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IBPS FEB RAS project has received WWF support!

IBPS FEB RAS has started work on the project "Development of methods for using quadrotors to estimate the number of walruses on the coastal rookeries of Chukotka" with the financial support of the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF).

The project leader - is a senior researcher of the Laboratory of Mammal Ecology, Cand. of Biol., Ph.D. A.A. Kochnev

Reducing of the ice cover in the Arctic leads to a change in the living conditions of pagophilic pinnipeds. The number of Pacific walruses decreased from 201,000 in 1990 (Gilbert et al., 1992) to 129,000 in 2006 (Speckman et al., 2011). During the absence of ice in the life cycle of this species, the role of coastal habitats increases. For the last two decades on the Arctic coast of Chukotka, the largest rookeries with the predominance of females and young animals regularly function; however, the methods for the animals’ census are extremely primitive, limited by very approximate visual records, and their correctness strongly depends on the individual experience of observers.

The aim of the project - is the experiment on the use of modern quadrotors to obtain vertical photographs of coastal rookeries of walruses in order to improve the accuracy of estimating the number of animals on them. In particular, a quadrotor can shoot the rookery sites that are inaccessible to direct observations from the shore.

The works will be carried out on the coast of the Chukchi Sea in the area of ​​the largest walrus rookery in the world at Cape Serdtse-Kamen and on the island of Kolyuchin, where there are haulouts of walruses, some of which are located on inaccessible parts of the coast. The field research will be continued from late July to November. Visual walrus census will be carried out daily, and in favorable weather conditions – an examination of the area and shooting walrus rookeries with the help of a quadrotor.

The project will be resulted in obtaining of photo and video materials, as well as visual data, which allow estimating the number, sex-age structure, natural mortality and behavioral responses of walruses, using coastal habitats in the Chukchi Sea, to quadrotor. The information obtained will make it possible to develop recommendations on the use of quadrotors for census of walruses on shore rookeries.

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New post in the on-line journal

Dear visitors!

There is a new publication "Parasites can also be useful" in "The Romanticism of Working Routine" Volume IV

New publication in "The Romanticism of Working Routine" Volume IV

Dear visitors! Please, pay your attention to a new pubplication "Ornithological studies in Central Yakutia" in our online journal "The Romanticism of Working Routine"