From the people-who-should-have-better-things-to-do department comes word of a recent event at Zoo Atlanta were officials invited a couple of psychics in to tell them whether or not a panda was pregnant:
It was all done “in the spirit of good fun,” according to a news release from Zoo officials.
Atlanta-born psychic Helene Frisch said she telepathically connected with Lun Lun using “tone vibration,” the release said.
Frisch said she discerned that not only is Lun Lun pregnant, but she will likely bear a male cub by September 4.
Another psychic—Andy Liu, a native of China—used the ancient I Ching to calculate a 65 percent chance that Lun Lun is pregnant.
It’s not enough that an accredited zoo wasted time on this nonsense, but they sent out a press release promoting it? Here’s the kicker:
Zoo spokeswoman Jennifer Waller said officials have another reason to suspect that Lun Lun is expecting: The panda was artificially inseminated last March.
Granted pandas are notoriously difficult to breed in captivity even using methods such as artificial insemination, but com’on. I’ll give the first psychic credit for predicting a vague date for the birth—anything within two weeks will be considered a “correct guess” by the psychic—though even if they’re wrong no one will remember it. Is Zoo Atlanta that desperate for funding that their catering to the woo-woo crowd now? There was a time when zoos were considered important in science in addition to educating the public, but those days appears to be long gone.