Questions for Tag, You’re It! | Science News for Students

Questions for Tag, You’re It!

Feb 19, 2014 — 3:04 pm EST


Before reading:

1.    Imagine someone tracked and recorded your every movement over the course of a week. Describe at least three types of information these data would reveal about your habits and routines.

2.    Many birds migrate with the seasons. How could you learn more about where they travel and when?

During reading:

1.    Define telemetry.

2.    Telemetry involves transmitting and receiving data. Explain the role each process plays during the tracking of tagged animals.

3.    How can tagging help scientists monitor the health of a specific wild animal over time?

4.    Why would it be difficult to track a penguin’s movements without using tagging?

5.    Explain the connection between sea ice extent and penguin health.

6.    Why is the amount of time a penguin spends foraging important to know?

7.    What appears to be threatening the southern giant petrel? What evidence is there for this?

8.    What is a pop-up archival tag?

9.    How can a shark tag provide an indirect record of when it eats?

After reading:

1.    Pick one of the tagged animals discussed in this story. What additional information about this animal could tagging and monitoring that animal reveal? How?

2.    Collisions with ships can be deadly for whales. Describe how tagging technology could help reduce the incidence of collisions.


  1. A southern giant petrel can travel 2,500 kilometers (1,553 miles) on a feeding trip. Using a map, locate two points separated by that distance to visualize how far the birds can fly in searching for food.
  2. Locate the Western Antarctic Peninsula on a map. What continent does it lie closest to?

Further Reading

S. Moran. "Tag, you're it!" Science News for Students. February 21, 2014.