Misinformation and Fear Fuel Indiscriminate Killing of Russell’s Vipers in Bangladesh

The Russell’s viper is a protected species and helps control rodent numbers on farmland, but at least 10 people have died from its bite so far this year. Photograph: S Chakraborty/Getty/500px

The article "Snakes beware: reptiles targeted across Bangladesh after rise in sightings of Russell’s viper" provides a comprehensive overview of the escalating issue of snake killings in Bangladesh, driven by a surge in sightings of the Russell’s viper and widespread misinformation. The narrative unfolds against the backdrop of a dramatic encounter between a farmer, Amin Mandol, and one of these venomous snakes, setting the stage for a broader discussion on the ecological and social implications of the phenomenon.

The Russell’s viper, once considered critically endangered, has seen a notable increase in sightings across Bangladesh, expanding from 17 districts in 2012 to 27 districts in 2024. This rise has sparked public fear and panic, exacerbated by rumours and sensational media reports. The snake, named after Scottish herpetologist Patrick Russell, is known for its potent venom, which has been linked to an uptick in fatal bites. Conservationists, however, argue that the snake’s population growth may be attributed to a decline in its natural predators, such as mongooses, eagles, and other snakes.

The crux of the issue lies in the rampant misinformation proliferating through social media and national media outlets. Alarmist headlines and viral posts have painted the Russell’s viper as a relentless predator, leading to widespread fear and the indiscriminate killing of not just vipers, but other snake species, including non-venomous ones like the Burmese python. This misinformation includes exaggerated claims about the snake's venom potency and its behavior, stoking irrational fears among the public.

Prominent conservationists like Mahfuzur Rahman and Shahadut Hossain have faced significant backlash for their efforts to advocate for snake conservation. Hossain’s experience, where a social media post about rescuing a Russell’s viper led to a torrent of criticism, underscores the deep-seated fear and misunderstanding surrounding these reptiles. The conservationists lament the public's lack of awareness about the ecological role of snakes and the importance of biodiversity.

The indiscriminate killing of snakes has broader ecological ramifications. Snakes play a crucial role in controlling rodent populations, which are pests in agricultural settings. The fear-driven refusal of workers to harvest crops, as experienced by Mandol, leads to economic losses and disrupts agricultural productivity. Conservationists like Prof Farid Ahsan emphasize measures to mitigate snake encounters, such as wearing protective gear and using torches and sticks to scare snakes away.

A Burmese python found coiled up in a tea plantation in Bangladesh. Some have been mistaken for Russell’s vipers. Photograph: Scott Trageser/NatureStills

The Bangladeshi government and health sector are attempting to address the issue by ensuring the availability of anti-venom and emphasizing rapid medical response to snake bites. The Wildlife and Nature Conservation Circle at the Forest Department is also involved in countering misinformation and addressing public concerns. The development of a new, locally-produced anti-venom by the Venom Research Centre is a promising step, although existing anti-venoms remain effective.

While the article effectively highlights the multifaceted nature of the problem, it could delve deeper into the socio-cultural factors that contribute to the fear of snakes. Understanding local beliefs and practices around snakes could inform more effective public awareness campaigns. Additionally, the response from conservationists and the government should be more coordinated, leveraging both traditional media and social media platforms to disseminate accurate information and educate the public on the ecological importance of snakes.

In conclusion, the situation in Bangladesh underscores the critical need for balanced media reporting, public education, and cohesive conservation strategies to address the complex interplay of fear, misinformation, and ecological sustainability. The indiscriminate killing of snakes not only threatens biodiversity but also disrupts agricultural practices and the natural balance of ecosystems. Addressing this issue requires a concerted effort from conservationists, government agencies, and the media to foster a more informed and rational public discourse.

source : https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/article/2024/jul/16/bangladesh-snakes-russells-viper-misinformation-online-rumours-panic-conservation

The Benefits of Cold Plunge Tubs: Enhancing Recovery, Circulation, and Mental Clarity

Cold plunge tubs have gained popularity in recent years due to their numerous health benefits. These specialized tubs are designed to provide a cold water immersion experience, which can have a positive impact on the body and mind.

