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Echidna in burnt out forest © WWF-Australia / Douglas Thron

Echidna in burnt out forest © WWF-Australia / Douglas Thron

An Eye on Recovery

‘An Eye on Recovery’ is a large-scale collaborative camera sensor project that will measure the impact of the 2019-20 summer bushfires on wildlife and help us to respond to future fires in Australia using innovative technology. With the support of Google.org, our first stop for this project was Kangaroo Island. 

 

 

 

Dunnart Captured on Kangaroo Island © Kangaroo Island Land for Wildlife

Meet the Kangaroo Island dunnart


Areas like Kangaroo Island are home to unique fauna and require the most urgent on-ground attention. One such species that was impacted by the bushfires was the Kangaroo Island dunnart. Before bushfires, there were estimated to be fewer than 500 Kangaroo Island dunnarts across its range on the Island. With an estimated 96% of known habitat for Kangaroo Island dunnarts affected by the bushfires there have been serious concerns raised for this species.
Reviewing sensor camera footage © Slavica Miskovich

©  Slavica Miskovich

Conservation meets innovation

That’s why WWF-Australia, via a network of local partners, will install a network of over 600 camera traps in Australian wildlife habitats ravaged by fire. These camera traps will capture valuable footage that will be analysed through Google-powered AI technology, via the Wildlife Insights platform, in collaboration with Conservation International. This will allow us to gain better understanding of impacted species, their resilience and how we can implement recovery actions.

Do you have camera sensor images you can share?

These cameras play an important role because they allow us to put hundreds of pairs of eyes across the landscape and find native species like dunnarts. Initial images will help train the AI platform to identify Australian fauna, led by the team at Conservation International.

In addition to the images we capture, we are calling on anyone with camera sensor images of Australian fauna, especially in the fire impacted regions, to send us their images as a means to begin this teaching process.

 

 

What kind of photos are we after?

We’re not looking for your best wildlife photography, as beautiful as the pictures may be. We’re after camera sensor images to help train Artificial Intelligence. These might be camera sensor images that are blurred, off centre, out of frame, not facing the camera and in black and white, or colour. The more camera sensor images we feed the platform, the better the technology will get at recognising the myriad and beautiful Australian wildlife. 

Here are some examples…

   Brush-tailed possum caught on sensor camera © Anke Seidlitz / DBCA / Murdoch University / WWF-Aus   Sensor camera image © Anke Seidlitz / DBCA / Murdoch University / WWF-Aus

 

Sensor camera image © Anke Seidlitz / DBCA / Murdoch University / WWF-Ausoch University / WWF-Aus   Western grey kangaroo close up caught on sensor camera © Anke Seidlitz / DBCA / Murdoch University / WWF-Aus

    

Do you have images that fit the bill? Potential contributors should contact WWF-Australia via eyes@wwf.org.au to express interest in sharing their images.

 

 

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