While browsing through the procrastinators.org news page I saw a link to an old cnn.com article that I thought was funny:
Stupid penguins. I can't keep from giggling while trying to picture this.Scientists ask: Do penguins really fall over?
November 3, 2000
Web posted at: 9:07 AM EST (1407 GMT)
LONDON, England (Reuters) -- Do penguins fall over backward when watching aircraft fly overhead?
Two British scientists are traveling to South Georgia in the south Atlantic to find answers to that question and others from a study of the island's 400,000 King Penguins.
Scientists have usually been skeptical about reports of penguins falling over backward to watch aircraft flying above them. But a senior officer on the British navy ship HMS Endurance, which is taking the scientific team to South Georgia, said he believed the reports.
"The penguins always look up at the helicopters and follow them all the way until they fall over backward," Stuart Matthews, the ship's operations officer, told the Daily Telegraph.
Dr. Richard Stone of the British Antarctic Survey told Reuters that scientists were concerned that low-flying aircraft could cause stress among penguins and affect their breeding performance.
"There may be an increase in heart rate as helicopters fly over," Stone said.
"The worst possible effect is that there would be a reduction in their breeding performance. If they were incubating eggs this could be quite devastating for them."
Stone said helicopters from HMS Endurance would fly at different altitudes over the penguins to help in the research.