Thursday, August 10, 2006

Pigeons as smog monitors?

Today's L.A. Times carries this article on the front page of the B section. I'm surprised to see it get that much play in a major metropolitan paper.

Pigeons wearing tiny backpacks and cellphones will roam the skies of Northern California this weekend as part of an unusual art project.

Equipped with miniature smog sensors, the birds will transmit air pollution data to a "pigeon blog" website.
The featherweight gadgetry fits inside a spandex backpack originally designed by a Colorado river-rafting company that employs pigeons to carry rolls of film back to civilization during wilderness tours.

Each smog-sniffing backpack weighs less than a 10th of a pigeon's body weight and costs $250, Da Costa said. Measurements of carbon monoxide and nitrogen oxide are relayed to Earth via pigeon cellphone and posted at
Another launch in Irvine is scheduled for Aug. 18. If you go, please share pics or tales!


Blogger Susan Gets Native said...

Call me crazy, but the thought of pigeons with wee little backpacks makes me happy.

August 10, 2006 6:45 PM  
Blogger Lynne at Hasty Brook said...

What a rotten deal for the teen-ager pigeons, no thumbs- no text messaging!

August 11, 2006 6:33 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

LOL! Thanks for the chuckles, bothaya.

August 11, 2006 10:23 AM  

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