The ICARUS-Team at ESA, November 29th 2012

Published by Max Planck Institute on Thu, 12/06/2012 - 11:36

ICARUS representatives of the Max-Planck-Institute for Ornithology, SpaceTech and DLR meet with ESA presenting a first overview on the ongoing activities and current technical developments of the ICARUS Space Segment Project. The picture shows the team at the Columbus Modul on ISS at ESA, Noordwijk NL.

The Third Exploratory Round Table Conference or ERTC in Shanghai from 1 to 3 November 2012

Published by Max Planck Institute on Wed, 11/14/2012 - 19:57

The Third Exploratory Round Table Conference or ERTC, on the topic of “Space-Based Research”, took place in Shanghai from 1 to 3 November 2012 under the auspices of the Shanghai Institute for Advanced Studies. The event is the third of a new series of annual conferences which are intended to provide a joint platform for scientists of both Max Planck Society (MPG) and Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) together with international leading scientists to discuss and evaluate newly emerging and rapidly evolving fields of research. ICARUS presented by Martin Wikelski was part of it. Please read more:

Successful Milestone Review on November 8th, 2012 at the DLR, Bonn-Oberkassel

Published by Max Planck Institute on Sun, 07/29/2012 - 15:08

ICARUS achieved a very successful Milestone Review on November 8th, 2012 at the DLR - German Aerospace Center at Bonn-Oberkassel.

The goal of this review was to verify that the technical feasibility of the overall ICARUS system was given and successfully demonstrated by the work of the contractors, i.e. SpaceTech GmbH (STI) and Steinbeiss Technologiezentrum Raumfahrt (TZR). The Milestone Review was conducted by the Max-Planck-Institute for Ornithology (MPIO).

"Migration of Animals" published by "Akademie Aktuell", Bavarian Academy of Sciences, October 2012

Published by Max Planck Institute on Fri, 05/18/2012 - 23:00
Only large birds can be watched via ARGOS satellite transmitters worldwide. Smal

Biotelemetry Migration of Animals Scientists are studying the annual migration of animal herds, flocks of birds or insects to have a better understanding of the distribution of animals and their migratory habits – not least in the light of biological threats and pandemic diseases. The research project ICARUS will soon record animal movement via the International Space station ISS. Migration behavior of animals Animals are among the most important features of our planet and the vast majority are continuously on the move. Details of their migration routes are only known of a few species. How do they find their way? How much stress are they under? What are the effects, positive and negative, of their migration and their behavior on our shared habitat? At present our understanding of the impacts of such things like natural hazards and –recently- human influence on animal migration is limited. Most often we do not know how these impacts might lead to extinction. As long as it is unclear where, when, how and why a single animal of a population dies, it cannot be understood how animals adapt to continuously changing environmental conditions. A dramatic example are the 10 billion of 20 billion migratory birds which die each year without us predicting their fate or being able to observe them.

FAO and Max Planck Institute take on species-swapping diseases

Published by Max Planck Institute on Mon, 01/23/2012 - 09:41
Wild birds in Thailand await inspection by animal health authorities.

Focus on interactions between wild animals, livestock,and human populations to reduce risks, strengthen responses 

30 May 2011, Rome - FAO and the German Max Planck Institute are joining forces to study species-swapping diseasesthat move back and forth between wild animals and domestic livestock and, in somecases, jump to human victims.

In today's interconnected world, population growth, modern transportation and increased global trade in animals and animal products have vastly accelerated the spread of zoonoses - species jumping diseases - capable of wreaking major impacts on farmers'livelihoods and human health alike. A/H1N1 swine flu and the highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza are but two recent examples.

A memorandum of understanding signed today by FAO and the Max-Planck-Institute for Ornithology, based in Radolfzell, Germany, establishes a strategic partnership aimed at combining the organizations'expertise and resources to tackle this problem.

A key goal of the partnership will be to determine which agroecological landscapes represent the greatest risk for disease transmission among human, livestock, and wild animal populations.
Among other things, the agreement also commits FAO and the Institute to helping countries strengthen their national capacity to balance preservation of natural resources and biodiversity with and expansion and intensification of agricultural production to ensure food security.

Strategic partnership, holistic vision

"Combining the Institute's extensive trove of data on wildlife movements with FAO data on livestock production and landscape changes due to agriculture, forestry and urbanisation, will permit a new level of insight into animal-human interactions, conservation priorities, and more effective management of and response to health risks," said Martin Wikelski, director of the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology.

FAO Deputy Director-General for Knowledge Ann Tutwiler added: "Disease dynamics can no longer be considered in isolation within the livestock sector but must be placed into a broader context of sustainable agriculture, socio-economic development, environment protection and sustainability."

"This is why FAO is moving forward with the ‘One Health' approach that emphasizes a multidisciplinary collaboration in solving challenging health issues arising from the livestock-wildlife-human-ecosystem interfaces -- working closely with partners like the Max Planck Institute," Tutwiler said.

About FAO and the Institute

The Department of Migration and Immuno-ecology of the Max Planck Institute for Ornithology has far-reaching expertise in investigating animal movements on a global scale,including the creation of its online, open-access database on world animal movements, MoveBank.

FAO has long worked to safeguard animal and veterinary public health, maintain animal genetic diversity, and minimize the environmental impact of livestock production. The UN agency has played a leading role in helping countries cope with outbreaks of zoonotic and non-zoonotic animal diseases, including understanding and addressing the factors leading to their emergence. This includes work on avian influenza, A/H1N1 influenza, rift valley fever, and African sleeping sickness as well as the international effort to eradicate rinderpest.