BENEFITING: ORGANIZATION FOR TROPICAL STUDIES INC
OTS is collaborating with The University of Florida and the Carnegie Institution for Science to expand their joint research program into the influence of the change in vegetation structure (due to elephants, fire, land-use change) on bird communities. Using expertise from all three collaborators and new innovative technology, the program would like to implement a bioacoustic monitoring system (SM3 Songmeter, Wildlife Acoustics, Concord, MA) and LiDAR technology (Carnegie Airborne Observatory, Stanford, CA) to detect fine scale vegetation use patterns of avian communities in Savannas. In order to conduct this research we require four SM3 Songmeter bioacoustics recorders fitted with GPS receivers which will be used to record bird calls in plots of differing vegetation structure. Through a method of triangulation, bird locations can be identified accurate to within 1m and these locations can then be spatially overlaid on LiDAR data to identify woody structural characteristics at that location. This novel approach has not, to our knowledge, been used anywhere else in the world to date and has the potential to reveal new findings regarding spatially explicit habitat use by birds.