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GATOR AID

Gemini Wink deserves some points for resourcefulness after his adventure in a swamp near Tampa, Fla. He ventured there to photograph alligators, using duct tape to mark his trail. But eventually Wink realized he was lost, and darkness was falling fast. What to do? The Louisville, Ky., man climbed 40 feet up a tree to escape any hungry gators that might happen by, then bound himself to it with the tape so he could sleep without tumbling to the ground. The story ended happily. Sheriffs deputies, alerted by a concerned friend, found him and helped him down.

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WELL, SNAKES ALIVE

An item in this space last Friday described the flap caused by a radio station's contest to reward the first listener who successfully mailed in an unbroken raw egg. Now, someone has used the Postal Service to ship two 10-foot pythons to an animal shelter in Arlington, Va. The package had no air holes, but the critters survived. Authorities are investigating.

Americans' favorite names for their fidos and felines

Planning to add a new puppy or kitten to your family circle? Have you given any thought to what to name it? You'll be in good company if you choose Max or Sam. In fact, those names are the top choices of pet owners across the US, according to a survey of veterinarians by the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Based on a review of hundreds of thousands of pet names, here are the top 15:

1. Max

2. Sam

3. Lady

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4. Bear

5. Smokey

6. Shadow

7. Kitty

8. Molly

9. Buddy

10. Brandy

11. Ginger

12. Baby

13. Misty

14. Missy

15. Pepper

- Infoplease.com/ASPCA

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society


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