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Bill Seegar  

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Bird strikes; Satellite tracking  

Environmental Recording 15:50 - 40:39 Play 15:50 - More
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Interview 41:43 - 1:23:35 Play 41:43 - More
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Paul Howey  

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Microwave telemetry; Transmitters for birds  

NPR/NGS Radio Expeditions
Oct 1996

    Geography
  • United States
    Virginia
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NPR/NGS RADIO EXPEDITIONS
Falcons
DAT # 5

BS = Bill Seegar
PH = Paul Howey
AC = Alex Chadwick

continuing Bill Seegar's interview

00:31 AC -I have always thought that birds -if you look at birds it is hard to see that there is any pattern to their flight. But maybe you are developing data that says there maybe patterns to their flight and you can use that to help explore and examine this bird strike problem.

00:49 BS -I think a lot of bird flight is fairly predictable. Certainly it can be examined in that regard around lots of airports and lots of areas where birds present a problem. Birds are more a problem than people may realize even in the industry to some degree because it is difficult to collect good information on bird strike -on the rate of bird strike and how it actually is effecting the industry right now. This technology can very possibly effectively be used to predict where birds are going to be and assisting for casting (?) bird locations and activities around aircraft flight. 1:40

1:43 AC -So by having transmitters on geese because they flock together you can have one on a goose and you could know where the flock was at any time.

BS -That is a concept -yes -to have sentinel animals in a flock. And the transmitter probably used in that context would provide information for a model to tell us how birds are moving around airports. the response time on those transmitters probably wouldn't be good enough to use it to actually forecast the presence of birds in any specific moment around an airport. But they would be able to provide us the kind of insight we need to predict very effectively how these animals are moving around the airport, where they are moving and what the circumstances are associated with their movements. Meteorological circumstances, perhaps behavioral circumstances where birds are moving btwn roosting and feeding areas and so on. And when birds begin to simply soar maybe recreationally or whatever they do when the air updrafts are favorable to take them aloft.

3:02 AC -Now how is it that you are able to collect that information than ornithologists have so far?

3:10 BS -Well, ornithologists are collected data like this in a variety of different areas. We are simply proposing the application of an integrated system to deal with and address this very issue for the bird strike problem. We would really like to see integrated the use of radar systems, satellite telemetry and advance data management -computer data management systems to try and develop a forecast function and mere real time capability to
monitor birds around airports. And there are various elements in the research community right now that are doing these things ¬but not applying it specifically to this issue.

4:14 AC -But you are talking about sat. telemetry -maybe the transmitter is sending back to some other source

BS -it is not entirely necessary under local circumstances that a sat. collect the information [AC -right]. We can have a system on the back of the bird that can interface with a sat. but it can also be collected conventionally. For example if birds were moving around a local area and that area was 20 or 30 miles we could easily put up a boom antenna that would collect information directly from the backs of the organisms from a receiving site in the area. Sat. telemetry becomes very usefully when animals move over fairly large regions and large areas, and they move outside the range of conventional telemetry systems. But animals staying within range of the center can be monitored conventionally.

5:18 AC -When you began doing this work you were working with swans? [BS -we started with large body birds, yes] and at that point -this is 15 yrs ago, and you are putting on something that weighed a lb? .. a half alb?

BS -oh no -a couple of hundred grams which is about 8 ounces.

AC -and at that point where you looking ahead -did you think you could develop something -your device now weighs less than an ounce -[BS -yes about 17 grams I believe is the microwave] did you foresee that you could do this? because it is incredible to me that you can get the information that you get from something that is no bigger than the end of my pen.

