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Odd Strange News

Last Build Date: Wed, 07 Mar 2018 01:16:00 +0000


Strange News: Zombie Honeybees

Sun, 08 Jan 2012 06:33:00 +0000

A fly parasite is being blamed for an epidemic that has struck the honey bee population around the world. The parasite nests in the stomach of the bees and causes them to walk in circles, sometimes pursuing bright lights, before eventually dying.
The Parasitic Phorid Fly Apocephalus borealisis responsible for the zombie transformation, laying its eggs inside the abdomen of the honey bee.

"When we observed the bees for some time, the ones that were alive, we found that they walked around in circles, often with no sense of direction," said San Francisco State University's Andrew Core lead author on the bee parasite study in the journal Plos One.
Bees usually just sit in one place, sometimes curling up before they die, said Core. But the parasitised bees were still alive, unable to stand up on their legs.
"They kept stretching them out and then falling over," he said. "It really painted a picture of something like a zombie."
And while the parasite may be causing immense damage to the honey bees population, there is an upside to their discovery, according to the Mirror, "Scientists discovered the parasite by accident but they believe it may help them discover what is causing colony collapse disorder which is devastating honey bees in Europe and America cutting some populations in half."
The parasite is believed to be new and similar to one currently affecting the bumblebee population. Scientists are still figuring out exactly how the parasite works, but an early theory by San Francisco State Professor John Hafernik holds that the parasite changes the bees' "body clocks," which causes their erratic behavior and deaths.

Source: Yahoo

Weird News: Giant Rat Caught

Sun, 08 Jan 2012 06:24:00 +0000

"There's no way it's a common sewer rat," Dr. Robert S. Voss, the Curator of Mammals at The American Museum of Natural History in New York, told HuffPost after reviewing the picture. "I'm 90 percent certain that it's a a Gambian pouched rat."
Voss estimated the rat to be about two-and-a-half feet in length.
Another huge Gambian pouched rat made headlines last year when it was killed in Brooklyn's Marcy houses.

Voss said it's possible this rat was once a pet that could have escaped or been released.
Gambian pouched rats were once imported to the United States for sale as pets, but reports that an outbreak of monkeypox in the early 2000s caused the importation of African rodents to be banned.
Despite its size, Voss said the rat is harmless and docile, so there's no need to be worried if you encounter one. He did, however, recommend walking away and calling animal control immediately.

Weird Crazy News: Robot Guards to Patrol Jail Corridors

Sun, 27 Nov 2011 16:11:00 +0000

Robot guards will patrol jail corridors in South Korea as early as next year, lifting the burden off human prison guards. Asian Forum for Corrections Chairman Lee Baik-chul said the robots will perform simple tasks such as patrolling during night hours and this will significantly help human prison guards focus on other more complex tasks. At night the robots will watch for any signs of suicide attempts or physical attacks on prisoners instead of the human guards. This will allow the human guards to work on more difficult problems such as educational work and counseling.

When the robot sees something unusual, it will report to the central control facility which will then take action. The robots have a speaker and microphone installed on their bodies so that when a prisoner speaks, the guard at the central tower can respond and vice versa. The robots will be able to observe their surroundings through visual software installed in their face.

Source: Far East Gizmos

Weird Crazy News: "Chocolate Room"

Sat, 26 Nov 2011 09:12:00 +0000

A shopping mall in Kaliningrad, Russia celebrated its fifth anniversary by commissioning an artist to create a room entirely of chocolate.
The idea of building a chocolate room inside Kaliningrad Plaza belonged to Lithuanian ad agency Ad Hunters, who commissioned experienced sculptor Elena Climent to carve it out of 420 kilograms of dark, milk and white chocolate. Measuring around 20 square meters, the delicious-looking room features furniture like a chocolate sofa, table and carpet, as well as chocolate cutlery, candle holders, and flowers. 40% of the room is made of dark chocolate, another 40% is milk chocolate, and the rest is white chocolate.

Weird Crazy News:"Golden"Christmas Tree

Sat, 26 Nov 2011 09:03:00 +0000

Japanese jeweler Ginza Tanaka has created the ultimate Christmas tree –  made of pure gold and worth a whopping $2 million.
After making a 24-karat gold horse for Japan’s newborn prince, and creating another tree worth $850,000, Ginza Tanaka decided to step it up even more and came up with a solid gold Christmas tree for this holiday season. Measuring 2.4 meters high and weighing around 12 kilograms, the luxurious tree is decorated with golden plates and around 60 heart-shaped ornaments, and covered with ribbon. It’s the most expensive thing Ginza Tanaka has ever made, but while I do appreciate the craftsmanship and the effort that went into it, I’m not sure gold is right for such an important symbol. After all, what kind of presents are you supposed to put under such a tree, anyway?

