Sunday, September 30, 2012

Bioethics – Expression of Values

Ethics and Values Must Go Together
 Dr Abe V Rotor
Living with Nature - School on Blog
Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid with Ms Melly C Tenorio
DZRB 738KHz AM 8 to 9 evening class, Monday to Friday

      Paolo drew one, last deep breath and held it there as if forever. His eyes were
wide open, glassy and welled with tears. His pale lips went agape as his whole body tensed. That was the arrival of the inevitable moment when he gave up fighting for life.

      Immediately, doctors, working with quick hands put the boy’s body under the command of modern machines like: a high voltage cardiac resuscitator; a lung machine that works on the principle of our diaphragm; and electronic gadgets to monitor pulse rate, body temperature and blood pressure. The sight of wires and tubes all over the young patient, with doctors working double time, reminds one of the desperate, but futile, effort to save the mortally wounded President of the United States, John F. Kennedy, in a Dallas hospital on November 22, 1963.

      This situation also reminds one of the celebrated Karen Quinlan case. This is about a young woman, who remained in a state of coma at a US hospital for more than a year.  Since her condition was not improving, she was unplugged from her life-sustaining machines. The case became an issue of a long court battle.  In the end, the patient was allowed to die, unplugged from her machines. 

      The court’s decision leaned heavily on the principles of bioethics. These principles continue to influence similar cases today, some 30 years later. Bioethics, the ethics of the life sciences, offers guidelines for dealing with life-and-death decisions. The ethical principles involved are expressions of values, and the humane foundations of moral values.

      In both the cases of Paolo and Karen, we ask? What is clinical death? Is the prolongation of life with machines (despite certification of a hopeless condition), justifiable?  In short, is keeping people alive through artificial means ethical? 

      By analyzing the interrelationships of ethical principles, we conclude that the human being must be respected. Allow him to die peacefully and let the bereaved family realize God’s sovereignty over life and all creation.

Bioethics and Social Justice

      Outside the hospital, people needing immediate treatment, are waiting for their turn.  There are those, mostly poor, who have been waiting silently in prolonged agony. In remote towns and villages, it is considered a luxury to have a doctor around. The medical care most poor people know are unreliable, often associated with superstitious beliefs. What an extreme scenario from that of Paolo and Karen!

      Thus bioethics and social justice must go hand in hand as we view its application upon the millions of poor people who are dying without benefit of good medicine. Like in war, precious medicine is applied on the potentially salvageable, and denied for those who are dead or beyond help.

      Yet there are those who feel privileged with “over treatment”. This is why we question the morality of cryogenics (dealing with the effects of very low temperatures), its lavishness and futuristic goals.  There are over a hundred rich people in America today whose bodies lie in cryogenic tanks, awaiting the day when medicine shall have found a way to revive them.

 ------------------------------------------------------
      “In the real sense, the practice of virtue is what morality is all about, meaning lived morality, the morality that leads to self-realization and ultimately, happiness.  After all, virtue is the road to happiness.”
                            
   Fr. Fausto Gomez, OP, STD, Relevant Principles in Bioethics
-------------------------------------------------------

      Here is another example of social injustice. The US spends US$1.5 billion daily on healthcare, even as more than a quarter of its population are deprived of medical benefit. One can imagine the tremendous contribution to world peace and improvement in the quality of human life, if only a portion of this wealth and that used for resurrecting life is diverted to the plight of the world’s poor.

Bioethics and Disease Prevention

      Dr. Mita Pardo de Tavera is a doctor who believes in the primary health care approach of involving people’s full participation. She raised ethics of  appropriability disease prevention as superior to its cure. This approach should be part of a program to eradicate diseases such as tuberculosis. The solution is not to be dependent merely on medical approaches, but on sound socio-economic programs as well that deal with illiteracy and unemployment. 
Pillars of Bioethics

      The broad domain of bioethics rests on four pillars, as follows:
§  Truth
§  Compassion
§  Beneficence
§  Justice

      Goodness springs from every righteous person when dealing with questions on bioethics.  It is conscience, that inner voice which makes us conscious of guilt.