One of the primary benefits of cold water immersion is its ability to reduce inflammation and muscle soreness. When the body is exposed to cold water, blood vessels constrict, which helps to reduce swelling and inflammation in the muscles. This can be particularly beneficial for athletes or individuals who engage in intense physical activity, as it can help to speed up the recovery process and alleviate post-workout muscle soreness.

In addition to reducing inflammation, cold water immersion can also improve circulation. When the body is exposed to cold water, blood vessels constrict, which helps to improve blood flow. This increased circulation can enhance the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the muscles, promoting faster recovery and healing.

Cold water therapy has also been shown to have positive effects on mood, energy levels, and mental clarity. The shock of the cold water stimulates the release of endorphins, which are natural mood boosters. This can lead to increased feelings of happiness and well-being. Cold water immersion has also been found to increase alertness and mental clarity, making it a great way to start the day or boost productivity.

One of the advantages of cold plunge tubs is their convenience and accessibility. Unlike traditional methods of cold water therapy, such as ice baths, cold plunge tubs can be easily installed in homes or gyms. This allows individuals to incorporate cold water therapy into their daily routine without the need for specialized facilities.

Furthermore, cold plunge tubs provide a controlled and consistent temperature, ensuring a safe and effective cold water immersion experience. The temperature of the water can be adjusted to suit individual preferences and needs, making it suitable for individuals of all fitness levels.

In conclusion, cold plunge tubs offer a convenient and effective way to incorporate cold water therapy into a daily routine. The health benefits of cold water immersion, including reduced inflammation, improved circulation, enhanced mood and energy levels, make it an attractive option for individuals looking to optimize their physical and mental well-being. Whether used for post-workout recovery or as a daily ritual, cold plunge tubs can provide a refreshing and rejuvenating experience for overall health and wellness.

Certainly! Here are a few references that you can explore for more information on the health benefits of cold water immersion and cold plunge tubs:

1. Wilcock, I. M., Cronin, J. B., & Hing, W. A. (2006). Physiological response to water immersion: a method for sport recovery? Sports Medicine, 36(9), 747-765. doi: 10.2165/00007256-200636090-00005

2. Bleakley, C., McDonough, S., Gardner, E., & Baxter, G. D. (2012). Cold-water immersion (cryotherapy) for preventing and treating muscle soreness after exercise. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 2. doi: 10.1002/14651858.CD008262.pub2

3. Roberts, L. A., Raastad, T., Markworth, J. F., Figueiredo, V. C., Egner, I. M., Shield, A., . . . Peake, J. M. (2015). Post-exercise cold water immersion attenuates acute anabolic signalling and long-term adaptations in muscle to strength training. Journal of Physiology, 593(18), 4285-4301. doi: 10.1113/JP270570

4. Costello, J. T., Algar, L. A., Donnelly, A. E., & McInerney, C. D. (2012). The effects of whole-body cryotherapy (-110 °C) on proprioception and indices of muscle damage. Scandinavian Journal of Medicine & Science in Sports, 22(2), 190-198. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0838.2010.01193.x

5. Stanley, J., Peake, J. M., & Buchheit, M. (2013). Cardiac parasympathetic reactivation following exercise: implications for training prescription. Sports Medicine, 43(12), 1259-1277. doi: 10.1007/s40279-013-0083-4

Embracing Growth: Letting the Past Make You Better, Not Bitter

In life, we all encounter challenges, setbacks, and disappointments that can leave us feeling bitter and resentful. However, it's essential to remember that our past experiences, no matter how difficult, have the power to shape us into stronger, wiser individuals. In this YouTube article, we'll explore the transformative power of embracing the lessons of the past and using them as catalysts for personal growth and positive change.

