#pandemic

#pandemic
Scientists Found That The Black Death Wasn't as Deadly as Originally ThoughtA new study has looked at the effect of the Black Death, one of the most devastating pandemics that hit the world. The plague, which lasted between 1346 and 1353, was believed to reach nearly every corner of Europe and is estimated to have killed 30%-50% of the population.A new study, however, is focused on correcting these initial beliefs. The study is aiming to correct the imbalance of information concerning the coverage of the plague. Instead, it is attempting to discover ways for fully working out the real extent of the Black Death’s mortality. Researchers are relying on pollen analysis because they can be counted in each sediment sample they had. In addition, counting and analyzing these grains can reconstruct the landscape and changes over time. While at first glance, learning about the agricultural landscape isn't related to the plague, it implies the human behavior exhibited during the pandemic. If Europe’s population did dwindle to the believed amount, a near-collapse of the medieval cultivated landscape should have happened. After analyzing pollen data and testing different scenarios region by region, the researchers found out that the Black Death did not equally devastate every European region. In addition, they pointed out that the plague did not just spread through rats and their fleas. Local conditions, such as economic activity and population density would have influenced the spread of the disease. Therefore, differences in local conditions yielded different transmission rates.Image credits: Gilles Li Muisis, Annales, Bibliothèque Royal de Belgique, MS 13076-77, f. 24v.; Izdebski et al., Nature Ecology & Evolution 2022#plague #BlackDeath #pandemic #research #study #polleanalysis
#pandemic
What Happens When People Get to Choose their Own Sleep SchedulesOur lives were disrupted in many ways during the coronavirus pandemic. At the same time, these disruptions created some interesting opportunities for research. A vast number of office workers went home to work remotely during lockdown, which made their work schedules more flexible in many cases. How did their sleep patterns change? Social jet lag (SJL) is the term sleep scientists to use for the gap between our natural sleep patterns and the the social schedules -mainly work and school- that we must adhere to in normal circumstances. Night owls suffer the biggest SJL when they have to be at work in the morning, while early birds suffer less because their natural sleep pattern conforms to social obligations. Nearly 15,000 from 14 countries participated in a study of sleep patterns to determine the pandemic's effect on SJL. They found that when people determine their own work hours, 46% of participants reduced their SJL. Most did this by sleeping later in the morning, starting work later, and staying up later at night. Another 20% increased their SJJL, and the rest observed no change.The research showed that nearly half of the population follows a schedule that betrays their natural, later chronotype. What’s surprising, however, is that the people who reduced their SJL experienced more insomnia and stress during the pandemic than those who maintained a consistent SJL. This is probably because spending too long in bed reduces sleep efficiency, making it harder to sleep throughout the night.That's makes sense, as sleep scientists have long advised insomniacs to not lay in bed unless they intend to sleep, so that they become conditioned to associating the bed with sleep. Read more about Social Jet Lag and pandemic sleep patterns at Science Focus. -via Damn Interesting#sleep #sleeppattern #socialjetlag #sleepschedule #pandemic
#pandemic
When the Covid Pandemic Hit New York, These Teenage EMTs Were The Only Ones Answering CallsSince the pandemic started, there has been a shortage of healthcare workers. In northern New York, emergency services personnel like EMTs are run entirely by volunteers. Most of the volunteers are from the older generation who decided to quit because of COVID health concerns.Sackets Harbor, a town on the edge of Lake Ontario, is fortunate to have teenagers stepping in. Just like any other community, they have a volunteer fire department. Their EMS crew or ambulance service would take at least a call a day. The EMS captain is 20-year old Grayden Brunet. He manages the budget and organizes the crew, which is composed of 8 people, all under the age of 21.​When the young, energetic trio joined a few years ago, some of the previous EMS crew were able to step back a bit. Then, the pandemic hit. Brunet says a lot of the older EMTs stopped responding to calls altogether."We came in one day and we realized we were the only ones coming in."Those were hard days, says Brazie. None of them were certified to drive the ambulance, and the agency actually changed the rules so they could get certified at a younger age and with less experience. [...]They say it was never an option for the three of them to stop running the town’s ambulance. Brunet says that they never even considered it."Honestly, it comes down to if we stopped volunteering our time here, this agency would no longer exist. The community would lose the ambulance and it would be detrimental. So we don't really have a choice."Learn more about their challenges over at northcountrypublicradio.org​All Images: Amy Feiereisel#youngheroes #pandemic #EMTs
#covid19
Eurovision Winner Mr Lordi Got a COVID-19 Vaccine in Full CostumeMr. Lordi looks like he doesn't need any help fighting any virus, but here he is getting the second jab of his COVID-19 vaccination in Rovaniemi, Finland.The lead singer of the heavy metal band Lordi, who won the Eurovision Song Contest 2006, showed up in full costume. "They put a big needle in my arm, and that's exactly why I came here. This was my second vaccine dose," he said to Finnish news site Yle.Mr. Lordi, whose real name is Tomi Petteri Putaansuu, added that the coronavirus pandemic had postponed his band's tours, but he managed to put all the extra time to good use."There's also good sides to all of this. It's given us an opportunity to be creative. We've recorded seven albums [during the epidemic]," he added.Image:Jouni Porsanger#COVID19 #coronavirus #pandemic #vaccination #Lordi #MrLordi #Eurovision #Finland​Related: We Don't Talk About Covid, No no no
#covid19
If Only More Covid-19 Vaccine PSAs are As Funny As This One by Rudy WillinghamSeattle-based artist Rudy Willingham created a series of fantastic public service announcements encouraging people to get vaccinated against COVID-19.Willingham use simple cutout image of Dr. Anthony Fauci placed at the right position next to the Seattle's Space Needle to create an image of the physician holding a giant syringe.Related: We Don't Talk About Covid, No no no​In other clips, Willingham put a giant syringe into the hand of the statue of Ken Griffey Jr. and a bandage on the arm of Rosie the Riveter. Take a look:
#sandcastle
World's Tallest Sandcastle is a Covid-Themed Sculpture by Wilfred StijgerStanding at 21.16 meter (69.4 ft) Dutch designer Wilfred Stijger's new sandcastle creation smashed the previous record holder to claim the new title of world's tallest sandcastle.Stijger was assisted by 30 of the world's best sand sculptors to create the sandcastle in the annual Sand Sculpture Festival in the seaside town of Blokhus, Denmark. It took nearly 5,000 tonnes of sand, mixed with some clay and an extra layer of glue to make the sculpture last through most of the Danish winter.To commemorate the current COVID-19 pandemic, Stijger put a sculpture of the coronavirus on top of the sandcastle. "It's ruling our lives everywhere," Stijger said, "It tells you what to do ... It tells you to stay away from your family and not go to nice places. Don't do activities, stay home."#sandcastle #SandSculpture #worldrecord #WilfredStijger #Covid19 #coronavirus #pandemicRelated: We Don't Talk About Covid, No No No​