Source: Oddity Central

Weird Crazy News: Nails and Threads Portraits

Wed, 23 Nov 2011 16:15:00 +0000

It’s amazing how someone can recreate organic shapes so well from thousands of angles created with nails and thread. Designers Pamela Campagna and Thomas Scheiderbauer take up to a month to work on each of their complicated artworks, but the outcome is certainly worth the time they put in. After analyzing an old photo they begin hammering nails into the canvas until they come up with a pixelated outline of the artwork, after which they start connecting the dots with thread. 

That’s easier said than done, and looking at how clean yet detailed their portraits turn out, they must have a great deal of patience. Campagna and Scheiderbauer are not the first to create wonderful art pieces using nails and thread, but their work stands out through attention to details and very clean style. Other artists, like the equally impressive Debbie Smith creates awe-inspiring nail and thread masterpieces, but has a less perfect style, leaving the thread ends hanging around all over the canvas.

More Portraits made of nails and threads on the link below:

Weird Crazy News: Masterpiece Created from Thousand Naked Bodies

Sun, 20 Nov 2011 06:11:00 +0000

New York-based artist Angelo Musco is taking the photography world by storm with his incredible mosaics made up of thousands of naked bodies.
Touching themes like birth, procreation and gestation, Angelo Musco creates complex structures of the natural world from an ant colony and beehive to a school of fish, using thousands of human bodies. “A swarm of fish captures a profusion of life, the safety of a symbolic nest, and a connection of one being to another. ’It’s the strength derived from this collective force,” the artist says on his website. “The nests, as well, relate to the safe geography of birth and early life.”

But Angelo Musco also draws inspiration for his unique mosaics from his traumatic early life experience.

Source: Oddity Central

Weird Crazy News: Zombie Training Course Now Offered

Thu, 17 Nov 2011 15:17:00 +0000

Zombie Boot Camp, a recently inaugurated one-day training course, promises to teach people specialized zombie-fighting skills for only 90$.
Whether you’re one of those crazy folks who believes a zombie apocalypse is imminent, or just a big fan of zombie culture, Zombie Boot Camp sounds like the perfect experience for you. The unusual training course taking place in the UK’s Droitwich, Worchestershire, sees would-be zombie hunters take part in specialized training exercises with experienced military instructors, before putting on special armor and taking on a group of brain-eating zombies to prove they’ve mastered the skills necessary to survive during a zombie crisis.
A day at Zombie Boot Camp starts with equipment and weapons training. Zombie-killing trainees have to put on a standard-issue Kevlar body armor, jacket and pants, and pay close attention to a team of veterans, as they demonstrate how to handle a specially-adapted pistol, assault rifle, grenades and chainsaw. Then they’re drilled in how to clear a room of flesh-craving zombies, before…lunch. That’s right, a nice big nutritious meal, to prepare them for the truly scary part of the training course.

Led by their instructor, trainees will split into teams and make use of all the skills they’ve been taught to storm a warehouse and clear it of any walking dead. And there will be some zombies around, you can count on that. To survive the main mission of Zombie Boot Camp, would-be zombie slayers will have to use special ammunition like blood balls and simulated grenades.

For more info on how to join this bootcamp, visit their website: Zombie Boot Camp

Sources: Oddity Central

Weird Crazy News: Man Run Out of Toilet Paper, Trashes Hotel Room

Wed, 16 Nov 2011 01:23:00 +0000

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Nov. 13 (UPI) -- A man caused more than $2,000 in damage to a Charlotte, N.C., hotel after discovering he had run out of toilet paper in his room, police say.
Police say between late Sunday and early Monday at the Charlottetown Manor, Dereck MacDonald, 43, became very upset upon discovering he ran out of toilet paper, The Charlotte Observer reported.
MacDonald allegedly walked into a vacant room at the hotel and clogged the toilet, causing water damage to the room, a police report states.
"The suspect then went back to his room and damaged additional property by physical force," the report says.
MacDonald reportedly caused more than $2,000 in damage in the two rooms combined.
Source: UPI

Weird Crazy News: $10,000 Engagement Ring Threw out on Garbage

Wed, 16 Nov 2011 01:01:00 +0000

MARGATE, Fla., Nov. 12 (UPI) -- A Florida man who accidentally threw out his wife's $10,000 engagement ring said he waded through more than 8 tons of trash to find it.
Brian McGuinn of Margate said he accidentally threw the ring away with a disposable razor and dreaded telling his wife of five years, Anna, WTVJ-TV, Miami, reported Friday.
"I just started crying and I would stop crying, and remind myself that jewelry is replaceable," Anna said.
Anna called waste management company Wheelabrator and within an hour Brian was suited up at the dump and wading through more than 8 tons of garbage to find the precious ring.
McGuinn said workers identified the trash from his collection route, making his job a little easier, and he was eventually able to locate the ring.

