My research team has used this technology to develop some very specialised wildlife tracking tags and collars. Each of the collars also had a small radio transmitter, so if the collar did fall off we could track it down. Being on site enabled us to examine the data as soon as it came off the collars, and to work closely with behaviour specialists Dr Sarah Ellis, of the University of Lincoln, and Dr John Bradshaw, of Bristol University, to interpret early results and decide how the study should progress. The project was fascinating for us as we were able to learn so much about cats and their human interactions.
More on this story Secret life of the cat: What do our feline companions get up to? Republican Party front-runner Donald Trump steps up his criticism of China's trade policy, accusing it of "raping" the US. You don't need GPS and cameras to know what your cat gets up to when you have a cat like Clive. Nimbus is the adored cat of my daughter and he came to stay with his cousins, my four cats and two dogs (as he has done in the past many times) whilst his parents left for a week in England.
Our cat George, an 11-year old Siamese cross Devon Rex, doesn't venture far but he does constantly seek out company. Where I lived previously, Tiggy used to visit my neighbour's house through an upstairs window and drink the milk out of her Teasmade in the bedroom.
Explore the BBC News News Sport Weather Shop Earth Travel Capital iPlayer Culture Autos Future TV Radio CBBC CBeebies Food iWonder Bitesize Travel Music Earth Arts Make It Digital Taster Nature Local Terms of Use About the BBC Privacy Policy Cookies Accessibility Help Parental Guidance Contact the BBC Advertise with us Ad choices Copyright © 2016 BBC. Notes: The 10 cats above are a selection of 50 studied in the Surrey Hills over a number of weeks. Read more about the science and technology behind the study from Alan Wilson of the Royal Veterinary College. Researchers in the US copy bird and bat wings to build a drone that can rebound and recover from mid-air collisions. Many people use GPS to stop them getting lost and help them reach their final destination when on a journey.
Finding your way from one end of a country to the other used to require at least one very large map, if not a multitude of small ones. Wading through the undergrowth trying to find a golf ball that somehow managed to find its way off the green is no golfer's favourite activity.But golf balls which contain a small GPS chip have now reduced this hide-and-seek element of the game.
More on this story What does it take to break a terror suspect's GPS tag? Yet, despite our domestic cats playing a big role in our lives, we know surprisingly little about what they get up to. They use a combination of high-accuracy GPS and electronic sensors to record the activity and movement of animals ranging from pigeons to big cats.
Perhaps we think we know about them because they are so familiar to us - living in our homes and being part of our families.
Luckily we only lost a couple, so we were able to collect a very complete data set from all the cats we tracked.So, with our equipment developed and our village of cats ready for action, my research team moved with their computers into Shamley Green Village Hall for the main week of the study in April this year.
For example, the collar data helped us to decide where to place fixed cameras by identifying activity hotspots.


Often our findings would contradict what owners believed their cats were getting up to.We were particularly surprised by how small the ranges of most of the cats were, and how few of them went into the surrounding countryside. The study also suggested cats were becoming increasingly domesticated, visiting each other's houses rather than roaming large distances and hunting.Here, readers tell the stories of their own cats' antics. We have a gym down the road where he visits regularly, entering the aerobic classes and weights room.
On the day she went missing it was a very sunny day (for Scotland) and there were lots of people out on the street - BBQs, garden parties etc. As part of the largest ever research project into domestic cat behaviour, the Horizon team - aided by the Royal Veterinary College and Lincoln and Bristol Universities - tracked dozens of pet cats over several 24-hour periods using specially-designed collar GPS devices and tiny "cat cams". The findings revealed that when owners thought their cats were out prowling the neighbourhood gardens, they were in fact sneaking in to other cat owners' houses to eat the food.Where have you been? Tags that attach to bags or clothing, wrist bands that can be worn or apps that can be accessed on smartphones can all be used to monitor movement. A research project by BBC2's Horizon and the Royal Veterinary College set out to find out more. In fact, we know less about some aspects of their behaviour than we do about many wild cats.
The data also told us how active each cat was, which helped us choose which cats to fit with "cat cam" collars.
He has only been kept by us because of a collar which not only gives his name, address and telephone number but a message stating "Get me home". We contacted the delivery company and the driver said that a black cat flew out, past his ear, at his next stop - Chipping Norton (50 miles away) - and ran off into gardens.
He proved a real character and, after settling into our new home, Henry quickly became a dominant male in the area.
This often coincided with the family holiday, so we did wonder whether he was going in hunt of us. Armed with GPS tracking devices and micro-cameras, a team from BBC Two's Horizon programme in collaboration with the Royal Veterinary College set off to a Surrey village to find out. The satellites in the sky have allowed the most hapless of sportsmen to speed up his game.Professional footballers are also using GPS to improve their game. So the Horizon programme and the study in our chosen village - Shamley Green in Surrey - was a fantastic opportunity to find out some of this missing information.
One theory is that their roaming is dictated by the hunt for food - something more easily done in the village. So for the past four years, I have spent much of my time collecting him or having him delivered home. He has visited and been collected from the vets, the nursery, the school, the station a-mile-and-a-half away, various pubs, shops - including Tesco and Costa - the petrol station, the park, the fair, puppy training classes, the dog show, the leisure centre, to name but a few. His strangest habit was to leave the house in summertime, walk to the nearest main road and get on the bus. He died six years ago at the ripe old age of 18 and where he went each summer will always remain a mystery! We came outside our house one night to see him in "conversation" with two other cats - no fighting just sitting on the fence.


We know she goes quite a way as we often get calls from people (she has a tag) and have to go and pick her up in the car.
All equipment was checked by animal welfare experts to ensure it was the right size and weight for cats to wear safely. Three Japanese tourists on holiday in Australia in 2012 found themselves floating rather than driving after their GPS system tried to send them across water to reach an island.In cities around the world it is now a common sight to see pedestrians with their head bowed over a smartphone as they track themselves on a map trying to work out where they are going. Studying animals in the wild without disturbing their natural behaviour has never been easy, but over the past few years a lot of new technology has come along to help us.
We have also discovered how often they hunt, how often they make a kill and new information about their athletic capabilities.
The biggest challenge for the team was to make the tracking equipment - the GPS and activity sensor tags - small and light enough for domestic cats to wear around their necks on safety-release collars. He has come home with coloured feet (after an encounter with teenagers) and has been responsible for a broken arm (a little boy learning to ride a bike got overexcited to see him) and for a referee having to stop a football match in the park. This was no ordinary bus, however, but a circular route that started and ended at Henry's stop. One time, the local school called me as she wouldn't leave the playground and was "distracting" the kids.The furthest she ever travelled was a mile away, crossing a busy road at some point. The maps of the routes of the 10 cats above are not all from the same 24-hour period or necessarily from the same day the cat cam footage was recorded. It was also interesting to see how much variation there was in the cats' activity patterns through the day. He has also been found in my daughter's maths class (to the children's delight), attended drill at the cadets and set off a security scare in middle of the night at the local flower show tent. Between circuits, the drivers used to open the door, check for lost property and generally make sure everything was OK before starting their next run. GPS tracking data was filtered to discard obvious false readings, however some smaller inaccuracies may remain. This was influenced by many factors, such as the weather, temperature, feeding times and owner's timetables.
At that point, Henry would board, taking a seat at the back and getting to know the passengers during the route. She actually wasn't that far away, but had based herself in one of the more posh areas of the town!
When he had [done] the [route] a couple of times he would then disembark, and wend his way home! When we still lived in London he used to follow me to work and sit under my desk as I worked at the local solicitors.



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