Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Paul, the WCup predicting octopus, dies at 2 1/2

Paul the Octopus, the tentacled tipster who fascinated soccer fans by predicting results at the World Cup, died Tuesday.

Paul had reached the octopus old age of 2 1/2 years and died in his tank on Tuesday morning at the Sea Life aquarium in the western German city of Oberhausen, spokeswoman Ariane Vieregge said.

Paul correctly tipped the outcome of all seven of Germany’s games. He made his predictions by opening the lid of one of two clear plastic boxes, each containing a mussel and bearing a team flag.

The octopus seemed to be in good shape when he was checked late Monday, but he did not make it through the night. He died of natural causes, Vieregge said.

“We had all naturally grown very fond of him and he will be sorely missed,” Sea Life manager Stefan Porwoll said in a statement.

The aquarium has not yet decided how best to commemorate their most famous resident, he said.

“We may decide to give Paul his own small burial plot within our grounds, and erect a modest permanent shrine,” Porwoll said.

After rising to global prominence during the World Cup in South Africa in June and July, Paul retired from the predictions business after the final between Spain and the Netherlands—correctly picking Spain—and returned to his primary role of intriguing children who attend the aquarium.

The invertebrate was stepping “back from the official oracle business,” Tanja Munzig, a spokeswoman for the Sea Life, told AP Television News at the time.

Rest in peace, Mr Paul !!!

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