Yesterday at the Craigenbrae property at Canyonleigh, koala researchers joined forces with Fujitsu to test drone technology for koala detection. Fujitsu approached the National Parks and Wildlife Foundation with the offer of trialling drone technology for wildlife research, and the Southern Highlands koala project was identified as a possible candidate.
The drone was fitted with a Forward Looking Infra-Red (FLIR) camera which detects heat sources, namely koalas (and other large mammals), in tree tops. The trial raised more questions than answers, not least because the heat of the day made it difficult to see the heat emitted by a koala on the FLIR screen. Fujistu are keen to take what they learned from the field test and refine their approach. Stay tuned!