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The Hoax Museum Blog
Category: Animals
Tail Lights for Horses—a case of satirical prophecy
Posted by The Curator on Sat Dec 07, 2013
On April 1, 1961, Milan's La Notte newspaper reported that city authorities had passed a new law making it mandatory for horses to be outfitted with signaling and brake lights while being ridden through the streets or neighboring countryside. Back then, quite a few people in the area still rode horses, so the law was going to have quite a broad impact. And, so the story goes, many people subsequently brought their horses into car mechanics to have them outfitted with the necessary lights. This is considered to be one of Italy's classic April Fool's Day hoaxes. And, as is so often the case, it's only a matter of time before reality…
Categories: Animals, April Fools Day Comments (0)
Cat Drinks From Bottle
Posted by The Curator on Tue Dec 03, 2013
There's not a lot of info on where this photo comes from. It's listed on the website of the French National Library as having been created in 1911 by the "Agence Rol." photo agency. For 1911, it's a pretty good example of photo fakery. Also included in the same series is "Cat peers through binoculars" and "cat looks through a telescope." Found these over at retronaut.com.
Categories: Animals, Photos/Videos Comments (0)
World’s Largest Tortoise
Posted by The Curator on Tue Nov 26, 2013
The International Business Times reports that a "fake image" purporting to show the "world's largest tortoise" being transported on a flatbed truck has recently been circulating online. I think it's been circulating for at least half a year, but it's not correct to call it a fake image. It's a still from Gamera The Brave (a 2006 Japanese monster movie) that has been falsely captioned. Here's another picture of the "world's largest tortoise" in action: The question that popped into my head is whether the creature in the image is a tortoise or a turtle. The distinction between the two has…
Categories: Animals, Photos/Videos Comments (1)
Squirrel Rides Fawn
Posted by The Curator on Sat Nov 16, 2013
This unusual photo ran in numerous papers in September 1963. I can't find a linkable example in the Google News Archive, but here it is in the Binghamton Press [PDF]. (A lot of examples of it come up in a search on newspaperarchive.com, but that's a paid archive, so I can't link to any of the results.) The caption read: All the animals are pretty tame at the Percy Pangborn Ranch above Lake Wenatchee in the foothills of Washington State's Cascade Mountains, Sept 14. 1963. A golden mantled ground squirrel chomps away on a nut as it rides around on the neck of a fawn. The photo looks…
Categories: Animals, Photos/Videos Comments (0)
Snipe Hunting Kit
Posted by The Curator on Mon Sep 23, 2013
Star Bound magazine sells a Snipe Hunting Kit. For only $12.95 you get a Snipe Hunting Guide, a Snipe burlap bag, a Snipe permit (to be filled out by the catcher), and a flashlight for the catcher. It says that the guidebook includes a "harvest report." And, "If the harvest report is sent back to the Star Bound Magazine's office (called the Snipe Hunting Association in the guidebook) with the proper fee, we will send back a certificate that will certify the name on the report as having had their first Snipe hunt and was the one left holding the bag."
Categories: Animals Comments (0)
Cow Tipping Debunked Once Again
Posted by The Curator on Mon Sep 23, 2013
Cow tipping has been thoroughly debunked before, but Modern Farmer's recent article on the subject is interesting nevertheless. It emphasizes that cows are not easy animals to tip over because they've got a lot of mass, they're very stable on their feet, and they're difficult to sneak up on. To underscore how difficult it is to tip a cow, the author, Jake Swearingen, notes that farm vets often need to get a cow down on its side to perform a medical exam, and it's not easy to do. The process is called "cow casting." The vets use ropes and teams of highly-trained individuals, and often things still go badly wrong, as the video below shows.
Categories: Animals, Pranks Comments (0)
Trout-Pig
Posted by The Curator on Fri Sep 13, 2013
A trout-pig hybrid, discovered in the Tet river in southeastern France. As reported by L'Indépendant, April 1, 2013. I imagine that, when cooked, this would taste like trout wrapped in bacon.
