Migrations in the “Animal Internet”


A couple weeks ago we shared a story about animals’ ability to travel without getting lost, and we’ve also featured pieces about migration in birds and butterflies. That eBird post from Seth is a direct example of what Alexander Pschera calls the “animal internet,” where data is accumulated in life that can be tracked, whether with devices or by people connected around the world. John Vidal reviews Pschera’s new book and covers the idea for The Guardian:

Aristotle thought the mysterious silver eel emerged from the earth fully formed. The young Sigmund Freud could not understand how it reproduced, and modern biologists puzzled for years over whether it ever returned to the Sargasso Sea, where it was known to breed.

Last year a team of Canadian scientists found conclusive proof of that extraordinary journey. They strapped tracking devices to 38 eels and followed as they migrated more than 900 miles at a depth of nearly a mile to the Sargasso, in the Atlantic near Bermuda. This year French researchers used geolocators to watch them descending European rivers and passing through the Strait of Gibraltar, heading for the same spot.

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