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Created with Fabric.js 1.4.5 What is Radio Telemetry? Radio telemetry is a wildlife tracking technique that allows researchers to receive data on animal subjects through radio signals, transmitted from or to a device located on the animal. Radio Telemetry in Wildlife Research Equipment Involved - A transmitting subsystem consisting of a radio transmitter, a power source and a propagating antenna - A receiving subsystem including a pick-up antenna, a signal receiver with reception indicator (speaker and/or display) and a power source Advantages - Relatively low cost- Reasonable accuracy for most purposes - Long Life- Excellent for collecting wildlife location data as well as indicating if an animal is active (feeding, walking, running) or resting, and the time spent deceased until the transmitter is recovered Disadvantages - Labor intensive (requiring researchers present in the field and physical access to animals being studied)- Can be weather dependent- Intrusive to animal subjects How can Radio Tracking be Improved? - Implementing Duty Cycling, which is the ability to program radio collars to transmit only at certain times to extend battery life- Reduction in collar weight. Allowing for smaller animals to be tracked or larger animals to be tracked for longer- More efficient transmitting antenna to save power Example of Radio Telemetry Use in Wildlife Conservation In Hokkaido, Japan, sika deer populations began to increase, causing an adverse effect on overstory and understory vegetation. A study was conducted by Uno, H., & Kaji, K. (2006) to determine if hunting as a population management technique, effectively contributed to an increased mortality rate of female sika deer. Radio tracking was used from 1993 to 1996 to monitor their average natural mortality rate vs death due to hunting. It was concluded that increased hunting did have a significant effect on population control, which prompted continued use of this technique. Tracking Blanding's Turtles in Massachusetts Blandings turtles are a native species to New England. They are classified as threatened or endangered in all New England areas besides New Hampshire, due to road kill, predation and habitat destruction. Conservation organizations are working closely with local zoological facilities and interested volunteers to locate nest sites, in order to collect and rear an allotted number of hatchlings to a certain size designated to give them the best chance at survival once released. Radio transmitters are attached to hatchlings to monitor their progress and survival rates once released. Transmitters are also attached to females so that nesting sites may be located each season. Data has shown that this head start program has had positive effects on populations of Blandings turtles in MA (Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program, 2007). References LIANG, C. c. (2013). Movements and Habitat Use of Yosemite Toads (Anaxyrus (formerly Bufo) canorus) in the Sierra National Forest, California. Journal Of Herpetology, 47(4), 555-564.Mech, L. D., & Barber, S. M. (2002). A critique of wildlife radio-tracking and its use in national parks. Biological Resources Management Division, US National Park Service, Fort Collins, CO Technical Report.Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program. 2007. Massachusetts Forestry Conservation Management Practices for Blandings Turtles. Draft (August 2007). Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program, Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife, Westborough, Massachusetts, USAUno, H., & Kaji, K. (2006). Survival and cause-specific mortality rates of female sika deer in eastern Hokkaido, Japan. Ecological Research, 21(2), 215-220. doi:10.1007/s11284-005-0111-4
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