement of the local community or any general form of public. As per the report of “UK Environmental Observational Framework” citizen science has been a very useful tool in the scientific study. The RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch is one of the famous citizen science project which has been very successful in the field of wildlife conservation. In the year of 2011  more than 600,000 people were involved in the survey, which could be the world’s biggest wildlife survey.

 

Bird Track is an online Citizen Science website operated by British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) which gives a platform for anyone anywhere in the world to records birds.

 

The Great Nature Project is another project by  National Geography to document the biodiversity of the Earth.

The concept of Citizen Science is not restricted just to natural science. There are numerous projects on Astronomy, Chemistry. The Zooniverse provides platform for Physics, Chemistry, Space science, History, Medicine etc.

 

Citizen-Science-Infographic

Source : http://www.citizensciencecenter.com

Why Citizen Science?

 

Citizen science is the best way to contribute back to the community. Not only it will help to enhance the conservational efforts of the local level, but it will broaden the understanding of scientific knowledge to the general public. It will help people understand the various changes and threats that one particular species or an ecosystem as a whole is facing. Conservation starts from the local level, the process of bringing science to the general public will improve the methods of conservation.  Citizen science brings people from different background into the domain of scientific research, hence giving rise to broad arrays of solutions for the environmental problems that a particular area is facing or is vulnerable to. The local people might be living in an ecosystem with vast importance and not realize it, or in a way over exploiting it. Their involvement in citizen science project will definitely help change their views about it.

All in all Citizen Science project generates new and in depth knowledge which could be limited otherwise. And moreover it will help to spread knowledge and awareness for the conservation of an ecosystem as a whole.

 

Disaster Mapping Using Social Media

With the increasing availability and advancements of mobile technologies with internet, it has become possible to quickly catch up with latest news around the world and share information through social media such as Facebook and Twitter. Especially during and after a disaster, the information obtained from citizens can be helpful and valuable for local authorities in identifying the extent, intensity and impacts of the hazardous event. Application-driven data collection techniques using mobile devices and social media allowed for the collection of citizens-based information in real time.

Are you aware that you could even contribute for better management of natural hazards (e.g. in the case of floods) through your tweets? In the recent years, researchers have developed approaches for real-time flood mapping using the social media network such as Twitter, enabling citizens to report the information related to flood conditions.

One of such examples is the work of Deltares (https://www.deltares.nl) and Floodtags (https://www.floodtags.com/); which an independent research institute and a social enterprise based in The Netherlands for water management.  They have studied how Twitter data could be used for disaster response with a pilot case in Jakarta (Indonesia), where floods pose a continuous thread to citizens every year. Taking advantage of citizens’ activeness on social media, in particular on Twitter, a concept was developed which combined observed information (i.e. depth and location of floods) with a Digital Elevation Model (DEM) to produce flood extent maps in almost real-time [1].

Continue reading “Disaster Mapping Using Social Media”

पानी, नदी र बाढी

सडक कि खोला?

अरु बेला साँघुरा सडक, पेटीभरी सामान बेच्नेहरुले गर्दा सजिलै हिँड्न नपाउने काठमान्डुको वर्खाको दुखको कथा बेग्लै छ। कमै सडक होलान् जसमा पानी बनाइएका नाली र ढलबाट बग्छ र सडक सहज रहन्छ।केही बेर पानी पर्दा नै काठमान्डुको मुख्य भाग जमल तथा ललितपुरको कुपन्डोलमा सडक नदी जस्तो हुने त सबैले देखेकै कुरा हो।

सडक बनाउँदा पानी व्यवस्थापनलाई प्राथमिकता दिएर काम गर्न सकिएन भने वर्षा हुँदा दुख दिने कुरा त छदैँछ, बनेको सडकको आयु पनि कम गराउने कुरालाई नजर अन्दाज गर्न हुँदैन।भिरालो धरातलमा त सडकको मुख्य शत्रुको रुपमा लिइने बगेर आउने बर्सातको पानीले उचित निकास नपाए सहरी सडकमा पनि जमेर बिस्तारै खाल्डाखुल्डी पार्ने गर्छ।

बङ्गालको खाडीबाट आउने मौसमी वायुले मनसुनी वर्षा हुने काठमान्डुमा त्यहाँबाट नजिकको भौगोलिक अवस्थिति तथा उत्तरका पहाडले हावा छेक्ने कारणले गर्दा यथेष्ठ मात्रामा नै बर्सात हुन्छ।औसतमा वार्षिक १३८० मिलिमिटर जति पानी पर्ने काठमान्डुमा जुलाइ महिनामा मात्रै ३७८ मिलिमिटरसम्म पानी परेको रेकर्ड छ। वरिपरिका डाँडाको समेत पानी बगेर आउने र बागमती र यसका सहायक नदी मार्फत निकास हुने उपत्यका सतहमा बग्ने पानी व्यवस्थापनको लागि सजिलो ठाउँ भने हैन। अब पहिलेजस्तो धेरै खेतबारी वा पर्ती जग्गा भएर धेरैजसो पानी जमिनमा सोसिएर जाने अवस्था पनि छैन, काठमान्डुमा। Continue reading “पानी, नदी र बाढी”

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