Access to technology allows our conservation and science teams to better understand animals, their habitats and the threats they face in the wild. Without vital data from our field projects, our mission to prevent extinction is dramatically hindered.
Being at the forefront of conservation, our teams utilise ground breaking technology to track, monitor and collect important information about a variety of species, that allows us to make informed decisions on how to act next.
In recent years, conservationists at the zoo, working alongside our partners, have made some incredible discoveries that has allowed us to gain crucial data on threatened species.
“Technology is becoming increasingly important and benefits conservation in many ways such as allowing exploration of previously inaccessible areas, conducting activities much more effectively and efficiently or improving the way we share, analyse and communicate data.”
Head of Field Programmes, Scott Wilson
Scott added: “Technology has without a doubt contributed significantly to the suite of tools we can access to carry out conservation work. Ways to monitor wildlife, particularly cryptic or elusive species, is one area where technology has helped a lot – drones can now provide different perspectives and access to previous hard to monitor areas, camera trap technology continues to advance allowing us to monitor wildlife in remote areas for months at a time, with minimum human presence. Acoustic monitoring methods are being developed and trialed in a few projects, and methods have advanced allowing us to extract increasing amounts of data from biological samples such as hair, faeces or even eDNA from a water sample.”
The below video clip was taken from one of our camera traps in the field, showing a chimp trying to find food in the wild…
During the coronavirus pandemic, technology has become a vital tool in keeping everyone connected, whilst allowing society to continue to function with reduced human to human contact. In the conservation world, this strikes a chord with all the teams who are continuing to work despite limitations in travel. Workshops and meetings with partners overseas are being held virtually, and teams at the zoo are working to map out how these relationships will continue to progress with the limit of COVID-19 restrictions.
Scott said: “We also have logistical challenges, some of our partners don’t always have Wi-Fi, or electricity for that matter, in some remote field sites; but this connectivity is improving all the time as infrastructure across the globe improves.”
The first ever bio-tagging of a giant pangolin in the wild, a conservation breakthrough.
The first sighting of a Lowland Bongo was spotted on our camera traps in the rainforests of The Semuliki National Park.
Camera traps helped us monitor tiger populations in the Bardia and Chitwan National Park in Nepal, throughout our living with tigers project.
Using specialist equipment we listened to these frog's vocalisations to ensure optimal health.