Animals & Wildlife Magazine

New Study Shows That Migration Flyways and Winter Destinations of Sparrows Are Unique to Each Bird

By Garry Rogers @Garry_Rogers

New study shows that migration flyways and winter destinations of sparrows are unique to each bird

“A new paper by Dr. Jeremy Ross from the University of Oklahoma describes the use of tiny devices strapped to birds’ backs called geolocators, which capture the individual migration routes of  lark sparrows in North America. By sensing the light levels, these backpacks can pinpoint the location of a bird anywhere in the world, even if retrieving the data-logger can sometimes pose a major problem.”


Animal cruelty outside the lab?  Does the geolocator bother the bird at all? Is it irritating or physically limiting?  Was its installation traumatic? It seems unlikely that any lark sparrow would volunteer to carry a backpack for the rest of its life just so someone could satisfy their curiosity. Could it choose, the sparrow might prefer that the researchers seek to find ways to preserve essential habitat and eliminate the herbicides and insecticides that poison the sparrow’s food.

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