Originally uploaded by Diana Pinto.
An article on today's Reuters news online left me quoting Monty Python for hours, and soon you'll see why. I guess we should just be grateful that Brazilian pigeons, like African swallows, are non-migratory.
"A sharp increase in drugs and mobile phones found inside a Brazilian prison mystified officials - until guards spotted some distressed pigeons struggling to stay airborne.
Inmates at the prison in Marilia, Sao Paulo state, had been training carrier pigeons to smuggle in goods using cell phone sized pouches on their backs, a low-tech but ingenious way of skipping the high-tech security that visitors faced.
"We have sophisticated equipment to search people when they go in, but they avoided this by finding another way to bring in cellphones and drugs," prison director Luciano Gamateli told Globo TV.
Officials said the pigeons, bred and trained inside the prison, lived on the jail's roof, where prisoners would take their deliveries before smuggling the birds out again through friends and family.
The scheme was uncovered when guards on the prison walls saw some pigeons struggling to fly."