      But how good is good enough?  To answer this question, we have to qualify conscience as formative conscience.  Fr. Tamerlane Lana OP STD, rector of the University of Santo Tomas, emphasizes that the formation of conscience is a life-long task, especially for professionals whose decisions directly affect the lives of people. The goal is for them to attain a well-informed conscience, which is upright and truthful, and that does not rely merely on acquired knowledge. It has to be a conscience guided by the spiritual nature of man.

Growing Application of Bioethics

      Today, with man’s growing affluence we find bioethics as part of the expanding fields of science and technology, areas that have direct consequences affecting human life.  Thus, we hear people raising questions of morality and ethics in various areas such as:

§  Euthanasia.
§  Hospice management.
§  Organ transplantation and rehabilitation.
§  Contraception, abortion and sterilization.
§  Social justice in the allocation of healthcare resources.
§  The Human Genome Project (HGP), and genome mapping.
§  Genetic engineering and human cloning.
§  In vitro fertilization (test tube babies).
§  Surrogate motherhood.
§  Menopausal childbirth technology.
§  Induced multiple births.
§  Aging and extension of longevity.
§  Pollution and global warming.
§  Ecosystems destruction.
§  Thermonuclear, biological and chemical warfare.

      These areas of concern in bioethics are expanded into medical ethics for doctors, lawyers and scientists to know. These include the following cases: 

1.     Food Additives and Contamination.

      Vital issues of discussion are the manufacture and distribution of food laced with harmful substances like potassium bromide in bread, sulfite in white sugar, nitrate in meat, glacial acetic acid in vinegar, monosodium glutamate (MSG) in cooked food, and aspartame in softdrinks.  Many of these substances are linked to cancer, diabetes and loss of memory.

2.     Ecological Bioethics.

      “Is it a sin to cut a tree?” a student asked this author.

      This is a bioethical question. It is not the cutting of the tree, per se, that causes the “sin”. Rather, it is the destruction of the ecosystem, the disruption of the functioning of natural laws resulting from the tree cutting, that is considered unethical.  

      The unabated logging of the watersheds of the once beautiful city by the sea – Ormoc City in Southern Leyte -  caused massive mudflows sweeping the central part of the community and killing hundreds of residents. Yet the ethics and morality of the actions of the loggers were never questioned.

       In the realm of theological sciences, this tragedy is akin to the paradigm of salvation.  According of Fr. Percy Bacani CICM, it is a sin to harm the environment, because it causes people to suffer. To find salvation, the culprits of the Ormoc tragedy should plow back their ill-gotten wealth for rebuilding the community they destroyed. The morality of this paradigm touches deep down at the roots of moral philosophy.

Five Principle in Bioethics

      Basic questions are raised where bioethics and moral philosophy are involved. These questions may be categorized under five general types.

§  When are we responsible for the consequences of our actions? (Principle of indirect voluntary).
§  How far may we participate in the performance of evil actions done by others? (Principle of cooperation).
§  When may we ethically perform an action from which results in two effects, good and evil? (Principle of double effect).
§  Are we the lords of our lives and all creation, or only custodians thereof? (Principle of stewardship).
§  Is the good of a part subordinated to the good of the whole? (Principle of totality).

      These general ethical principles serve as guides in analyzing situations, making decisions, or forecasting the consequences of one’s actions. These principles are used in law, philosophy, theology, management and other disciplines. The values on which they are founded which, in turn, provide the virtues that guide our actions, remain unchanged.

      Why do we not always follow the dictates of our conscience? “It is because we are weak, or blinded by sin or vice. Or because we lack virtue and fortitude,” says Fr. Fausto Gomez OP, regent and professor of bioethics at the UST College of Medicine.

      Man has yet to learn to avoid evil, and to do good.  Temptation leads one to sin, but so does complacency and inaction.

