'Alarmed' sheep's heartbeats could warn shepherds of wolf attacks
GENEVA (AFP) - 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 biologist 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 heart monitor before being targeted by a pair of Wolfdogs - both of which were muzzled.
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.