Animals Thrive in Fukushima Nuclear Accident Zone
Scientists observe a surprise in danger zone around the Japanese nuclear accident zone after 10 years: animals love the place!
Hidden cameras in the 10-km evacuation zone around the ill-fated Fukushima Nuclear Reactor revealed a surprise to scientists at the University of Georgia and Japanese scientists: animals, romping all over the place! UGA’s press release says, “Study shows animal life thriving around Fukushima.”
Nearly a decade after the nuclear accident in Fukushima, Japan, researchers from the University of Georgia have found that wildlife populations are abundant in areas void of human life.
The camera study, published in the Journal of Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, reports that over 267,000 wildlife photos recorded more than 20 species, including wild boar, Japanese hare, macaques, pheasant, fox and the raccoon dog—a relative of the fox—in various areas of the landscape.
Watch the video clip and see for yourself: it’s a jungle out there, with thriving plants and animals of all kinds having a ball. They rather enjoy it without those pesky humans around. And if the top predators and herbivores are thriving, the understory of plants, fungi, worms, insects, bacteria and all the other members of the food web on which they depend must be doing well, too.
Tragedy Strikes, but the Environment Rebounds
TV watchers were aghast at the damage from the tsunami that took out whole communities and caused damage at the nuclear reactor on 11 March 2011. Some of the radioactive material entered the sea and was even detected across the Pacific Ocean on the California coast. Scientists despaired at the prospects of lasting ecological damage from the accident. It should be noted, however, that radiation levels were significantly lower than those at Chernobyl, and some of the most destructive fallout began to decay within weeks (see ibtimes.com.uk article).
“Our results represent the first evidence that numerous species of wildlife are now abundant throughout the Fukushima Evacuation Zone, despite the presence of radiological contamination,” said Beasley, associate professor at the Savannah River Ecology Laboratory and the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources.
Scientists placed 106 camera sites in three zones in a variety of habitats. The cameras portrayed a consistent picture: the nuclear accident has not destroyed the ecology of the area. Would this have been predicted? Wasn’t the radiation bath supposed to leave a trail of death for miles around? People knew to scramble, and have instruments to measure the risk, but animals cannot smell or see radiation.
“Based on these analyses, our results show that level of human activity, elevation and habitat type were the primary factors influencing the abundance of the species evaluated, rather than radiation levels.”
A similar situation prevailed around the Chernobyl radiation disaster site in the Ukraine, Evolution News reported. The efficiency of DNA repair processes appears to be greater than expected. The press release seems reticent to compare earlier predictions with current realities.
Darwinists should be excited about this finding! Look at all the potential for mutations, the raw material for natural selection! The radiation zone could be a natural laboratory for Darwinism. The origin of new species, like flying pigs, should follow rapidly!
If evolutionists were consistent, they would set up homes within the contamination zone to enjoy the fitness benefits of unguided variation in their genes. Maybe their kids will become Supermen and Wonder Women. Or is that “persons”?