      On that fateful day, Paolo my hero, was the focus of a most crucial decision the doctors, my family and I had to make. When we made it, the life-sustaining machines were finally removed that day in 1983. Paolo died in my arms. He was my son. ~  


Paolo

Young fronds of coconut are offered on Palm Sunday. Thousands of coconut seedlings and trees are sacrificed, leading to the death of thousands of trees on a single occasion every year. Estimated loss runs to millions of pesos.  The productive life of a coconut may extend to fifty years.  The value of nuts and other products (tuba, midrib, husk, leaves, firewood, charcoal) produced by a single tree in a year is between P1000 to P5000. The same occasion endangers other species such as buri, anahaw, and oliva or cycad which are living fossils, and are now endangered species.  

Food additives like MSG (monosodium glutamate), artificial sugars (aspartame, nutrasweet, saccharin and other brands) destroy human health, in fact cause premature aging and early death.  
Intensive monocropping depletes soil fertility, and destroys physical properties, such as tilth, water retention, organic matter content, which are necessary to good production and sustainable productivity.


Friday, September 28, 2012

Let's Go Back to Nature: Self-Administered Test (True or False, 25 Items)

Let's Go Back to Nature: Self-Administered Test (True or False, 25 Items)


Dr Abe V Rotor
  • Living with Nature - School on Blog
  • Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid with Ms Melly C Tenorio 738 DZRB AM, 8 to 9 evening class Monday to Friday



 Fire tree (Delonix regia) in bloom 

1. "Going back to nature” means we have to live the lives of our ancestors and renounce our modern living.

2. We can actually transfer genetic materials from one organism to another irrespective of species or class or sub kingdom by means of genetic engineering, resulting in the formation of what we call as GMO.

3. Genetic engineering actually started with Gregor Mendel, the father of the science of genetics and heredity some two hundred years ago.

4. There is no question about a human clone of not having a soul because, the soul of the parents transcend to offspring which is the clone.

5. We live under different ages all at a given time - atomic age, computer age, age of genetic engineering, and space age – all rolled into what scientists called the age of postmodernism.

6. “Tailor the land to the crop, and not the other way around,” is a cardinal rule of "treaty between man and nature."

7. Man is a recent creature on Earth. If the 5 billion years of the earth’s existence is compared to a calendar (365 days), man came into this world only on the eve of December 30. Man is only one-day old on earth.

8. “Our lives are being run and outrun by science and technology.” This statement is generally true.

9. "Universities without walls" or "distance education" will enable mass education to the grassroots. It will break the cartel or control by elite universities and colleges.

10. Toxic metals abound on land, sea and air – from kangkong to tuna to fowls – unless we control the emission and spread of these toxic metals.

11. Going back to nature is to become a strict vegetarian – giving up animal products. Unless we do this we can’t truly say we have gone back to nature.

12. “Ecological paradigm of salvation” means “we express our love and care to people by protecting nature.” Plant a tree, for example, is reverence to nature and therefore to the Creator; kill a tree and you commit a sin – more so it caused flood and erosion leading to death and destruction.

13. Support and actively participate in movements such as Clean Air Act, Piso sa Pasig, Clean and Green, Green Revolution, Carless Day, Car pooling, Biofuel, Saving Endangered Species, Greenpeace.

14. Convert deserts into woodlands and pasture; empty shorelines into resorts, given the tremendous resources to accomplish such gargantuan task.

15. Petrodollar is the life of the world economy – so that we support the idea there there is plenty of oil yet to be discovered. There should be no letup in tapping these reserves.

16. We should implement stricter laws such as: absolutely no logging (total log ban); impound all smoke belching vehicles; no conversion of agricultural to industrial lands; no hunting of wild animals; and the like.

17. Even without the human species, Planet Earth will continue to “go round” so to speak in the same way as it did in the last 5 billion years – and perhaps go on for another 5 billion years. We just don’t know what will be the kind of dominant species after us.

18. Homesite for the golden years is feasible in the rural as well as in the urban areas; it can be modified according to area, design and structure – but not purpose.

