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  1. #1
    COJOMAY is offline Jersey Retired
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    Plastic duck armada is heading for Britain after 15-year global voyage


    A flotilla of plastic ducks is heading for Britain’s beaches, according to an American oceanographer.

    For the past 15 years Curtis Ebbesmeyer has been tracking nearly 30,000 plastic bath toys that were released into the Pacific Ocean when a container was washed off a cargo ship.

    Some of the ducks, known as Friendly Floatees, are expected to reach Britain after a journey of nearly 17,000 miles, having crossed the Arctic Ocean frozen into pack ice, bobbed the length of Greenland and been carried down the eastern seaboard of the United States.

    Mr Ebbesmeyer, who is based in Seattle, said yesterday that those that had not been trapped in circulating currents in the North Pacific, crushed by icebergs or blown ashore in Japan are bobbing across the Atlantic on the Gulf Stream.

    Any beachcomber who finds one of the ducks will be able to claim a $100 (£50) reward from the toys’ American distributor, First Years Inc.

    The ducks began life in a Chinese factory and were being shipped to the US from Hong Kong when three 40ft containers fell into the Pacific during a storm on January 29, 1992. Two thirds of them floated south through the tropics, landing months later on the shores of Indonesia, Australia and South America. But 10,000 headed north and by the end of the year were off Alaska and heading back westwards. It took three years for the ducks to circle east to Japan, past the original drop site and then back to Alaska on a current known as the North Pacific Gyre before continuing north towards the Arctic.

    Many were stranded as the currents took them through the Bering Strait, which divides Alaska from Russia. Mr Ebbesmeyer predicted that they would spend years trapped in the Arctic ice, moving at the rate of one mile a day towards the Atlantic.

    In 2000, eight years after their journey began, the ducks were reported in the North Atlantic and in 2003, when they were expected to wash up on the east coast of America, First Years Inc announced the reward. By now the ducks had been bleached white by the sun and sea water. Sightings in the past two years have been scant, but oceanographers believe that their next port of call is southwest England, southern Ireland and western Scotland.

    Simon Boxall, of the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton, said that the ducks offered a great opportunity for climate change research. “They are a nice tracer for what the currents are doing as they travel around the world, and currents are what determines our climate, and cycles of carbon.

    “I would ask holidaymakers to keep an eye out, as they might be very few and far between by now. It’s a real adventure story and the plastic should last 100 years, so we hope it will continue.”

    The landfalls have all been logged on a computer model called the Ocean Surface Currents Simulation, which is used to help fisheries and find people lost at sea. Two children’s books have been written about the saga and the ducks have become collector’s items, changing hands for £500.
    Kentucky Vikes Fan

    When you require nothing, you get nothing; when you expect nothing, you will find nothing; when you embrace nothing, all you will have is nothing.

  2. #2
    Billy Boy is offline Hall of Famer
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    Re: Plastic duck armada is heading for Britain after 15-year global voyage

    Priceless.
    I am assuming the bug has struck during the creation of a thread.

    Hey Cojo have you ever read your sig before?
    Talk about double standards.


    All the kids my age pee their pants, it's the coolest.

  3. #3
    COJOMAY is offline Jersey Retired
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    Re: Plastic duck armada is heading for Britain after 15-year global voyage

    Hey Cojo have you ever read your sig before?
    Talk about double standards.
    LOL I added that to my sig quite awhile ago when we were having some problems here. Funny at the time but it's kinds out of date now. I usually don't do that except in rare cases where the source is so obscure that I know that it's not going to cost them readership. But good eye. Thanks for catching it and I'll try to do better in the future!
    Kentucky Vikes Fan

    When you require nothing, you get nothing; when you expect nothing, you will find nothing; when you embrace nothing, all you will have is nothing.

  4. #4
    BloodyHorns82's Avatar
    BloodyHorns82 is offline Jersey Retired Feed The Frog Champion
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    Re: Plastic duck armada is heading for Britain after 15-year global voyage

    This is actually a pretty interesting story!
    I've never heard of the ducks before.
    It's amazing that they are even still floating about all these year later.

  5. #5
    Marrdro's Avatar
    Marrdro is offline Beware My Spreadsheet, Bitches!
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    Re: Plastic duck armada is heading for Britain after 15-year global voyage

    You know whats bad?????
    Everytime I get out into the Atlantic this year I will be thinking about this article.


    ;D
    Thanks Cojo.
    ;D
    Many many thanks to my talented friend Jos for the new Sig.http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v343/josdin00/Vikings/Marrdro_sig.jpg

  6. #6
    Prophet's Avatar
    Prophet is offline Jersey Retired
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    Re: Plastic duck armada is heading for Britain after 15-year global voyage

    I think I will quit my job and look for the ducks.
    Get your facts first, and then you can distort them as much as you please. Mark Twain

  7. #7
    Zeus's Avatar
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    Re: Plastic duck armada is heading for Britain after 15-year global voyage

    "COJOMAY" wrote:
    The ducks began life in a Chinese factory and were being shipped to the US from Hong Kong when three 40ft containers fell into the Pacific during a storm on January 29, 1992. Two thirds of them floated south through the tropics, landing months later on the shores of Indonesia, Australia and South America. But 10,000 headed north and by the end of the year were off Alaska and heading back westwards. It took three years for the ducks to circle east to Japan, past the original drop site and then back to Alaska on a current known as the North Pacific Gyre before continuing north towards the Arctic.
    This children's book, by Eric Carle, sprung from his head after reading the original story of the storm.


    http://www.amazon.com/Little-Rubber-Ducks-Eric-Carle/dp/0007202423/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/104-7244035-7231945?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1183120026&sr=8-1



    Not a bad book - it was given to my daughter as a gift a couple Christmases back.

    =Z=

    Thanks to Josdin for the awesome sig!

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