Tall Tales

RSPCA reveals its funniest call-outs

And other stories from the stranger side of life

Cat

The RSPCA said its funniest calls last year included being asked to save a trapped bird that turned out to be a plastic chair and to retrieve a snake that was merely a rubber toy. When responding to a report of a “squealing and crying” dog that was tethered to a canal boat in west London, an inspector found it to be a stuffed toy tiger tied to the bow of the boat. The animal welfare charity urged people to “stop, think and check before asking us for help”.

Asteroids could ‘sneak up’ on Earth

Astronomers have warned that asteroids have the potential to “sneak up” on Earth undetected. Nasa-funded scientists have found that the way the Earth rotates and orbits the sun means approaching objects can slip through a network of computerised telescopes. Professor Richard Wainscoat, who led the research team at the University of Hawaii, said people “shouldn’t lose sleep” over the sub-optimal news because it should be possible to update the algorithms to resolve the issue.

Plastic bag fan hits the record books

A woman with a penchant for old plastic bags has collected a world record 10,000 of them. Angela Clarke, 55, from Wales, has spent 40 years keeping and collecting bags, some of which date as far back as 1954 and are classed as historical artefacts. She said that after she spoke about her passion on TV show Multi-coloured Swap Shop with Noel Edmonds, the BBC was sent hundreds of bags for her, including one from the House of Lords. Her collection is now worth thousands of pounds.

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