Thanks for stopping by this morning, hope you didn't get too excited about a couple of our fake news posts this morning!
Have a great day in the capital, we'll be back with the morning's top news from 7am to 10am tomorrow.
In the meantime, we're off to check out these ducks using pedestrian crossings at the ANU....
Here's a look at the top news on the site this morning.
- Householders around Canberra's Parliamentary Triangle are already cashing in on the paid parking regime around the precinct, according to a private sector parking broker.
- The last words spoken by one of the pilots of the missing Malaysia Airlines airliner to the control tower were "Good night Malaysian three seven zero", Malaysia's civil aviation authority said, changing the previous account of the last message as a more casual "All right, good night."
- Public service bosses must save Australia's public policy from the ''dishevelled'' and ''untidy'' decision-making of political staff, a former departmental chief says.
- The Australian National University is experiencing something of a brain drain as esteemed academics cross Belconnen Way for the University of Canberra.
- Newcastle Knights forward Alex McKinnon has woken to news from doctors that his life may never be the same. But those closest to the inspirational 22-year-old are hopeful his condition will eventually improve as he recovers from surgery and starts to receive intensive treatment.
A quick look at the weather for the coming days.
The mercury has slowly crept up to 14.7 degrees on the way to a 25 degree day.
And it's all rain on the horizon for the rest of the week. Here's how it's looking.
- Wednesday: 11C, 26C. Sunny morning, the chance of showers during the afternoon and evening.
- Thursday: 14C, 22C. Cloudy, scattered showers and the isolated thunderstorms.
- Friday: 11C, 18C. Cloudy, scattered showers.
- Saturday: 13C, 21C. Partly cloudy, scattered showers.
- Sunday: 11C, 21C. Partly cloudy, isolated showers.
Some new Brumbies have arrived at the National Zoo and Aquarium, and they seem to be fitting in pretty well, what do you think?
This is not really the kind of April Fools prank anyone could have seen coming.
Pranksters have sent an early-morning text message to hundreds of parents saying Castle Hill High School in NSW had burnt down.
The NSW Department of Education and Communities said it was reporting the incident to police after discovering that an unknown person had "inappropriately accessed" the school's IT system and sent hundreds of inaccurate text messages to students' parents early on Tuesday morning.
The text message incorrectly claimed that the school had been severely damaged by fire and that it was unsafe for students to attend that day.
A NSW Department of Education and Communities spokesman said the message was sent to hundreds of parents who had provided their mobile phone number or email address to the school so they could receive important information.
Attorney-General Simon Corbell has told the ACT Legislative Assembly legal costs have reached $112,883 so far, with the full amount likely to include the Abbott Government’s legal costs from its successful High Court challenge to the laws.
Mr Corbell said the current total included external legal counsel provided to the ACT Government Solicitor up to March 12.
Veronica and Krishna Wensing outside the High Court, after the ACT's same sex marriage laws were overturned. Photo: Rohan Thomson
Henry Belot: Daylight savings will end this weekend and the switch may be more dangerous than you think...
"Switching over to daylight saving time, and losing one hour of sleep, raised the risk of having a heart attack the following Monday by 25 per cent, compared to other Mondays during the year, according to a new US study released on Saturday."
Losing one hour of sleep raises the risk of having a heart attack, according to a new study. Photo: Peter Rae
Tom McIlroy: ACT Housing Minister Shane Rattenbury has praised the outcome of discussions with the Abbott Government on the critical issue of homelessness.
The Greens MLA has welcomed continued funding for the National Partnership Agreement on Homelessness.
"The Agreement will provide $1.48m in matched funding to ensure that many important services within the sector are able to continue to provide support for those experiencing homelessness," said Mr Rattenbury.
"This is great news for those in the homelessness sector, who have been living with uncertainty for too long. I would also like to extend my thanks to my state and federal colleagues who have consistently raised the need for continued support for the sector.
Mr Rattenbury praised the Street to Home program in Canberra, helping rough sleepers.
"The program has been a great success, reducing the number of "rough sleepers" from approximately 51 down to 29 in the latest census," he said.
He called for a move to longer-term contracts for service providers in the sector.
