Presentation Title

Monitoring Re-action of Western Snowy Plovers to Unmanned Aerial Vehicles(Drones)

Faculty Mentor

Cynthia Hartley

Start Date

17-11-2018 12:30 PM

End Date

17-11-2018 2:30 PM

Location

CREVELING 88

Session

POSTER 2

Type of Presentation

Poster

Subject Area

physical_mathematical_sciences

Abstract

The use of drones to monitor wildlife is a burgeoning technique of species management. Ormond Beach has been designated critical habitat for the federally threatened western snowy plover (WSP) and the use of drones to monitor and manage this species is an enticing prospect. Understanding how WSP react to the operation of drones over their habitat and nesting grounds is essential for ensuring there was minimal disturbance. The objectives of this study were to: observe the reaction of WSPs during drone flyovers, create a scale for WSP reaction to drone flights, develop a standard operating procedure (SOP) for flights over western snowy plovers, compare WSP reactions to drones of varying sizes and shapes with different decibel output levels. Our data shows that drones can be flown over nesting WSP without causing distress or flushing birds off nests. While we found that field observers were able to score responses of WSP to drones and determine if nesting birds where flushed off nests, we found that GoPro video provided a much more detailed account of WSP reactions to drones. The use of cutting-edge technology like drones has proven to be an effective tool for mapping the constantly changing coastal environment that shorebirds inhabit. As technology continues to advance it promises to provide a vital tool for management of species such as the western snowy plover. Use of drones in future habitat analysis will play a role in how these and other species are managed.

This document is currently not available here.

Share

COinS
 
Nov 17th, 12:30 PM Nov 17th, 2:30 PM

Monitoring Re-action of Western Snowy Plovers to Unmanned Aerial Vehicles(Drones)

CREVELING 88

The use of drones to monitor wildlife is a burgeoning technique of species management. Ormond Beach has been designated critical habitat for the federally threatened western snowy plover (WSP) and the use of drones to monitor and manage this species is an enticing prospect. Understanding how WSP react to the operation of drones over their habitat and nesting grounds is essential for ensuring there was minimal disturbance. The objectives of this study were to: observe the reaction of WSPs during drone flyovers, create a scale for WSP reaction to drone flights, develop a standard operating procedure (SOP) for flights over western snowy plovers, compare WSP reactions to drones of varying sizes and shapes with different decibel output levels. Our data shows that drones can be flown over nesting WSP without causing distress or flushing birds off nests. While we found that field observers were able to score responses of WSP to drones and determine if nesting birds where flushed off nests, we found that GoPro video provided a much more detailed account of WSP reactions to drones. The use of cutting-edge technology like drones has proven to be an effective tool for mapping the constantly changing coastal environment that shorebirds inhabit. As technology continues to advance it promises to provide a vital tool for management of species such as the western snowy plover. Use of drones in future habitat analysis will play a role in how these and other species are managed.