he video: A farmer in Colorado has bred one of the world's smallest cows — Ben, an extremely rare "panda cow" that will grow to only 44 inches in height. The breed originated on the Washington farm of Richard Gradwohl, who created it after "44 years of genetic manipulation." As many as eight breeds of cow have gone into the making of Ben — whose mother, Bella, is a lowline Angus cow. Chris Jessen, Ben's owner, says he is likely to sell the calf — one of only 24 panda cows in existence — as a domestic pet. Such animals sell for as much as $30,000 to animal lovers, and are named for the distinctive, panda-bear-like black and white markings.
The reaction: "Who knew the Island of Doctor Moreau was in Northern Colorado?" asks Fred Abercrombie in UnnecessaryUmlaut.com. Bovine Ben "seems like a celebrity in the making," says Matt Clark in Gather. Surely he deserves "his own reality show, 'Keeping Up with Ben the Panda Cow'"? At least now, says Eric Millikin in the Detroit Free Press, I know where White Castle gets those miniature hamburgers from." Watch an ABC report about Ben:
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