Drone Aerial Wildlife Population Surveys
Infrared Imaging & Video | Visible Imaging & Video | Detailed Reporting
IR Aerials Conducts Wildlife Surveys Using Drones with High-Resolution Thermal and Visible Imaging Sensors.
Within our operations’ scope, we have to be outdoors a great deal of the time and enjoy it. We found a way to combine our passion for the outdoors and unmanned aviation by providing a service to the people who manage the wildlife residing in it. From our experiences in the outdoors and deploying drone technology, our team is well equipped to help perform various wildlife surveys for various applications.
IR Aerials is committed to providing drone-based wildlife surveys that provide a more accurate and effective count compared to traditional methods. Our survey team will systemically capture aerial video of the entire targeted area using a thermal camera that can detect animals out in the open or even bedded down in a range of different levels of brush or wooded areas.
Utilizing a drone for wildlife surveys is more accurate and consistent compared to alternatives like manned aviation or physically walking the property. We can fly lower than manned aviation to get higher quality images and be more transparent than a team physically walking around the property. The result is a less stressful environment for the wildlife and a more accurate count for wildlife management purposes. Where we shine is helping to provide an accurate count of the total number of deer on a property. We are able to differentiate deer from hogs, coyotes, turkey, cattle, or other animals commonly found on properties surveyed. Drones generally do not disturb the wildlife meaning we can get more accurate counts because they are not franticly running in different directions and aren’t being redundantly counted or missed in our counts since the whole process is videoed.
While UAV’s do present a lot of advantages, it’s not flawless as the resource does have limitations. When surveying deer populations, the technology is limited to really only being able to count the total number of deer and cannot easily differentiate species (if multiple deer species are present on the same property) and it is not reliable to tell the difference between a buck, doe or fawn.
Interested in learning more about how drones can more effectively help you perform heard counts and wildlife surveys? Based in Dallas, we routinely work with landowners and government entities throughout Texas the United States.
Give us a call today at (214) 842-6000
IR Aerials Can Help You Perform Accurate Wildlife Count From Texas.
We have studied and performed many of our own case studies before launching this program. Our research has led us to conclude that if a drone survey is performed properly, you will see more consistently accurate results. We put every property through the same process. During the day, we fly the whole property in a grid-shaped flight pattern capturing visible and thermal aerial video along the way, documenting any wildlife visible along the way. Once we complete everything during the day, we do it again at night when the thermal imaging will give us better results compared to the visible imaging having a better result during the day. This process does not spook the wildlife or cause them to run and counting the same animals twice is a rare occurrence as long as our team pays close attention. Capturing video footage along the way allows us to not have to rely on just what we see while we’re in the field, we can review video footage in the office multiple times from different angles to make sure we count everything without fail. Performing 2 surveys within a 24 hour period helps us get a better perspective on accurate wildlife counts.
This case study reviews the 21,025 acre White Tail Deer wildlife survey conducted for the Army Core of Engineers for Raystown Lake in Pennsylvania. We successfully utilized a drone with thermal video capabilities to count how many deer were present throughout the property before, during and after hunting season in 2020. Learn about the obstacles we had to overcome and how this was able to help the client accurately gather the data in the field without disrupting the wildlife.
The process of using drones to perform wildlife surveys is unique. We are capable of documenting roughly 5,000 acres a night with good access throughout the property and are often involved with large properties that require multiple days to complete. When we get a property in question, we divide up the property into flight plans based on where we anticipate being able to launch from. The flight plans are created based on the anticipated flight altitude and angle of view to make sure each video file has an overlap from one pass to the next. If we see something that looks puzzling or is unusual, we can stop the drone to investigate before continuing on. This documentation process is ideally completed during the night during a cooler time of the year with little to no foliage on the trees (if possible). After the video is collected, we carefully comb through all the video documentation and identify/count the target animals being surveyed for each flight plan. The advantage here is the ability to, without rushing, count each animal with confidence with the ability to review the footage as many times as necessary. Depending on the desired deliverable, we can process Full Motion Video Files (FMV) capable of being plugged into ArcGIS to map out points of where animals were observed. With this data collected and mapped out, we can then provide a pdf report that reviews our counts, findings, and observations broken down by flight plan.