RECUPERA 2020: Comprehensive monitoring of the rural environment

Principal researcher: Miguel Ferrer

Period: 2014-2015

The aim of this project is to develop systems for the acquisition of data and monitoring of wildlife based on unmanned aircraft systems (UASs). We will focus on two areas of application:

-Wildlife census and monitoring. UASs offer a great opportunity to substantially improve the process of wildlife monitoring and surveillance by being a cost-effective method, with lower disturbance and higher accuracy than traditional approaches, particularly in remote or difficult-to-access areas. The major drawback of this approach is related to the analysis of the data since manual processing of a large number of images to detect individuals is a time consuming task. Thus, our aim will be to implemente an automatic recognition system of wildlife based on data acquired by UASs.

-Wildlife tracking and location. The deployment of electronic devices on wildlife is widely extended and has multiple applications; it allows to record the movements of the marked individuals, serves to locate their feeding and breeding areas or permits registering multiple activity and physiological parameters. VHF radio tagging and gps logging devices are nowadays two of the most common wildlife marking systems, but tracking and (re) capturing animals maybe challenging and is both time-consuming and expensive. The use of UASs to automatically track and locate animals is a promising solution by having a great potential to reduce cost and efforts in this research field.