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June 12, 2004

Animal Quackers

Ducks Have Regional Accents

It's reassuring to know that in these days of unrestrained greed and pathological craziness being unleashed upon a bewildered world, the English can still be relied upon to keep their heads and retain a sense of proper proportion. Besides being delightful of themselves, some areas of scientific investigation delve into matters of import that will still have their place in the emporium of worthwhile human knowledge long after the antics of today's mental and moral midgets have been forgotten.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports from the Guardian that researchers at London's Middlesex University have discovered that British ducks have regional accents, just like the people. Ducks in London parks make shorter, sharper sounds like Cockneys, and tend to be louder, while ducks from the Cornwall and the West produce longer, drawn-out calls, evocative of slower-talking country folk. It is thought that the different environments affect ducks and humans similarly. Full story at www.smh.com.au/articles/2004/06/04/1086203606507.html

 
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