Tuba Thefts Linked to Banda Music
A rash of tuba thefts may be attributed to the popularity of a genre of music called banda. High schools all over Southern California report thefts of Sousaphones and concert tubas, which may be sold on the black market to banda musicians. Mexican banda music has been growing in popularity over the past twenty years, and the tuba is the most important instrument for the distinctive sound. Banda bandits are suspected because other instruments that are easier to carry off and sell for scrap have been left behind in the break-ins.
Courthouse Evacuated Over Coconut
A deputy at the Frederick County Courthouse in Maryland spotted a coconut on Wednesday morning. The coconut was placed on one of the building's columns, and appeared to have been split open and pieced back together. The courthouse was evacuated and the Maryland State Fire Marshal's Bomb Squad responded. Upon examination, they determined that the coconut was no threat. The investigation continues.
Nathan Adams caught a pretty big fish, considering he was only using a rod and reel and fishing from a 20-foot boat. Adams landed a Pacific bluefin tuna that weighed in at 738 pounds! Bigger tuna have been caught, but the New Zealand fisherman may have set a world record for a rod and reel. Tuna that size can sell for hundreds of thousands of dollars at a fish market, but Adams cannot sell the tuna for meat, as New Zealand law bans selling fish caught from a registered recreational vessel. He is considering having the fish mounted, which means Adams cannot eat the tuna himself, either.
Giant Chicken Stolen
A 10-foot-tall chicken was stolen last week from a poultry farm in Windham Township, Ontario. The fiberglass rooster had been guarding the farm since it was imported from Texas in 2004. Thieves broke the $3,000 chicken and made off with it, leaving its feet behind. An anonymous caller reported the bird's whereabouts, and police found it in a backyard in Milton. The homeowner, 36-year-old Brent Smith, was arrested for fowl play possession of stolen property. The farmers, Sonia and Frank Dierick, are hoping that an auto body shop may be able to reattach the big bird to its feet.
Terrifying Tom Turkey
Edna Geisler of Commerce Township, Michigan, is afraid to leave her home, because she is being stalked by a turkey. The 69-year-old woman calls the big tom "Godzilla." The bird stakes out her front lawn from sunup to sundown, and attacks if she tries to cross the yard. It has bumped her and even clawed her once. A wildlife expert says the behavior is unusual, but it appears the gobbler is defending its territory. Geisler just hopes Godzilla leaves before gardening season begins.
Town Covered in Spider Webs
Townspeople in Wagga Wagga, NSW, Australia, were evacuated during recent floods. When they returned, the fields surrounding the town were covered with a blanket of spider webs! Experts explained that the local wolf spiders threw out webs hoping to escape the danger of flooding, a process called "ballooning." The water made the webs more visible to the human eye. The water also makes the webs stickier, which means they trap more insects. The many webs are actually advantageous to people, as they help capture mosquitoes, which normally thrive during floods.
Steven Seagal Sued over Raid
The expected response to a story we posted here a year ago has come about. Last March, actor Steven Seagal assisted the Maricopa County (Arizona) Sheriff's office in a raid over suspected cockfighting. They showed up with an armored vehicle and a SWAT team and busted through a wall at the home of Jesus Llovera. The raid, during which Llovera's dog was shot, was filmed for the TV show Steven Seagal: Lawman. Llovera initiated a lawsuit this week against Seagal and the sheriff. The recorded raid was for an episode that was supposed to be aired in January, but the show was pulled from the A&E network lineup.