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Prelim Bits 12-11-2017

November 12, 2017
11 months

Cherry Blossom Festival

  • Shillong in Meghalaya is known for cherry which belongs to Prunus Cerasoides.
  • It is also known as Wild Himalayan Cherry.
  • It blossoms in autumn, usually in the month of November.
  • In countries like Japan, cherry blossom tree “Prunus yedoensis” which blossoms in spring.
  • Meghalaya is the first in the world to celebrate autumn Cherry Blossom Festival based on local cherry trees which bloom uniquely in the state.  
  • The 2nd India International Cherry Blossom festival was recently organized in the state to boost the tourism.
  • However, cherry blossoms fail to appear due to erratic rainfall pattern in the state.
  • Huge difference in the day and night temperature have delayed the blossoming.

APEC Summit

  • Asia Pacific Economic Co-operation (APEC) 2017 summit was recently held in the city of Danang, Vietnam.
  • At the summit, Ministers from 11 Asia-Pacific countries have decided to go ahead with the trade deal “Trans-pacific partnership” without the United States.
  • APEC is a forum for 21 Pacific Rim member economies that promotes free trade throughout the Asia Pacific region.
  • It is headquartered at Singapore.
  • It was established due to growing inter dependence among Asia Pacific regions, increasing regional trade blocs, to diffuse growing power of Japan.
  • The criterion for membership is that the member is a separate economy, rather than a state and the result of it is the inclusion of Taiwan.
  • APEC also includes three official observers: ASEAN, the Pacific Islands Forum and the Pacific Economic Cooperation Council
  • India is not in the grouping.

Trans-Pacific Partnership

  • Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) is the proposed trade deal among the 12 Pacific Rim nations excluding China.
  • It includes Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, the United States and Vietnam.
  • But the United States has pulled out of the trade deal at the start of the year.
  • The finalized proposal was signed on 2016 in Auckland, New Zealand, concluding seven years of negotiations.
  • The TPP contains measures to lower both non-tariff and tariff barriers to trade, and establish an investor-state dispute settlement (ISDS) mechanism.

EcAMSat Mission

  • EcAMSat – E.coli Anti-Microbial Satellite Mission was scheduled to be launched to International space station.
  • E.Coli is a common bacterial pathogen linked to urinary tract infections and foodborne illnesses.
  • The mission is intended to investigate spaceflight effects on bacterial antibiotic resistance and its genetic basis.
  • It aims to determine the lowest dose of antibiotic needed to inhibit the growth of E.coli.
  • It will help to determine the appropriate dosages of antibiotics to protect astronaut health during long-duration human space flight and how antibiotic effectiveness may change as a function of stress on Earth.
  • The launch was later postponed.

Valley of Honey

  • Araku Valley is a hill station in the Eastern Ghats, known for its coffee.
  • In the winter season, it turns into valley of Honey with the bloom of Niger flowers and increase in bee keeping.
  • Honeybees, which live in highly organised communities, are of great importance to farmers for pollination and maintaining the ecological balance.
  • The Araku valley is located close to A.P - Odisha border.
  • It is surrounded by various mountains which are endowed with bauxite ores.
  • One of the important mountains is Galikonda which is one of the highest in A.P.
  • The nearest cave to Araku Valley is Borra cave.

Bonnet Macaques

  • The bonnet macaque, an old world monkey, diurnal animal is endemic to southern India.
  • They are found only in peninsular India with close proximity to humans.
  • It exists as commensals to human, meaning it maintains commensalism with human beings.
  • In Commensalism, one organism benefits from the other without affecting it.
  • A study suggested that rhesus macaques were invading the bonnet’s habitats in south India.
  • Rhesus macaques are usually found in northern part of India.
  • Decrease in tree cover, loss of contiguous canopies, rapid urbanization causes bonnet’s disappearance from temples and tourist spots.


Source: The Hindu


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C Mohan 11 months

thank you.....