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Japan's Unique Cow/Whale Hybrid Experiments

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the baleen-on-the-hoof-or-udders-out-at-sea dept.

Biotech 348

RemyBR writes "Controversial scientific research happens all the time, but a review conducted by scientists in Japan uncovered a list of 'bizarre' trials - including one program designed to crossbreed cows with whales.'Scientists have analyzed 43 research papers produced by Japan over 18 years, finding most were useless or esoteric. The scientific research included injecting minke whale sperm into cows eggs, and attempts to produce test-tube whale babies.'"

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Love It or Hate It? (5, Funny)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741570)

I really am torn on these experiments, I mean I could seriously question the motive and nature:

Of all the animals you had to pick from you went with cows and whales? Cows and wales? What's next? Sloths and sea sponges? You had the chance to go Island of Doctor Moreau and you tried to recreate a manatee (hello? already exists!) instead of ... oh I don't know ... hybridizing wolverines and great white sharks?

On the other hand, I could also defend it with other logic, just as solid:

I don't see anything wrong with it. It was all a matter of time before this happened naturally anyways. Interspecies mating happens all the time between donkeys and horses resulting in a mule or hinny. Occasionally squash and pumpkin plants cross fertilize. It's common. Really, it was only a matter of time before a heard of cattle near the ocean resulted in a particularly rowdy bull wandering into the Ross Sea or Pacific Ocean to jump the bones of a minke whale thus creating a hybrid. Who knows, maybe these would be as useful as mules are? I'm sure the poor of third world countries could use another pack animal--now for oceanic voyages!

Re:Love It or Hate It? (2, Funny)

shawn(at)fsu (447153) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741638)

What's next? Sloths and sea sponges?
I think it's going to be a pig-elephant.

(I clicked no karma bonus as it's a pretty weak joke)

Re:Love It or Hate It? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741756)

I'm sorry, but:

Pig and Elephant DNA just won't splice

Apologies to Loverboy

Re:Love It or Hate It? (3, Funny)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741772)

All I want is sharks with lasers mounted on their heads. Is that so much to ask?

Re:Love It or Hate It? (4, Funny)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741808)

I think it's going to be a pig-elephant.
Maybe, but that really wouldn't take the work of Japanese scientists. All you need is a pot-bellied pig, an elephant, lots of alcohol, and some Isaac Hayes music.

However, it will probably end up that a closeted gay, balding school teacher did all the "real" work. Even then, what good will it be if only has one ass?

Re:Love It or Hate It? (2, Funny)

Ashbory (781835) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742096)

forget the elephant. I wanna see a man-bear-pig!

Re:Love It or Hate It? (5, Funny)

MrNaz (730548) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741680)

*Mumbles something about welcoming new cowhale overlords*
*Gets modded to the depths of hell*
*Swears*

Re:Love It or Hate It? (3, Funny)

master_p (608214) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741700)

Of all the animals you had to pick from you went with cows and whales? Cows and wales? What's next? Sloths and sea sponges?
Sharks and bulls, apparently...with freaking lasers mounted between their horns.

Re:Love It or Hate It? (2, Insightful)

Adambomb (118938) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741908)

"Contrary to popular belief, the most dangerous animal is not the lion or
tiger or even the elephant. The most dangerous animal is a shark riding
on an elephant, just trampling and eating everything they see."
oh Jack Handey [deepthough...handey.com]

Re:Love It or Hate It? (5, Funny)

TobyRush (957946) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741706)

It was all a matter of time before this happened naturally anyways.

No kidding! In fact, when I read the headline my first thought is that these guys were experimenting with ways to put a stop to the rampant cow/whale breeding that has been taking place in cities like mine. It's really transformed my neighborhood in such a way that I'm no longer comfortable letting my kids play out front, at least not unsupervised.

Re:Love It or Hate It? (1)

watzinaneihm (627119) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741946)

We don't have cow-whales breeding in our town yet, but dolphin-cows are a menace around here. I would'nt mind if they did whatever they did in private, but this public indecency has to shop. All this cavorting and interspecies breeding can do no good, I tell you. Look at this picture [homebusine...bsites.com] . Have you ever seen anything so wrong? A poor little cow corrupted by a cruel fish

Re:Love It or Hate It? (5, Funny)

The End Of Days (1243248) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742022)

Dolphins aren't fish, they just taste the same.