Source: UPI

Pacquiao vs Marquez 3: "Who Will Fall this Time?"

Sat, 12 Nov 2011 10:28:00 +0000

A Little bit Off topic, to give way to the most anticipated fight of the year.
On November 12, 2011, watch Pacquiao and Marquez battle it out for the 3rd time. Who will fall? Would this be the end of Marquez's career? or will this be Pacquiao's ticket to retirement? You'll be the Judge!

       Link 1                    Link 2

Weird Crazy News: World's Largest Bra Unveilled

Fri, 11 Nov 2011 01:48:00 +0000

The makers of a stain removal product in England are showing their support for breast cancer research in the most titillating way possible: By making the world's largest bra.
As part of a "Wear It Pink" campaign by the British-based Breast Cancer Campaign, the makers of Vanish stain remover, supported the creation of a brassiere big enough for a brontosaurus, according to
When it was finally unveiled on Oct. 28 at the ITV Southbank Tower, the pink bra -- which has a size 1222B cup -- measured nearly 102 feet around the chest.

If shrunk down to human proportions, the bra would fit a woman with a 34B bust.

Getting the bra ready for the big unveiling took at least four weeks by M Putt Sailmakers, which is actually in the business of making sails for ships, not bras for buildings, reported. The company used more than 4000 square feet of lightweight spinnaker nylon and the final product measures It measures 88 feet under the bust and 101 feet around it. The fabric alone weighed 165 pounds and the metal fasteners bumped up the bra's weight to nearly 200 pounds.As might be expected, a spokesman for Vanish stain remover is happy that the bra made a mark on history.

"Raising awareness of our sponsorship of Wear It Pink via a Guinness World Record-breaking stunt has proved to be a great success," said Stefan Gaa, a marketing director for RB, the parent company of Vanish. "It really captured the interest of the nation.

Weird Crazy News: Another Dies Due to Falling Television

Fri, 11 Nov 2011 01:40:00 +0000

A 3-year-old girl was killed after her family's television fell on her head, the second such death in less than two weeks in the Chicago area.Shaniya Singleton was playing with her 5-year-old brother when she apparently bumped into a TV stand, causing a 27-inch, older-model TV to fall on top of her, crushing her head, WGN reports. Her great-grandmother said she heard a thud upstairs in their home on the 7800 block of South Union Ave. in Hamilton Park, and ran to find Shaniya on the floor at about 5:55 p.m."I put my hand under her head. That's when I knew she was bleeding," Johnnie Sibley told WGN. Sibley performed CPR and attempted to stop the bleeding, from an apparent head wound, with a towel while paramedics were called.Shaniya was taken to Comer Children's Hospital, where she was pronounced dead at 6:32 p.m., the Cook County Medical Examiner's office told Fox Chicago.Police called the death a "tragic accident," but Wentworth Area detectives are conducting a death investigation pending an autopsy Wednesday, according to Fox. The Chicago Tribune reports that the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services is investigating neglect allegations in relation to the accident. DCFS had previous contact with the family in 2008 based on an indicated allegation of abuse, spokesman Jimmie Whitelow told the Tribune.A similar incident killed 6-year-old Karl Clermont on Oct. 30 at his home on the 1700 block of Portsmith Lane in Arlington Heights, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. A TV fell on Clermont's head while he was playing alone, possibly after the boy tried to climb onto the set, police told theSun-Times. His death was ruled an accident.The Consumer Product Safety Commission reports that 169 children ages 8 and younger were killed by falling televisions between 2000 and 2010.Source: Huffingtonpost[...]

Weird Crazy News: Rare Breed of Spider Found

Fri, 11 Nov 2011 01:29:00 +0000

"I nearly fell over when I saw its white head," Mark Harvey, senior curator at the Western Australian Museum, said via email.
The newfound trapdoor spider isn't a true albino, since it still has some pigment—its body is brown, like those of other trapdoor spiders.
But the 1.2-inch-wide (3-centimeter-wide) arachnid has been dubbed the albino trapdoor spider until it's formally described as a new species.

