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NATURE | Animals

Little lizard, big confusion for animal hospital


Caroline Floyd
Meteorologist

Sunday, October 7, 2018, 7:12 PM - A teeny telemarketer generated a lot of confusion last week for an animal hospital in Hawaii.

When Dr. Claire Simeone, of the Ke Kai Ola Monk Seal Hospital, started receiving calls on her lunch break, she thought maybe someone had a question about one of the hospital's seal patients. Her concerns started to grow when the calls kept coming -- 9 in 15 minutes -- each with only silence on the other end of the line when she answered. Thinking something was wrong, she hurried back to the clinic, only to find nothing apparently amiss.

As it turned out, however, she wasn't the only one receiving the calls. Several other employees began calling in, reporting similar 'ghost calls' and asking what was going on.



"THE CALLS ARE COMING FROM INSIDE THE BUILDING"

In fact, according to an agent at Hawaiian Telecom, "a bazillion calls" were coming from the hospital; something the agent said could be an issue with one of the phones, or with the software -- a bug in the system.

Turns out, it wasn't so much a bug as it was a bug-eater.



The culprit turned out to be a gold dust day gecko and his tiny toe pads, taking advantage of easy dialing on a touchscreen phone in the office. Gold dust day geckos are perhaps most famous for being the mascot for GEICO. The animal is native to Comoros and northern Madagascar, but has been introduced to a number of islands in the Pacific, including Hawaii.

Once she'd assured employees and volunteers alike that there was no need for concern, Dr. Simeone says she immediately hired the little lizard, to take advantage of his natural talent in telemarketing.

View the entire thread describing the strange event, here.

Sources: Twitter | Gizmodo |

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