Icarus starts the first of a series of global research project tracking 5000 blackbirds across Europe

A Soyuz capsule approaches the ISS, in the foreground the rod-shaped Icarus antenna can be seen.  © Roscosmos
October 6, 2020

The ICARUS (International Cooperation for Animal Research Using Space) initiative has successfully completed a test phase in the past months and has started its first pilot project across Europe. Martin Wikelski, co-director of the Max Planck Yale Center for Animal Movement Biodiversity and Global Change and principal investigator of ICARUS, will track thousands birds, such as blackbirds (Turdus merula) across Europe to better understand where and why bird populations are declining throughout the world. With trillions of animals migrating across the world connecting ecosystems, the Icarus tracking technology will provide researchers with unprecedented opportunities to study the causes and consequences of such animal movement across the world. The Icarus project has received support from the German and Russian Space Agencies and has recently received endorsement from the Interior Ministries of both countries as a successful international collaboration throughout these difficult times.


For more information, see https://www.mpg.de/15350169/icarus-start-pilot-phase and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fz0po-rFnlA for a video on the tracking of blackbirds.