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Drone autopilots are naturally suited for real-time iceberg tracking as they measure position and orientation (pitch, roll, and heading) and they transmit these data to a ground station. We powered an ArduPilot Mega (APM) 2.6 with a 5V 11 Ah lithium ion battery (a smartphone power bank), placed the APM and battery in a waterproof sportsman's box, and tossed the box and its contents by hand onto an 80 m-long iceberg from an 8 m boat. The data stream could be viewed on a laptop, which greatly enhanced safety while collecting conductivity/temperature/depth (CTD) profiles from the small boat in the iceberg's vicinity. The 10 s position data allowed us to compute the distance of each CTD profile to the iceberg, which is necessary to determine if a given CTD profile was collected within the iceberg's meltwater plume. The APM position data greatly reduced position uncertainty when compared to 5 min position data obtained from a Spot Trace unit. The APM functioned for over 10 h without depleting the battery. We describe the specific hardware used and the software settings necessary to use the APM as a real-time iceberg tracker. Furthermore, the methods described here apply to all Ardupilot-compatible autopilots. Given the low cost ($90) and ease of use, drone autopilots like the APM should be included as another tool for studying iceberg motion and for enhancing safety of marine operations. •Commercial off-the-shelf iceberg trackers are typically configured to record positions over relatively long intervals (months to years) and are not well-suited for short-term (hours to few days), high-frequency monitoring•Drone autopilots are cheap and provide high-frequency (>1 Hz) and real-time information about iceberg drift and orientation•Drone autopilots and ground control software can be easily adapted to studies of iceberg-ocean interactions and operational iceberg management.