6:21 BS -well, we just had a vision, and we knew what we wanted to accomplish we get involved in the technology and it possibly have been the naivete that allowed us to do what we did because had we been really educated in the school of electronics we may have known better than to ask for this development capability. since we were really told from the onset -this is really impossible, you can't do that. but we never took that as an answer. we continued to push the state of the art within 18 months of the inception of this project in '81 we trapped the first bird with a device that was 200 grams. and we knew at that point that nothing was going to basically stop us as long as technology continued evolving and we continued to be smart in the application and use of it and what you are seeing is a very interesting evolution of a piece of hardware conductor. Howie had a lot to do with that. I tell you what i think also had a lot to do with it is the miniaturization of a lot electronics in some industries out there that are applying this in a very large
way like the cel phone industry. a lot of components are going into these little hand help devices that we can uses. that Dr. Howie uses very effectively. 7:42

7:44 AC -let me just ask what you have your degree in?

BS -I have a degree in pathobiology from the Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health with a sort of classic degree in Tropical Medicine parasitology, Ecology and Entomology.

AC -Did you have an interest in electronics as a kid? I mean how did you integrate all of this stuff?

BS -I still don't know which way electrons go down the wire. Paul tried to explain that to me once. I don't know anything about electronics per se, other than what I have learned from the engineers. I have had an interest in trying to achieve a goal and create a capability and I have gone out and sought the kind of people that can help us conquer that problem. and in the process I've met just the most wonderful, extraordinary bright people that have had the energy and enthusiasm to go on this great journey, and Paul Howey is one of them -he is just brilliant. 8:54

9:57 BS -what is happening is the industry is trying to be as economical as possible, and I am not an expert in aviation and equipment and all, but basically I go to the mtgs and listen but basically they are trying to figure out economically how to get more people into fewer planes and that's economically feasible for them and environmentally friendly too.... {VERY HARD TO UNDERSTAND BECAUSE FAINT} ...so we are going for larger bodied planes with fewer jets???

AC-and one interesting thing that you said earlier and I thought this was a fascinated bit of information is that they have actually tested these jet engines repeatedly and a jet engine can eat something that weighs about a pound and a half and if you go above a pound and a half -can't handle it.

BS -and this was a really interesting presentation at the bird strike committee, International Bird Strike Committee, Bird strike committee of Europe just this spring, and they had a really great engineer from Rolls Royce who showed some films on the hardening of jet engine and how they are designed to ingest a certain size bird...and he said look we at great expense may be able to harden these jet engines to ingest 2.5 lb bird. but when
plotted out the real threat to what it was going to take engineering wise to get this from 1.5 to 2.5 lbs i realized that by jumping it a pound we were only dealing with about 5 or 6% more of the threat (?). The real threat is the large body birds and the geese, some of the larger gulls (?) -we can't build a jet that is going to ingest a 8 or 10 lb bird and really guarantee the survival -I mean of the engine -...we better start figuring out how to develop alternative technologies and capabilities to deal with some of these large body bird problems and ???

12:35 AC -did he have films of them throwing a 1.5 lb sack of flour?

BS -What they do is they don't use live organisms -they use chickens -but I don't for sure. but there is a lot of work that goes into trying to evaluate the density of birds -but they actually take the carcasses of birds that are 1.5 lbs and they fire them into an engine that is at full thrust, and they have got pictures of that and they analyze that very meticulously

AC -key question is do they have audio recordings of that?

BS -and they may, but you are going to get a jet at 95% power. you are not going to hear a bird go through that -in fact it is
[SNAP] quicker than that -one guy has got -Tom Algae (?) from Pratt Whitney has got a slow-mo camera of them firing 4 of them through the engine in less than a second and they just gobble them up.

AC -yeah, but what happens when you put a 2.5 lb in

13:52 BS well, they put a couple in that warped a few fan blades and blew an engine....

AC -that's the sound that I want -I want audio from the flight that Henry C. is on

14:25 -41:00 WIND wind is 70 kph gusts same location -high wind storm GOOD AMBI

Interview with Paul Howey

(PH = Paul Howe)':)

41:44 PH -....when BS arrived we thought we would try this on peregrines rather than just water fowl and we made some dummy peregrine eggs with sat telemetry sensors in them and we took them to Scotland. and we put them in a per. nest in the southwest of Scotland and we spent 6 weeks there or so watching these eggs and gathering data from them. the system is totally automated so we didn't really have a lot to do just sit there and make sure that things are working and that is when we sort of
came up with this idea of tracking per. with satellites.

