"We were literally dripping with snot in these dishes!"
June 1, 2016 9:03 PM   Subscribe

Low-flying research drones have to watch out for whale snot. Researchers for Ocean Alliance are using DJI's Phantom 4 drone to shadow blue whales in the sea of Cortez, allowing them to capture pictures, video, and — yes — gooey biological samples without disturbing the creatures.
posted by Johnny Wallflower (7 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Try to overlook the misuse of "cephalopod" in the very first sentence.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 9:04 PM on June 1, 2016 [3 favorites]

...without disturbing the creatures.

One whale to another: "Is it just me, or are the mosquitoes really big this year?"
posted by 445supermag at 9:25 PM on June 1, 2016 [6 favorites]

Everybody in Wales speaks Phlegmish.
posted by The Underpants Monster at 10:07 PM on June 1, 2016 [2 favorites]

Amazon taps previously overlooked market.
posted by arcticseal at 10:32 PM on June 1, 2016

Until they come up with a game where a drone hunts you in the wilderness while you listen to ARG updates on your earpiece, this is my favourite usage of drones.
posted by Theta States at 6:31 AM on June 2, 2016 [2 favorites]

I'll have to mention this to a marine biologist friend who's recently been studying krill in the blue whale diet by collecting blue whale feces, with obvious difficulties; maybe she needs similar drones.

She says even when the feces are double-bagged, sealed, and shut in the fridge, they make such a stench that no-one can bear to be in her lab.
posted by anadem at 10:27 AM on June 2, 2016

She would need an underwater drone, then. The tether requirement seems quite limiting, however.
posted by Johnny Wallflower at 11:14 AM on June 2, 2016

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