Shane Rattenbury. Photo: Melissa Adams
Raiders fans can breathe a sigh of relief, Shaun Fensom has been cleared to play this weekend again Penrith.
NRL fantasy footy coaches breathe a sigh of relief - Raiders lock Shaun Fensom cleared for Saturday's game against Penrith— Lee Gaskin (@Lee_Gaskin1) March 31, 2014
The club was waiting on results to come through this morning, after Fensom fell awkwardly on his elbow late in the Rabbitohs clash.
Here's the daily offering from David Pope..
How would you like to fly in a plane with a glass floor? What about travelling in the cargo hold for a reduced rate?
And would you believe some New Zealand tourist guides on their talk about a group of long-necked sheep? (Apparently it took some tourists a week to figure out they were just llamas).
We've compiled a list of some of the best April Fools pranks in the travel world.
Virgin Atlantic's glass-bottomed plane.
Henry Belot: From Pokemon to Hanson.
Chugg Entertainment and XIII Touring have announced that the infamous boy band Hanson will head down-under.
The groups said the blonde haired gents from Tulsa, Oklahoma, celebrated their 21st anniversary this year by launching their own craft beer called Mmmhops, inspired by the title of their breakout single.
"Pop-rock trio, HANSON, are back with their brand new album ANTHEM, which is set to be released digitally on Friday 4th April in Australia and New Zealand, along with the album’s lead single Get The Girl Back," read the release.
April fools? It doesn't look like it.
Henry Belot: If Pikachu is blocking your route on Google Maps this morning, don't freak out. Just remember what day it is.
Some people take April Fools day seriously, but Google, Nintendo and Pokémon have taken tomfoolerly to another level.
Google have hidden 150 digital monsters around the globe on Google Maps, encouraging users to explore the globe to “catch them all.”
Henry Belot: What's ahead in national politics today?
Greens Leader Christine Milne will address the National Press Club about the WA Senate election re-run.
Palmer United Party leader Clive Palmer and his WA Senate team will hold a press conference this morning.
Teachers are expected rally outside parliament house against the state government’s cuts to education around midday. Bill Shorten is also expected to attend the rally.
Senate select committee into the Abbott government’s Commission of Audit holds its 5th hearing.
ICAC inquiry into claims Australian Water Holdings continues in Sydney.
Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse continues.
Cabinet will meet in Perth.
Paul Jurak was back at it on the lake this morning.
Here's a little something he tweeted out to his loyal Twitter followers - you can see more of his great work on his Facebook page.
These bikes were stolen from an underground storage facility in Kingston. Photo: ACT Policing.
Henry Belot: ACT Police are urging Canberrans to keep their eyes peeled for two bikes that were stolen from an underground carpark in Kingston.
If anyone has any information, they should contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000, quoting reference 5590641. Information can be provided anonymously.
Horrific injury: Giants co-captain Phil Davis. Photo: Getty Images
Henry Belot: In other sports news...
The Giants co-captain Phil Davis was rushed by ambulance to Royal Prince Alfred Hospital in the hours after the game at Spotless Stadium on March 15, after GWS club doctors had administered morphine to combat the 23-year-old’s dangerously low blood pressure and vomiting from pain.
The guarantee, which was to have provided a financial safety net for the Knights until January 31 next year, was due by 5pm.
Russian President Vladimir Putin has informed German Chancellor Angela Merkel he has ordered a partial withdrawal of troops from a region on the border with Ukraine, her office says.
"Moreover the two discussed further possible steps to stabilise the situation in Ukraine and Transdniestr," Moldova's largely Russian-speaking breakaway region, Ms Merkel's spokesman Steffen Seibert said in a statement issued on Monday.
"They agreed to stay in close contact."
The Russian defence ministry on Monday said it was pulling back a battalion from a region on the border with Ukraine but it was not clear if this was linked to a wider troop movement to defuse tensions.
Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Henry Belot: The ACT Emergency Services Agency will hold its latest strategic bushfire management plan consultation session this evening from 6.30pm.
ACT Emergency Service Agency Commissioner Dominic Lane said the meeting is a chance for the Canberra community to have their say on bushfire management.
