June 30, 1907 (Sunday)
THE TALE OF THE LEOPARD CUB AND THE SPARROW: Word has reached the New York Times, which printed the story today, of an unusual friendship that appears to be growing between a leopard cub named Alice and an unidentified young sparrow at the Central Park Zoo. Alice, who with her brothers Nicholas and Teddy, was separated from her mother yesterday for weaning purposes, was alone in her cage recently -- sharing space with a couple of shin bones that were thrown her way so she could strengthen her teeth between meals. At one point, a sparrow flitted between the bars, settled on one of the bones and began to peck at it. Alice noticed the intruder and began to move toward it. Then, in the words of the Times reporter, the sparrow "made a little sign with its left foot which resembled, according on one observer, a combination of the mystic signs of the Knights of Pythias and the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity."
At that point, "the tense muscles of Alice melted into beautiul softness. She licked the sparrow and then lay down. The sparrow played about on her back for half an hour. It went out of the cage several times but always returned. Alice seemed much distressed when it was away from her."
Bill Snyder, head keeper at the zoo, has signed and filed an affidavit about the story