Today's stories [3.21.12]
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Watertown, New York:
It was eagle-eyed zookeepers who noticed first.
The DNA testing only proved what they already
The Thompson Park Zoo's American bald eagle breeding
program was going nowhere. Not with two males, anyway.
"We had our suspicions right away. The birds are
virtually the identical size," said Director
Glenn D. Dobrogosz, who laughed Tuesday about the
gender mix-up that provided a comical start to the
zoo's new eagle breeding program.
"It happens. Not a lot. But it happens," he said.
The two American bald eagles - supposedly a male and
female - arrived at the zoo last July from the Bird
Treatment and Learning Center in Anchorage, Alaska.
The two males became good buddies but zookeepers
quickly realized there would be no amorous flights
for these two, Dobrogosz said.
Because bald eagle males and females share the same
coloring characteristics, it is difficult to determine
gender by visual inspection. However, in most raptor
species, the female is slightly larger than the male,
Based on their size and behavior, the Alaska center
mistakenly thought it had sent a male and a female,
Dobrogosz said. It wasn't until the Thompson Park Zoo
took blood samples for DNA testing that it confirmed the
"Sure enough, they both were boys," he said.
Now that the confusion has been cleared up, zookeepers are
once again focused on the romancing.
One of the males is being sent to the Clinch Park Zoo in
Traverse City, Mich. Meanwhile, the Watertown zoo already
has received a new female from another raptor rehabilitation
center on Sitka Island in Alaska.
"We're positive this time," Dobrogosz said, heading off the
inevitable inquiry about the bird's gender.
The airline Virgin Atlantic plans to install bedrooms
complete with showers, Jacuzzis and double beds in its
747 jumbos to encourage travelers to join the "Mile High
Club", a report said Wednesday.
Ten to 12 rooms will be installed in the hold of airplanes
and be accessed by a staircase from the main cabin, the Sun
The price of a trip from London to New York would be around
2,900 pounds ($4,600).
"You can do it on cruise ships and trains, why not on a plane?
Passengers will find it comfy and romantic," airline boss
Richard Branson was quoted as saying.
The paper said Branson also plans a Kiddie Class, where airline
nannies and clowns will entertain children.
A company takes out a newspaper advertisement claiming to be able to
supply imported hard core pornographic videos. As their prices seem
reasonable, people place orders and make payments via check.
After several weeks, the company writes back explaining that under
the present law they are unable to supply the materials and do not
wish to be prosecuted. So they return their customers' money in the
form of a company check.
However, due to the name of the company, few people ever bother to
present these to their banks. The name of the company, 'The Anal
Sex and Fetish Perversion Company.'
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