QUT, Noosa and District Landcare and Watergum
QUT (Queensland University of Technology) with Noosa and District Landcare and Watergum received $320,000 to begin an amazing new Koala Drone Monitoring Programme as part of The #14M Landcare Led Bushfire Recovery project supported by the Australian Government’s Bushfire Recovery.
The impacts of bushfire on koala populations in south-east Queensland were clearly evident but difficult to quantify because of a lack of baseline data. This project will build a wildlife conservation network to monitor koalas and other animals in and adjacent to South East Queensland bushfire affected areas, using a powerful combination of drones and automated detection.
Rapidly detecting the animals from the air over large areas, sometimes in locations that may be inaccessible on foot, Landcare and conservation groups from anywhere in Australia will soon be able to partner with the team to transmit the data to the Conservation AI Hub at QUT, offering far more fast and accurate monitoring of population numbers.
This project will build a wildlife conservation network to monitor koalas and other animals in and adjacent to South East Queensland bushfire affected areas, using a powerful combination of drones and automated detection. It will develop the capacity of existing Landcare and other community groups to conduct drone surveys for wildlife detection, drawing on their local knowledge, skill and expertise to enable effective on-ground management for koalas and a range of other species in key areas. An AI powered hub will be created for remote, rapid analysis of the wildlife monitoring data that has been collected. This is essential for the project, but will also enable wildlife conservation well beyond the life of the project.