Re:Love It or Hate It? (1)

ady1 (873490) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742004)

Which side are you on? Cows or whales? *ducks*

Re:Love It or Hate It? (2, Funny)

Drooling Iguana (61479) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742044)

It's an avian spy! Get 'im!

Re:Love It or Hate It? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22742136)

Excelthior! *zoom* *zoom*

Parthenogensis? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22742150)

I mean, I understand the basics -- they're trying to breed your mom and your sister -- but I dunno. They'd still need to do a lot of work to produce a viable embryo, and to what end?

Re:Love It or Hate It? (5, Interesting)

greginnj (891863) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741732)

Agreed, cows and whales sounds ridiculous. But my first reaction was - I'm sure "Japan" has published more than 43 research papers in 18 years; how did they pick these?? And a quick check of TFA reveals:

A review of the controversial scientific research conducted by Japan and its whalers has uncovered...
Aha! So it's not just the Ploxmire awards, it's a review of the specious "research" the whalers conduct in order to continue hunting whales. These crucial words were left out of the summary, and makes it seem even more ridiculous. Makes much more sense now, and explains why whales are involved, and they won't bother with sloths and sea sponges. It's sort of a more gruesome version of Canadian lottery quizzes.

Re:Love It or Hate It? (1)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742036)

Aha! So it's not just the Ploxmire awards, it's a review of the specious "research" the whalers conduct in order to continue hunting whales. These crucial words were left out of the summary, and makes it seem even more ridiculous. Makes much more sense now, and explains why whales are involved, and they won't bother with sloths and sea sponges. It's sort of a more gruesome version of Canadian lottery quizzes.

I automatically assumed that's what it was. The intent behind the 'research' jumped right out at me and bit me on the nose.

Re:Love It or Hate It? (1)

Naughty Bob (1004174) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741784)

New technology will make the Human race indistinguishable from gods in many ways.

The question is- Do we, as a race, set about becoming good at techniques such as genetic engineering, or do we sit back and wait for crazy shit to happen (evil billionaires, rogue states etc.)?

Re:Love It or Hate It? (3, Insightful)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741806)

I think the combo makes sense. Japan still hunts for whales, which gets them a lot of bad press. What if, they could grow whale meat on land? You'd want whale flesh in a easily manageable form that lacks the intelligence of a whale, but you already had facilities to breed, slaughter and distribute.

Re:Love It or Hate It? (1)

meatspray (59961) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742064)

meh, I bet they were working on 3.5 ton (3175kg) beef cattle.

why cows and whales (4, Interesting)

sdedeo (683762) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741856)

Actually, if you were going to pick some creature to go with whales, it would be the hippopotamus. In the evolutionary chain that you can establish with DNA, whales got back into the water rather late. But as someone noted below, this article is about papers that come out of "scientific" whaling -- which is really just a cover for the Japanese to hunt the endangered species for cash. So I guess they went with cows, because they are pretty cheap and it's probably easier to do whatever phony-science you want (e.g., because of agriculture, getting your cow DNA sequenced is probably somthing you can just mail in.)

Beware! My knowledge of evolution and cetaceans comes only from Richard Dawkins books which I last read like three years ago (I highly recommend The Ancestor's Tale, if you've already read the classics like Selfish Gene and Extended Phenotype.)

Re:Love It or Hate It? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741858)

You clearly swing both ways. Flimsy as a feather, you would go where the wind took you, I suspect.

Re:Love It or Hate It? (1)

watzinaneihm (627119) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741892)

Of all the animals you had to pick from you went with cows and whales?

I don't know why they picked cows, but Japan has a very good reason to pick whales. They are pretty much the only country in the world that engages in whaling and "scientific research" is the only excuse that Japan has to continue this. Oh and "tradition" - never mind the fact that Japanese whale-eating "tradition" was really a byproduct of food shortages after second world war...

Re:Love It or Hate It? (2, Informative)

Sciros (986030) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742098)

Japan isn't the only country in the world that still hunts whales. Norway, Canada, Greenland, Iceland, even the US (Alaskan natives) engages in it. Norway I think brings in more whales than even Japan, though reportedly they use more humane killing methods (or at least are better at using the same ones).