“As well as addressing the higher bushfire risk areas in the urban environment, the review of the strategic bushfire management plan is also looking at future hazard reduction burning programs, how climate change is affecting the landscape and the vegetation management of residential gardens," he said.
Those living on the fringe of Canberra are encouraged to attend the Rivers Volunteer Brigade Shed on Cotter Road in Weston Creek.
Reporter David Ellery has sent through this shot of the morning skies up in Murrumbateman.
It's proven to be quite a speccy morning for getting a perfect sunrise shot, we posted a couple of tweeted photos earlier, too.
Sunrise in Murrumbateman. Photo: David Ellery.
PSI: A sneak peek.
The April edition of the Public Sector Informant comes out today, you can find all the latest news from the PSI team here. And here's a quick look at the highlights:
- The Abbott government might as well end the pretence and shut up the accountability shop, writes Paddy Gourley.
- The government's deregulation agenda copped some early criticism, but its success is crucial, writes Stephen Bartos.
- Conservatives no longer seem to be much interested in championing an independent public service, writes Richard Mulgan.
- The Public Service Minister tells the Informant about his approach to the bureaucracy's upcoming wage negotiations.
Henry Belot: The first parking machines to accept credit card and smartphone payments have begun to pop up in carparks in Canberra’s city centre, signalling a shift for thousands of territory commuters.
The ACT government has begun its rollout of 300 ‘‘pay and display’’ parking machines to replace hundreds of existing coin-only meters.
The first of the new machines have been installed in Civic during the past few days, with more set to appear in Woden, Dickson, Belconnen, Manuka, Kingston and Tuggeranong in coming months.
Executive director of Justice and Community Services Brett Phillips demonstrates the new parking metre phone app. Photo: Elesa Kurtz
Soaring carbon emissions will amplify the risk of conflict, hunger, floods and mass migration this century, the UN's expert panel said Monday in a landmark report on the impact of climate change.
Left unchecked, greenhouse gas emissions may cost trillions of dollars in damage to property and ecosystems, and in bills for shoring up climate defences, it said, adding the impact would increase with every additional degree that temperatures rise.
"Increasing magnitudes of warming increase the likelihood of severe, pervasive, and irreversible impacts," a summary said, in a stark message to policymakers.
'Denial of the science is malpractice': US Secretary of State John Kerry has spoken out in response to the UN report on climate change. Photo: Reuters
Henry Belot: An ACT police spokeswoman has said traffic in Deakin has not been affected by the two vehicle crash in Deakin reported around 8.45am.
''If this mystery is solvable, we will solve it, but I don't want to underestimate how difficult it is,'' he said. ''Until we locate some actual wreckage from the aircraft and then do the regression analysis that might tell us where the aircraft went into the ocean, we'll be operating on guesstimates.''
Prime Minister Tony Abbott addresses the international forces currently based in Perth searching for Malaysia Airlines flight MH370. Photo: Reuters
Henry Belot: An update on the car crash in Deakin, near the intersection of Melbourne Avenue and Gawler Crescent.
A spokesman from the ACT Emergency Services Agency said the crash involved two cars.
Eight patients are currently being treated for minor injuries by intensive car paramedics at the scene of the crash.
The ESA spokesman said transportation of the eight patients to hospital was unlikely.
Fleta Page: Internet company iiNet claims to be today unveiling "Pet-Fi" – a Wi-Fi internet connection powered by the kinetic energy of your pet.
Unfortunately, it's an April Fools press release that I wish was true.
"Pet-Fi is available in a range of sizes, to accommodate pets of all shapes and species. Pet-Fi 3G is designed for medium-sized pets (including cats, rabbits and ferrets)," the media release says.
"Pet-Fi 4G is for larger pets (including dogs, pigs and ponies), and Pet-Fi Mini is suitable for even your smallest pets (including lizards, birds and hamsters)."
And as if powering your internet with your lizard, cat or pony wasn't good enough, the dongle - which you clip to your pet's collar - also makes sure your pet won't run away!
"With a range of 30 metres, and a handy small electric shock feature which encourages your pet to stay within range."
Clive Palmer during question time. Photo: Andrew Meares
Government agencies are aiming to force Clive Palmer's Queenland Nickel out of business due to a $36 million carbon tax bill, The Australian reported.