Categories: Animals, April Fools Day Comments (2)
The Beast of Trowbridge
Posted by The Curator on Wed Aug 21, 2013
A 71-year-old pensioner recently claimed to have caught a photo of the "Beast of Trowbridge" — a large black panther that supposedly roams wild in Wiltshire. The photo was genuine, but it wasn't taken in Wiltshire. Nor was the pensioner the photographer. Turns out it was actually taken in Lapeer County, Michigan and posted online six years ago. [mirror.co.uk]
Categories: Animals, Photos/Videos Comments (1)
The Substitute Zoo
Posted by The Curator on Tue Aug 20, 2013
Back in April 2012 I posted about the Dream Park El Janoob Zoo in the Gaza Strip, which was displaying taxidermied animals, because it couldn't afford living ones. Now we have the People's Park of Luohe in Henan, which has been thinking along similar creative lines. Instead of a lion in the African Lion cage, they've got a Tibetan mastiff dog in there. It does look vaguely similar to a lion, if you squint. However, it barks. Other substitutes include two rodents in the snake's cage, a white fox in the leopard's den, and a common dog in the wolf's pen. But this isn't being done because of a lack of funds.…
Categories: Animals Comments (1)
Testicle-Biting Danish Fish
Posted by The Curator on Mon Aug 19, 2013
It's true that a South American pacu, sporting "big crushing teeth," was caught recently off the coast of Denmark. But Professor Peter Rask Moller said he was only joking when he warned that these fish often attack male reproductive organs, mistaking them for tree nuts, and he regrets that the news release featuring his warning generated such concern. The reality is that pacus are vegetarian and there's no record of them attacking a human. But maybe Prof. Moller was only kinda joking, because he added, "I still will keep my swimsuits tied up, and I will never swim in an aquarium with these fishes." Warning over testicle-biting fish in…
Categories: Animals Comments (1)
Hippo Eats Man
Posted by The Curator on Tue May 07, 2013
Thanks to Tah for giving me a heads up about this article. The hippo didn't eat a dwarf, but it does give an idea about how it would feel to become hippo food. My favorite line is, "Time passes very slowly when you're in a hippo's mouth." Experience: I was swallowed by a hippo guardian.co.uk There was no transition at all, no sense of approaching danger. It was as if I had suddenly gone blind and deaf. I was aware that my legs were surrounded by water, but my top half was almost dry. I seemed to be trapped in something slimy. There was a terrible, sulphurous smell, like rotten…
Categories: Animals, Urban Legends Comments (2)
The Argentinian Pet
Posted by The Curator on Thu Apr 11, 2013
I guess it's possible that con artists down in Argentina are giving ferrets steroids to increase their size, then fluffing up their fur and selling them as toy poodles, but as many people have already pointed out, this sounds an awful lot like a variant of the "Mexican pet" legend. Man gets shock of his life when he buys two toy poodles for $150 only to be told by a vet that they are actually GIANT RODENTS pumped up with steroids to look like dogs Daily Mail Gullible bargain hunters at Argentina's largest bazaar are forking out hundreds of dollars for what they think are gorgeous toy poodles,…
Categories: Animals, Urban Legends Comments (9)
The Roosterfish
Posted by The Curator on Sun Mar 31, 2013
Fred Freer sent in the following press release. I'll let everyone form their own conclusions about this "roosterfish." Fossil Find of the Century? Local artist and stonescaper, Fred Freer, discovers unique fossil in Chena Ridge hills. While teaching his sons the art and process of hand-splitting stone (for landscaping purposes), Freer Uncovered what seemed to be fossil remains of a birds head and beak. But upon further examination and cleaning the tail and fins of a fish also began to appear. Coined "roosterfish", and an amazing find it is, Freer states that "this is really gonna mess with the 'chicken and the egg hypothesis'". Unveiling of "the fossil" and artistic renderings of "the creature"…
Categories: Animals Comments (2)
Ukrainian Attack Dolphins
Posted by The Curator on Fri Mar 15, 2013
Word got out this week that the Ukrainian military had lost three dolphins in the Black Sea after the dolphins swam away from their trainers, apparently to search for mates. The problem: these were trained attack dolphins "equipped with firearms." The source of the story was a document that appeared online that seemed to be a scan of a letter from the head of a Ukrainian military research institute to naval command warning of the dolphin escape. The story took off when it got picked up by RIA Novosti (the Russian International News Agency) and from there spread to the western media. However, Ukraine's Defense…
Categories: Animals, Military Comments (0)
Dog Fight Hoax
Posted by The Curator on Wed Feb 27, 2013
Over in Perth (home to a couple of MOHers!) there's a rumor going around about an organized dog fighting ring that's stealing pets and using them in fights. The larger dogs are supposedly starved and turned into fighters, while smaller animals are used as "bait." A flier (below), posted on Facebook, is helping to spread the warning. People are also being warned that the pet thieves are tagging the homes of potential victims with red dots, as shown in this picture: However, the police and animal welfare authorities insist there's simply no evidence that any of this is happening. Social media expert Tama Leaver is quoted…
Categories: Animals Comments (0)
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