But yeah, the research that was looked at was indeed part of the "research" that the whaling industry sort of conducts in order to keep doing the whole song and dance so they can say they whale for scientific research. Most of it, though, is of course research that they claim involves "lethal sampling" (that way they can say they kill the whale in the name of science, rather than in the name of, um, selling to a high-end restaurant chain or something).

No need to be torn -- it's actual BS (1)

Nicolas MONNET (4727) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741924)

Japan uses the "research" exception to keep on hunting whales despite the whaling ban they're supposed, by treaty, to obey. The "researchers" aren't trying to make whale-cow hybrids, they're just bullshitting to fulfill a legal requirement. They could just as well try out whether whale sperm cures cancer, or see if agitating whale baleens in one's butt result in time travel. "Nope, doesn't work, but we tried! So now let's hunt s'more whales."

Re:Love It or Hate It? (5, Informative)

flyingsquid (813711) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741930)

It's not quite as bizarre as it sounds, actually. Whales are ungulates like cows, actually part of the even-toed ungulate group (artiodactyls) that includes cows, goats, deer, etc. So whales are actually closer to cows than horses are. The paleontologists thought the molecular biologists were on crack when they published those results, but eventually they dug up early whales with ankle joints which are remarkably similar to those of cows and other ungulates, and the artiodactyl-whale hypothesis has now been embraced.

So it's not completely bizarre, just... mostly bizarre. Yes, whales are artiodactyls, but they're pretty damn highly modified ones: no hindlimbs, nostrils that open on top of the skull, lots of extra finger bones. Even if you got a sperm to successfully fertilize an egg, I can't imagine that the cowhale/whalecow embryo would survive for long when the developmental patterns of the parents are so different. And what would that tell you? Whale/cow love ain't likely to work out? Shit, I could've told you THAT without an experiment. I gotta agree with the critics: this doesn't strike me as serious scientific research. I have a very hard time believing that you could write up a grant proposal for this experiment and get a favorable review.

Re:Love It or Hate It? (4, Insightful)

Remus Shepherd (32833) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741950)

Seems natural to me, from a japanese perspective. Japanese like eating whales. Cows are easy to breed and keep. It would be a terrific thing for Japan if they could make cows that tasted like whales. (It wouldn't be a bad thing from the whales' perspective, either.)

Re:Love It or Hate It? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741954)

Cows and whales aren't as far off as you might think - the closest order to cetacea is the even-toed ungulates, which include cows. So they're practically cousins. (Well, in the same sense that, I believe, the closest order to primates is rodents...) So it's not like they picked two species at random - they probably picked a whale and then its closest living land-dwelling species that was easily available. (I believe hippos are more closely related to cetaceans than cows, but it's probably quite a bit harder to find a hippo to experiment on, whereas cows are a dime a dozen.)

Re:Love It or Hate It? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22742018)

Didn't Dr. Clayton Forrester [wikipedia.org] pioneer this genre of animal experimentation when he grafted the butt of a dog onto the butt of a cat? The double butt graft... Sure, they all laughed...

Re:Love It or Hate It? (1)

c_forq (924234) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742078)

I think it makes perfect since, if you think about Japan. Japan wants whale meat, but isn't supposed to hunt whales. Imagine if you could create cattle that have meat similar to that of a whale! Remember that beef is already expensive in Japan, and you will see that if you can achieve it you will have quite literal cash cow.

Re:Love It or Hate It? (4, Interesting)

The Fun Guy (21791) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742140)

Of all the animals you had to pick from you went with cows and whales?

Actually, cows [wikipedia.org] (Bos taurus) are members of the Aritodactyla [wikipedia.org] order:

Cetaceans

One group of artiodactyls (which molecular biology suggests were most closely related to Hippopotamidae) returned to the sea to become whales. Thus Artiodactyla without Cetacea is a paraphyletic group. For this reason, the term Cetartiodactyla was coined to refer to the group containing both artiodactyls and whales.[3]


Commingling of sperm and egg will let you know how closely related the molecular recognition is between these related species. Count the number of divisions in the zygote until it fails due to genetic incompatibility, and you have more information on cross-species recognition. Since you already know how closely cows and whales are (by molecular fingerprinting), that will let you calibrate this information.

