Sunday, 21 October 2012

Shark Social Networking: Shark Migrations Studied With Underwater Robot Along Delmarva Peninsula


ScienceDaily (Oct. 17, 2012) — University of Delaware researchers are using an underwater robot to find and follow sand tiger sharks that they previously tagged with transmitters. The innovative project is part of a multi-year partnership with Delaware State University to better understand the behavior and migration patterns of the sharks in real time.
"In the past week our new, specially equipped glider OTIS -- which stands for Oceanographic Telemetry Identification Sensor -- detected multiple sand tiger sharks off the coast of Maryland that were tagged over the past several years," said Matthew Oliver, assistant professor of oceanography in UD's College of Earth, Ocean, and Environment. "This is the first time that a glider has found tagged sharks and reported their location in real time."
OTIS is a remote-controlled device that looks like a yellow torpedo and normally darts through the ocean to sample water conditions. Oliver outfitted the apparatus with acoustic receivers that can recognize signals given off by the sharks' transmitters as they travel through coastal waters, rapidly reporting the encounters.

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