The use of drones in environmental research

15/01/2017

Being able to view the Earth from above is vital for many aspects of environmental research. Until recently this was only possible using expensive aerial or satellite surveys.

UAVs are 'Unmanned Aerial Vehicles' and include the 'drones' that are now available at relatively low costs.

They are used by many research organisations such as universities and by a range of commercial drone services providers.

The links below give some insights into how they can be used.

https://conservationdrones.org/

http://www.airbornedrones.co/pages/farming-drones

https://www.savetherhino.org/rhino_info/thorny_issues/the_use_of_drones_in_rhino_conservation

http://theconversation.com/a-guide-to-using-drones-to-study-wildlife-first-do-no-harm-57069

Although the technology may be new, the principles of scientific research for collecting representative, statistically significant data are always the same:

What data are collected?

Where?

When?

How many samples?

How large are the samples?

How can the techniques be standardised?

How does the information collected inform future research?