Coral

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Flag Day!

Flag Day

United States

In the United States, Flag Day is celebrated on June 14. It commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States on June 14, 1777 by resolution of the Second Continental Congress. The United States Army also celebrates the U.S. Army birthday on this date; Congress adopted “the American continental army” after reaching a consensus position in the Committee of the Whole on June 14, 1775.  source

Today on Bing

June 14, 2019

A perfect day to fly your flag

We’re at Chimney Rock State Park, about 25 miles southeast of Asheville, North Carolina, for Flag Day. The 6,807-acre park gets its name from the 315-foot spire that offers expansive views of Hickory Nut Gorge and Lake Lure with the Blue Ridge Mountains in the distance. If you’re wondering how this sizable flag made it up to the summit, we don’t know the answer to that. But there is an elevator inside the mountain that can zip you to the top in 32 seconds. The other option is to hike up the 499 steps to the viewpoint.

It’s an Elephant!

But not just any elephant!

Today on Bing

June 13, 2019

A unique elephant encounter in Nantes

Created by François Delarozière, Pierre Orefice, and their team of artists and engineers at La Machine Company workshop, the Grand Éléphant was the first of three artworks/attractions constructed for the Machines de l’île (Machines of the Isle) in Nantes. The elephant is a mechanical sculpture that’s so big it can take up to 49 passengers for a 45-minute walk. After unveiling the elephant in 2007 and the Carrousel des Mondes Marins (Marine World Carousel) in 2012, they’re now working on an ambitious third project, L’Arbre aux Hérons (Tree of Herons), scheduled for 2022. The efforts of these visionary creators have turned a shuttered industrial shipyard on the Loire River into a unique place where art, architecture, tourism, and urban planning come together to delight all who visit.

The Marrying of Man and Nature

Today on Bing

June 8, 2019

Diving into World Oceans Day

Humans have been trying to construct artificial coral reefs since at least the 1950s, with only marginal success. But in 1979, German scientist and inventor Wolf Hilbertz created ‘Biorock,’ also known as ‘Seacrete.’ Hilbertz found that by directing a low-voltage charge to a metal frame submerged in seawater, calcium and other minerals in the water would build up on the frame. This mineral coating is so similar to the mineral composition of natural reef substrate that it creates a good habitat for the growth of corals. After the minerals have begun to coat the surface, divers transplant coral fragments from other reefs, attaching them to the structure’s frame. These coral pieces begin to bond to the accreted mineral substrate and start to grow, typically faster than in natural environments. Eventually the reef looks and functions like a natural reef ecosystem rather than an artificial one.

The story of Biorock is a good example of how technology and human innovation are important parts of the conservation movement, especially where Earth’s oceans are concerned. More than 70 percent of our planet’s surface is covered by oceans, and those oceans contain 97 percent of Earth’s water. That’s why ocean health is a global concern. It’s also the motivation behind World Oceans Day, celebrated every June 8. We’re celebrating with this photo of a Biorock reef off the Gili Islands in Indonesia.