Home>News Center>Life

Animals invited to help forecast earthquakes
Updated: 2004-07-31 13:59

Animals in a northeast China zoo are now there not only for people to visit but also for monitoring possible earthquakes.

The Anshan Zoo, named after the city where it is located, in Liaoning Province, was brought into the city's seismological macro-observation network this week.

"About one week before an earthquake happens, animals' behaviors would become obviously abnormal," said Xu Jing, deputy chief engineer of the city's seismological bureau. And the more abnormal the animals act, the stronger the earthquake would probably be.

The zoo keepers therefore were given a new mission besides taking care of the animals: report to the seismological bureau whenever they find the animals acting strangely.

Together with the micro-monitoring result done with instruments, the local seismological administration believed that its earthquake forecasting would become more accurate and in time.

It is believed that more than 100 kinds of animals can "predict " earthquakes, including horses, donkeys, pigs, cattle, dogs, cats, chickens, ducks, geese, rats, snakes, and fish. Some are restless, some are dazed and some change their habits.

China, located between the circum-Pacific seismic belt and the belt ranging from the Mediterranean to the Himalayas, experiences the most earthquakes in the world.

Liaoning Province has reported three earthquakes measuring above 5.0 on the Richter scale since 1970. It has succeeded in forecasting one earthquake measuring 7.3 on the Richter scale which hit Yingkou and Haicheng, two densely populated places in southern part of the province, on Feb. 4, 1975. More than 2,000 people died in that tremor.

The most tragic quake to occur in China was the one hitting Tangshan of Hebei Province, the province surrounding Beijing, on July 28, 1976. Measuring 7.8 on the Richter scale, it killed some 242,000 people.

Titbits of life in Beijing
Gong Li and Yeoh to star in Spielberg geisha film
Xu Jinglei's new directing credit
  Today's Top News     Top Life News

Hu: China to resolve Taiwan peacefully



US nationals arrested for DVD piracy



China, US sign deal to expand air services



Beijing to raise water prices again



US Chinese suspected of spying `regretful'



Ensuring clean online environment


  Moore enjoying Disney bosses' 'comeuppance'
  Former Miss India Nafisa Joseph commits suicide
  Iraqi body beautifuls flex in honor of hero Arnie
  New gimmicks to get rid of your millions
  Animals invited to help forecast earthquakes
  China to issue special stamps of Chinese Tiger
  Go to Another Section  
  Story Tools  
  Paris Hilton, singer Nick Carter end romance