Quirky World ... Texas cow welcomes Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moo

USA: A cow in Northeast Texas has apparently defied great odds and given birth to four calves that have been named Eeny, Meeny, Miny, and Moo.

Quirky World ... Texas cow welcomes Eeny, Meeny, Miny, Moo

Jimmy Barling said that DNA tests will be done on tissue samples from the three bull calves and the one heifer calf to satisfy those who may question the births from one mother.

“We knew she was pregnant, but we didn’t know she was going to do this,” the 76-year-old Barling said. “This was a shock. This blew our minds.”

Barling’s wife, Dora Rumsey-Barling, owns the couple’s 20 or so cattle outside of DeKalb, near the Arkansas and Oklahoma borders. Rumsey-Barling’s granddaughter named the four black calves Eeny, Meeny, Miny, and Moo, Barling said.

Local veterinarian Mike Baird called the March 16 births “extremely rare”. He said the odds of four live births from one cow are 1 in 11.2m. Baird knows the couple well and is nearly certain the four came from one mother, rather than a nearby cow perhaps birthing one or two and then moving along so that it appeared the four came from the Barling’s cow.

“In the interest of science and the animal world, it’s one of those things that need to be verified beyond a shadow of a doubt,” he said.

The couple watched the birth of the fourth calf after going to check on her when they saw buzzards circling above a field.

Because the mother cow is unable to nurse all four calves, the couple are relying on neighbours to help. Moo has stayed with her mother, while Eeny, Meeny, and Miny are with two different caretakers. Meeny is the smallest of the calves, weighing in at about 25 pounds. A typical healthy birth weight for a calf is 75 pounds. Standing has also been difficult for some of the quadruplets.

Northern highs

ENGLAND: World travellers clearly disagree with the old saying that “it’s grim up North”.

For global tourists’ top 10 list of best-rated UK destinations contains only two from the south of the country.

Apart from London, in first place, and the Devon resort of Torquay (fourth), the list compiled from multiple TripAdvisor reviews, is dominated by destinations well away from southern England. Scottish capital Edinburgh is in second place in the best-UK table, with the Welsh seaside town Llandudno third, Liverpool fifth, and Blackpool sixth.

New home

SCOTLAND: The UK’s only female polar bear arrives at her new home today, bringing hopes of a cub in the future.

Victoria is being introduced to Highland Wildlife Park as a potential mate for Arktos, who lives there with fellow male Walker.

The female, who has travelled by road and sea from Aalborg Zoo, Denmark, will spend a couple of weeks settling into her new enclosure before the public can see her.

Douglas Richardson, head of living collections for Highland Wildlife Park, said that during the breeding season, between March and May, staff “will gradually introduce her to Arktos and the two will stay together until the two hopefully mate, when the male will be returned to the bachelor enclosure”.

If Victoria settles in quickly, they might try to start breeding this year, but may wait till next year.

Mad selfies

USA: Mad Men fans can now take a selfie with Don Draper, thanks to a bench unveiled featuring the fictional adman’s silhouette.

Jon Hamm, the actor who plays Draper, posed for photos on the bench outside the Time & Life Building at 1271 Avenue of the Americas in midtown Manhattan. He appeared with other cast members, January Jones, Christina Hendricks, John Slattery and Elisabeth Moss, along with the show’s creator, Matthew Weiner.

Pie for the Pope

ITALY: Pope Francis, who recently lamented being unable to slip out and get a pizza like he used to, finally got a pie — albeit one hand-delivered to his Popemobile.

Pizza maker Enzo Cacialli had a pie on hand as Francis sped by the Naples waterfront during his one-day visit to the city famous for its pizza. In a video made by a colleague at the Don Ernesto pizzeria, Mr Cacialli is seen getting close enough to the Popemobile to make the delivery as the crowd behind him cheers.

Mr Caciallisaid he was “full of joy that [the Pope] accepted a pizza straight from my hands”.

Isn’t it ironic?

USA: A Pennsylvania man who skipped out on jury duty 11 times in the last two years has been arrested inside a courthouse while seeking relief from a child support ruling.

Somerset county judge D Gregory Geary told 32-year-old Owen Fazenbaker III he found it “ironic” that Fazenbaker could find his way to court for that but not for jury duty.

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