Monday, November 27, 2006

A Week On The Wild Side, November 25th, 2006

Some things I noticed this week:

Pigging Out: Python Style

What would happen if an extremely greedy python tried to eat an alligator whole? This BBC story has the grisly answer.

If You Go Down To The Woods Today...

Insomniac bears are wandering the woods of Siberia, scaring the living daylights out of locals. According to news reports the bears can't settle down to their normal hibernation because of the unusually warm weather.

Happy Fetusus

Every now and again, a wildlife film-maker does something so extraordinary it leaves you awe-struck, simply lost for words.
The National Geographic channel have just completed such a film. It's called Animals In The Womb and is precisely that: a collection of amazing ultrasound images of unborn dogs, dolphins, elephants and other animals. Visit the Animals In The Womb site to get a preview of the film and view a breathtaking gallery of photographs, including a 12 month old elephant foetus (it already weighs 26lbs and is 18 inches long) and a heart-melting image of three, incredibly peaceful looking golden retriever puppies curled up in their mother's womb. Happy Fetuses indeed. Remarkable stuff.

Panda Porn Update

Last week I mentioned that zookeepers in Thailand were showing giant pandas pornographic dvds to get them in the mood for mating. Well, the Press Association are reporting that it paid off. Reports that Chuang Chuang the male panda was spotted smoking a cigar afterwards haven't been confirmed yet.

What Not To Get Rover This Christmas

Wondering what to get your dog for Christmas? Well whatever you do, don't get Rover a robot companion. The shops are full of these yapping little automatons at the moment. Some of them are rather cute. But as this film clip of what happened when a team of researchers tried to introduce Sony's AIBO robot dog to another canine demonstrates, real dogs don't take terribly kindly to them. In the understatement of the year, the researchers concluded that :“It seems that at present there are some serious limitations in using AIBO robots for behavioral tests with dogs." Apparently the AIBO's warranty doesn't cover injuries to the robots by dogs. Now there's a surprise.

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