Data Summary for

"Mac" and "Arthur"
Elephant Seals

(Mirounga Angustirostris)

Summary Page


7/29/97

We received locations from both tags on Sunday afternoon right after we stuck them on the seals. This is good. Both tags were started before we put them on and they will run for several hours. The tags are programmed to shut down if they stay dry for more than six hours. This prevents the tags from using up all of their battery if the seal is just hauled out somewhere. After the tags get wet they turn themselves back on and start transmitting again. At least we hope they do and this is the first thing to sweat out. The good news is that we are getting readings from "Mac's" tag the bad news is that we have not gotten anything from "Arthur" yet. I'm not too worried yet about this, because he might not be on the surface very much and not sending very many signals, so we will see. It took about a week to ten days before we got locations and regular signals from some of the other tags, so we will have to wait and see.

As for "Mac" we have no locations so far, but have begun to get a few dive data messages. What we have, so far, shows that on the day he was released, his deepest dive was to a little over three hundred feet. If I remember this was just about where the bottom was where he was let go. We received a few messages on dive duration this AM (Wed). In all we have gotten seven messages since he was released. The duration information was a real surprise with three dives longer than an hour. (yikes!!). The readings were from two different six hour periods during which "Mac" did about 15-20 dives. This tells me that he is spending a lot of time under water and not much on the surface. If "Arthur" is doing the same thing this might be one reason we have not heard from his tag yet.

That is the quick news for now.

Greg Early
Edgerton Research Laboratory
New England Aquarium
Central Wharf
Boston, Mass 02110
617-973-5246 (phone)
617-723-6207 (FAX)
www.neaq.org

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