Stiftung Tierärztliche Hochschule Hannover (TiHo)TiHo eLib

Data generated by camera trapping in 40 areas in Europe including East and South Europe : report of the field activities (May 2022)

The new-born European Observatory of Wildlife (EOW)2 is a part of the EFSA-funded ENETWILD project, and has the aim of improving the European capacities for monitoring wildlife populations, implementing international standards for data collection, providing guidance on wildlife density estimation, and finally, to promote collaborative, open data networks to develop wildlife monitoring. As a next step, the EOW has engaged and enhanced the existing network of collaborators, and a number of participants are currently preparing field operations to estimate wild mammal density (focused on wild ungulates and other medium to big sized mammals) in certain areas from their respective countries. A field camera trap (CT) based protocol provided by the EOW is going to be applied. An online training course held in May 2022 provided specific training on camera trapping methods and protocols, specifically the random encounter method (REM) and other methods which do not require individual recognition. Here we also present the new field protocol, which is compatible with the subsequent application of artificial intelligence to process and analyze photo trappings using the online app AGOUTI. This strategy aims at promoting a network of professionals/researchers capable of designing, developing field work and analysing data, contributing also to disseminate the experience and train other colleagues in their respective countries. By now, the overall number of countries participating in the EOW is 25. Some participants from 12 countries could already estimate mammal densities during the previous seasons 2019/2020/2021, which will also apply the same methodology in different populations during 2022 in their respective countries. The number of density values finally obtained through this experience by the end of 2022 will exceed 40 different locations in a total of at least 30 countries, since some countries are on the process to confirm their participation. The EOW website is presented. This coordinated field trial activity over a range of European countries, involving different experts and professionals, follows the original plan.

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