19. It is good to go back to classics without aristocracy, spirituality without religious dogmatism; philosophy without ideological bias; realism without barbarism – to have a better view of life, and a firmer basis of our decision and faith.

20. Science and technology has imprisoned us in many ways – that is why we are not truly happy. We need a direction – a definition of life’s meaning. Logotherapy is as relevant as in a situation where we are kept helpless in a prison camp.

21. Science and technology has actually eliminated the scourge of the human race – disease, poverty and ignorance. Actually we are only begging for more benefits discreetly.

22. Today it takes weeks for man to make diamonds in special oven chambers the size of a washing machine, when it would take nature thousands of years to make one.

23. Reports have been verified of the presence of bromate in sugar, sulfite in wheat flour, nitrate in meat, human hormone in milk.

24. Alternative vegetables are not to be recommended because we have barely studied them unlike conventional vegetables.

25. Homeostasis means dynamic balance – Nature’s way of renewal, renaissance, seeking stability as continuing goal.


ANSWERS: 1 F, 2T, 3F, 4F, 5T, 6F, 7T, 8T, 9T, 10T, 11F, 12T, 13T, 14F, 15F, 16T, 17T, 18T, 19T, 20T, 21T, 22T, 23T, 24 F, 25T

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Dua kadi ti alipuspus mo? (Do you have two hair pools)?

Ka Abe V Rotor 

  • Living with Nature - School on Blog
  • Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid with Ms Melly C Tenorio 738 DZRB AM, 8 to 9 evening class Monday to Friday                                


       1.  Pan-nangan’ awan agsaramsam,
Nagbaetan.
 Don't eat between meals

                              2.  Awitemto’t umuna nga bunga
A nakadagdagsen.
Presume first fruit to be very heavy to carry 
(to induce plant to bear more)

                               3. Agpalpalayog diay sanga ti balete,
Pammaturog.
Someone (kapre) is swinging in the balete tree 
(to hush children to  sleep) 

                               4. Niog nga imula, tangadem to’t bungana.
Agdumugca.
 When planting coconut, stoop low, so that it will bear nuts early.

                               5. Nangisngisit nasamsam-it -
Bugnay.
It's a riddle: The more black it is, the sweeter - 
bignay or bugnay fruit.

                               6. Perlas ken lua pangar-arigan
Panagcaddua. 
Pearls and tears make a good companion.

                               7. Nakabasol, umel ken pukol,
Awan mairaman. 
The guilty - dumb and armless, and no one else.  

                               8.  Alipupus dua, maysa’t muging,
Nasukir.
He who has two hair pools (puyo), with one on the 
forehead, is stubborn  

                               9. Alimbubuyog sabong nagucrad.
Makasulisug.
An open flower tempts the bee.. 

                              10. Agkimkimat - buneng kumilkilap,
Ibaina.
Keep shiny bolo in its scabbard during lightning.

                              11.  Adda mata dagiti ti kaykayo,
       No rumabii.
Trees have eyes at night.

                               12.  Mang-mangan agsarsarita
Makababaeng,
 Talking while eating induces one to sneeze.

                                13. Agkakabsat, agkabkabsat,
Aggugubat.
 Brothers against brothers at war.

                                14. Bislat: pagbaut, pagsurat
Sarukud.
Stick for whipping, writing, walking.
  
                               15. Agriringgor, Angel nga puraw, nangisit.
Tao pay?
 If angels and devils fight each other,
wouldn't humans do the same?

                             16.  Puyutam, cuppo-cuppo,
Umamo.
 Gently blow the top of his head to tame him.
(usually applied to babies and young children).  

