Sea lions like Gremlin can detect and mark mines and attach “handcuffs” underwater

By People Staff
December 01, 2009 09:15 PM

You’ve heard about dogs helping apprehend criminals – but what about slippery sea lions? The U.S. Navy has found these creatures to be skilled combatants that can be trained to detect mines and even put cuffs on enemies!

These talented sea lions (including Gremlin, above) can trap an enemy diver underwater. “We have trained sea lions to attach a leg cuff, just like hand cuffs, but fitted on a diver’s thigh,” Tom LaPuzza from the Biosciences Division of the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Pacific told the Daily Mail. “The device works in the same way as handcuffs. Once they are on, they cannot come off.”

According to the Web site of the U.S. Marine Mammal Program, it’s the sea lion’s low-light vision, keen underwater hearing capabilities and ability to maneuver in tight spaces that makes them so valuable. So, to sea-faring suspects (Jack Sparrow, we’re looking at you!), we say watch out!

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