‘Sky Rangers’ monitor protected wildlife areas in Africa and other countries, saving animals from eradication.
The World Wildlife Foundation launched the first project using drone technology in 2012 in an effort to save endangered rhinos in Africa and Asia.
Island Conservation, an organization specializing in preventing animal extinctions around the world, is using drones in an ongoing conservation project in Galapagos Islands.
Ocean Alliance is using similar technology, customized DJI aircraft – SnotBots, to fly above whales and capture biological data that comes with their blow.
The role of drone technology in the war against ivory trade is essential. Aerial drones are flying over national parks and game reserves across Africa, informing park ranger and local police.
Drones helped to determine that there are fewer than 400,000 Savannah elephants left across Africa. The ivory trade between 2007 and 2014 made the problem urgent as the population was steadily declining 9% a year.
Elephants are essential for maintaining ecological integrity. And that novel way of collecting data, providing real-time and correct information with their remote sensors and cameras, identifies the need for ranger patrols in specific areas.
Drones have proved to be useful not only in military actions but are serving for good in many countries. They help to survey orangutan populations on Sumatra Island in Indonesia, spot dolphins in the Amazon and whales in Southeast Asia.
Research shows that using drones to gather data on wildlife population numbers is more accurate than counting those on the ground. The potential of this technology is being explored and developed.