Embracing Resilience: One of the most profound lessons we can learn from the past is resilience. When faced with adversity, setbacks, or failures, it's natural to feel discouraged or disheartened. However, by reframing our perspective and viewing challenges as opportunities for growth, we can cultivate resilience and inner strength. Instead of allowing setbacks to define us, we can choose to rise above them, embracing the inherent resilience within us to overcome obstacles and thrive in the face of adversity.

Learning from Mistakes: Mistakes are an inevitable part of the human experience, but they also offer invaluable opportunities for learning and growth. Rather than dwelling on past failures or harboring regrets, we can choose to extract meaningful lessons from our mistakes and use them to inform our future decisions. By embracing a mindset of continuous learning and self-improvement, we can turn our past missteps into stepping stones toward personal and professional success.

Cultivating Forgiveness: One of the most profound acts of self-love and empowerment is forgiveness. Holding onto resentment, anger, or bitterness from past hurts only serves to weigh us down and impede our emotional well-being. By practicing forgiveness—both for others and ourselves—we free ourselves from the shackles of the past and open the door to healing and inner peace. Forgiveness doesn't mean condoning harmful behavior; rather, it's a conscious choice to release negative emotions and reclaim our power to live fully in the present moment.

Finding Meaning and Purpose: Every experience we encounter, whether positive or negative, has the potential to shape our values, beliefs, and sense of purpose. By reflecting on our past experiences and discerning the lessons they hold, we can gain clarity about our values, passions, and goals in life. Whether it's overcoming adversity, navigating relationships, or pursuing our dreams, our past can serve as a compass guiding us toward a more fulfilling and purposeful future.

Creating a Brighter Future: Ultimately, the choice to let the past make us better, not bitter, lies within each of us. By embracing the transformative power of our past experiences, we can cultivate resilience, wisdom, and compassion, enabling us to create a brighter future for ourselves and those around us. Let us harness the lessons of the past as fuel for personal growth, empowerment, and positive change, knowing that every challenge we overcome brings us one step closer to becoming the best version of ourselves.

Conclusion: As we journey through life, let us remember that our past does not define us but rather shapes us into the individuals we are today. By embracing the lessons of the past with humility, courage, and grace, we can transform our pain into strength, our setbacks into opportunities, and our bitterness into boundless potential. Let us choose to let the past make us better, not bitter, as we continue to evolve, learn, and grow on our path toward self-discovery and fulfillment.

From a 12K Salary to Thriving as a Freelance Content Writer: My Journey of Resilience

Have you ever wondered if your salary brings you happiness? Well, I can proudly say, "YES!" Let me take you on a journey through my career transformation.

I started as a customer care executive earning 12,000 per month. The pivotal moment came in 2020 when my company shifted to remote work due to a lockdown. Working from home allowed me ample time to explore new skills and elevate my career.

With a night shift from 10:30 pm to 8:30 am, I delved into my passion for writing. I scoured the internet, took a short copywriting and content writing course, and applied my learnings. Soon, I secured my first client, writing daily blog posts for an educational website.

Despite the low pay initially, I cherished every payout. However, in April 2022, my world turned upside down when my company went bankrupt, and I lost my main job. Determined, I began applying for content writing positions.

Facing rejection and uncertainty, I reminded myself to trust my talent. Freelance opportunities caught my eye, and after two months of perseverance, I secured my first full-time freelance writing job with a payout of 25K.

The journey wasn't swift, and I received little support from friends, siblings, or even my parents. Independence was challenging, but the rewards were worth it. Currently earning around 35K, my progress may seem slow, but the lessons learned are invaluable.

Life won't always provide a safety net, but the fruits of resilience are abundant. My message is clear: Never give up, no matter the challenges you face. If you ever feel down, know that I'm just a DM away. 🌟💪 #CareerTransformation #FreelanceWriter #ResilienceJourney #NeverGiveUp

Unlocking Financial Success: A 7-Step Blueprint to Entrepreneurship

Embarking on the journey to financial independence and becoming your own boss requires strategic steps. Here's a comprehensive guide to help you achieve your monthly salary within 24 hours:

1. Master a High-Income Skill

  • Dedicate 2 focused hours daily to learning a high-income skill.
  • Minimize distractions and build expertise in a specific area.
  • Choose from these recommended skills: Sales, Coding, Copywriting, or Forex Trading.
  • Utilize online resources like YouTube channels to immerse yourself for 100 days, mastering the skill.