                            17.  Tumpaw, tumakder,
Itbong.
Bad egg floats and sinks in water. 

                            18. Kattiliw, tumarektek,
Tumaray.
 Untrained, it struts, then runs away (refers to  fighting cock) 

                            19. Agkedked, agarem.
Mumalem.
Unmoved, submits at the end.

                             20. Bit-bitwen lallaki, babba-i
Padapadada.
                                          Stars have no gender.  

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

UST Environmental Science: Camouflage and Mimicry - Oneness of Creation

Dr Abe V Rotor
Lesson: 

  • UST-GS Assignment: Interpret the 12 two-liners
  • Living with Nature - School on Blog
  • Paaralang Bayan sa Himpapawid with Ms Melly C Tenorio 738 DZRB AM, 8 to 9 evening class Monday to Friday



Three species of walking stick, Order Phasmatodea, 
Family Bacillidae
Brown leaf insect
A rare leaf insectNote leaf like abdomen. 
How many insects are there in this photo?
Green tree cricket (Phaneroptera furcifera) Order Orthoptera, 
Family Tettigoniidae
What mystery holds the insects' mimicry, 
camouflage and deceiving morphology?

Wonder if genes the source of similarity
and they too, the reason of trait diversity.

Fish like Sargasso weed floating at sea,
butterfly its wings like the leaves of a tree;

The preying mantis by mimicry is free 
to keep away from harm or lurk its prey;

The stinkbug exudes the odor of a sty,
repugnant and uninviting to be a prey.

The lacewing, its name speaks of  beauty,
the walking stick isn't at all  for the elderly;

What brings a leaf and insect in unity,
when unrelated they are in phylogeny?

Fishes constitute the most in diversity,
yet so keen the eye to spot their variety.

If creatures in the deep and in the sky
are extreme, why can some fish fly?

Creatures from land that chose the sea
only a few retain the traits of their family;

There are those from sea to land to stay,
under the sky, whether blue or gray. 

Oneness the universe in its infinity,
defies man's search for this mystery. ~         



Apparition

Dr Abe V Rotor
Oh, how short is memory after you are gone,
     Shorter still it is through time,
When spring comes but only part of season
     And time tolls in a hanging chime.

When in the night, in the shade of the moon,
     Your face appears in a smile,
I remember, I remember, the years gone by,
     As if it is only for a while.

Remiss I have been to keep your goodness,
     Our treasured things - and all,
And if they are locked in my heart and mind,
     I would not wait for your call.

But you come, you come in the dreary hour,
     When walls are fading and crumbling,
When work never ends, numbing the being,
     To rekindle faith and the spirit of living. ~

UST Photography and Environmental Science Reference: Love the Spiders


Dr Abe V Rotor
Photos by the author of a specimen kept in a Petri dish for study.  It was later released to its natural environment - in some cozy corner of the house.  Hence the spider is called Common House Spider.  It is harmless, but owing to its fearful look and intruding presence it is not at all welcomed as part of the household. We may not be aware that its a vanguard and friendly companion devouring cockroaches, flies, midges, and other household pests even bigger than itself.  

Common House Spider (Tagenaria domestica). Note the missing legs of this specimen.  The spider and all members of Class Arachnida, have eight legs, distinct from insects which have six.  Lost legs due to accident or as a result of fighting and predation  grow back in the next molting. This power of regeneration is common to members of Phylum Arthropoda, and among reptiles.  Regeneration a phenomenon in the biological world which we do not yet fully understand.   
The egg mass of house spider is covered with the spider's own silk. It carries the egg mass under its belly wherever it goes, finally depositing it where the newly hatched spiders are safe and assured of food. 
Another house spider, Tegenaria parietina which looks very close to our local species is known as Cardinal Spider or Cardinal Wolsey's Spider.  Legend tells us that during the reign of Henry VIII of England  between the 14th and 15th century, Cardinal Wolsey was almost frightened to death by a fierce looking spider in his bedroom.  Cardinal Wolsey's fear of spiders is shared by many children and adults which may develop into a nervous condition called Arachnophobia. 


Spider 

Your home is the space
where your embroidery sways
and glitters with the rainbow
away from life's shadow.

