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ALERT makes largest-ever fentanyl seizure in Edmonton

Law enforcement officials seized a drug shipment containing 2,000 fentanyl pills and 60 kilograms of marijuana earlier this month.

The Alberta Law Enforcement Response Team (ALERT) said it was the biggest seizure ever made in Edmonton.

Investigators received information that a vehicle was returning to the Edmonton area from the B.C. lower mainland and had a large shipment of drugs inside. The vehicle was found on June 3 and three Edmonton homes in the Rutherford, Terwillegar and Lewis Estates neighbourhoods were searched.

ChangSha Night Net

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  • ‘It’s a Russian roulette of drugs’: Edmonton police teaching students about fentanyl

  • Two people charged in huge West Kelowna fentanyl bust

  • Fentanyl, marijuana seized by Saskatoon police in drug bust

    READ MORE: Dealers masquerading fentanyl as other drugs 

    The 2,000 fentanyl pills were seized from a condo on Hanna Crescent and are believed to have come from B.C.

    It’s the third-largest fentanyl seizure ever for ALERT.

    READ MORE: Fentanyl, cash, Mercedes seized in Edmonton drug bust 

    The drugs seized (fentanyl, marijuana, cocaine) have an estimated value of $866,000, ALERT said. Body armour, a Taser, 650 rounds of ammunition, a prohibited magazine, two vehicles (offence-related property) and $26,000 in cash proceeds of crime were also seized.

    Christopher Jervis, 28, James Jervis-Hilker, 35 and Billy Roche, 28 – all Edmonton residents – were arrested.

Fatality inquiry into death of 4-year-old girl in aunt’s care reveals heartbreaking family history

WARNING: This story contains disturbing content. Discretion is advised.

A judge is recommending greater scrutiny in Alberta’s Kinship Care program after a four-year-old Edmonton girl was beaten to death after being placed in her aunt’s care.

Provincial Judge Joyce Lester said in a fatality report it was “a very sad and complicated set of circumstances.”

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Related

    Edmonton woman avoids extended sentence in child’s death

  • Case of Alberta baby who drowned in homemade alcohol container spurs calls for improved children services

    “So many forces, human and systemic, have collided. The best of intentions in securing a child into a home environment that is safe and nurturing can be seen in the drafting of the Kinship Care Program,” Lester said.

    “However, it is a troubling situation and a fine act of balance when the kinship placement may well be as dysfunctional an environment as the home from which the subject children are being extracted.”

    J’Lyn Cardinal was found dead on Jan. 13, 2009. She was just 17 days shy of her fifth birthday.

    Edmonton police received a call from EMS that day, when paramedics found the child dead in a bedroom in her aunt’s home.

    The fatality report explained the little girl died from head trauma with a large blood clot pressing on the surface of her brain. When J’Lyn was found by EMS, she was lying face up on the floor, wearing only a diaper and had bruising throughout her entire body with dried blood by her nose and mouth.

    Scroll down to read the full fatality report.

    In 2012, the aunt – who had custody of the child and five other siblings – was sentenced to seven-and-a-half years in prison and three years probation for manslaughter after she admitted to assaulting the girl and failing to seek medical care in the three days that followed.

    READ MORE: Edmonton woman avoids extended sentence in child’s death 

    Under the Kinship Care program, the government placed the six children, all under the age of seven, in their aunt’s west-end home in August 2008 because their parents, the guardian’s brother and sister-in-law, were drug addicts and struggled with homelessness.

    The aunt was just 23 years old when she assumed care of her brother’s children.

    The fatality report revealed the aunt – referred to as S.D.C. in the report to protect the identity of the other children – had a history with Children’s Services dating back to 2002, when she was 17. She was in need of government assistance, the report explained.

    “There is little dispute about the value of the Kinship Care process and the need to keep children safe, within a familiar environment amongst family members, where possible,” the report said. “The philosophy of the program considers extended family to be the best and first consideration, before apprehension of any form.

    “However, it becomes troublesome when the family members identified as potential kinship placements have a family history fraught with dysfunctional characteristics of their own.

