Inspection - Where are the wader birds?

Inspection - Where are the wader birds?

The number of waders in the Netherlands has been decreasing at an alarming rate over the past ten years. Landschap Overijssel focusses on environmental conservation in the province Overijssel, and approached us to help them find nests, eggs and chicks hidden in agricultural areas.

Landschap Overijssel will use the accumulated data to make new conservation policies. Knowledge of how and where the waders nest, facilitates the development of strategies that will help to halt the mass decrease of wader birds.

Strategy and results:

Waders are masters of disguise. They hide their nests so well in agricultural areas, that it can be nearly impossible to find them. We used different kinds of drones, equipped with state of the art infrared cameras. We connected a live-stream from the drone to the ground station, and combined the GPS-coordinates with images of the area. This way we could pinpoint the exact locations of the nests, and accumulate valuable data for future reference.

Do you want to know more about this project or are you interested in how we can help you with our infrared inspections? Please contact us. 

Lessons learned:

Even with the best infrared technology, wader nests are complicated to locate in a large field. We had to experiment with equipment, height and speed. We could not fly too low because we did not want to disturb the birds. We also discovered that the point of time as well as the weather conditions were important factors in finding the waders. The overall results are very positive and highly promising for the future.

This is an ongoing project. Together with our partners we are continuously working on developing hardware and software, and assisting Landschap Overijssel and several agricultural nature associations in collecting and interpreting the accumulated data. Furthermore, in cooperation with partners like the University of Twente, we are working on fully automating the process of finding nests and tagging them with a highly accurate GPS location. Do you want to know how we can help you with long term bird control? Contact us and we will happily discuss all the possibilities.

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