Redeem your mother Arachne
vanished for her art by Athene;
put the morning star to rest
and the sun to its crest. ~


A note of simple expression of thanks and gratitude to all followers, participants and viewers of Living with Nature - School on Blog and Naturalism – the Eighth Sense

Your contribution has greatly helped us expand in the number and variety of lessons and coverage. This is very encouraging as we are about to begin our fourth year with hundreds of pageviews daily from different parts of the world. We have now a running total of more than 2,500 combined posts or lessons, with a number of them  regularly updated and edited for added information and easier access.

 The lessons are also linked with radio and outreach programs, and with the academe. We invite you to help in enhancing a greater multiplier effect. You may wish to contribute by any means, from disseminating the lessons in your area yourselves, or by donating to our current extension work and radio broadcast (school-on-air) through Philippine National Bank Dollar Account No. 372756300038, or 372756300020 (peso account).

 Living with Nature-School on Blog and Naturalism – the Eighth Sense is purely a voluntary effort, non-profit and humanitarian movement, to bring functional literacy to millions who lack access to formal education, and to augment formal learning and experiential knowledge. Such a humble cause is in the spirit of modern technology, which in spite of its tremendous progress, and billions of dollars it has generated, there are millions and millions of people out there who have yet to rise above their present condition. But environment must not pay for progress. 

This is the commitment of his blog, with the unselfish and untiring support of Google and its network. I share, insignificant as it may, the global thrust of Google and company.  I believe in the cause of reaching out for the grassroots, the conservation of the environment, without condition of honor or material gain. It takes great effort to the point of sacrifice to make this blog independent from partisanship of any kind in order to maintain its integrity and objectivity as a avenue of learning. 

- Dr Abercio V Rotor



Sunday, September 23, 2012

Beware of the Higad! (Tussock Moth Caterpillar)

Beware of the Higad! (Tussock Moth Caterpillar)
Dr Abe V Rotor

We call it samrid in Ilocano, higad in Tagalog and Pilipino. It is perhaps the most avoided insect next to the putakti or paper wasp. Unlike the latter, the injury one gets by contact with this spiny caterpillars is far reaching - it can spread to other parts of the body. Thus the rule is: Never rub - not even touch, the affected area. If feasible, light a candle, train the drops on the embedded spines, allow to solidify, then lift off. In this way the spines are pulled out without much damage. Apply vinegar to neutralize the alkaline chemical substance. Taking a bath without vinegar treatment will only spread the minute Neptune spear. There are people who are extremely allergic to higad that they need immediate medical treatment with antihistamine drug.


Rusty Tussock Moth (Orgyia antiqua). This specimen of Tussock Moth caterpillar belongs to Family Lymantiidae, Order Lepidoptera.  It is a commonly found on Fire Tree (Delonix regia) which blooms in summer. The colorful caterpillar, about an inch long in its last instar, dangles from the tree with spinneret and sways in the slightest breeze. It often lands on a passerby and causes extreme discomfort that needs immediate medical attention.  The rule is to remove the caterpillar immediately without rubbing the affected area. One who is  particularly sensitive to higad must get immediate help.    
Tussock moth caterpillars are passive and tend to group together. Before they enter pupal stage they descend from their host tree, hide in crevices, and other suitable places where they will later emerge as moths.

Tussock moth caterpillars in three stages (instars), pupa (left, scantily covered with cocoon thread), molted skin (lower left), and frass or waste (right).
Snowy tussock moth mimic the color and pattern of its host tree, and growing lichens.

Tussock moth - a master of camouflage. It can adjust to the color and pattern of its environment.

First aid: Train melted candle over embedded bristles, then carefully peel off. Apply vinegar on the affected area to dissolve remaining bristles. Do not rub.

NOTE: Skin castings of higad can inflict considerable injury. Eliminate castings by burning or burying, just as caterpillars are disposed off. Higad may inflict the same injury on pets. Regular smudging (smoke emitted by burning dead leaves) can effectively reduced higad population. Household insecticide spray can help. Community control using chemicals needs expert's assistance.



Forest Primeval

Dr Abe V Rotor
Forest Primeval, Acrylic painting by AVR 2000

In the deep bowels of the Earth
     The ancient sun lies buried deep,
Then modern man came with tools to tap
     The fossil long in its keep.