The original carbon tax bill was $6.2 million in the 2013 financial year, but interest and penalties applied since have lifted the amount to $35.8 million.
Mr Palmer has launched a High Court case to have the carbon tax declared unconstitutional.
A poster in Sydney CBD to help find Brian, a teddy bear belonging to five-year-old Canberra girl Alice Marsden.
John-Paul Moloney: A Gungahlin family are going to every effort to fix their daughter's broken heart and find her beloved teddy bear. Alice Marsden, 5, was on a family holiday in Sydney last week when she lost Brian somewhere in the CBD.
Brian has been Alice's best buddy since birth and has been with her on overseas trips, hospital visits and to meet Santa each year. Alice last recalls having him outside the Raddison Blu Plaza Hotel on O'Connell Street last Friday.
The family have set up a Find Brian Facebook page and have had Sydney friends plastering missing bear posters around the city.
"Big picture, he's just a toy, but to her and the rest of us, he's more than that - he's part of the family,'' the family say. They're asking anyone who's been in that area or have friends or family nearby to keep an eye out.
Henry Belot: Former Interior Minister Manuel Valls has been named as the new Prime Minister of France following heavy nationwide election election losses by socialists.
Google says Turkey has been intercepting its internet domain and redirecting users to other sites in the latest battle between Ankara and web giants.
In a weekend post on Google's security blog, software engineer Steven Carstensen said the company had received "several credible reports and confirmed with our own research that Google's Domain Name System (DNS) service has been intercepted by most Turkish ISPs (Internet Service Providers)."
Mr Carstensen said the DNS server "tells your computer the address of a server it's looking for, in the same way that you might look up a phone number in a phone book".
"Imagine if someone had changed out your phone book with another one, which looks pretty much the same as before, except that the listings for a few people showed the wrong phone number," he added.
Henry Belot: There has been a car accident near the intersection of Melbourne Avenue and Gawler Crescent in Deakin.
ACT Fire and Rescue are currently on scene.
We'll let you know of any impact on traffic, or any injuries in this crash.
Researchers from The Australian National University have trained ducks to walk across pedestrian crossings in an effort to reduce the number of duck-related road incidents on campus.
Dr Donald Drake from the Research School of Birds and Fowl Creatures said the breakthrough research was the result of several years of study combined with practical training exercises and in-class lessons.
"Early research into duck road crossings told us that ducklings tend to prefer to follow a group leader and walk single file across the road," said Dr Drake.
"The 'leader' duck often has little regard for road traffic and can often unwittingly put the younger or 'follower' ducksdirectly into harm's way.
"This has regularly put our local duck population into danger particularly during peak-hour and around breeding season."
Staff and students at ANU have regularly petitioned the University Executive to build tunnels or special duck-crossing bridges in an effort to improve road safety.
Killed by multiple blows to the head: Reza Barati. Photo: Kate Geraghty
The Australian Federal Police refused a request from Papua New Guinea for an officer to help interview witnesses to the killing of asylum seeker Reza Barati on Manus Island.
PNG police said they needed the Australian help because some witnesses to the violence at the immigration detention centre in mid-February were reluctant to speak to local Manus Island investigators and had demanded instead to speak to Australians.
But the request last week for help was declined. ''The AFP does not have any plans to provide any further support to [the Royal Papua New Guinea Constabulary] regarding this matter,'' an AFP spokesman said.
Henry Belot: What's the talk of town on our opinion pages this Tuesday morning?
"Having watched the recent gladitorial-type rugby league games, including Souths versus West Tigers, I fear we may be only one vertebrae away from quadriplegia, or even death. Suspend offenders for the same length of time as the injured player"
"The evidence of damaging climate change now exists on every continent, say scientists, and includes melting ice caps, rising oceans, dying coral reefs, and more intense and severe weather events."
Eight students from an elite Sydney school have been expelled following allegations of a drug "incident".
The SMH has reported that as many as eight students from Trinity Grammar were asked to leave the school over an incident involving cannabis on the school grounds.
Trinity Photo: Julian Andrews
Henry Belot: Will Australia see an April Fools prank worthy of Dick Smith’s efforts in 1978?
