The ever expanding demand on land, sea and fresh water, along with the climatic adversities have made the conservation and management of wild areas and wild animals a top priority.
Wild animals have been the critical source of food, fur, leather for a long time for human existence. But recently due to high economic and cultural demand, there has been a dip in the animal population and some animal species have faced/ on the verge of facing extinction. Wild animals are captivated to provide entertainment in zoos and circuses.
Human attitudes towards wild nature and wildlife have, historically, been ambivalent. Prehistoric societies of hunters and gatherers seem to have understood wild animals not only as a source of food and fur but also — cave paintings suggest — as objects of reverence.
Today, there are debates about how wildlife population is decreasing at an alarming rate. Although the idea of “wildlife” is usually taken to mean animals not bred or controlled by humans, increasingly, wild animals are not just left alone to live their own lives (Gamborg et al. 2010).
Innovations are changing conservation:
Around the globe, conservationists are employing the latest technological advances to make a difference for people, wildlife, oceans, forests and clean water.
- Drones: Drones allow a view of wildlife and habitats that could never have been achieved by simple observation. From measuring El Nino impacts to monitoring rare vultures in the remote steppe of eastern Mongolia to assessing Caribbean coral reefs, drones have proven themselves to be essential tools for savvy conservationists.
- Camera Traps: Camera traps have now become so inexpensive and accessible that even backyard naturalists utilize them to keep tabs on the local foxes and raccoons. Conservationists employ them in remote habitats, allowing them to monitor the presence of rare birds and better understand the habits of nocturnal critters.
- Live Camera Feeds: Cameras can also allow naturalists to spy on wildlife while sitting at the computer, a live nature documentary that runs 24/7. The primary use of these is to educate the public about the lives of birds, allowing them to see everything from eggs hatching to daily feedings.
- DNA Analysis: DNA doesn’t lie. And the techniques to analyze DNA have come a long way in the past decade, allowing conservationists to better analyze everything from wildlife diets and population genetics.
Apps and online communities make sharing data easier than ever before. You don’t have to be a technical wiz to help save the planet — just get outside and start looking.