Chinese boffins develop remote control pigeons

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Chinese boffins develop remote control pigeons

Bush requests billions for anti-guano defences.

Scientists in China have found a way to control pigeons remotely by implanting minute electrodes in their brains.

Researchers at the Robot Engineering Technology Research Center at China's Shandong University of Science and Technology have developed a computer system which allows them to tell the birds to fly left, right, up or down.

Chief scientist Su Xuecheng told Chinese state media that the experiments mark the first successful attempt to control a pigeon's flight. Similar experiments on mice had been carried out by the team two years ago.

The technique has a variety of practical uses, such as helping amputees to use mechanical limbs and controlling animals fitted with cameras to search large areas or disaster zones.

Experiments at Arizona State University earlier this year, funded by the US Neural Prosthesis Program, used a monkey to control a robotic arm.
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