It turned out that these birds can ‘spy’ on poachers much more efficiently than humans. Because of this, these feathered vigilantes were equipped with GPS sensors.
Just a few years ago, scientists discovered the birds’ unusual habit of following ships. The reason behind this strange behavior is simple: birds are drawn to the smell of fish. Why not use this trait for the public good?
Scientists from the French National Research Agency and the University of Liverpool developed special devices that can be attached to the birds’ backs. They are equipped with GPS sensors, marine radar, and a communication channel for data transfer.
The rest is simple: whenever a bird discovers a poacher’s ship, the information is transferred to the corresponding authority. Distinguishing criminals from regular ships is easy: poachers turn off their Automatic Identification System (AIS). This feature is detected by the devices that were created by the scientists. There are currently 169 active albatross ‘spies’.
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