A person in a small town in western Australia found the strange-looking spider near his house, captured it in a jar, and sent it to the museum.
"Unfortunately we know nothing about its life history. We presume that they live in burrows for their entire lives—like all trapdoor spiders—and when males mature, they wander in search of females in their burrows," Harvey said.

Spiders That Pop Out for Prey

Trapdoor spiders get their name because they use soil, vegetation, and silk to construct doors to their burrows that are hinged with silk. The arachnids then pop out when they feel the vibrations of passing prey, which include insects, other arthropods, and small invertebrates.

The spiders also mate inside the burrows, where "males of all species probably have to lift the female body up to access her genital opening, which is located on the underside of the abdomen," he said.

The newfound spider is considered rare, Harvey added—it's currently the only known specimen of its kind.

"Spiders are a diverse group of animals that fascinate and terrify many people," though they're crucial in keeping insect populations in check, he said.

"The world would be a poorer place without spiders."

Source: Christine Dell'Amore

Weird Crazy News: Devil Image Found in Fresco by Giotto

Tue, 08 Nov 2011 04:27:00 +0000

Art restorers have discovered the figure of a devil hidden in the clouds of one of the most famous frescos by Giotto in the Basilica of St Francis in Assisi, church officials said on Saturday.

The devil was hidden in the details of clouds at the top of fresco number 20 in the cycle of the scenes in the life and death of St Francis painted by Giotto in the 13th century.The discovery was made by Italian art historian Chiara Frugone. It shows a profile of a figure with a hooked nose, a sly smile, and dark horns hidden among the clouds in the panel of the scene depicting the death of St Francis.

The figure is difficult to see from the floor of the basilica but emerges clearly in close-up photography.

Sergio Fusetti, the chief restorer of the basilica, said Giotto probably never wanted the image of the devil to be a main part of the fresco and may have painted it in among the clouds "to have a bit of fun."

The master may have painted it to spite someone he knew by portraying him as a devil in the painting, Fusetti said on the convent's website.

The artwork in the basilica in the convent where St Francis is buried was last restored after it was severely damaged by an earthquake in 1997.

Weird Crazy News: "Monstrous" Eruption in the Congo (Photos)

Tue, 08 Nov 2011 02:03:00 +0000

The erupting Nyamulagira (also known as Nyamuragira) volcano reddens the sky on Sunday in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. (See an interactive cutaway of the Nyamulagira volcanic region.)Nyamulagira, which generally erupts every two years, rumbled to life at 8:06 p.m., spewing lava, smoke, and ash throughout Virunga National Park. The volcano sits within the park, about 25 miles (40 kilometers) north of the city ofGoma (map).The park's communications officer, LuAnne Cadd, first got a phone call about the event from rangers, who'd heard noises like gunshots, she said.Cadd immediately went outside to take pictures of the nighttime spectacle, which was occurring an estimated 6 to 12 miles (10 to 20 kilometers) west of park headquarters in Rumanbago, she said. (See a park map.)"What's quite astonishing is how bright it is, how it lights up the sky with a red glow, and the sound. We can hear the dull roar of it, especially at night in our tents," she told National Geographic News via email."I'm actually looking at it while I'm talking to you—it's so amazing, just a monstrous fountain" of lava, Cadd said."It's mesmerizing and hard to pull your eyes away from it."Experts say the volcano could continue erupting for weeks and even months, Cadd added.Since 1882 the 10,000-foot-high (3,000-meter-high) Nyamulagira has erupted more than 40 times, including a major eruption in 1938, according to a park statement.Despite the volcano's frequent activity, human fatalities are rare.Source: National Geographic[...]

Weird Crazy News: 850 lbs marlin caught by 85 year old grandma

Tue, 08 Nov 2011 01:39:00 +0000

Connie Laurie reeled in 10 pounds for every year of her life.

Last wednesday the 85-year-old Aussie great grandmother had the catch of of her life. According to, Laurie pulled in a fish multiple times her own weight while fishing on a charter boat off the coast of northern Australia.She was able to reel in the 850-pound marlin she captured up to the back of the boat. According to ABC News (, Laurie held onto the rod throughout the battle.

The marlin popped out of the water for one incredible second giving the amateur angler an unforgettable view. The charter company grabbed a great shot of the catch, which you can see here. (photo)

"Only twice did I get lifted out of the seat when it made a run, but I was able to get it right up to the back of the boat before we released it," Laurie told Cairns.

