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Drone Ecology: robust methods for wildlife research using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs)

Project Description

Terrestrial ecological surveys generally require ecologists to be present in the environment. For large environments or those with restricted access, ecologists have used helicopters or light aircraft to undertake aerial surveys. However, chartering flights is costly and there are often competing demands on aircraft time. This PhD will capitalise on recent advances in UAV technology to develop new ‘drone ecology’ methods, which will be validated against other ecological methods through a programme of field research. The PhD will benefit from substantial international networking opportunities and the ‘drone ecology’ methods developed will make a significant contribution to terrestrial ecological research internationally.

Funding Notes

This PhD is available on a self-funded basis. The PhD supervisors undertake field-based research at a variety of sites across the UK and internationally, including ongoing drone-based research in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone. Through this PhD, there is the potential to work at one or more of these sites if funding allows.

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