Web trackers 'prove' Santa travels fast

They once had to lie awake listening for the sound of Santa shuffling down the chimney. Now, to find out precisely when their gifts are going to arrive, children can track his progress from computers.

World’s rarest ducks make Easter debut

Six years ago their kind was feared extinct, but 18 newborn ducklings from the world's most endangered duck species – the Madagascar pochard – met the public for the first time yesterday.

Mad about Madagascar

David Attenborough loves its exuberant wildlife, but this island in the Indian ocean has much more besides lemurs to offer, reveals Kate Eshelby

Ol' blue eyes faces the final curtain

Ever seen such bright blue eyes? The blue-eyed black lemur of Madagascar is something of a celebrity. "We always say they are the Hollywood stars of the primates," said Christoph Schwitzer, who studies the animals in Madagascar's north-western forests. "Stunningly beautiful, but a bit stupid."

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The Big Question: What is going on in Madagascar, and can the African

After three months of violent unrest, an opposition leader on the vast Indian Ocean island of Madagascar has set himself up in the President's offices in the capital Antananarivo, declaring himself de facto boss. The elected President, Marc Ravalomanana, is holed up at his palace on the outskirts of the city, guarded by a poorly-armed crowd of loyalists. After insisting for days that he would not resign and would fight "to the death" if necessary, he appeared to signal yesterday that he had quit. His departure would hand power to a military board, only a day after the army stormed his city offices in a show of support for his political rival.