Archive for Sunday, March 20, 2005

Briefly

March 20, 2005

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New York City

Network news shows announce lineups

Guest lineup for the Sunday TV news shows:

ABC's "This Week" -- Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld; Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz.; Gerry Adams, leader of Northern Ireland's Sinn Fein party.

CBS' "Face the Nation" -- Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman Gen. Richard Myers; Rep. Tom Davis, R-Va., and Major League Baseball executive vice president Robert Manfred.

NBC's "Meet the Press" -- Myers.

CNN's "Late Edition" -- Lt. Gen. R. Steven Whitcomb, 3rd Army commanding general; Sens. John Sununu, R-N.H., and Carl Levin, D-Mich.; retired Army Gen. George Joulwan; retired Marine Lt. Gen. Michael DeLong; and retired Air Force Gen. Don Shepperd.

"Fox News Sunday" -- Rumsfeld.

New York

Scientists surprised that bats can run

As if it were not enough that vampire bats can swoop down from the sky to get a blood dinner from their victims, it turns out that they also can run on the ground to sneak up on them.

The finding is surprising because no other bat has been shown to run. In fact, most can barely walk, shuffling awkwardly from a sprawled position.

Daniel Riskin of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Cornell University in Ithaca and his colleagues made the discovery at a ranch in Trinidad, where they trapped five adult male vampire bats using cows as bait. They placed the animals on a treadmill inside a plexiglass cage and photographed them with a high-speed camera while the speed of the treadmill was increased.

They were surprised to find that, at higher speed, the animals broke into a full-fledged run.

Bats, the only mammals that fly, lost the ability to run long ago, so Riskin believes the vampire bats re-evolved the ability. But neither he nor anyone else knows why. Perhaps it just makes it easier for them to get out of the way when cows and other quarry kick at them, or perhaps it helps them chase smaller prey, he said.

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