The millionaire businessman towed a fake iceberg into Sydney Harbour after announcing his plans to sell small ice blocks for 10 cents a piece. Local media took the bait, and reporting on the arrival.
The prank lasted until rain began to dissolve the shaving cream and firefighting foam to reveal white plastic sheets beneath.
Dick Smith tows ice berg into Sydney Harbour, April Fools Day 1978 Photo: Trevor Dallen
Brumbies player Jarrad Butler. Photo: Jay Cronan
Lee Gaskin: ACT Brumbies flanker Jarrad Butler is getting weekly tutoring sessions from Wallabies star David Pocock as part of his development into Super Rugby.
Butler will look to continue his impressive form when the Brumbies host the Blues at Canberra Stadium on Friday night.
The 22-year-old has played more than expected after the season-ending injury to Pocock in round two.
Pocock was at Brumbies' training on Monday and has been mentoring Butler and giving him tips on how he can improve.
Canberra Times front page: April 1, 2014
On today's front page..
The International Court of Justice has upheld Australia's bid to ban Japan's Antarctic whaling program.
Householders around Canberra's Parliamentary Triangle are already cashing in on the paid parking regime around the precinct, according to a private sector parking broker.
The Australian National University is experiencing something of a brain drain as esteemed academics cross Belconnen Way for the University of Canberra.
The ACT Government is considering a big hike in licence fees to sell tobacco, suggesting fees could be doubled or more this year, with substantial increases each year to follow.
The ACT government has spent more than $112,000 on legal advice for its push to allow same-sex marriage, with the price tag expected to grow.
It's all happening down at the David Campese Oval this morning...
Or should we say, the Terry Campese Oval.
Henry Belot: It may cost more to light up in Canberra.
The ACT Government is considering a big hike in licence fees to sell tobacco, suggesting fees could be doubled or more this year, with substantial increases each year to follow.
It is also considering limiting the number of shops that can sell cigarettes, perhaps just two shops per suburb, and restricting the hours between which cigarettes can be sold.
Cigarette laws may change dramatically in the ACT.
Ben Westcott: If you like helping out people and cupcakes, but haven't yet found a way to combine those things, well today is your lucky day!
The Australian Federal Police will be holding a cupcake sale today, at the Edmund Barton Building in Barton, to raise money for Olympic silver medalist and AFP officer Jai Taurima and his family.
Jai's two-year-old daughter has less than a week to live, after being diagnosed with infant acute lymphoblastic leukaemia.
The AFP have rallied around their colleague and baked 6000 cupcakes in two days to raise $18,000 for Jai and his family.
Indie Rose Taurima's Fundraiser
The cupcake boxes all stacked up. Photo: Elesa Kurtz
The last words spoken by one of the pilots of the missing Malaysian Airlines airliner to the control tower were "Good night Malaysian three seven zero", Malaysia's civil aviation authority said, changing the previous account of the last message as a more casual "All right, good night."
The correction of the official account of the last words was made as Malaysian authorities face heavy criticism for their handling of the disappearance, particularly from families of the Chinese passengers on board Flight MH370 who have accused Malaysia of mismanaging the search and holding back information.
"We would like to confirm that the last conversation in the transcript between the air traffic controller and the cockpit is at 0119 (Malaysian Time) and is "Good night Malaysian three seven zero," the Department of Civil Aviation said in a statement.
Malaysian Defence Minister Hishammuddin Hussein delivers a statement on missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 to the media in Kuala Lumpur. Photo: AFP
Lee Gaskin: Spots in the Canberra Vikings team for the inaugural National Rugby Championship will be up for grabs when the John I Dent Cup kicks-off this weekend.
The Canberra club rugby competition takes on extra significance with the establishment of the NRC providing opportunities for fringe players to push their claims for Super Rugby contracts.
The Brumbies will provide up to 16 players for the Vikings team, with the remainder to come from the club rugby ranks.
The Tuggeranong Vikings are the reigning champions when the first round gets underway on Saturday, with the grand final on August 9.
The NRC starts at the end of the club competition.
