Hiroshima and Pythons

August 9, 2018

Following the bombing of Hiroshima on August 6, 1945, which resulted in 140,000 deaths, the Makurazaki Typhoon hit the city one month later killing 1,200.  The second bombing of Japan was scheduled on August 11 but  was moved up two days due to expected bad weather and the originally  selected city of Kokura was later changed to Nagasaki.  On this date in 1945, a B-29 bomber, nicknamed Bockscar, after its commander, Frederick Bock, took-off from the island of Tinian carrying a 9,000 pound plutonium bomb named Fat Man with a blast equivalent of 21 kilotons of TNT.  Two weather observation planes scouted conditions over both target areas.  At 11:02 a.m. on August 9, 1945 the nuclear inferno was unleashed 500 meters above the surface. For many years the Florida Everglades has been invaded by nonnative species such as Burmese and African pythons, iguanas, and invasive fish.  The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission notes that the invasion occurs due to pet owners discarding the animals into the wild.  Pet shops and stores that experience devastation from storms and hurricanes also lose animals into the wild were they quickly multiply.  Burmese pythons consume just about anything and are harmful to the environment because of their voracious appetites which includes eating other endangered species.  Wildlife officials have been diligent about removing the pythons.

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