Eider feathers, or down, aren't just for duvets. In fact, a hormone in those feathers called corticosterone, can indicate the stress eider ducks have been under as they molt. Yukon-based eider researcher Jane Harms explains that stress can be due to nearby predators or sometimes changes in their environment. So, not only can the stress hormone indicate eiders' health and their ability to reproduce, it may also be an indicator of climate change. Get under cover and tune into the tale.
Wetlands are delicate ecosystems. So the last thing researchers really want to do is churn up those wetland waters just to sample them. But what if a flying robot could do that for them? How? We do a flyby visit with a young inventor, Nathan Hoyt, who worked with a small team of high school students to figure it out. Plus, they're making a business out of it. Listen in. We promise we won't drone on.
Like to learn more about these topics and other aspects of wetlands conservation? You can at ducks.ca.
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Jane Harms is the program veterinarian with the Department of the Environment in Yukon.
Nathan Hoyt is a student at the Fredericton High School and is now a co-owner of Eco Drone Water Collection. If you’d like to learn more about his fledgling company visit ecodronewatercollection.com