Six days in November on Sable Island

I have just returned from a short trip to Sable Island. The purpose of the visit was for my work with Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the deployment of video cameras on two adult female grey seals.

Each seal also had a satellite transmitter so we can see where the seal goes and an accelerometer that records fine movements of the seal’s body and head. We are hoping that the footage recorded by the camera and the data from the transmitter and accelerometer will help us better understand the seal’s behaviour while at sea. 

The image below is of a seal called F412. We attached the camera to her on 3rd November on the North Beach. She has a strong record of pupping on Sable Island so we are quite confident that she will return in December to give birth and we can recover the camera.
 F412 showing the satellite tag and video camera
 F412 departs the beach carrying the digital video camera

The map below shows the movement of F142 from Sable Island (red line). The blue line is of another female carrying the same instruments.  The two seals departed Sable at the same time and are obviously following a similar track out to foraging grounds.

As soon as night time arrives and the seal dives to below 25 m the camera will turn on and record the seal’s behaviour.

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