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Interview :26 - 35:00 Play :26 - More
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Paul Howey, Bill Seegar, Mike Yates  

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Microwave telemetry; Transmitters for birds  

Peregrine Falcon -- Falco peregrinus 26:46 - 26:54 Play 26:46 - More
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Wingbeats  

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1 Adult Female  

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In hand  

NPR/NGS Radio Expeditions
Oct 1996

    Geography
  • United States
    Virginia
    Accomack County
    Locality
  • Assateague Island; Assateague Beach Coast Guard Station
    Latitude/Longitude
  • 37.86389   -75.36667
    Channels
  • Stereo
    Sampling Rate
  • 48kHz
    Bit Depth
  • 16-bit
    Recorders
    Microphones
    Accessories
    Equipment Note
  • Stereo=1; Stereo

NPR/NGS RADIO EXPEDITIONS
FALCONS
DAT # 7

1:00 Bill -we have got it snugged up pretty good. and we are trying to get it snugged it up on the keel..... [talking about the fit -above or below the keel]

6:20 Bill -let it flap around for a little bit and see -what we think about that

6:29 FX satellite goes off

6:35 FX bird flaps wings

7:25 Bill -very close to a fit now...

8:06 BS -it is right on the top of the keel this is where we usually do them...and the transmitter rides high on the center of the back

Paul -i think that is good

8:23 Bill -ok! now watch these surgeons hands -Dr. Howey. Watch him sew.

8:44 AC -...how wide are those strips?

Paul -just about a quarter of an inch. they are actually measured in millimeters...it's about a quarter of an inch wide. like i said it is made of teflon so it is very slippery stuff...what we do is we sutcher it like this with dental floss, and then we put some Cyanoacrylic (?) glue -super glue over the stitches.... it hold toe tHreads in place... 10:08 bc we already have the harness mounted on the front of the transmitter we only need to do the stitches in the back here....10:31 ok..11:13 ok ¬we have one side down...11:36 -the other side
not much FX or ambi putting the stitches in
a lot of mumbling as they put it on -very serious feeling in the air

AC -(the bird seems very calm)

16:56 -Mike -pereguines are generally very calm in this situation...make no mistake, she wants to go

17:21 Mike -we have super glue right here

17:46 AC -Bill, just a guess -where do you think this bird has come from and where do you think it is going?

17:53 Bill -I am going to guess from the high eastern arctic 'somewhere. she has a lot of washed out old feathers on her
brow....she could have been in some high area where there was a lot of sunlight. maybe bleaching these feather ....this is pretty heavy sun bleaching here...she could be headed as far as southern Argentina, but I am going to bet somewhere along the northern coast of south america. a lot of birds move into that -Mexico, Gulf of Mexico along the Caribbean rim.

AC -and how long will it be before you know?

18:40 Bill -ahh -...these adults make pretty rapid migrations, and if she is typical she will be in cuba in 5 to 8 days. and from there she will head across to south america probably via the islands or she could cut across to Nicaragua and honduras and down that way. and she could be down on the north coast of s.am in 3 weeks or so. when they get down to Florida and the islands they may slow down a little bit, but certainly by end of Nov, beginning of Dec. they are usually on their wintering ground, and that is usually end up ...

19:53 -Bill -there you go. she is a beauty (flapping of wing)
this is a 3rd year bird. she was probably hatched in the summer of '94.
this is probably her 3rd year down

**26:46 falcon flies away!, ambi of surrounds

29:51 Paul -there it goes! ...it's in the first hour of the first cycle of the first season so that you know the transmitter is being re-? so it will go for 8 hours it shoulf shut down at about -6:30 or so tonight.... 30:33 yeah this is a little receiver where we can pick up transmissions from the transmitter directly without it going through the satellite. the numbers here tell us the id code of the transmitter and these are the numbers here that tell us the information from the 4 different sensors. so if we decode these numbers, we would have temperature, the battery voltage, the activity from the [sat goes off] bird. watch, next time it transmits this last number changes from F to 10, so it shows that the thing is active. next time it transmits it will probably be reading 11 on there. so that is exactly the same data that we will get through the ARGUS system, but we are reading directly from the bird. when we get the data back we get a whole list of numbers like this which we can decode and tell us how active the bird is, what temperature the transmitter was at, how the batteries are doing. but when we get it through the ARGUS system we also get the location. this won't give us the location it is just picking it up directly. we need the satellite to actually figure out the location of the bird. 31:50

32:33 AC -(answering Linda's question: can you still see her?) ...yeah, there she is a little dot moving out there -dead ahead.

32:48 Paul... it has happened before. we launch a bird from here,
and we pick it up in the evening, and it is off the coast of
North Carolina south of the outer Banks. that is the sort of distance it can travel, 8 hours from here. 33:01

33:14 Mike -if there was a satellite over head now we would know from about 20 mins to about a half hour where the bird is
Bill -One year we had one that went dead west about 123 miles in about 3 days. couldn't figure that one out...

34:58 END OF OAT

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