The marlin was later released.

Despite a long amateur fishing career, this catch was certainly her most memorable. "I certainly didn't feel 85 when I was bringing it in, I was too busy concentrating on keeping it on and getting it into the boat," she told ABC News.

Weird Crazy News: John Lennon's Tooth Sold at same Price as BMW

Tue, 08 Nov 2011 01:26:00 +0000

British auction house Omega Auctions sold off much of former Creation Records boss Alan McGee's private collection Saturday, most notably one of John Lennon's teeth.
The tooth, which the Beatles frontman parted ways with in the 1960s and passed on to his housekeeper, was expected to take in $16,000. It ended up going for more than $31,000.

The tooth sold to a Canadian dentist for £19,000 ($31,200) yesterday, just above the price for a low-level BMW
The author of Confessions of a Former Cosmetic Dentist, a tell-all of sorts about celebrity teeth, Zuk now plans to display his prize in his office and eventually take it on a tooth tour of other practices and dental schools.

"Once I heard it was up for sale I had to have it," he said. "Some people will think its gross, others will be fascinated by it."

McGee, who discovered acts such as Oasis, The Jesus and Mary Chain and Primal Scream, while at Creation also sold off his original signed management contract with Jesus and Mary Chain, the loan agreement he used to establish the label and a by The Stone Roses guitarist John Squire.

Weird Crazy News: "Dead Man's Toe" Bonds Father and Son

Tue, 08 Nov 2011 01:13:00 +0000

Fathers and sons traditionally bond over a shared experience -- hunting, fishing, playing catch -- but it's highly unusual for that familial moment to involve sucking on a dead man's toes.That's how it worked for Ron and Matt Franscell. Before Matt went off to college at University of Nebraska in 2007, the pair decided to take a road trip from San Antonio, Texas, up to Alaska. It was a trip six years in the making, and the experience inspired Franschell to write "The Sourtoe Cocktail Club: The Yukon Odyssey of a Father and Son in Search of a Mummified Toe ... And Everything Else" (Globe Pequot)."I had this overwhelming urge to spend time with my son," Ron Franscell told The Huffington Post. "And this idea popped up during a summer vacation when Matt was 13 and heard about the Sourtoe Cocktail."Watch Video HereRead More here: Huffington Post[...]

Weird Crazy News: Image of a man in agony seen through Ultrasound

Thu, 03 Nov 2011 14:47:00 +0000

Doctors at a Canadian hospital found a shocking image staring right back at them as they were scanning the testicles of a 45-year-old paraplegic man. The image of one of the testicles, shown above, looks like a man's face grimaced in agony.
"It was very ghoulish, like a man screaming in pain," Dr. Naji Touma of Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario told The Toronto Star. "His mouth was open and it looked like one eye was gouged out."

The image, taken in 2009, was sent to the medical journal "Urology," and was recently published with the headline, "The face of testicular pain: A surprising ultrasound finding."

"The residents and staff alike were amazed to see the outline of a man's face staring up out of the image, his mouth agape as if the face seen on the ultrasound scan itself was also experiencing severe [pain and swelling]," read the entry, as reported by The Daily Mail.

About the only one not amazed by the finding was the patient, who was just happy that the two-inch tumor was benign. The man had the testicle surgically removed so he could receive a firm diagnosis.

"I think the patient was just relieved it wasn't cancer, and once I told him he wasn't particularly interested in the details of the ultrasound," Dr. Touma told The Sun.

source: NY Daily News

Weird Crazy News: Eel Enter Man's Penis

Thu, 03 Nov 2011 13:15:00 +0000

Zhang Nan was bathing with live eels to cleanse his skin when one rogue serpent took a liking to his manhood.
The eel treatment in question is a similar concept to the popular London spas that offer fish pedicures.
Thinking that the eels would make him look ten years younger, Nan dived into the water and let them feast upon layers of dead skin.
But after laying in the spa bath, Nan felt a sharp pain and realised a small eel was working its way up his urethra and into his bladder.

