Merry Christmas to All, and a Happy, Healthy, and Prosperous New Year to Everyone!
-Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival, January 23-28, 2013
- Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge Clean-Up, February 9, 2013. Contact Nancy Corona, 321-861-0668 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Fishing only occupied a single day this week. On Friday David and Terrell Juth, from Virginia, joined me for a day's Mosquito Lagoon fishing. The day was gorgeous and everyone with a boat in central Florida was out. In spite of that we saw quite a few fish and managed to catch a few. David missed two strikes fly fishing, but got a decent trout on a DOA Shrimp at the end of the day. Terrell got several nice trout, also on a DOA Shrimp. The fish were pretty spooky, though. No tailing reds were seen.
The water has dropped and was clean in the places I fished. It's pretty cold!
One of this writer's favorite columns to read online is Tuesday Morning Quarterback. This week Mr. Easterbrook had this to say:
"A Cosmic Thought: At this time of year, your columnist contemplates the size, age and grandeur of the cosmos.
"Scientists and philosophers alike remark on the many seeming coincidences of physical law that make the firmament, and life, possible. If the "strong force" that holds the nuclei of atoms together had been only slightly weaker, heavy elements never would have formed, and so there would be no planets; if the strong force had been slightly stronger, the stars would have burned out in the initial eons. The energy density of the universe is just right to make the cosmos geometrically normal: alter the density even a little and the universe either collapses back into itself, or becomes weirdly distorted. There are many similar examples. Perhaps the favorable physical laws and constants of our cosmos are just good luck. Perhaps.
"The new book 'Gravity's Engines' by Caleb Scharf, the director of astrobiology at Columbia University, is a fascinating addition to the stellar debate.
"Scharf proposes another way in which an important part of the cosmos -- our Milky Way galaxy -- seems fine-tuned for life, at least on the very large scale. The black hole at the center of the Milky Way is "only" about 4 million times the mass of the sun, Scharf reports. That means it emits relatively little radiation. Many galaxies have central black holes with billions of solar masses, emitting so much radiation as to sterilize an entire galaxy. The Milky Way's central black hole is in the sweet spot -- massive enough to hold the galaxy together and support star formation, not so massive as to contaminate the Earth.
"Perhaps this is just good luck. Perhaps.
"Our universe has existed for 14 billion years -- and stars are still forming, including nearby in galactic terms. There are 10 billion stars for every person alive -- every person here, at least. The universe may last trillions of years, perhaps forever. Who can say what the cosmic enterprise may call for?"
And that is this week's exciting version of the Orlando Area and Mosquito Lagoon Fishing Report.