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Data tools for conservation monitoring

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Presented during the 17h Annual Sahelo-Saharan Interest Group Meeting organized by the NGO Sahara Conservation Fund in Senegal, from 4 to 6 May 2017. The Sahara Conservation Fund (SCF) gathers every year about a hundred people who are interested in the field of Sahelo-Saharan species conservation.

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Data tools for conservation monitoring

  1. 1. 17th Annual Sahelo-Saharan Interest Group Meeting 2 days of talks on biodiversity conservation in the Sahara and in the Sahel Data Tools for conservation monitoring Katherine MERTES, Conservation Biologist - Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute May 4 – 6, 2017
  2. 2. Post-release monitoring of Scimitar-horned oryx reintroduced to the Ouadi Rimé-Ouadi Achim Game Reserve, Chad
  3. 3. - An animal's decision to move is a response to both internal (hunger, thirst) and external (food abundance, temperature) conditions - Animals do not move simply to change their geographic location, but to change the conditions associated with their location - GPS collars record these movement decisions, collecting large numbers of locations over time - From these movement data, patterns of space use emerge
  4. 4. Oryx released August 2016 • Multiple institutions, multiple management backgrounds • Released during wet season Oryx released January 2017 • Single institution with pen- based management • Released during dry season
  5. 5. Next questions • Natural and optimal movement strategies for oryx in this system? • Migration vs. residency • Area requirements? • individuals, groups, viable populations • How well do reintroduced scimitar-horned oryx track local and/or regional variation in peak vegetation growth? • Follow, surf, jump IRG • Are oryx movement paths determined by local conditions or spatial memory? • Track energy expenditure over time since release • gains in energy efficiency over time? • Identify times or places in which oryx increase energy expenditure • dangerous areas, stressful seasons, etc. T. Wacher, ZSL
  6. 6. Oryx movement data (to date) • 33 collared individuals • 2 collar failures • >150,000 locations • Released animals have moved over 10,000km2 • Moved >90km from release site • Group sizes from 1-16 individuals

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