AC were you an engineer or a biologist?

PH -I have never quite been sure. I studied as an undergrad animal physiology but at school i was more interested in physics so i tried to keep going in both lines of things and when I went to post graduate although I was in the biology dept. everything i did was electronic, so I was designing these systems to monitor these micro-climates and that was purely electronics. electronics has always been my hobby since I was a little kid so i have always been doing both. so when i came over here i came to work at the applied physics lab and they thought i was biologists...

AC -would you pick up that device and describe it for me?

43:38 PH -this one here is one our latest satellite track transmitters. this is the smallest one that we made -perhaps the smallest one available.

AC -how much does it weigh?

43:53 PH -this one -complete with harness and everything ready to go on the bird weighs just a little less than 20 grams. when we started making these in '84 they weighed near to 250 grams, so quite a bit smaller now. this was our aim right from the beginning to make them as small as this so that we could track these male peregrines. the male peregrine is somewhat smaller than a female. and a transmitter really needs to be less than about 5% of the body weight of the animal. so you can if you make one that's 20 grams it's going on a 400 gram bird and be 5% of the bird. so we are little less than 5% of the body weight when we put this on a 500 gram bird. previous to that we were using this other one which weighs about 30 grams and a large female peregrine will easily carry this. we have been tracking the females for about 3 yrs now.

45:04 AC -how did you reduce that 30 grams to 20 grams?

45:10 PH -we started off with one even bigger than this. over the last few years due to the popularity of ce~ phones and lap top computers and all sorts of commercial electronic devices the components that you get hold of to make these sort of things have been getting smaller and smaller and also components themselves have been getting more sophisticated so you can use less components to do a certain function than you used to let's say 10 years ago. so basically to get from this 30 gram one to the 20 gram one we can use some smaller components although in actuality these 2 devices are very similar we should really be comparing the larger ones to these. the main difference to these 2 is that the smaller one has only got one battery in it, and the larger
one has got 2 batteries in it but, the consequences of that is that the smaller one will only last about half the lifetime of the larger one. but that is still significant. we can get 4 to 5 hundred hours of transmission out of the small one and if you spread that out over a year you can still get enough data back to track the animal in both portions of its migrations and get some data from when it is either in the wintering grounds or its breeding.

AC -can you describe what it is like to put that on the bird?

46:45 PH -it's pretty uneventful. most people think that when you get hold of one of these birds its going to do its best to attack you or mutilate you in some way, but most of these birds, especially some of the bigger one that I worked with in the past, they become quite docile once you caught them and you are starting to handle them. once we have caught the bird [BANG ¬door slams?] we are handling it quite successfully, but you know making sure you got hold of these feet and not allowing it to flap its wings. the transmitter is then placed on the back of the bird, it's harness basically goes over its head and sort of around what would be its shoulders, or in front of the wings, around underneath the bird, and the two free straps that we have here come back up behind the wings and join on to the loops that we have on the transmitter. we have played with various designs with this harness, but this one is fairly simple to put on. once you get these two straps on the back we temporarily attach them with these two clamps and then we adjust the whole thing so it is symmetrical on the back of the bird. and it is not too tight on there. you can usually set it so you can get you finger under the transmitter, and then we tie the 2 straps off in the back and suture them with some dental floss or some waxed cotton thread andut the excess straps off and put some cyanuric (?) glue on there to -just as a sort of back up to the stitching. and once the thing is on there it will stay on there for quite a while until the glue and the suturing decays, and eventually will fall off. 48:41

48:42 AC-How do you know that those things are safe on a bird if they are less than 5% of the body weight of the bird? How do you know that's not going to hurt the bird?

