never say die
The Unsinkable Molly B(ovine) surfaces again
Five years after a cow dubbed the "Unsinkable Molly B" leapt a slaughterhouse gate and swam across the Missouri River in an escape that drew international attention, the heifer has again eluded fate, surviving the collapse of the sanctuary where she was meant to retire. Molly B was among an estimated 1,200 animals removed from the Montana Large Animal Sanctuary and Rescue as part of a massive effort to bail out its overwhelmed owners. Animal welfare groups were forced to euthanize dozens of starving and ill cattle, horses and llamas found on the 400-acre sanctuary. The bovine celebrity herself — an overweight but otherwise relatively healthy black Angus breed — was removed to a nearby ranch and is headed this week to a smaller farm sanctuary. "Molly B made it okay. She's a tough old broad," said Jerry Finch with Habitat for Horses of Hitchcock, Texas, who participated in the rescue effort. "She had bad feet, but she was not anywhere near as bad as some of the others."
These mice can smell a rat
Mice are being trained to detect would-be bombers and drug couriers at airports. Israeli scientists have created a detector, similar to a full-body scanner but with three concealed cartridges each containing eight specially trained mice. Researchers told New Scientist that the mice, which work four-hour shifts, are more accurate than sniffer dogs and X-ray machines. Air is pumped into the cartridges every four hours so the mice can breathe. When the mice sense traces of drugs they run to a side chamber where they trigger an alarm, the magazine said.
Site offers a virtual tour of marriage
An Indian website is offering bachelors a ''virtual wife'' to give them a taste of married life before they go through with the real thing. The site, biwihotohaisi.com, offers four different types of partner: devoted homemaker, control freak, shopping and soap opera obsessive or ambitious banker. Bachelors who subscribe receive automated phone messages from their virtual lady, supposedly helping them make an informed decision when the time comes to find a real wife — on the company's parent site.
No protection from royal exploitation
A London-based company has launched Prince William and Kate Middleton-themed condoms to celebrate the Royal Wedding. The Crown Jewels Condoms Of Distinction are sold in royal purple packs with an image of the royal couple on the front. The packaging instructs users to "lie back and think of England." But it also carries a disclaimer advising would-be lovers the condoms are designed as a souvenir and are not suitable for contraception or to prevent STDs. Critics, not surprisingly, are calling it a new low for Royal Wedding memorabilia.
Compiled from Times wire services and other sources.