From the archive, originally posted by: [ spectre ]
Police in Iran are reported to have taken 14 squirrels into custody – because they are suspected of spying. The rodents were found near the Iranian border allegedly equipped with eavesdropping devices, according to Sky News. The reports have come from the official Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA). When asked to confirm the story, the national police chief said: “I have heard about it, but I do not have precise information.” The IRNA said that the squirrels were kitted out by foreign intelligence services – but were captured two weeks ago by police officers. A Foreign Office source told Sky News: “The story is nuts.” But if true, this would not be the first time animals have been used to spy. During the Second World War, the Allied Forces used pigeons to fly vital intelligence out of occupied France. More recently, US marines stationed in Kuwait have used chickens as a low-tech chemical detection system.
Chinese scientists experiment with remote control of animals
Chinese scientists said they have succeeded in an experiment to remotely control the flight of a pigeon with electronic technology. Scientists with the Robot Engineering Technology Research Center of east China’s Shandong University of Science and Technology say they
implanted micro electrodes in the brain of a pigeon so they can command it to fly right or left or up or down. The implants stimulated different areas of the pigeon’s brain according to signals sent by the scientists via computer, and forced the bird to comply with their commands. It’s the first such successful experiment on a pigeon in the world, said the chief scientist Su Xuecheng. The electronic signals resemble the signals generated by the brain which control body movement, said Su. Su and his colleagues are improving the devices used in the experiment ahd hope that the technology can be put into practical use in future. Su conducted a similar successful experiment on mice in 2005.