R Wests Captain Michael Smith, Gungahlin Captain Matt Hawke, Queanbeyan Whites Captain Daniel Penca, Vikings Captain Tim Cree, Easts Captain Kyne Bowden, Owls Captain Bhiamie Williamson and Royals Captain Joel Penders. Photo: Melissa Adams
Prime Minister Najib Razak will travel to Perth on Wednesday to see the search effort firsthand, Transport and Defence Minister Hishammuddin Hussein told reporters in Kuala Lumpur on Monday, AFP has reported.
MH370: ocean full of false leads
The search for the Malaysia Airlines plane is distracted by several floating orange objects as the PM and opposition leader visited the RAAF Pearce base on Monday.PT2M29S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-35up0 620 349 April 1, 2014
An 80-year-old man has been arrested for allegedly shooting birds off power lines in a western Sydney street.
Locals reported hearing gunshots about 10am on Monday, and police arrived to find two dead currawongs and a third bird with a gunshot wound.
An 80-year-old man who was driving nearby was spoken to by police.
They later arrested him at his Links Avenue home, where they seized two rifles, ammunition and the man's firearms licence.
British singer Elton John will marry long-time partner David Furnish now that Britain's legalisation of gay marriage has been put into effect, the singer said in an interview on Monday.
John, 67, told NBC's Today host Matt Lauer that he and Mr Furnish, who were one of the first couples to become united when Britain legalised the Civil Partnership Act in December 2005, will marry in a small ceremony this year, as early as May.
"We'll do it very quietly," the singer said. "But we will do it and it will be a joyous occasion and we will have our children."
Sir Elton John and his partner, David Furnish, arrive at the grand opening of FIZZ Las Vegas inside Caesars Palace celebrating John's birthday on March 28, 2014 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo: Getty
Lee Gaskin: Canberra FC and Belconnen United will square off for the first trophy of the Canberra soccer season at Hawker tonight.
The pre-season cup will be on the line when the two traditional rivals go head to head.
Both clubs have new coaches - Ray Junna has taken over at Canberra FC and former Woden Valley coach Dean Ugrinic is in charge at Belconnen.
The season proper gets underway on Friday night when Belconnen hosts Tuggeranong United.
Tonight's final starts at 7pm.
Ray Junna. Photo: Graham Tidy
Australian journalist Peter Greste has told judges he has no links to the banned Muslim Brotherhood and he and fellow jailed journalists from the network pose no threat to Egypt. Their bid for bail was rejected again overnight.
Greste is being accused of spreading false news and supporting the blacklisted movement of deposed Islamist president Mohamed Morsi.
Outside the caged dock and wearing a white prison uniform, he said: "I arrived in Cairo two weeks before my arrest … the idea that I have a connection with the Muslim Brotherhood is frankly preposterous. I would like to emphasise that we pose no risk to either the state of Egypt or any individual."
Trial adjourned: Peter Greste with his colleagues appear before an Egyptian court.
Lee Gaskin: The debate over which Campese is the better sportsman has finally been settled - with David Campese Oval in Queanbeyan renamed the Terry Campese Oval.
Terry, the nephew of Wallabies representative David, has played more than 120 matches for the Raiders and has also represented the Prime Minister's XI, NSW Country, NSW and Australia.
"Terry Campese's performance for the Canberra Raiders, NSW and Australia during his career have been outstanding and there is no doubt that he deserves to have this fine oval named in his honour," Queanbeyan Mayor, Cr Tim Overall said.
"If it wasn't for a few unfortunate injuries, Terry Campese would already be an immortal, and even with those injuries it's a formality that he will eventually join the likes of Dally Messenger, Wally Lewis and Andrew Johns.
"Given his outstanding achievements on the field, and future honours, it's fitting that the David Campese Oval in Queanbeyan is renamed to the Terry Campese Oval.
"Obviously, if David Campese is to come out and play a leading role in the Wallabies winning the World Cup, or better still help the Queanbeyan Whites to premiership glory, the name of this oval will again be up for debate. However, at the moment, Terry's achievements far outweigh those of his uncle and I'm incredibly proud to be part of this significant community event."
Terry Campese. Photo: Rohan Thomson
Abbott said before the election that the Coalition and Labor were on a ''unity ticket'' on the NDIS. However, since the election the Coalition has stopped talking about ''launch'' sites and instead started calling them ''trial'' sites.