    “When this first comes to light, or is suspected, it is of the utmost importance that there be extensive, early background assessments conducted on each and every adult in the home, within which children are being placed. Self-reporting as to one’s own history is not always accurate. In addition, reference letters have value, but should be followed up with a face-to-face interview.”

    The report said guidelines that focus on family history, criminal history and history with Human Services have been established, but must be followed and each step completed. After a review of Kinship Care in 2009, changes were made to the program to address some of these concerns.

    The report also recommended the number of children placed in a Kinship Care home should be established and limited based on the age of the children, the caregiver’s experience and possible support from extended family.

    Two other recommendations were that more unannounced visits to Kinship Care homes be made and that more information be shared, if possible, between the school system and Human Services.

    READ MORE: Alberta to review how it investigates, reports foster child deaths 

    In April 2014, the province introduced changes to allow the publication of names and photos of children who had died in government care. The new law says the child’s name is public unless the child’s family applies for a ban.

    READ MORE: 3 Alberta children died in government care in the past 6 weeks, province reveals 

    The province recently revealed four children ranging in age from five months to 16 years died while receiving government services in May and June, 2016. One child was in provincial care while the other three were receiving services, but not in care.

    Alberta Human Services is offering support and counselling to family members and staff who worked with the children.

    Fatality Report – Cardinal

‘Being a better man’: Halifax police, advocacy group team up against domestic violence

Halifax Regional Police have created a new role in their crime prevention unit, assigning a dedicated constable to work as a Domestic Violence Prevention Officer.

The officer will help facilitate the way police are changing their approach and philosophy to domestic violence complaints, with the goal of identifying problems in the community and working to prevent domestic abuse.

“This officer will work closely with victim’s services to hold high risk abusers accountable,” Staff Sgt. Scott MacDonald said..

HRP say they’ve received 800 complaints of domestic violence so far in 2016.

Annually, the police force responds to about 2,700 reports of domestic abuse in the Halifax Regional Municipality alone. It’s estimated only about 35 per cent of domestic violence cases are actually reported to police.

Although experts say domestic violence can occur in any relationship, women are primarily the victims and men are primarily the perpetrators.

“As police, we’re unfortunately all too familiar with the tragic consequences of men’s violence against women,” Chief Jean-Michel Blais said.

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Blais says addressing gender violence is a complex issue and that men need to be the leaders on navigating change within society.

“We’re firm believers that men’s violence against women is first and foremost a men’s issue,” said Blais.

Attitudes and response changing

MacDonald, has been a police officer for 17 years, says the way police handle cases of domestic abuse is changing.

“When I first joined the policing profession, there were widely held opinions that because domestic violence usually occurred behind closed doors, there wasn’t much the police could do to impact the frequency of such events,” he said.

“We’re looking constantly at best practices that are being done across the country and adapting them for our needs here, locally,” added Blais.

For officers who work on the front lines, dealing with cases of domestic abuse is a daily occurrence. Const. Ray Turner, a member of the force for 11 years, says it takes a lot of courage for victims of domestic violence to come froward.

“It doesn’t matter what part of society you live in, domestic violence happens. So we’ve been in different parts of society, different parts of our community where we’ve seen it from all angles,” said Turner.

“We get too many of these calls. The worst are when there are children in the homes. No one wants to leave in handcuffs.”

“In a sense, they’re the city’s builders, they’re our bus drivers, they’re our students, they’re our armed forces personnel, they operate our heavy machinery, they teach our students, they’re our government employees, they’re university faculty, they’re our parents and they’re our partners,” said Eric Ross, New Start Counselling.

Ross works to counsel men who have committed violence against women. He says some of the men he deals with are able to realize what they have done and make positive changes in their lives.

On Tuesday, New Start Counselling and Halifax Regional Police launched a new campaign called “On being a better man.”

A series of posters will be placed throughout the Halifax area in the coming weeks, with the goal of creating awareness about domestic violence.

New Start says they can only offer counselling services for between 200 to 230 men in Halifax annually.

The non-profit organization relies largely on provincial funding but only receive about $235,000 to operate. The lack of funding has the organization wondering if the provincial government is taking the issue of domestic violence seriously enough.

