Science: Have Platypuses, Will Travel

"The platypus is the most touchy, temperamental, unpredictable animal," says Australia's David Fleay, and he should know. Called "the platypus man," Fleay is the world's leading authority on one of the world's strangest animals, and the only man who has ever made the furry, duckbilled, egg-laying protomammals breed in captivity. Last week Fleay was grooming two juvenile platypuses for shipment to New York's Bronx Zoo, and he hoped that they would travel by air.

When he took three of them to New York by sea in 1947, says Fleay, "it was one of the...

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