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Boffins win bizarre science prize for giving alligator helium to see how it sounded


AN alligator on helium has landed boffins a bizarre science prize.

They gave the knobbly reptile a dose of comedy gas to see how it sounded.

Like humans, its pitch went higher, which proved for the first time they produce sound from their vocal tracts.

Stephan Reber and his team at Sweden’s Lund University, were awarded an Ig Nobel Prize — given to celebrate quirky or trivial experiments.

They put the Chinese alligator in a sealed tank filled with a mix of oxygen and helium.

Mr Reber said: “Our study is the first to show that all alligators sound strange when inhaling a party balloon.”

Other 2020 winners included a US-UK team who determined that a knife made of frozen poo did not work well, disproving an Innuit “myth”.

The governments of India and Pakistan were feted for getting their diplomats to ring each other’s doorbells in the middle of the night and run away before anyone answered. 

And Toronto duo Miranda Giacomin and Nicholas Rule won for a study finding “thick and dense” eyebrows are a tell-tale sign of loving yourself.

The Big Bang Theory's Sheldon Cooper has voice affected by Barry Kripke who fills his room with helium

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