Feeds

Walruses shake off Danish migrant-watchers

Plucky creatures escape satnav tags implanted 'for their own good'

Intelligent flash storage arrays

A plan to monitor Atlantic walruses using satnav bugs shot into their hides from crossbows or CO2 guns has run into trouble.

A Danish research team fired tags into 10 walruses off the Greenland coast just over a month ago. Dr Erik Born, leader of the walrus-tagging team, said the project was intended to monitor the animals' migration.

Denmark is, of course, notoriously unwilling to welcome migrants, but El Reg hadn't realised that even Greenland walruses were now being seen as a threat to Europeans' jobs and cultural integration.

And indeed this turned out not to be the case. It seems the two-ton whiskery tuskers are uninterested in moving to Denmark, choosing instead to head off each year to a mystery summer hideaway. Dr Born and his crew are determined to find out where this might be and what the walruses get up to there.

But it seems that walruses guard their privacy jealously. Two of the 10 tags simply bounced off the creatures' tough hides, and it appears that now all but one of the remaining eight devices has ceased transmitting. Dr Born's crew didn't expect the bugs to keep working for longer than two months, but he told the BBC that he was a little disappointed with the way things had gone.

The researchers contend that their scheme is entirely for the walruses' benefit. The idea is seemingly to gather evidence which might be used to restrict hunting or oil exploration.

Be that as it may, the project seems not to be going well. The one remaining tag is attached to a female walrus whom the inquisitive Scandinavian eggheads have lightheartedly dubbed "W2". The creature has so far failed to begin her migration to the secret walrus summer retreat, but Dr Born and his team hope that she might get moving before her tag, too, becomes unserviceable.

It could be that the plucky female has managed to shake off the Danish snoopers already. According to the Beeb's "Walrus Watch" service, the last data received from her tag was dated six days ago. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
SECRET U.S. 'SPACE WARPLANE' set to return from SPY MISSION
Robot minishuttle X-37B returns after almost 2 years in orbit
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
LOHAN crash lands on CNN
Overflies Die Welt en route to lively US news vid
You can crunch it all you like, but the answer is NOT always in the data
Hear that, 'data journalists'? Our analytics prof holds forth
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
Origins of SEXUAL INTERCOURSE fished out of SCOTTISH LAKE
Fossil find proves it first happened 385 million years ago
America's super-secret X-37B plane returns to Earth after nearly TWO YEARS aloft
674 days in space for US Air Force's mystery orbital vehicle
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.