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Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Voyages of Discovery

New species found in Papua 'Eden'
The expedition rediscovered a bird of paradiseA research group from the US, Indonesia and Australia trekked through an area in the mist-shrouded Foja Mountains, and found a "lost world" in the Indonesian jungle that is home to dozens of new animal and plant species.

Amongst the remarkable discoveries made by the international team of scientists, a honeyeater bird with a bright orange patch on its face, the first new bird species to be sighted on the island of New Guinea in more than 60 years and the location of the homeland of Berlepsch's six-wired bird of paradise were the most notable.

The researchers spent nearly a month in the locality, detailing the wildlife and plant life.

"It's beautiful, untouched, unpopulated forest; there's no evidence of human impact or presence up in these mountains," a co-leader of the group told BBC News. "It's as close to the Garden of Eden as you're going to find on Earth."
Picture courtesy of BBC News

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Alien Discovered in Attic
By Sean Coughlan
The Builders working in the attic of a cottage in an English village found an old jar containing what appeared to be a model of an alien, about 12 inches tall, made of clay and preserved in a liquid which smelled of vinegar.

The jar was wrapped in a 1947 copy of the Daily Mirror. The alien appeared to have a serial number on its foot.

But what would be the point of producing this dummy? Why would someone be making aliens like this in the 1940s?

Conspiracy theorists will already have their own ideas, such as whether such "aliens" were used as convenient decoys to cover up research projects and military crashes during the Cold War.

But a professor, specialising in science fiction literature, says the type of alien depicted is more like the images portrayed in the 1960s, rather than the 1940s, which could cast doubt on whether it really was produced 60 years ago.
Picture courtesy of BBC News Magazine

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