Booming AI-Based Wildlife Protection Solutions
The conversation around preserving the natural habitats and wildlife around us is constantly evolving. Technologies are developed in such a way that protecting, sheltering and working for the discovery and preservation of wild species becomes less time-consuming, effortless and community-focused. The report by researchers from the Society of Conservation Biology suggests that the development and implementation of conservation technologies will be hampered unless issues of funding, coordination and capacity building are addressed. OT tracks what new proposals are on the table to bring about changes in wildlife protection with current challenges.
Why is AI needed in wildlife conservation?
There have been techniques like camera traps, tracking beacons, satellite remote sensing, acoustic sensor monitoring, and drones to capture and encapsulate activities in the wild. However, most of these technologies come with associated issues of monitoring and sorting through the huge amount of data.
Some really innovative #tech4wildlife solutions presented in my last story for @the hill – Check them: @WildMeORG @bearid_project PAWS @SMARTCnsvTools @NatureMetrics @arribada_i @SmartParksOrg @SensingClues @ioelephants @FieldKitOrg https://t.co/Z8cDIGlSHG
— Trang Chu Minh (@TrangChuMinh) February 11, 2022
Therefore, the cloud-based platform wild book was developed to identify species and individual animals based on their distinctive patterns, such as stripes, spots, or other distinctive physical traits such as scars or markings. The platform allows users to enter their discoveries of any wildlife species with images and location and keeps continuous track of the same as well as connects other conservation enthusiasts, making the platform open to citizen scientists and researchers so that the database on the discovery, living conditions and movement of each species can be generated over time. The platform started with just tracking sharks and now inhibits over 53 species of sea and land creatures.
View full @NSF to resume #takeoverNSF thread on the work of our director Dr. Berger-Wolf and the @WildMeORG team members do with #AI #computer vision for #preservation #biodiversity https://t.co/bzhJIs5YMS
In honor of the #InternationalDayofWomenandGirlsinScience
— WildMe (@WildMeORG) February 10, 2022
The aforementioned report also suggests that despite the obstacles, more than half of survey respondents, consisting of conservation NGOs, universities or research institutions, non-tech private institutions and government agencies, were more optimistic about the future of preservation technology than they were a year ago.
Wildlife tracking with GPS, bio-registration and bio-telemetry
Another related research provided by Intechopen in the same area deals with possible levels of high accuracy in animal tracking and tracing using GPS systems. Bio-logging and bio-telemetry are two different ways of collecting data, but they both involve monitoring physiological, behavioral or environmental data of species that are difficult to visualize or often impossible to reach.
Bio-registration technology records and saves the information in an animal-derived device (archival recorder), and the information is uploaded once the recorder is retrieved. Bio-telemetry sends the information to a remote receiver of the device carried by the animal.
—Jethro Gauld ACIEEM (@Gauldblimeyjet) February 15, 2022
Scientists can collect precise movement patterns of an animal using GPS telemetry, allowing them to quantify the animal’s location and distance to survey locations. Such technology has helped identify unexpected habitat use, explore the social dynamics of reintroduced species, and reveal new life history traits of species at risk, among others. Animal-based technology (also known as Animal-based Environmental and Video Data Collection System, or AVED) collects high-resolution datasets that can be used to assess the physiology, behavior, demographics, community interactions and the environment in which it lives.
The use of new electronic tagging and remote sensing satellites, which allow more accurate and faster sampling of the environment and higher resolution of global views, has facilitated the integration of environmental data with animal data obtained . New methodologies that combine the two technologies are transforming the ability to perform ecosystem-scale scientific research and improving scientists’ ability to study unsolved ecological problems.
Protection against animal trafficking
The need for AI isn’t just felt by data scientists, conservationists, and conversation activists. There is a major requirement for wildlife security services to create and adopt new technologies that would benefit them in anti-poaching operations. The Protection Assistant for Wildlife Safety (PAWS) used past poaching records and geographic data to predict future poacher behavior and integrating these technologies with the Spatial Monitoring and Reporting Tool ( SMART) that is already used by PAWS could generate wildlife mapping with such precision that the scope of PAWS for predicting other forms of environmental crime, such as illegal logging or fishing, is expanded.
Read also : Wildlife biologist Latika Nath on wildlife conservation in India
What is environmental DNA? Why does he enter the chat?
Environmental DNA (eDNA) is organism DNA found in the natural world and derived from cellular material lost by organisms in aquatic or terrestrial habitats (through skin, feces, etc.). Conservationists can acquire data on biodiversity by extracting DNA from environmental samples such as water, soil, snow or even air using the traces left by various species.
The study of eDNA began in microbiology, with the realization that culture-based approaches vastly underrepresent the microbial diversity observed in nature. The results of eDNA techniques have proven effective in monitoring contemporary biodiversity in terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems and have provided essential information for the study of ancient habitats.
It can also be used to study the effects of climate change, detect unseen dangers such as viruses or bacteria, and measure the general health of an ecosystem, all of which can be used to advocate for additional protection of area, species rehabilitation if required and any form of restoration work.
Facial Recognition – Insider on bears and has miles to go
Camera trapping has been one of the most important means of tracking animal placement and movement. However, moving into the new era, facial recognition software can be used to identify and track brown bears using camera trap images, as well as inform conservation initiatives. Due to the lack of unique natural markings for some species, camera traps are now unable to consistently detect individual bears and would additionally be used for any similar species.
Read also : 5 wildlife apps for adventurers
Bringing the community in with smart parks and wildlife games
Beyond all wildlife conservation measures, the most important still remains the awareness and education of populations in this regard. To do this, organizations like Smart parks and smelling clues have been reported by the hill emphasize the use of networked sensors to improve the monitoring and administration of protected areas.
Since national telecommunications networks often do not extend to these protected areas, most national parks lack basic internet and cellular connectivity. Smart Parks uses a variety of sensors, such as gate sensors, alarm systems, and animal, vehicle, and people trackers, to provide low-power, long-range connectivity. Networked sensors monitor a wide range of data and can detect human intrusions, which can aid anti-poaching operations, as well as animal escapes from the protected area into the community, which could help prevent human-wildlife conflicts.
At the same time, researchers have developed the feeling that games are the easiest way to spread information and involve younger generations in any conversation. Consequently, the emphasis on building games based on ecological conservation and increasing the use of technology in wildlife protection is becoming widespread due to catastrophic declines in biodiversity. Strategic targeting of technology development and community support, on the other hand, will increase the beneficial effects of these advances.