But if you want to get a real feel for just how many earthquakes there have been since March 11, 2:46pm-- go visit the amazing Japan Quake Map built by Paul Nicholls. It moves--the color of the circles indicates quake depth, the radius indicates magnitude (which you can also see running in a window to the right of the map). I felt my stomach tighten as the clock ticked rapidly up to 14:46... BAM. One huge circle engulfing the Japanese archipelago, then a fireworks display of aftershocks. 730 earthquakes in 12 days. You can highlight individual quakes by running the cursor over the window right of the map. Take note of the magnitudes of the 6 aftershocks that hit in the hour following the main quake-- all 6.3M or higher. At 15:15 there was a 7.9M aftershock-- and I'd just like to note that that aftershock was higher magnitude than the 1995 Kobe quake, the recent Christchurch quake (Mr. Nicholls did a map for that quake as well), the 2010 Haiti quake, and the 2008 Sichuan quake.
p.s.-- to fundamentalist zealots whose tactless reaction to the 9.0M quake of March 11 I have been told was along the lines of "well they (meaning, apparently, the Japanese in toto) shouldn't live on the ring of fire!", I offer simply this:
|click to enlarge|