It's value can be seen in modern cross-breeding of more closely related animals, and how to suppress incompatibilities to allow for valuable traits to be incorporated into livestock from wild cousins.

Re:Love It or Hate It? (1)

RKBA (622932) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742152)

This is the first time in history that I've ever thought a SlashDot comment was so funny that I had to print it out on PAPER to share with others, har, har. I have mod points and would love to give you more, but you're already at +5

Where's the beef? (5, Insightful)

binaryspiral (784263) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741580)

Wow, imagine the size of a T-bone from a whale sized cow...

Re:Where's the beef? (1)

mh1997 (1065630) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741812)

Wow, imagine the size of a T-bone from a whale sized cow...
It would be very small because a cow with no legs but a huge tail would starve on land, and without the blow hole would drown at sea - but it would be the perfect combination for veal.

Re:Where's the beef? (3, Funny)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742010)

It would be very small because a cow with no legs but a huge tail would starve on land

Nonsense. That is why there are people. To make and feed cows with no legs and a huge tail.

Re:Where's the beef? (1)

wsanders (114993) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742050)

I don't fancy chewing through 6 inches of blubber to ge to the good part.

Or hearing underwater "moo"'s when I scuba dive.

As Paris Hilton would say... (4, Funny)

Izabael_DaJinn (1231856) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741596)

"The scientific research included injecting minke whale sperm into cows eggs, and attempts to produce test-tube whale babies.'"

That's hot!

(clerks) (2, Funny)

everphilski (877346) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741598)

Whales with teets that put mine to shame

Isn't this how Cloverfield started? (5, Funny)

xmuskrat (613243) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741600)

It looked like a cow whale to me.

Re:Isn't this how Cloverfield started? (1)

Svet-Am (413146) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741662)

my initial reaction EXACTLY.

They got that right (5, Insightful)

A nonymous Coward (7548) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741614)

TFA says Australia is going to try to end the "scientific research" loophole. These idiotic "experiments" smell of bureaucrats hiring incompetent and/or lazy "scientists" to do useless thumb twiddling just so they can say they need to keep killing whales.

Whether or not there should be a ban on killing whales is another matter altogether. Wasting time and resources in this manner to circumvent public opinion is another. I'd be pretty pissed if I were a Japanese consumer / taxpayer (depending on who pays for these useless "experiments").

And so it came to pass... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741630)

that the Countess, who once bathed in the rejuvenating blood of a hundred virgins, was buried alive... And her castle in which so many cruel deeds took place fell rapidly into ruin. Rising over the buried dungeons in that god-forsaken wilderness, a solitary tower, like some monument to Evil, is all that remains. The Countess' fortune was believed to be divided among the clergy, although some say that more remains unfound, still buried alongside the rotting skulls that bear mute witness to the inhumanity of the human creature.

man o' tee (3, Funny)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741640)

Silly Japanese. Don't they know we already have sea cows?

Re:man o' tee (1)

corychristison (951993) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741854)

Perhaps they were testing to see if that is how manatee's came to be...
Either that or God did it. ;-)
/sarcasm

Re:man o' tee (2, Funny)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741874)

Silly Japanese. Don't they know we already have sea cows?
Maybe they want their own version of Family Guy.

Is there another reason for this? (2, Insightful)

Hojima (1228978) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741650)

Meat wouldn't be that great of an incentive considering that we can directly clone meat so that we don't need to raise any animals and there would be a greater energy efficiency for the production of meat. I don't see milk being a problem either, as a similar solution could be developed with greater ease and less time.

It sounds funny now, but... (2, Funny)

Subm (79417) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741658)

It sounds funny now, but wait until the giant flying lizard starts fighting the giant flying turtle. By that point, not even the giant robot with the missiles shooting from its fingers can save Tokyo.

kill me.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741670)

kill meeee... er.. moo moooo... er.. BEOoooouUUNnnnggg

Pff. (5, Funny)

FlyingSquidStudios (1031284) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741674)

God, schmod. I want my whalecow.

Re:Pff. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741986)

And so, a new Slashdot troll is born.

Long live the whalecow, naked and petrified.

Your mama (1)

Jozxyqk (16657) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741676)

So that's how your mama got so fat!