48:51 PH -a lot of experiments are done on that back in the late 70s early 80s as to what sort of weight these birds would carry. and it's been my experience that -i mean, I didn't so those original experiments, but it seems to me that from the experiments that we have observed of these transmitters on birds in the wild is a bird that migrates on its own basically can carry much more than one that migrates in a flock and when we first started doing this we were using much larger transmitters and it was much more critical than it is to make sure that we weren't putting too big a load on the bird. our original transmitters weighed like approximately 250 grams and there was only a few species you could put these on like golden eagles, large bald eagles and some of the swans. we had some original problems with the swans, but it turns out more that it is the design of the harness rather than the weight of the transmitter. but we have noticed, and that other people have noticed is that the higher weights, and birds that seem to migrate in a flock seems not able to keep up with its partners in its flock or whatever. whereas a bird that migrates on its own such as an eagle or these falcons it doesn't seem to mind so much a heavier weight, although now we are putting on low weights quite often that the weight of the transmitter is even less than 3% at the moment. but bill would be better to address that question. he may know more about the research that was done to determine that weight -or maybe it is Mark Fuller that was involved with that -

AC -that is alright -Let me ask you this: in terms of thinking about this device, and the technology of tracking, not just the falcons but other wildlife, what is the insight that has led you to -what is your best insight? ....what is it that has really been a key finding for you? or figuring out the battery?

51:10 PH -the major problem originally was just making this thing small enough just so the bird can carry it, but since then when we first had these available there was very little known where these birds actually went and how long it took them to and get to where we didn't know where they were going. because we have a limited lifetime on these units we had to guess at first as to when to switch them on and try to recover the data. and our first guess is -not necessarily correct, we thought that the birds would get to their wintering grounds at first some what quicker than they actually did and we thought when they are we thought they would leave sooner than they actually did. so our scheduling of these things was incorrect, but we have learned over the last couple of years more how to set these things up and use them to maximum advantage. it is a waste of the very limited energy in the battery here to expend it when the bird is not really moving if it is going to sit in one place all of the time you are getting redundant data. lots of people have asked us about the shape of this thing and whether it effects the aerodynamics of the bird and there has been a lot of ideas about how we should change that but the reason we came up with this shape is that is the most compact shape we could get to reduce the rate. some people want this to be flatter and I think some of them are mistaken in that they think that will reduce the aerodynamic forces exerted on the bird by carrying this is flatter because the frontal area of this thing will be the same. but there is another factor in that in that when we started playing with these you will notice that these things are quite narrow. we noticed that if you used a wider package and then you look at a bird, when a bird is flapping its wings when they are on the upswing the distance btwn the base of the wings on some species is quite narrow and if you put a wider package on their you can be restricting the movements of the wings which may be uncomfortable to the bird. so there are a lot of little things like that we took into consideration. one of the hardest things was how to make this thing light and yet also strong enough to withstand the bird trying to destroy it or whatever -which some of them try to do, although with peregrine we have found that not to be a problem. but some species try to tear these things apart or at least pull the antennas off of them. and some species -if you put this on a parador or a macaw of something they will literally try and crunch the thing up. they have very strong beaks and they would quite easily sort of puncture these things, and once they are punctured if the environment is allowed to get in there they won't last very long. these things are hermetically sealed and actually filled with nitrogen so that the environment inside the little thing is actually good for the electronics in their. it won't deteriorate. whereas if we try to in close these some other way where it wasn't hermetically sealed its quite amazing what will happen on the back of one of these birds. these birds go through rain, some of them dive, some go to very cold places. if you get any cracks in it, if you enclose them in some kind of epoxy and water gets in there and it expands the cracks can expand and things. 55:26 it is sort of like designing something that has to work under the hood of a car. the environment, sometimes, on some species it can be very diverse. it can be very hot at one time, it can be cold at another, it can be wet, it can be dry. so we took a lot of time in coming up with a package that was light and also able to survive the environment. 55:52

AC: You are now planning on putting these on fish so they will go underwater?

