Senses of Danger - How Animals can save the world
13 - Innovations and technological leaps
Country : GERMANY
Producer : k22film
Director : Ralf Blasius
Lenght : 00:52:00
Natural disasters are continuing to catch us off guard, often with catastrophic consequences. Despite advances in predictive technology, the gap in effectiveness can cost hundreds of thousands of lives. Could animals warn us of an impending natural disaster? High-end technology can assist in built-up areas, but animals are abundant on our planet. They could save human lives in regions that have no means of financing expensive technology. We follow scientist Martin Wikelski on a journey around the globe to discover key species that could be crucial for future early warning systems. He and his colleagues have to differentiate fact from fiction. Following the Asian Tsunami of 2004 legends spread of elephants heading inland before it struck. While human casualties topped 300,000, there were no elephant deaths. Coincidence?
This film offers a new understanding of animal behavior through the use of state-of-the-art technology. With the latest developments in GPS technology animal tracking has reached a new level of sophistication, allowing insight into the most private lives of animals. GPS Sensors are now small enough to be attached to birds and even insects, with such accuracy as to determine whether an animal is feeding or sleeping. Miniaturised GPS trackers bring an intimate understanding of the animal world through hitherto hidden patterns of animal interaction. Such developments are not only a boon for science, they can help humans to live in greater harmony with the animal world that surrounds us, benefitting both in the process. If top predators like sharks can alert us to potentially catastrophic shifts in weather, it may help to rehabilitate their image as a dangerous nuisance, and to preserve their vital role in the natural order.