Popular AR-15 rifle used in Orlando shooting restricted in Canada

*Editor’s Note: U.S. law enforcement officials say the type of weapon used in the Orlando nightclub shootings is a Sig Sauer MCX rifle, not an AR-15, which is a similar model.

The semi-automatic type rifle used in Sunday’s deadly mass shooting in Florida is classified as a restricted weapon in Canada and most people can only use it at a gun range.

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The AR-15 is a civilian model of the M16 rifle used by the U.S. army and has been used to carry out other mass slayings in the past, including the 2012 killing of 20 children in Newtown, Conn.

READ MORE: Orlando shooting: As the shootings unfolded, a horror for a mother via text

One of the top-selling rifles in the U.S., the AR-15 is also popular in Canada, according to Ontario provincial police.

But while purchasing one doesn’t require a licence in Florida, anyone looking to buy one here must have a firearms licence that includes restricted weapons, which involves passing two one-day safety courses. RCMP note that they need “a minimum of 45 days” to process an application.

The form includes questions about the applicant’s mental and emotional health and an RCMP report said 112 applications were denied last year due to mental health concerns.

WATCH: Coverage of Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida

Gun shop owner says Orlando nightclub shooter legally purchased two firearms

02:12

Gun shop owner says Orlando nightclub shooter legally purchased two firearms

02:26

New details emerge in how events unfolded inside Orlando’s Pulse Nightclub

01:21

#GaysBreaktheInternet: People coming out online in wake of Orlando shooting

01:34

Donald Trump says ‘dysfunctional’ immigration system is to blame for Orlando shooting

01:32

Donald Trump: Our whole nation, indeed the whole world, is devastated by the shooting in Orlando

01:19

MPs hold moment of silence for Orlando shooting victims

03:05

Obama: Orlando shooting treated as ‘terror investigation’

01:12

Orlando gunman’s father confronted by journalist over past statements on homosexuality

00:30

President Obama says he was made aware that ISIS sympathizers could legally buy guns days before Orlando shooting

01:27

Gun control debate reignites between US politicians after Orlando shooting

00:55

Orlando shooting: FBI believes nothing could have been done to stop nightclub attack

02:41

Orlando shooter investigated by FBI multiple times

02:13

Orlando shooting vigils held around the world to mourn victims

00:18

Father of Orlando shooting survivor describes son’s experience

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‘He was scary in a concerning way’: Co-worker of Orlando shooter describes gunman

05:20

Orlando shooter’s father witnessed son “ticked off” by gay couple kissing

01:06

Orlando shooter’s father says God will punish homosexuals

02:03

Orlando shooting: Police describe battle with gunman

00:12

Orlando Mayor: ‘We will not be defined by a cowardly hater’

00:48

Ex-wife of shooter in Orlando Pulse Nightclub calls gunman ‘disturbed’



Authorities can request that someone provide information from their doctor to confirm they are not at risk to themselves or others if police have recorded an incident related to mental health, but privacy legislation makes it otherwise difficult to seek that information, another RCMP report said.

“Considering almost three-quarters of the firearm deaths across Canada are attributable to suicide, there is little progress being made in developing better links with the mental health community as far as reporting obligations,” said the 2010 report, an evaluation of the Canadian Firearms Program.

“The exception being with the province of Quebec… where more workable arrangements have been made with the mental health services to report on persons of risk.”

Anyone seeking to buy a restricted weapon must also have authorization from their province’s Chief Firearms Officer to transport the gun to a shooting range, gun show, gunsmith or a few other permitted locations.

The RCMP says there are only a few purposes for which individuals can obtain a restricted firearms licence, “the most common being target practice or target shooting competitions, or as part of a collection.”

“In limited circumstances, restricted firearms are also allowed for use in connection with one’s lawful profession or occupation, or to protect life,” the force’s website says.

Still, the AR-15 — a brand name for that particular style of rifle — is widely available and in demand, said Insp. Steve Ridout, a spokesman for Ontario’s Chief Firearms Officer.

READ MORE: Orlando shooting: Video shows moment gunshots erupt inside Pulse nightclub

That’s in part because the patent for the rifle, which was owned by Colt, ran out years ago, allowing other companies to make their own versions, he said.

“It’s very popular,” Ridout said. “Especially since the patent ran out, there’s lots of variations of it now.”