PH -yeah. that is a totally different project, but it is basically we are working with some people at Stanford University and Monterey Bay Aquarium in CA. they are interested in tracking bluefin tuna and also different species of marlin. tracking fish is a much different sort of problem in that the fish is mostly underwater most of the time and you cant transmit to a satellite from a transmitter underwater. and the way to do this is to simply release the transmitter from the fish after a predetermined period. so we are working on a transmitter now which is basically the same electronics as in these small bird ones. it is contained in a small tube which is just slightly positively buoyant, and it has a release mechanism on the front of it. and the idea is that it will be attached to a fish on a small line and after a pre-determined period which is programmed in a small microcomputer which is inside everyone of these things. for instance after 3 months we might tell it to release mechanism on the package that will release it from the line which attaches it to the fish will float to the surface and will tell us the location of where it was released. if that works the future models will have various sensors on them to record such things as depth during the period before the release so we may be able to get a record of the deepest depth that it went to or the daily depth or maybe the hourly depth, depends on how we program it. they are pretty flexible these things because we have a little microcomputer in them and we can make each one slightly different in how it records data and whatever. and eventually some people have done this on other species using much larger devices, maybe able to record the time of sunrise and sunset from underwater by monitoring the light level and record that during the time that is attached to the fish, and then when the thing surfaces, transfer all of this data to the satellite over several weeks. and once we got that data we can interpret from that sunrise and sunset times the approximate latitude and longitude of the fish at that time. so even though we will only be locating it with a satellite right at the end of -the release point, we might have a crude record of where the fish was during the 3 or 4 months or however long the thing was actually attached to the fish and underwater...the bird transmitters all have sensors on them, they are all internal, but they are measuring the temperature, the device and how much it is moving also we transmit the battery voltage back so we've got some idea of how long the thing will last and what the bird is doing. for instance we have noticed that if the bird is flying the temperature is significantly lower than if the bird is perched, and it is insulating this thing with its feathers and its body heat is warming it up. and when it is perched the activity sensor in here is usually giving a pretty low reading, but when it is flying you get a high level of activity. so by comparing the temp and the activity we can tell when a bird is flying. and sometimes from that data we can determine from satellite locations as to the speed of movement of the bird. 1:00:09

1:00:13 AC -do you find people calling you up the smallest of these things that there are [PH -we believe so, yes] are people calling you up more now and saying hey -we want one of these things?

1:00:35 PH -well, there are 2 sorts of calls. whenever there is some kind of publicity like this might bring we get the sort of people that want to track things other than birds. like people want to track their grandfather who has lost his memory or taxi cabs or trains, or prisoners, those sorts of things we get a lot of...unfortunately the system can not be used for that sort of thing. it is intended only for environmental research. but it is also brings to the minds of other researchers that maybe haven't thought of using this technique; the possibility of tracking various other species that hasn't been tracked before. but as we make these things smaller there are obviously more and more things we can track with it. each year as we make this thing smaller there are more and more research projects going on around the world. for instance there is one project going on in Florida right now where those guys have been waiting for us to make it this small for many years. they have been very patient and they are tracking some other birds of prey. some small kikes
(?) from FL which in Aug fly south out of FL and disappear and right at this moment i believe they are tracking 6 of these kikes which are down in Brazil. they flew across the Caribbean from Cuba across to the Yucatan peninsula....they flew down through Central America down the west coast of north and south america and then the Andes -i believed crossed over in Peru into Brazil. so, just like we are tracking male peregrines now, these guys are seeing some data which they have never have seen before. 1:02:39

AC -you say you can't attach these to prisoners -why not? Why couldn't you give one to a pilot that might be shot down?

PH -well we could do, and I am sure it would work. I was thinking of that when a young pilot was shot down in Bosnia a few months ago. they were trying to find him using the techniques ¬unless they had something they weren't telling us about which is somewhat antiquated. but the argus system which we use was designed and paid for by govt agencies such as NOAA and was intended from the outcome to be used purely for environmental research. so, they have rules they have to stick to as to what they are allowed to use them for. and that is the limiting factor as to what it can be used on. the system is identical in fact, or near identical, to the search and rescue system which is used to find downed aircrafts and boats that are lost. obviously their system is not as small as these, and they never had to be, but technically the system is very similar.

