North Star Science and Technology, LLC warrants our products against defects in material or workmanship, as follows: For a period of one (1) year from date of purchase, North Star Science and Technology, LLC shall at its sole and absolute option, either repair the defective product at no charge or replace the defective product with the same model or its equivalent model at no charge. Proof of purchase in the form of a bill of sale or receipted invoice, which indicates that the product is within the warranty period, must be presented to obtain warranty service. North Star suggests that the purchaser retain the dated bill of sale as evidence of the date of purchase. This warranty does not cover cosmetic damage, and/or damage to any part of the product (including the antenna) resulting from acts of God, accident, misuse, abuse, improper maintenance, a depleted INTERNAL BATTERY power source, or connection to an improper voltage supply


Please note that when electronics devices are placed on wild animals, the animals themselves are often capable of damaging the electronics sufficiently to cause either poor performance or no performance. Thus, we reserve the right to investigate the cause of any failure or poor performance to the extent possible to determine what we can about the fate of the electronics. Damage to our electronics that was caused by animal behavior may or may not be covered by warranty. These situations will need to be determined on a case by case basis.

Airtime Billing Policy

Just so there is no confusion about how the airtime invoices are being calculated, here is what North Star is doing.

For each calendar quarter, North Star prints out a usage report from the www site that provides the exact number of messages received through the system for each ESN (i.e., collar serial number). Based on that number, North Star can determine exactly how much airtime was used per collar and per account holder. The exact number of messages per account holder is then added up for each month in the quarter, and airtime is billed based not on how your collars were programmed but on how much data you actually received through the system. So you ONLY PAY FOR THE DATA THAT YOU RECEIVE. The monthly rates are shown below. If your collar was programmed to collect, for example, 8 locations per day, but in practice it actually only successfully transmitted 6 per day, you are only charged for the 6 locations per day that you actually received.

Partial months are prorated. Also, in cases where you actually received some number of locations other than what is posted below (e.g., 7 transmissions per day), you will be charged a monthly amount between the posted fees for 6 and 8 transmissions per day.

If a collar is provisioned on the system and it is not transmitting, you are only charged $5 per month per collar to keep it provisioned on the system. If you do not want to pay the $5 per month for a non-transmitting collar, you can ask North Star to decommission it. Once it is decommissioned, there will not be any further charges for that collar, ever. However, if you ever want to use that collar again, you will be charged a $75 activation fee to re-provision it on the system.

Monthly Rates
24 transmissions per day $120 per month
12 transmissions per day $80 per month
8 transmissions per day $63 per month
6 transmissions per day $48 per month
4 transmissions per day $41per month
3 transmissions per day $36 per month
2 transmissions per day $33 per month
1 transmission per day $30 per month
< 1 transmission per day Custom pricing (ask)

Collars that remain provisioned on the system and do not transmit for 12 sequential months will be decommissioned summarily. This is because we have over 1,000 collars provisioned on the system, and we get charged to keep them there. If the collars are not being used, we need to limit our liability for the costs that they generate to us. And it is not our responsibility to track down each researcher to determine why the collars are not being used. After 12 months of inactivity, they will be decommissioned. If, at a later time, the client decides to use the decommissioned collars, a $75 re-activation fee will be charged.

The account holder is responsible for all testing time, both at our shop and while the collar is in your possession. However, we do try to limit the amount of testing time that is actually charged to the account holder.

If a client would like, you can ask North Star to provide its notes and calculations that were used to determine your invoice amount.

North Star routinely accepts wildlife collars and bird PTTs for repair and/or refurbishment, and refurbishment can often be done for a very reasonable amount of money, much less than the cost of a new unit. However, please follow the policies and procedures outlined below when preparing to send items back to North Star. And please notify North Star in advance so we can know to look out for specific items. This way, we can alert you if an item does not arrive.

  1. Whether you are shipping internationally or domestically, PLEASE do not declare the items for any value higher than $100 total. Use a reliable shipper – like FEDEX or UPS or even the Post Office (Please do NOT use DHL) – and declare the items for a low value. This will save North Star from having to pay import duties and taxes, which we would then have to pass along to you, the customer. And this will save you from having to pay exorbitant insurance fees. Used equipment is not worth a high declared value, so don’t do it. Declare the cargo for no more than $100 total.
  2. Mark the airbill to allow delivery without signature. I know all of the FEDEX and UPS drivers, and we have a very SAFE place for them to leave packages for me if I am not around. Your package will be delivered safe and sound – and dry – without my signature.
  3. I cannot say this emphatically enough: PLEASE PLEASE clean every item that you send back as thoroughly as possible. We have received bird PTTs that were retrieved off dead birds, and they sure smelled the part. Also, we have received collars back with feces, blood, mud, hair, and all sorts of unmentionable odors. Please DO NOT ship equipment to us in this condition as it creates a heath concern for our workers and can potentially contaminate equipment for other customers. Clean each item thoroughly with soap and water, and please disinfect each item – especially the collars that may have had blood and/or feces on them. If you do not know what to use to disinfect a collar or PTT, let me know and I will send you some solvent to use.
  4. Please do not make North Star responsible for paying any transportation, duties, taxes, etc. If you want to ship something back to us, feel free, but North Star is not responsible for any of the costs.
  5. If you are shipping UPS or FEDEX please use the North Star street address, as follows:
    Blake Henke North Star Science and Technology, LLC 3325 Lenzi Lane King George, VA 22485 410-961-6692
    If you are shipping via the postal service, you can send it to either the above address or to:
    If you are shipping via the postal service, you can send it to either the above address or to:
    Blake Henke North Star P.O. Box 438 King George, VA 22485
    I check both mail boxes every day, so I will get anything that you send.
  6. Please include a note in the box with the items returned that explains what you want done and when you need to get the items back. Please be as detailed as possible. Send me an e-mail also with the same information.
  7. Feel free to remind me often about your equipment and when you need to get it back. I do not mind the e-mails or phone calls, and it helps keep me on my toes.

Special Notes for Returning Wildlife Tracking Collars

If you send a collar(s) back to the lab to have the data dumped, we need to know the following from you:

  1. What will happen to the collar once the data is dumped? For safety reasons, we will need to remove and dispose of the battery. This will cost our client $7 per collar. After that, we need to know if we are to store the collar(s) with us after removal of battery, return to client with no battery, or return to client with new battery in operational condition). NOTE: If you intend to replace the batteries at some point but are not yet ready to get the collars back, we will hold them until you are ready for field work to resume; this way, fresh batteries are not wasted sitting in a collar for months without being used.
  2. If we keep the collar and store it, a $2 per month fee will be assessed per collar stored.