'The First Years' 'Friendly Floatee' plastic beaver, 1990-1992

1990-1992 in China

Buy this image as a print 

License this image for commercial use at Science and Society Picture Library

Science Museum Group
© The Board of Trustees of the Science Museum

'Toy, The First Years' 'Friendly Floatee' red (faded to pale yellow) plastic beaver, swept overboard in North Pacific in 1992 and washed up in Sitka, Alaska. Used by Curtis Ebbesmeyer and other oceanographers, to track drift patterns.

These plastic beavers were part of a consignment of nearly 30,000 plastic toys that fell into the North Pacific from a container ship in 1992. Many of these toys inadvertently became part of a massive scientific study: beachcombers have been finding them ever since, helping oceanographers refine their models of ocean surface currents.


Object Number:
  • recreational artifacts
Rebecca, Kamden and Kaitlyn Johnson

Cite this page


We encourage the use and reuse of our collection data.

Data in the title, made, maker and details fields are released under Creative Commons Zero

Descriptions and all other text content are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 licence

Using our data


Download catalogue entry as json

View manifest in IIIF viewer

Add to Animal Crossing Art Generator

Download manifest IIIF

Our records are constantly being enhanced and improved, but please note that we cannot guarantee the accuracy of any information shown on this website.