If sharks can tweet, when do we get our friggin’ laser beams?

Artist's conception of a shark tweeting. Wikimedia Commons / Lee Hutchinson / via ARS Technica

Artist’s conception of a shark tweeting.
Wikimedia Commons / Lee Hutchinson / via ARS Technica

Via the tipline

Western Australia’s beachgoers are a bit more informed as to the whereabouts of the region’s shark population this summer, thanks to a scientific initiative that has fitted transmitters to more than 300 sharks of various types. The transmitters are picked up by underwater receivers, and when a tagged shark comes within a kilometer of the shore, a tweet appears in the Surf Life Saving Western Australia twitter feed (@SLSWA).  

The tweet notes the type of shark, the receiver that picked up the shark, and the time and date the shark was detected. By glancing at the feed, Australians can get an idea of the amount of shark activity (if any) at their beach of choice and decide whether or not to brave the waters.

The transmitters are being attached to sharks as part of an ongoing government program by the Western Australian Department of Fisheries to better understand the movement patterns of sharks, particularly great whites, around Western Australia. The tags are also intended to enhance public safety by alerting the public when sharks approach beaches. The tags should last up to a decade on their internal batteries.

That’s a pretty creative use of technology.

I wonder if we can change the law to apply it to sexual predators also?


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