It came from forests ages ago,
     By chemistry of nature and time -
Eons to the end of the Sixth Day
     When God gave man wisdom in his prime.

But woe, wisdom took away his mild
     To mine the forest primeval
To run the wheel, to warm his home,
     To guard his own survival.

Golden Oscar

Dr Abe V Rotor

These Oscars are our pets at home. They have been with us for nearly two years now.  They are actually albinos, culled from the colorful Oscars we are familiar with. Surprisingly as they grew they began to display impressive colors of gold and orange and gray - which didn't show up when they were fingerlings.  And what is more interesting is their ability to modify their appearance with the hour of the day and the kind of weather. We designed a backdrop of underwater scene to complement their mimicry and camouflage.  Indeed it makes a stage of sort to entertain us and our guests.     
 It is difficult to breed Oscars in captivity, more so in small home aquarium.  Like any group or community Oscars establish a pecking order. The tighter the competition for food and space, the more the dominant members become aggressive.  If this is the case, transfers to another aquarium those in the lowest rung of the order.     
               



           
Oscars are tame and playful.  Just don't tease them with bare hands.  
They have tiny sharp teeth. 
Gleaning on crumbs give a double image of this fish.
 Remove remnants and waste daily with a net, and keep 
the water clean and fresh. 

Astronotus ocellatus belongs to the cichlid family under a number of common names like oscartiger oscarvelvet cichlid, or marble cichlid.  In South America where the species naturally resides, A. ocellatus specimens are often found for sale as a food fish in the local markets. The fish can also be found in other areas, including China, Australia, and the United States. In spite of its slow and limited growth its potential for aquaculture is highly regarded.  However, it is more popular as aquarium fish owing to its variety of colors and  design. 




Saturday, September 22, 2012



Disney's fabled mickey mouse at Avilon Zoo, Rizal. The rat, Rattus rattus mindanensis (field rat) and Rattus rattus norvigicus (city rat) is the worst disease carrier, mainly Bubonic Plague that killed one-third of the population of Europe in the Dark Ages. 

It is also the most destructive pest of crops and scorn of housewives. 

Yet it is the most revered animal in the world of fantasy of Disney and in traditional India and other countries. 

It is also the most experimented animal, replacing the Guinea pig, in medicine, biology, and even in the social sciences. 

The story of the Pied Piper, the rat exterminator of Hamlin, Germany, is alive in classrooms and cinema. The rat belongs to a large group - rodents, to which the rabbit was once classified. Photo by Abe V Rotor, Canon EOS 350D Two  worlds of the rat -  most loved and most dreaded

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Echoes

Dr Abe V Rotor
Echoes still reverberate on the ruins of a church 
overgrown by balete. Magsingal, Ilocos Sur 

Whispers and footsteps on the hall and wall,
Greet a stormy morning; candles flickered,
Sheltered by warm, toughened palms,
And courtesies were the smile of familiarity:

Heads moved to acknowledge, to recollect

Old memories coming fresh and nostalgic,
Of those who once passed through the arch,
and longing to pass through it again someday.

Memories about a child becoming man,
Men’s wanderings, and man’s return to reality;
When with age, he looks back at the ideal,
Not in its pursuit but for treasured peace.

Whispers and footsteps on the hall and wall,

Echoes, sweet echoes, and music to a child
On some strong shoulder lifts a heavy eyelid;
A curtain falls, a new chapter begins. ~

Jungle Survival: Building a Fire

Dr Abe V Rotor
Primitive way of making fire. Anyone who watched the movie Castaway knows how the actor played by Tom Hanks made fire, succeeding only after tremendous effort. It was his greatest triumph as a lone survivor in an island for four long years. The principle of fire making is spontaneous combustion. Dry materials like bamboo and grass reach kindling temperature through sustained friction, slowly emitting smoke, flickering and bursting to flame. Courtesy of Subic Bay Ecological Park. Photos by Matthew Marlo R Rotor, Subic, Zambales 2007