GPS tracker: Flying and roaming around
Our lives have been enriched by technology and with each passing year, GPS trackers seem to become more integrated in our lives. GPS trackers have been used by many fleet companies, large and small, to make their daily business routines more efficient while improving productivity. While this is the most recognized use for GPS trackers these days, there are others that have found the technology to be beneficial. Today, we’re taking a step back from the norm and talking about three distinct animals that animal researchers have used GPS trackers on to help humans learn more about these magnificent creatures.
1.) Blackpoll Warbler Birds: It’s not really a surprise that with the history regarding carrier pigeons in World War I and World War II, that birds can travel quite a long ways. Not to say that they are anything like pigeons, but the Blackpoll Warbler bird can fly 2,500 kilometers or 1553.428 miles without landing or stopping. This was confirmed with an international research team led by Ryan Norris from the University of Guelph. The research team placed small, light-weight GPS trackers on the flock of birds’ backs much like a backpack. When the birds returned in the spring, they were able to learn the distance flown.
2.) Pandas: It was once believed Pandas were loner animals, but thanks to GPS trackers, researchers at Michigan State University discovered a different side to these animals. This team collared five Pandas: three older females, one young female and one male. With the GPS trackers, the team monitored the Pandas for 3 years. In this time they learned that the male stayed alone at times, but often came to check in on the females. The three older females stayed together most of the time, even after mating season. It turned out that these furry mammals are social and flirtatious, much different from the previous belief.
3.) Domestic Cats: It would seem a lot of research has gone into studying larger felines groups, but David Brooks, who writes the weekly Granite Geek science column for the Nashua Telegraph and Granite Geek.org decided there wasn’t enough research being done on what domestic cats are up to. Cat Tracker is a project that involves placing a harness with a tiny GPS tracker unit in it on your cat. The cat roams around and after a while you take the GPS tracker off to study the data. You can see the maps of where they’ve gone and you get a sense as to how far they travel, where they travel and when they travel there. Some of you will know what we’re talking about when we say That Darn Cat, staring Hayley Mills, sure would have been a different movie with GPS trackers around!
As you can see, GPS trackers have been used for many types of animals for various types of studies from serious University level to the guy who was simply interested in knowing more about household, pet cats. You just never know where GPS trackers can be beneficial in your life. Perhaps, keeping track of your business needs is all you want them for and if that’s the case, that is just fine by us.
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