1:03:55 AC -how small do you think you can make a transmitter?
PH -the limiting factor at the moment is the batteries. in this transmitter here the small one -the battery weighs about 8 grams, the electronics weigh about 3 grams and the rest of it is the case the harness the antenna. so if you reduced the electronics by 50% we are only going to knock about 1 and a half grams off the weight of this thing. so what we really need to reduce the size of this any more is a new battery technology. we have been trying to keep ahead of that in the publications that appear every week. we check it. new claims on batteries but so far we have not found any that will run the transmitter. there are a lot of new batteries around that are tiny or potentially tiny. the main problem with them is that they can not deliver the energy within the short time interval that we need it.
1:05:00

AC -but bill was mentioning earlier that the real trick of this
thing is that it will put out for its size a huge amount of energy very quickly so you can send a burst up to the satellite.

PH -that is the problem. you need a battery that can give you that amount of energy in about a third of a second. these transmitters are quite powerful. they give out about a fifth of a watt -200 milliwatts -of RF8 ????power. relative to conventional transmitters which they follow to the ground this is maybe 500 times as much power. and as i said a moment ago the batteries are not available to give the sort if current we need to get that power out of the transmitter. (he has a file cabinet full of info re batteries from allover the world back at his office) ...there were some leads earlier this year on some batteries which were said to be tiny and had the energy density that we require -in other words they could store.....but just as we found before they could not release the energy in the time needed...we've got some transmitters that are solar powered we don't have any here. we have one that is just slightly bigger than this. it has a bank of solar cells on it...but unfortunately that is not any lighter than these. the advantage of them are that they will run for much longer -possibly 5 years. we are not sure yet because they have not been available that long. that's one way to go but again the solar cells charge the battery -they don't run the unit directly, and those things are quite heavy... i guess those batteries might become available in a smaller size, and tha~ is one way we may go but even if those batteries are much smaller you have the extra weight of the solar array which is not insignificant. the solar cells themselves are light, but you have to protect them again from the environment. and you may end up in adding... l:07:58
AC -you said you have trouble getting people to help you? you mean you are trying hire assistants? ..
PH -it is fascinating work but you can imagine the size of the parts inside of here. and i am looking for some unemployed swiss watchmakers I think or neurosurgeons, or something like that -i don't know. it is what people have told me to go [AC -who can build those for you] unemployed surgeons -yeah. we are sort of getting around the problem a little bit by buying technology, machines to build. we have just bought a machine that will basically build the boards for us, however that's not the whole story. once we have got the basic electronic module here there is still a lot of work goes into testing it, characterizing it and then fitting it into the housing and sealing it. it's all pretty precise stuff. if we made these things a little bit bigger it would be probably fairly easy to find people... l:19:19 you have to work under microscopes and magnifying glasses all of the time building these things, and a lot of people don't like doing that we use quite tiny instruments to handle the components. some of the components here are really tiny. a lot
of the components here are just about the size of a head of a pin. there are approximately i think 220 separate electronic components in one of these tiny units. 1:09:46

AC -there are 220 parts in there? [PH-yeah] and that is oh -no bigger than your thumb.

1:09:56 PH -the actual board in here is not much bigger than a standard postage stamp. we put components on both sides of that. i think there is about a 120 parts on one side and about 100 on the other. so there are a lot of parts in here. and that is a lot less than in the bigger ones. and we started off in the early 80s. it might have been nearly 500 parts in those ones. so it is pretty skilled work putting those together.

AC -so it is sounds impossible to me that you can have a device that small that would work for that long, that could send up info to a sat. which has got to be fairly difficult

PH -well, that's what people thought when we started this. when we proposed doing this back in 1977 people thought we were really crazy. at that point people were just starting using satellites for tracking animals. and there was a couple of experiments going on. one researcher in Scotland was proposing to track basking sharks and he had obtained a transmitter, and this transmitter was about the size of a shoe box. and that did not include the antenna and all of the power supply... (in the end) ...he had quite a large package. and his technique was ...he had built virtually a little submarine that the shark would tow behind it on a tether...it worked but it was a tremendously large device for an animal to carry around. so when we started doing this people really did think that we were crazy.... it is only recently w/in the last 4 years that researchers believe that this can be done. there are several projects that have been going on now since the late 80s now where it is becoming very routine for them to use sat. tracking for their research. some researchers now have probably put on about 100 units over the last 4 or 5 years on some species. yet there are other ones that are just starting and a few still skeptical, but many of them are much less skeptical now because there is a lot more data... 1:13:03

AC -could you put one of these on a lion?

