July 23 2014 Latest news:
Monday, April 1, 2013
It’s bad news for vegetarians as researchers reveal that plants really do have feelings after registering plants ‘sighing’ in their laboratories - or so our story claimed.
Earlier this morning we told how researchers at the Fuldstændig Består University in Denmark claim that research carried out under laboratory conditions proves plants have feelings and can react to external stimuli in “an almost human” fashion.
And at the John Innes Centre in Norwich, work will soon begin on developing a communication system which will allow scientists to hold ‘conversations’ with plants.
“Much of our work is carried out in a warehouse-sized glasshouse where a huge number of genetically-modified plants are kept so we can carry out experiments which help us advise farmers how to increase their efficiency,” said Danish plant researcher Dr Aleksander Eksisterer-Ikke.
“We noticed that after a few weeks, there would be an audible ‘sigh’ from the plants before we began our experimentation. It was quite marked. When we investigated more thoroughly, we realised that the plants were reacting to our presence and the likelihood of undergoing experimentation.
“We then concentrated our research on the emotional responses of the plants to various stimuli such as loud music, shouting and soothing words and discovered that the plants would display an almost human reaction.
“One of our discoveries was that the plants hated listening to Bon Jovi and Bryan Adams but enjoyed being read The Hungry Caterpillar, especially the bit where the caterpillar turns into a butterfly. Using specialist equipment, we registered what sounded almost like a cheer.”
The eagle-eyed amongst you spotted that this was indeed an April Fools story. See tomorrow’s paper to find out what the scientists at John Innes have really been up to.