SPY chiefs have at last revealed|
their most secret of undercover agents — gerbils By Amanda Evans (Archived in Spy News)
And when it comes to sniffing out moles even James Bond couldn't match them. Licensed to kill? "No, these boys are licensed to smell," revealed a source deep inside the counterespionage community. The key to the gerbil's unique role in tackling fanatics bent on world domination is its acutely powerful nose that can scent a whiff of treason in seconds. It does this by detecting a rise in adrenalin, the chemical released in sweat when humans are under stress.
The gerbils were to be trained to help smell a rat
BBC News, Saturday, 30 June, 2001
Security Serivce MI5 once planned to recruit a team of specially-trained gerbils as a secret weapon to sniff out spies, it has been revealed. The animals were to help interrogate suspects because they could use their acute sense of smell to detect a rise in adrenalin - the chemical released in sweat when people feel under stress.
MI5 planned to use gerbil spycatchers |
By Richard Norton-Taylor
The Guardian , Saturday June 30, 2001
MI5 sleuths planned to use gerbils to trap secret agents, terrorists, and subversives during the cold war, Britain's top counterspy revealed yesterday. Gerbils can scent increased adrenalin from sweat - an instinct which makes them the perfect detector of people up to no good. Or so security boffins thought.
MI5's secret plan to recruit gerbils as spycatchers|
The Telegraph, Saturday 30 June 2001
By Michael Smith, Defence Correspondent
MI5 considered using a team of highly-trained gerbils to detect spies and terrorists flying into Britain during the 1970s, Sir Stephen Lander, the service's director-general, revealed yesterday. The plan was based on the ability of gerbils to detect a rise in adrenalin from changes in the scent of human sweat.
Why MI5 wanted gerbils with a nose for fear |
The Times, Saturday 30 June 2001
BY MICHAEL EVANS, DEFENCE EDITOR
THE short, secret role of gerbils in the hunt for suspected hostile infiltrators was revealed by the head of MI5 yesterday. Sir Stephen Lander, Director-General of the Security Service, who was once head of MI5's registry of files, recalled seeing a file which described the special sniffing qualities of the domestic rodent. An MI5 man came up with the idea in the 1970s of using gerbils to detect nervous people arriving at airports. Apparently the Canadians had found that gerbils had such a powerful sense of smell that they could detect the slightest whiff of adrenalin, the chemical released in sweat when human beings are under stress.
MI5 'recruited gerbils to smell a rat'|
Ananova, Saturday 30 June 2001
MI5 planned to recruit a team of trained gerbils to help expose undercover agents, according to the security service's director-general. The rodents were to play a key role in the interrogation of suspects because their acute sense of smell meant they could detect a rise in adrenalin, the chemical released in sweat when humans feel under stress.
(Archived in Spy News)