DASTARDLY JAPANESE!! (3, Funny)

explosivejared (1186049) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741678)

Can't you see the obvious advantages of having a large cow-whale reserve. The Japanese wanted to produce an army of cow-whales that would have a superhuman... er... supercow ability to produce milk. With an inflated milk reserve, they could crash the US market... a veritable economic Pearl Harbor. THANK GOD THE INTELLIGENCE DIDN'T FAIL THIS TIME!!

Re:DASTARDLY JAPANESE!! (1)

corychristison (951993) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741802)

I have a feeling you have watched way too much Discovery Channel and Beverly Hills Ninja.

Re:DASTARDLY JAPANESE!! (2, Funny)

genericpoweruser (1223032) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741932)

The Debian team has already come up with a solution to that threat. Apt has super cow powers! Zing!

female whales = cows (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741682)

i hope the article's author realized that female whales are called cows...

Re:female whales = cows (3, Funny)

JustOK (667959) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741976)

but rarely to their face

Half bear Half pig (5, Funny)

Grokmoo (1180039) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741704)

I am ok with them pursuing this line of research, as long as they don't try something truly dangerous, like a half bear, half pig. Or worse, a half man, half bear, half pig. Now that would be trouble.

Re:Half bear Half pig (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741816)

Or worse, a half man, half bear, half pig. Now that would be trouble.
Yeah. Considering that would be wayyyyy too many halves.

Re:Half bear Half pig (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741918)

South Park reference.

Re:Half bear Half pig (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741922)

Yeah. Considering that would be wayyyyy too many halves.

*WOOSH*

Google "Man Bear Pig", it's a South Park thing.

Re:Half bear Half pig (1)

Deltaspectre (796409) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741944)

But I'm thuper therial, guys!

This sounds like a twisted subplot to an anime... (1)

AmazingRuss (555076) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741714)

...movie.

Seriously. YUCK! What gets IN to these people?

Re:This sounds like a twisted subplot to an anime. (5, Funny)

Surt (22457) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741848)

Seriously. YUCK! What gets IN to these people?


I'm thinking it's the whale sperm.

Re:This sounds like a twisted subplot to an anime. (2, Informative)

popeye44 (929152) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742030)

Well according to that one vid I seen it was eels up the wazoo.. but then again they put all sorts of things IN ..

Pasteurised sperm (1)

Timesprout (579035) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741728)

with your tea sir?

related research (4, Funny)

circletimessquare (444983) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741730)

-quantifying the mouthfeel of whale flesh on a scale of carnivorous appeal
-how to use less fossil fuels in the preparation of whale meat to abide by the kyoto protocol
-classifying whale meat's umami taste factor
-topological descriptions of various folding models in the preparation of whale meat sushi

most of the scientific papers associated with this vastly important field of scientific research have concluded some amazing scientific findings, samples of the papers' conclusions:

"om nom nom nom nom nom..."

"BURP"

"pass the sapporo, onegai shimasu"

The summary should probably mention (4, Interesting)

TimeZone (658837) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741752)

that these experiments were solely intended to allow Japan to continue it's whaling operations (under the guise of said "research") and that everyone involved probably knew the experiments were ridiculous and a scam.
So it's not like this is some mad scientist thing or anything. Just business. As usual.

TZ

Re:The summary should probably mention (-1, Troll)

jobsagoodun (669748) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742126)

Nuke 'em. Again.

thank you internet (1)

rev_sanchez (691443) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741780)

That's the least terrible thing (short of not killing a whale and taking it's sperm) that I can imagine the Japanese doing with whale semen. Thanks internet.

Re:thank you internet (1)

icebrain (944107) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741890)

You realize that the "sperm" from a sperm whale (in the "let's kill the whales and take their sperm!" idea) isn't actually sperm, right? "Spermaceti" is the sorta waxy stuff in the whale's head that helps with buoyancy control and echolocation. It was often used for making perfume a long time ago.

Of course, that whooshing sound I just heard was probably a joke going right over my head...

Re:thank you internet (1)

rev_sanchez (691443) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742032)

I'd heard about that with regard to how sperm whales got their name but I thought the Japanese made the distinction between the various kinds of whale goo when trying to knock up a cow. I also figured that they killed those whales since it seemed unlikely that they swam out there an jerked the whales off. It would have been nice of them though.