1:13:05 PH -um, you probably could. we haven't done that. we have always concentrated on making them smaller and lighter, but we have made a few in collars...there have been a couple that have been put on wolves up in Minnesota, there have been some on unguIates in New Mexico. that's probably about all we've made on collars. we have some that have gone on whales, but that is yet another story. there are other companies that specialize in these to go mammals. those transmitters are relatively large. they really don't need the kind of technology that we have
here... so people have not really come to us, and we have not tried to specialized in that market making collar sized ones. 1:14:13

ID: 1:14:23 PH -my name is PAUL HOWEY" and I originated from England. I have been over here since 1983 when I came over to work on this project...I have been here ever since. It has taken since '83 to get this device, although Dr. Seegar and I have envisioned this since 1977. My company is called MICROWAVE TELEMETRY located in Columbia in MD ... (he owns the company himself) we are a relatively small company. we have about 7 employees at the moment, but as more and more people want these things we are having to expand somewhat... since we have started we have expanded.... [AC-how many do you make a yr?] it increases each year probably by the end of the yr 6 or 7 hundred maybe even 100. since sort of unbelievable. they are going to every continent. they are being used everywhere from the antarctic to the arctic. many of them are going to the antarctic. there are several groups in europe that carry out large projects there, each yr. groups from the British Antarctic survey to Norwegian Antarctic research people. some Finish people. so there is a lot of stuff going on down there in our winter which is their summer down there. researching albatrosses and things. we send them to the Arab countries where they are doing research on birds of prey -actually on the prey that the birds are hunting. some are going to europe for tracking storks. the europeans are very interested especially the Germans and Czechs are very interested in tracking storks which come to their countries every year. and there is research going on on some of south american countries on some of the endangered species eagles, and there is a lot of stuff being done on albatross in the southern oceans.

1:17:36 AC -are there particular kinds of animals that this technology is well suited for?

PH -yes. Particularly the birds that go over the oceans, or the people really don't have a clue where they go to. for instance, probably one of the more exciting ones was finding out where the eider ducks in Alaska went to. some researchers up there have been studying eider ducks for many years and noticed that he population of the eider ducks was declining. the eider ducks, i believe, are in Alaska only during the breeding season. the males being there just for a few weeks and the females being there from the time when they start breeding to the time when their young could flyaway. up until a yr or so ago when once these birds had left the researchers really didn't have a clue where they went to. they always thought they went over to Russia somewhere and they had no way of going into Russia at that time to find out if that was true or not. but as it turned out Russia became a place where they could go to look for them and they weren't there. so these people, 3 yrs ago or so, started using sat transmitters to track the eider ducks ...and it turns out that once they leave Alaska basically wander out into the middle of the Bering Sea and they spend their winter literally in the middle of nowhere within the ice on the Bering Sea. they congregate in groups of many 1000s of birds in small . holes in the ice which they appear to keep free of ice just from the fact that they are there. and there is one picture which has very widely been publicized of many 1000s of eider ducks which were found in this location from the data sent from a single transmitter that sended the researchers to this place in the middle of the Bering Sea in the middle of winter when nobody would every dream of going there...the mystery now is what are these birds feeding on...1:21:00 -DESCRIPTION OF CATCHING THE BIRD, PUTTING TRANSMITTER ON...put transmitter on using Teflon ribbon...1:23:36 END OF INTERVIEW WITH HIM

1:24:28 -1:29:05 ROOM AMBI

1:29:06 END OF DAT

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