'I climbed into the bath and I could feel the eels nibbling my body. But then suddenly I felt a severe pain and realised a small eel had gone into the end of my penis,' the 56-year-old from Honghu, Hubei province said.
'I tried to hold it and take it out, but the eel was too slippery to be held and it disappeared up my penis.'
(OK, that's enough cringing now... it's horrible, though, we know...)
Rushing himself to hospital, the man underwent a three-hour operation to remove the six-inch eel which was dead by the time doctors found it.
Surgeon Jin Wang said that, because of the eel's slippery nature, it was able to make a smooth entry into the genitals of Nan.
'The diameter of the urethra in a man's penis is just a little narrower, but because eels are quite slippery, its body worked as a lubricant and so it got into the penis smoothly,' he said.
(Really - stop cringing - we can see you...)
Believe it or not, Nan's case follows a similar incident when a 14-year-old boy in India had to undergo emergency surgery.
In a case study published by urologists Dr G Vezhaventhan and R Jeyaraman, they described how they removed a 2cm-long fish from the boy's bladder.
The teenager said that while holding the fish he had gone to the toilet and, while urinating, the fish had 'slipped from his hand and entered his urethra'.


Weird Crazy News: Ghost Sex at Haunted House in Ohio

Thu, 03 Nov 2011 13:05:00 +0000

A house in Euclid, Ohio, is arousing interest from ghost researchers because the owner claims that she has seen two ghosts having sex with each other.Dianne Carlisle claims that she has seen afterlife amore going in the living room, which seems to be more of a living-and-dead room."It look like, like ghosts having sex," she told the Fox affiliate in Cleveland. "You can see the lady's high heeled shoes!"If true, this represents an extraordinary development in paranormal research, according to Ohio-based investigator David Jones."This has never been reported before," Jones told HuffPost Weird News. "It would be interesting to know more about the house, especially [Carlisle's deceased sister], who supposedly left a voicemail message from the afterlife. However, I don't think that has anything to do with [the sex], but I do wonder how long it's been going on.Jones says ghosts are examples of residual energy that get imprinted on to a certain location and aren't always from dead people.See the Video at the link below:Source: The Huffingtonpost[...]

Weird Crazy News: "Spider Tree"

Thu, 03 Nov 2011 12:49:00 +0000

A spider web enshrouds a tree in Sindh, Pakistan, in a December 2010 photograph.
The unusual cocoons were a mixed blessing: The huge webs ultimately killed many of the trees they covered, perhaps by reducing the amount of sunlight reaching their leaves.
But for a while, the webs also seemed to help trap more mosquitoes in the region, thereby reducing the risk of malaria, Watkins said. 

Normally after a flood, the remaining stagnant water provides more opportunities for mosquitoes to breed. But people in Sindh reported far fewer mosquitoes than expected following the recent crisis.

Azkals vs Vietnam: The REMATCH

Wed, 02 Nov 2011 03:18:00 +0000

Though short on preparation, hopes are high that the Philippine Under-23 Azkals can reach the semifinals of the men’s football competition of the Southeast Asian Games for the first time in 20 years.
Senior team members Jason De Jong, Matthew Hartmann and Mark Hartmann, Carli De Murga and experienced goalkeeper Roland Muller spearhead the 20-man squad, which has 15 players under 20 years of age that could still make them eligible for the next SEA Games.
The Under-23 Azkals, who left for Jakarta yesterday, will be the first Filipino athletes to see action in the Games, with their first match slated Thursday against favorite Vietnam at the Gelora Bung Karno Stadium.

Daily Odd News: "Cyclop" Shark Discovered

Tue, 01 Nov 2011 00:29:00 +0000

Talk about a one-of-a-kind discovery—an extremely rare cyclops shark(pictured) has been confirmed in Mexico, new research shows.The 22-inch-long (56-centimeter-long) fetus has a single, functioning eye at the front of its head—the hallmark of a congenital condition called cyclopia, which occurs in several animal species, including humans.Earlier this year fisher Enrique Lucero León legally caught a pregnant dusky shark near Cerralvo Island (see map) in the Gulf of California. When León cut open his catch, he found the odd-looking male embryo along with its nine normal siblings. "He said, That's incredible—wow," said biologist Felipe Galván-Magaña, of the Interdisciplinary Center of Marine Sciences in La Paz, Mexico.Once Galván-Magaña and colleague Marcela Bejarano-Álvarez heard about the discovery—which was put on Facebook—the team got León's permission to borrow the shark for research. The scientists then x-rayed the fetus and reviewed previous research on cyclopia in other species to confirm that the find is indeed a cyclops shark.Cyclops sharks have been documented by scientists a few times before, also as embryos, said Jim Gelsleichter, a shark biologist at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville. The fact that none have been caught outside the womb suggests cyclops sharks don't survive long in the wild.Overall, finding such an unusual animal reinforces that scientists still have a lot to learn, Gelsleichter added."It's a humbling experience to realize you ain't seen it all yet."-National Geographic[...]