Prices listed on various Canadian gun store websites ranged from around $700 to several thousand dollars.

“There’s lots of different AR-15 platforms so it kind of covers the gamut of price points,” Ridout said.

WATCH: There have been renewed calls to ban the AR-15 assault rifle after the Orlando nightclub shooting that claimed 49 lives and wounded dozens of others early Sunday morning. Marcelino Benito reports. 

More than two million Canadians had firearms licences last year, according to an RCMP report.

As of December 31, there were a total of 978,347 restricted or prohibited firearms registered to individuals or businesses in Canada, the report said.

Suncor restocking Petro-Canada stations after Edmonton refinery restart

Suncor Energy says its Edmonton refinery is working to restock Petro-Canada stations after fuel shortages across Western Canada.

A company spokeswoman said it will be a matter of days before fuel stocks are replenished after the refinery outage on May 27 led to significantly reduced production of diesel and particularly
gasoline.

ChangSha Night Net

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  • Lethbridge Petro-Canada gas station runs out of fuel

  • Petro-Canada out of fuel in Regina

  • Fuel supplies dry up at Okanagan Petro-Canada stations

    Fort McMurray wildfire, refinery problems cause gas shortage at Petro-Canada

    READ MORE: Suncor Energy apologizes for gas shortage across western Canada 

    The company said supply disruptions from the Fort McMurray wildfire added to the shortages, which resulted in Petro-Canada stations from Winnipeg to the B.C. Interior showing zeros as the
    pumps ran dry.

    READ MORE: Suncor restoring more oilsands operations, additional 3,500 people to return

    Suncor starting bringing in extra fuel supplies by truck and rail to help ease the shortage that had at some points spread to Shell and other competing stations as well.

    Gasbuddy长沙桑拿 analyst Dan McTeague said the partial shutdown of the 142,000-barrels-a-day Edmonton refinery came as two facilities in the U.S. Midwest were also shut down, leading to a spike in gas prices in parts of Western Canada.

    Suncor says it continues to ramp up crude production in the Fort McMurray area following the wildfire and expects to return to normal rates by the end of June.

Amber Heard withdraws Johnny Depp spousal support request

Amber Heard has filed a declaration to withdraw her request for temporary spousal support from soon-to-be-ex-husband Johnny Depp.

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Heard says she thought it was standard to ask for spousal support in divorce cases, but now thinks it’s taking the focus away from the real issue: the alleged abuse she suffered at the hands of Depp.

READ MORE: Amber Heard’s lawyers give statement to LAPD about alleged Johnny Depp abuse

In court documents obtained by TMZ, she states that the spousal support issue is being “used against me to distract and divert the public away from the very serious real issue of domestic violence.”

By filing the declaration, Heard is not restricting herself from ever receiving spousal support; rather, she’ll be able to re-request the support once the hearing about the restraining order filed against Depp is complete.

Heard, 30, filed for divorce from Depp, 53, on May 22, citing irreconcilable differences. The two have been married for about 15 months. Heard was later granted a domestic violence restraining order against Depp by a judge, after she submitted multiple photos as evidence of assault, one of which purportedly shows the actress with what appears to be a bruise on her right eye.

READ MORE: Vanessa Paradis, Johnny Depp’s ex, says he is not physically abusive

Both Heard and Depp are due in court on Friday, June 17 for a hearing to address the restraining order. Depp is currently on vacation on his island in the Bahamas (ironically, where he and Heard were married last year).

Depp’s camp has accused Heard of fabricating the abuse in order to make money. The divorcing couple didn’t sign a prenuptial agreement, and Depp is estimated to be worth upwards of US$400 million.

Depp is trying to ensure that many of his assets stay his. He specifically noted “miscellaneous jewelry,” earnings made after their separation and, as stipulated in his response, “there are additional separate property assets and obligations of the parties, the exact nature and extent of which are not presently known.”

READ MORE: Amber Heard once arrested for violence against girlfriend in 2009

“Given the brevity of this marriage and the most recent and tragic loss of his mother, Johnny will not respond to any of the salacious false stories, gossip, misinformation and lies about his personal life,” read a statement released to the media. “Hopefully the dissolution of this short marriage will be resolved quickly.”

