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'Goose-napper' leaves animal in 10-250

A white goose, probably one of a small group of birds that lives between the BU bridge and the Hyatt Hotel on Memorial Drive, was placed sometime over the weekend in Rm 10-250. It was removed Monday and returned to its flock by a Cambridge animal control officer.

The adult bird "wasn't harmed, but it was put in a situation it didn't want to be in," said Mark McCabe, director of animal control for the City of Cambridge, who took the bird out of the building. He said the unusual flock of 15-20 white geese lives year-round in the area because they are fed by someone at the pumping station at Magazine Beach.

The identity of the goose-napper is not known. Mr. McCabe noted that there is a cruelty to animals statute in Massachusetts under which an offender could be fined $500 and imprisoned for up to one year. In this case, he said, because the bird was not harmed, he probably would have been more interested in educating rather than prosecuting the offender.

"The animal was put in a situation where it was stressed. It was not in its natural habitat, that's for sure," he said.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on September 22, 1999.

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