August 1, 2017.
Fisher (Pekania pennant) belongs to the weasel family. In October 2014, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service proposed to list the West Coast Distinct Population Segment of fisher as threatened under the Endangered Species Act. We wish to better define where fishers live within their habitats and use that information to improve conservation efforts. Previously, to track the behavior of wild fishers, researchers put tracker collars on the animals and relied on networks of fixed antennas on the ground in the environment to collect data. We are experimenting with using unmanned aerial vehicles (‘drones’) to collect data from tagged fishers in the environment. Using drones could offer advantages over antennas that require a dedicated power source and are placed in the field long-term.
Dr. Marc Horney and Dr. Aaron Drake, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo
California Polytechnic State University (Cal Poly SLO)
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation through the Robert Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program under Grant # 1340110. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation. The research was also made possible by the California State University STEM Teacher and Researcher Program, in partnership with Chevron (www.chevron.com), the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation (www.marinesanctuary.org), and Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.