In a recent discovery, three children in eastern Germany reportedly fished out World War II-era bullets and shells from a pond using powerful magnets. According to international media reports, the children found the bullets and shells in a village called Wolfis in Thuringia on November 16. The police were immediately informed about the findings after which they cordoned off the area. However, it is still not clear why the ammunition had been dumped in the pond.
The police officials have also asked the locals to be on the lookout for any such objects dating back to the war and have further asked to leave the munitions alone. Even after 75 years to the war, Germany is still littered with explosives because of the intensive air raids by the British, US, and Soviet bombers. The bomb disposal experts on numerous occasions said that the explosives could be potentially dangerous as sometimes, unexploded ordnance could explode even after decades of lying in dormancy as the old detonator can sett off a bomb by itself.
The Nazis, apparently, had developed a notorious insecticide, with minimal environmental impact. Known as Difluorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DFDT), the fast-acting insecticide which the Nazis used during World War II for insect control in the Soviet Union and North Africa has been rediscovered by researchers recently. The study, exploring the chemistry and history of DFDT, has been published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.
"We set out to study the growth of crystals in a little-known insecticide and uncovered its surprising history, including the impact of World War II on the choice of DDT — and not DFDT — as a primary insecticide in the 20th century," said Bart Kahr, a professor at New York University and contributor to the research.
A new crystal form of the Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), which is considered to be one of the primary reasons behind the declining population of vultures, has been discovered by the researchers. The new form is not only more effective but also has a lesser impact on the environment and wildlife.
(With agency inputs)