Japan's research on Whales is like my research on (3, Funny)

MrSteveSD (801820) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741798)

M&Ms

Success rate? (1)

ecavalli (1216014) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741822)

This being /. I obviously didn't RTFA, but does anyone know how successful these experiments were?

I haven't seen any extremely oversized cows lusting after plankton recently, so I have to imagine the scientists in question didn't actually create the terrifying cow/whale chimeras that we're all imagining, right?

Some day... (2, Insightful)

nacturation (646836) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741864)

Some day, the International Whaling Committee which discusses hunting and killing of whales will be about as ethically acceptable as an International Slavery Committee that discusses acceptable ways to enslave people.
 

Re:Some day... (1)

LighterShadeOfBlack (1011407) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741970)

We can only hope. I need someone to plough my fields.

Oh, you meant that the other way. ...Awkard...

Re:Some day... (1)

ducklord (770855) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742186)

At last... That brings us one more step closer to Disney's Farcry ride... "Please don't feed the hybrids" (-"Ah! AAaAahhHh! He ate my arm!")

Whales & cows are fine by me... (0, Redundant)

LighterShadeOfBlack (1011407) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741868)

Just please God, tell me they didn't try to fertilise a laser with shark sperm.

Japan's response... (4, Funny)

AutopsyReport (856852) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741886)

Don't have a cow, man!

Re:Japan's response... (1)

nebaz (453974) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742116)

Ushi ga nakute hou ga ii desu ne.

Think of the farmers (1)

JustOK (667959) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741900)

Won't the farmers drown when they try to milk them?

this could never work... (1)

bigdaddyhame (623739) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741906)

there's no way in hell this would ever get funding. whalecow-tipping would be almost impossible.

Different Orders (0, Redundant)

Stargoat (658863) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741914)

WTF? A cow is order Artiodactyla, and a whale is order Cetacea. Their DNA would be miles apart. The only thing they have in common is that they are mammals. How did anyone ever think this could work? And a biologist at that? Again I say, WTF?

Re:Different Orders (1)

DaveV1.0 (203135) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742138)

If I recall correctly, classification is done more by appearance and behavior than by genetic testing.

Re:Different Orders (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742160)

They'd have experiments testing whale sperm with lightbulbs if it meant they could hunt more whales (you don't think they get the sperm by asking politely, do you?).

only a week late (1)

Dillenger69 (84599) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741926)

wow, Slashdot is waaay behind the curve lately.
This story has been discussed o death over the last week elsewhere.

ma83 (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741928)

Hardly unique (3, Funny)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 6 years ago | (#22741988)

Japan has been at the forefront of cat/girl technology for *tears*.

Re:Hardly unique (3, Informative)

Quiet_Desperation (858215) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742012)

Dammit!

Finally! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22741990)

Now there's a fetish I can get behind.

Thank Effing God I Have Lived To See These Days (2, Funny)

BigBlueOx (1201587) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742024)

At long, long last we have whale-cows. And Hallmark greeting card stereos. And pigs that glow under UV light. And iPhones.

Domesticate Hippos, Then Cross-Breed with Whales (1)

the0ther (720331) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742028)

The Japanese are usually so clever, I am surprised that they haven't tried this strategy before the wacky cow/whale crossbreed. Or am I the only one around who knows that the closest relative to whales are hippos?

Gyuuojira! (1)

markok13 (1255928) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742042)

Sorry, couldn't help it.

Tell Japan... (1)

TheBlunderbuss (852707) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742052)

...it's called a "seacow."

Re:Tell Japan... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22742112)

It certainly explains Rosie O'Donnell

Anime? (1)

Gat0r30y (957941) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742072)

Ok, how long til a whale cow shows up in some tenticle porn in Japan? My estimate, 5 hours.

I don't know... (1)

TooMad (967091) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742076)

But it sounds like a bunch of bull if you ask me.

Wake me up (1)

plexium_nerd (724461) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742134)

Wake me up when they crossbreed sharks with frick'n lasers..

Unit 731 flashbacks? (1)

GlobalColding (1239712) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742144)

Japanese have a long standing history of conducting nasty experiments. Unit 731 anyone? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unit_731 [wikipedia.org]

Chicken of the Sea (1)

droopycom (470921) | more than 6 years ago | (#22742194)

I think it might be simpler to start smaller. For example: tuna and chicken, dont you think?
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