Swiss sheep to warn shepherds of wolf attacks by SMS

Aug 04, 2012
During the experiment, the change in the flock's heartbeat was found to be significant enough to imagine a system whereby the sheep could be fitted with a collar that releases a repellent to drive the wolf away, while also sending an SMS to the shepherd.

Using sheep to alert shepherds of an imminent wolf attack by text message might sound fanciful, but testing is already under way in Switzerland where the predator appears to be back.

"It's the first time that such a system has been tried outdoors," said Jean-Marc Landry, who took part in testing on a Swiss meadow this week.

In the trial, reported by the country's news agency ATS, around 10 sheep were each equipped with a before being targeted by a pair of Wolfdogs -- both of which were muzzled.

During the experiment, the change in the flock's was found to be significant enough to imagine a system whereby the sheep could be fitted with a collar that releases a repellent to drive the wolf away, while also sending an SMS to the shepherd.

The device is aimed at owners of small who lack the funds to keep a sheepdog, Landry said, adding that it could also be used in tourist areas where guard dogs are not popular.

A prototype collar is expected in the autumn and testing is planned in Switzerland and France in 2013. Other countries including Norway are said to be interested.

The issue of wolves is a divisive one in Switzerland where the animals appear to be back after a 100-year absence.

On July 27 a wolf killed two sheep in St Gall, the first such attack in the eastern canton.

Explore further: What if our children are the screen-obsessed couch potatoes of the future?

Related Stories

Many in West fear wolf reintroduction

Dec 27, 2005

Some 900 wolves roam Idaho, Oregon, Montana, Wyoming and Colorado thanks to a federal program that reintroduced and protected the wolf in the West.

Recommended for you

Amazon says FAA drone approval already obsolete

Mar 27, 2015

The approval federal aviation officials gave Amazon.com last week to test a specific drone design outdoors is already outdated, the company's top policy executive said Tuesday in written testimony to a Senate subcommittee.

Special ops troops using flawed intel software

Mar 26, 2015

Special operations troops heading to war zones are asking for commercial intelligence analysis software they say will help their missions. But their requests are languishing, and they are being ordered to use a flawed, in-house ...

Amazon says US too late on drone rules

Mar 24, 2015

Online giant Amazon told Congress on Tuesday the US government is lagging in implementing rules for commercial drones, making it hard to make plans for its quick delivery system by air.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.