Remember: A skill is ten times more valuable than a degree.

2. Cultivate a Powerful Network

  • Surround yourself with like-minded individuals.
  • Engage with three friends committed to self-improvement.
  • Focus conversations on Money, Success, and Business.
  • Be a reliable team player within your network.

3. Establish Multiple Streams of Income

  • Create and manage at least 15 businesses.
  • Own valuable assets.
  • Act frugal and invest instead of saving.
  • Let money work for you by smart investments.

4. Invest Time in Reading

  • Allocate at least 100 minutes daily to reading.
  • Financially free people prioritize continuous learning.
  • Begin with books such as "Human Nature," "Atomic Habits," and "Think and Grow Rich."

5. Embrace Early Mornings and Daily Habits

  • Wake up at 4:00 or 5:00 am to gain a three-hour head start.
  • Cultivate successful habits like making your bed, staying hydrated, exercising, and reading.
  • Success is woven into your daily routine.

6. Develop Your Online Brand

  • Choose a platform (Twitter, YouTube, or TikTok).
  • Grow your audience by sharing your story.
  • Monetize your online presence.
  • Consider hiring a mentor to accelerate your learning process.

Tip: Leverage the internet to diversify income streams through book sales, online courses, blogs, and mentorship programs.

7. Invest in Yourself

  • How you treat yourself sets the standard for others.
  • Prioritize self-care: smell nice, eat healthy, exercise, wear fitting clothes, and enhance your social skills.

Mastering ChatGPT: 10 Proven Prompts for Optimal Results

Unlocking the full potential of AI tools like ChatGPT requires a strategic approach to prompt usage. In this guide, we delve into the top 10 prompts recommended by industry experts to maximize results efficiently and effectively.

Understanding the nuances of AI tools is crucial, as simply entering prompts won't magically produce desired outcomes. To achieve optimal results, invest time in learning the platform, its workings, and organizing inputs thoughtfully. Embrace a beginner's mindset and be willing to start from scratch for improved outcomes.

Rowan Cheung, founder of The Rundown, a rapidly growing AI newsletter, along with academics Sondos Mahmoud Bsharat, Aidar Myrzakhan, and Zhiqiang Shen, advocates for the importance of crafting prompts that large language models (LLMs) like ChatGPT can comprehend and respond to effectively. They outline 26 prompt principles grouped into five categories, with Cheung recommending ten key principles for maximizing ChatGPT's potential.

  • Get a deeper understanding: Utilize prompts like "Explain [specific topic] in simple terms" to seek clarification or a deeper understanding.

  • Replicate a sample: Mimic the style of a given text using prompts to create consistent and engaging content.

  • Improve without changing the meaning: Refine existing content while preserving the original message, focusing on grammar and vocabulary improvements.

  • Be clear on what you want: Provide direct instructions to ChatGPT using phrases like "Your task is" for better results.

  • Tell ChatGPT how to think: Use leading phrases like "think step by step" to guide logical and sequential information processing.

  • Don't ignore frequency: Repeat specific words or phrases to emphasize important information for better comprehension.

  • Use positive language: Frame prompts with affirmative directives to enhance the effectiveness of instructions.

  • Specify detailed output: Request detailed and specific output, guiding ChatGPT on clarity, conciseness, and structure.

  • Check for bias: Ensure unbiased answers by adding a directive against relying on stereotypes in prompts.

  • Assign a role: Direct ChatGPT by instructing it to take on a specific role, leveraging its capacity for simulation for more precise outcomes.

Mastering prompt crafting is described as an art, and it is emphasized that proficiency in this skill is vital for reliably guiding LLMs and making full use of their capabilities. The guide encourages studying relevant papers, subscribing to newsletters, and experimenting with inputs to continually refine and optimize prompts for the best results.


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