08 January 2012

On the trail of Happy Feet

NEW ZEALAND - The last we heard of emperor penguin Happy Feet was the final signal from his satellite transmitter on 9 September, and experts have said it is likely we will never know what happened to him.

But the man who paid for that transmitter, Gareth Morgan, has announced his intention to change that.

Dr Morgan is joining a group of scientists on a 30-day voyage to Antarctica in February to raise awareness of the importance of the region. He told the NZ Herald that as Happy Feet has a radio-chip embedded in him, "in theory, we could come across a colony of penguins and go out with a radio transmitter trying to find him.

"It might be, 'Ooh, this one is beeping - it must be Happy Feet'. If we see them ... I'll be out there with my radio transmitter trying to find him."

Dr Morgan said that the mission to find Happy Feet is an "add-on" to the Our Far South project, which aims to raise New Zealanders’ awareness of the importance of the area between Foveaux Strait and the South Pole, to highlight the reasons why it is of such value and to outline the threats and opportunities.

Source
Richlister's mission for Happy Feet by Vaimoana Tapaleao, 10 December 2011, NZ Herald

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