06 October 2008

I know they don't fly, but...

Emperor penguinA depressing story about mammalian extinctions is making the rounds this morning (see it here in The Age and New Scientist).

Sadly, one of the news stories is probably more revealing than it wanted to be about why these animals are endangered:

Because we're bloody ignorant.

The Age claims (with emphasis added):

Threatened mammal species include the African mountain gorilla, the emperor penguin of Antarctica and the Sumatran orang-utan.

Not a mammal!

Penguins have beaks. Lay eggs. Even putting aside the platypus for a second, I think those feature would twig to most people that penguins are birds, not mammals.

Does nobody fact check anymore?

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