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Seals help Japanese researchers collect data under Antarctic ice

Seals help Japanese researchers collect data under Antarctic ice

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Seals help Japanese researchers collect data under Antarctic ice
  • Project leader said such research helps scientists trace the animals’ behavioural patterns and ecology.
  • Each seals had travelled as far as 633km (393 miles) from the coast of Japan’s Showa Station in Antarctica.
  • These seals were equipped with the head-mounted conductivity, temperature and depth sensor.

A seal wearing a helmet with an antenna might look unusual, but eight Weddell seals, each with a 580g monitoring device on their heads, have been helping Japanese researchers survey the waters under the thick ice sheet in Antarctica.

Tapped for a research project between March and November 2017 – winter in Antarctica – these seals were equipped with the head-mounted conductivity, temperature and depth sensor, which allows scientists to collect observation data, such as water temperatures and salt levels, in areas with extremely harsh environmental conditions.

Project leader Nobuo Kokubun said such research helps scientists trace the animals’ behavioural patterns and ecology.

“During the summer, we can go to Antarctica on icebreakers to conduct actual research activities, so that we can collect data there. But during the winter, such things cannot be done in so many places,” Kokubun said during an interview with Reuters on Friday.

“However, even in such a situation, many animals such as seals are living in the area of Antarctica, so I thought we should have them collect the data,” Kokubun added.

The data successfully gathered from seven seals showed one of them had travelled as far as 633km (393 miles) from the coast of Japan’s Showa Station in Antarctica, while another had descended to a depth of 700m (2,297 ft).

Kokubun said the scientists also learned from the data that warm seawater from the upper layer in the open sea reached Antarctica from March through winter that year. The water flowed below the ice, bringing in sea creatures like Antarctic krill, a major food source for seals.

Aiming to examine further the impact of global warming on Antarctic coastal areas, Kokubun next hopes to make the device small enough to fit on other animals at the South Pole such as penguins.

“The advantage with penguins is that they come back to the same place and we can collect the data from them immediately. Also, we can use the devices on a large number of penguins so they can cover a wide area,” he said.

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Saudi Arabia rewards brave police officer ASP Shehrbano with a royal pension.

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Sources claim that when the two met at the Saudi embassy, where the ambassador was entertaining the courageous female officer, the diplomat gave ASP Shehrbano the information.

The Saudi ambassador praised the police officer’s bravery and assured her that her family’s travel expenses to Saudi Arabia as a royal guest will be covered by the Saudi royal family.

He gave the ASP high marks for her poise and selfless dedication to her work in managing an agitated environment.

One day before, the Gulberg ASP visited the Chief of Army Staff (COAS), General Syed Asim Munir, at General Headquarters.

The head of the army acknowledged the significant contribution Pakistani women made to society as a whole.

He was cited as adding, “Since independence, Pakistani women have made a name for themselves both at home and abroad thanks to their skill, perseverance, and determination.

Additionally, ASP Shehrbano’s name was suggested by IG Punjab Usman Anwar for the Quied e Azam Police award.

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36% of fresh faces make it to the National Assembly.

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Following the general elections of this year, a record 36% of new members have joined the National Assembly.

There are now 96 new legislators that have been elected to the assembly out of 265 total. In the general elections, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) has elected the most number of fresh faces as Independents.

Of the new faces, eleven PPP and MQM members, as well as fifteen PML-N members, have become MNAs for the first time. The IPP’s Abdul Aleem Khan and Awn Chaudhry were elected to the National Assembly for the first time.

Ataullah Tarar of the Pakistan Muslim League-N, Mir Jamal Khan Raisani, the party’s youngest member, was also elected from Balochistan for the first time and made it to the lower house.

Sher Afzal Marwat, Latif Khosa, and Barrister Gohar Ali Khan, who is supported by the PTI, are some of the fresh faces. In the last parliament, Shandana Gulzar had a reserved seat; however, this time, she was elected to a general seat.

Arshad Vohra, Syed Mustafa Kamal, and Rauf Siddiqui of the MQM were also elected to the National Assembly for the first time.

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The government declares March 2 a public holiday.

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In the province capital, Madhu Lal Hussain’s 436th annual three-day urs festivities will get underway on Saturday.

Secretary Auqaf Dr. Tahir Raza will execute the customary chador laying on the saint’s grave to kick off the urs festivities.

On this occasion, ulema Mushaikh, members of the Religious Committee, and a sizable crowd of devotees will take part.

For the Urs gift, the Auqaf Department has set up Rs 459,000. The agency and local police put together impenetrable security plans for the guests.

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