Robots to capture ocean life in Pembrokeshire
Ground-breaking robots have recently set off on a mission to take photographs of the incredible marine life surrounding Pembrokeshire.
The marine research scheme has seen the National Oceanography Centre and WWF, the wildlife charity, partner to find out more about the sea life around the popular Welsh holiday destination.
Many holidaymakers who are staying at Saundersfoot cottages in Pembrokeshire and in other regions of the county are usually attracted by Pembrokeshire’s incredible coastline and abundance of marine life, and it is this marine life that we could get to know a little better soon.
Robots to spend a month at sea
In all, the robots will spend a month collecting data and information as well as capturing images of wildlife they encounter. They are partly powered by satellite and partly powered by wind and solar energy.
The first robot has an underwater glider that moves up and down in the water and last week it began its mission and took to the sea in Milford Haven. This robot will explore an area called the Celtic Deep, which is roughly 50 miles offshore.
The robots are armed with sensors and GoPro cameras to take water temperature readings, detect plankton, fish shoals, clicks and whistles from marine animals, as well as photographing animals off the Pembrokeshire coastline.
People holidaying in Pembrokeshire cottages have been treated to a number of encounters with some magnificent marine animals over the years, such as fin whales, harbour porpoises and common dolphins.
Speaking to the BBC, Dr Lyndsey Dodds, Head of Marine Policy at WWF UK, said, “As well as being home to a wonderful array of animals and plants, our seas provide vital resources such as food and energy.”
She added, “By using innovative technology like these vehicles we can learn more about the life that is offshore and out of our sight and make sure these areas are given the protection that they need.”
Image Credit: Michele W (flickr.com)
This content was written by James Dart. Please feel free to visit my Google+ profile to read more stories.