Asked whether the national scheme promised by Labor would be delayed, Mr Abbott said his government was committed to ''delivering a sustainable and affordable national disability insurance scheme''.
"One of the problems with the former government is they were rushing it.": Tony Abbott. Photo: AFP
Local stocks are poised to open flat as the RBA board prepares to meet this afternoon, while the price of iron ore jumped by over 4 per cent overnight.
The Aussie dollar is at 92.68 US cents, 95.67 Japanese yen, 67.29 Euro cents and 55.59 British pence at 5.59am AEDT.
The latest news on Newcastle Knight Alex McKinnon is so sad.
McKinnon has been in an induced coma since last Monday, when he was tackled in a match against the Melbourne Storm.
He has undergone two operations to have a disc removed and to fuse his C4 and C5 vertebrae. The second operation involved a bone graft with a piece taken from his hip to support his neck.
There are now reports the 22-year-old has been left a quadriplegic.
Alex McKinnon training with the Knights this month. Photo: Darren Pateman
Just a word of caution this morning, beware of any fake news headlines around this morning!
It's April 1, and that of course means PR agencies have gone into overdrive to "leak" their huge news this morning.
That means all the outrageous news and tweets you see around in the next few hours are probably not real.
Don't say we didn't warn you!
The Netherlands have humiliated 2010 champions England by 45 runs at the World Twenty20 in Chittagong, rounding off a wretched winter for the English side that included a 5-0 Ashes series loss in Australia.
Paceman Mudassar Bukhari took three wickets for 12 runs while Logan van Beek finished with three for nine to bowl England out for a paltry 88 in 17.4 overs, after they were set a modest target of 134 to chase in their last group one Super-10 match at Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury stadium.
England captain Stuart Broad said there were ''no excuses'' for Monday's defeat.
England's captain Stuart Broad walks back to the pavilion after his dismissal by Netherlands's Mudassar Bukhari. Photo: AP
Wow - it's gorgeous out there this morning.
Check out these photos on Twitter of the sunrise today.
After weeks of desperate searching of the Indian Ocean, it seems that the missing Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 is lost in a sea of rubbish.
Sometimes the object spotted in the water is a snarled fishing line. Or a buoy. Or something that might once have been the lid to an ice box. Not once - not yet at least - has it been a clue.
Anticipation has repeatedly turned into frustration in the search for signs of Flight MH370 as objects spotted from planes in a new search area west of Australia have turned out to be garbage. Not only is the rubbish a time-wasting distraction for air and sea crews searching for debris from the Malaysia Airlines flight that vanished March 8, it also points to wider problems in the world's oceans.
A piece of unknown debris floats just under the water in this image taken by a Royal New Zealand P3 Orion while it searches for missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, over the Indian Ocean. Photo: AFP Photo
In world news, the International Court of Justice has upheld Australia's bid to ban Japan's Antarctic whaling program.
ICJ president Peter Tomka said the court concluded the scientific permits granted by Japan for its whaling program were not scientific research as defined under International Whaling Commission rules.
Mr Tomka said in The Hague that the court was persuaded that Japan had conducted a program for logistical and political considerations, rather than scientific research.
Prominent Australians have welcomed the decision.
A whale of a win! Paul Watson is a global hero and Australians can all feel proud.— Bob Brown (@BobBrownFndn) March 31, 2014
This is a truly historic decision & vindicates the decision our action. It means that so called scientific whaling is no more!— Peter Garrett (@pgarrett) March 31, 2014
Great news upholding Australia's case against whaling in International Court of Justice-proud of decision of Labor Govt to take legal action— Anthony Albanese (@AlboMP) March 31, 2014
Good morning Canberra, and welcome to your live news blog on this Tuesday morning.
We've woken to another cool start in the capital, with an overnight low of 9.2 degrees.
We're expecting a top of 26 degrees today, with a partly cloudy afternoon.
After today though, the rain is returning until at least Sunday. We'll have a full weather wrap for you shortly.
Stick with us over the next three hours, as we blog all the morning's news and headlines.
We're kicking things off this morning with a bit of David Pope...