Follow @CJancelewicz
Johnny Depp Timeline | PrettyFamous

Amber Heard Timeline | PrettyFamous

Good Samaritan assaulted after stopping sexual harassment on SkyTrain

UPDATE: June 15 – Transit Police say they have now interviewed the three suspects described below. The investigation continues. 

Story from June 14, 2016:

A Good Samaritan is recovering from his injuries after trying to help a woman who was allegedly getting sexually harassed on the SkyTrain last week.

It happened around 11:20 p.m. June 9.

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Transit Police say a man boarded the SkyTrain at Commercial and Broadway Station when he noticed three young men board the train at Sperling Station and call out to a woman that they were going to follow her home.

One of the men, that police are now calling Suspect 1, then allegedly sat beside another woman and made jokes to his two friends about raping her. The Good Samaritan stood up and sat down near this suspect, telling him to leave the woman alone.

Transit Police say Suspect 1 became aggressive, swearing at the man and threatening to follow him off the train.

At Lougheed Station, the man got off the train and was allegedly followed by two of the suspects who punched him in the face and upper body, before getting back on the train.

The victim boarded a separate car, held the door open and pushed the emergency strip inside the train.

That’s when Transit Police say three suspects got off the train again and Suspect 1 punched the victim in the face.

Suspects 2 and 3 pulled Suspect 1 from the victim and ran from the platform.

Transit Police say their officers arrived moments later, but could not find any of the suspects.

The victim was taken to hospital with a bleeding nose and a sore left forearm. He has now been released.

Transit Police say they commend the victim for taking action to protect the woman, but they would not suggest anyone put themselves in harm’s way.

Suspect 1 is described as a white man, 20 to 25 years old, six feet tall, with thin build and short brown hair. He was wearing a red Hurley shirt, blue jeans and a black baseball hat.

   

Suspect 2 is described as a white man, in his early 20s, 5’9” tall, with medium to heavy build, short brown hair, short beard and mustache. He was wearing a blue NFL jersey with the name “Johnson” and the number “81” on the front and dark jeans.

      

Suspect 3 is described as a white man, 20-years-old, 5’9” tall, heavy build, short brown hair, wearing a grey hoodie with red hood and sleeves, black shorts and grey skate shoes.

Anyone with any information is asked to contact Transit Police at 604-515-8300 or text at 87-77-77.

Bike Week returns to Winnipeg for third year

WINNIPEG —; On Saturday, June 18, cyclists in Winnipeg will be able to enjoy a weeks worth of events as part of the third consecutive Bike Week —; an annual week-long celebration of people riding their bicycles in Winnipeg.

“Winnipeg has a vibrant and thriving cycling community that is enthusiastic about sharing their passion for the sport and advocating for the benefits of human-powered transportation,” Mayor Brian Bowman said in a press release.

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“Bike Week events provide a great way for Winnipeggers to get active outdoors to try out our city’s various trails and explore our city.”

Returning events include Community Bike Shop Day, bike yoga, the Moveable Feast, an outdoor spin class and the ninth annual Bike to Work Day —; taking place on Friday, June 24 with over 60 city-wide pit stops. New events will involve family rides and a Bike Thru Breakfast on Monday, June 20 from 6:30 a.m. to 9 a.m., where bike riders are invited to visit any of Bike Week Winnipeg’s four Bike Thru Breakfast locations for a grab-and-go breakfast to kick off the week.

RELATED: Sunday and holiday bike routes back this weekend

Additionally, there will be several group group and theme rides as well as the opportunity to get help tuning up your bike at local community bike shops.

“We want to build on last year’s success and make this year’s Bike Week Winnipeg as inclusive as possible, so we’re working to host events that will engage with riders of all ages and skill levels,” Dave Elmore, Bike Week Winnipeg’s Project Manager said in a statement. “Bike Week is for everyone.”

Festivities wrap up on Friday, June 24 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. with the Bikes and BBQ Party hosted by Half Pints at their new location on the front lawn of the University of Winnipeg.

All Bike Week events are free and open to the public unless otherwise stated on the Bike Week Winnipeg website, where all further information can be found.

