Emerging technologies like IoT, Big Data, AI, Machine Learning, can be of great assistance to wildlife conservationists. Today, technology is playing a pivotal role in many ecological research pilots. Drone technology, in particular, is being extensively incorporated by forest officials to help nurture wildlife that is at the brink of extinction. With these drones, researchers now have capabilities to track wild animals in dense forests and rough terrains.
The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) for Nature estimates that up to five living species on earth become extinct every day, thus its critical that ecological researchers and universities develop new technologies to capture species data that can give actionable insights and persuade those in power to take action.
As per Claudio Sillero, professor of conservation biology at Oxford University and chief scientist at Born Free, technology is transforming the conservation research space bringing in evolutionary changes. With further advancements in this field, making the technology much agile and cheaper will further assist researchers to perform better. One such example of technology advancement is the remote sensing, which used to be a tool that needed some technical know-how to operate, but has now become ubiquitous, today everyone in the field of ecology research uses the geographic information system (GIS) and global positioning system (GPS) for surveying.
Adding further he said that the real help which wildlife conservation researchers are getting is from big data. Continuing he said that his students no longer look at the data holding pencils and papers, but rather they feed that data into fast computers that use machine-learning algorithms to analyze results.