Eurosceptics up in arms over ”Jurassic lark”
Eurosceptic MP David Heathcoat-Amory reacted angrily after the EU officially sanctioned a proposed project to recreate the egg of the Dodo, extinct 300 years before the union was formed.Brussels, Monday 31 March - The EU sanctioned research and development by a team of French scientists who aim to reconstruct the egg of a Dodo in special incubators in the hope that they might bring the creature back to life.
Eurosceptic MP David Heathcoat-Amory described the plans as “preposterous” and branded the project “Jurassic lark”. Dr Patrick Refrain, one of the founders of l’Institut de Beauville-sur-Lys, close to Paris, responded by saying that laymen should refrain from commenting on matters “outwith their sphere of knowledge”. Dr Refrain and his team have acquired DNA from a dodo skull discovered in 2006 on the isle of Mauritius by Dr Julian Hume, a research associate with London's Natural History Museum. (BBC News : Dodo skeleton find in Mauritius).
They will use this as the basis for their reconstruction. Dr Hume refused to comment until he could study the French plans in detail.
There are many supporters of the team’s work, not least Stephen Spielberg, maker of Jurassic Park. He called it, “a brave move by Europe. There are not many big ideas left in the World. I salute these scientists and intend visiting the laboratory in the Summer”.
The EU department for zoology and anthropology has initially earmarked 3 million euros (4, 7 dollars) for initial tests and promised further funding “should progress be deemed significant”.
Heathcoat-Amory told reporters from his Cheshire home that the researchers were "living with Alice in Wonderland" and that it was the EU “who would be extinct shortly and no one will bring it back”.
copyright ADPA 2008