Second gravitational wave detected by scientists

Hot on the heels of the first detection of a gravitational wave, a second has been recorded by scientists at the twin Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO).

READ MORE: Gravitational waves: What they are and why scientists are so excited about them

Gravitational waves or ripples, are a form of radiation — ripples in space-time that travel at the speed of light. They were first proposed by Albert Einstein in his theory of general relativity in 1916. But because these ripples are so subtle, and precise instrumentation is needed to record them, they had gone undetected until observed on Sept. 14, 2015.

WATCH: Theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking calls gravitational waves major discovery

Gravitational waves are created by cataclysmic events in our universe, such as two merging black holes. In the case of the first detection, two black holes about 30 times the mass of our own sun, moving at the speed of light, merged taking 1.3 billion years to arrive at the LIGO detectors.

The LIGO detectors are incredibly sensitive: they can measure a ripple in space-time down to as little as 1/1,000 the diameter of a proton.

The detection was a breakthrough in cosmology. These waves help cosmologists understand the nature of gravity that can’t otherwise be observed.

WATCH: ‘We can hear the universe’: Scientist shows gravitational wave sound to reporters

ChangSha Night Net

Related

  • Scientists confirm first direct evidence of gravitational waves

  • Astronomers discover supermassive black hole in unlikely place

  • Record-breaking supermassive black hole found in heart of far-off galaxy

    The second gravitational wave — named GW151226 — was observed on Dec. 26, 2015.

    Scientists believe that the waves were created as two black holes — one 14 times the mass of the sun, the other eight times the mass — merged about 1.4 billion years ago. Specifically, the waves were detected during the final 27 orbits of the black holes. Out of that merger came a larger black hole about 21 times the mass of our sun.

    “It is very significant that these black holes were much less massive than those observed in the first detection,” says Gabriela González, LIGO Scientific Collaboration (LSC) spokesperson and professor of physics and astronomy at Louisiana State University. “Because of their lighter masses compared to the first detection, they spent more time — about one second — in the sensitive band of the detectors. It is a promising start to mapping the populations of black holes in our universe.”

    The first direct detection of a gravitational wave rocked the scientific community when it was announced in February. In 1993, Russel A. Hulse and Joseph H. Taylor Jr. won the Nobel Prize in Physics for indirect detection.

    Follow @NebulousNikki

Scientists claim to have found new mating position for frogs

NEW YORK – This just in from the Department of Amphibian Philandering:

For years, scientists have thought frogs and toads used only six positions to mate. It turns out they may be wrong. In a forest in India, researchers say, they’ve documented a seventh.

READ MORE: Possible new octopus species found near Hawaii

This latest entry in the Kermit Sutra is called the dorsal straddle. Like other positions — but unlike mammal sex — it’s aimed at letting the male fertilize eggs outside the female’s body.

Researchers spent 40 nights in a dense forest, finding male Bombay night frogs by listening for their mating calls and filming the action when a female showed up.

WATCH: Night Life of Bombay Night Frogs

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Related

  • Aquarium successfully breeds critically endangered frogs, for the 5th year

    Growing hope for endangered Oregon spotted frogs

    In a paper released Tuesday by the journal PeerJ, S. D. Biju of the University of Delhi and co-authors report what they saw:

    Once the female makes physical contact, the male climbs onto her back. But instead of grasping her at the armpits or head, as frogs of other species do, he puts his hands on the leaf, branch or tree trunk the pair was sitting on. After an average of 13 minutes, she repeatedly arches her back, and he takes the hint and dismounts.

    She lays her eggs after that and remains motionless with her hind legs stretched around the clutch for several minutes. Then she leaves.

    The researchers suspect that during the straddle, he deposits sperm on her back. The sperm then trickles down to fertilize the eggs while she encloses them with her legs, the researchers suggest.

    But a scientist unconnected to the work questions its conclusions. Narahari Gramapurohit of the Savitribai Phule Pune University in India, who studies the same frog species, said he doesn’t believe the report documents a new mating position. In an email, he also said he doubts the sperm is delivered to eggs from the female’s back.

    In any case, all the frog work can come to naught. Of the 15 egg clutches the researchers monitored for the new paper, 12 were eaten by predators before hatching.