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Jeff Lampe
Jeff Lampe

Jeff Lampe has been outdoor writer at the Journal Star in Peoria for 12 duck seasons. He lives in Elmwood with his wife Monica, sons Henry, Victor and Walter, and Llewellin setter Hawkeye. A native of Buffalo, N.Y., he is an avid fan of the Bills and still has mental scars from four consecutive Super Bowl losses. Outside of hunting and fishing, Lampe's main passion in Illinois was Class A boys basketball (which sadly no longer exists). Former publisher of the Class A Weekly newsletter, Lampe is a co-author of "100 Years of Madness" and "Classical Madness," both books focusing on prep basketball in Illinois.

Illinois Outdoors


A Web log by Jeff Lampe of the Journal Star

Car wash bird thieves

May 20, 2008 at 10:18 AM

Illinois Outdoors

Somehow I’ve never seen this e-mail before, even though it apparently started making the rounds back in 2004. Illinois OutdoorsAnd for a change, there was some truth to the message that accompanied these wild pictures. That’s kind of unusual, but nice. Click here to read the story as sniffed out by Snopes.

As the story goes, a car wash owner in Fredericksburg, Va., was losing money out of his coin machines. So he set up a camera to capture the thieves in action. And here’s what they found.

Illinois Outdoors

The thieving starlings were working together. One would fly in to jimmy coins loose and the other would fly off with the coins.

One detail in the e-mail I received was apparently not true, though. That was the quote that the birds had stockpiled $4,000 in coins nearby. That was never discovered according to Even so, it’s a pretty wild story.


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