The rise of drones in the scientific community raises the question for their possible use in future wildlife surveys. A study conducted by Vermulean et. al. (2013) in the Nazinga Game Ranch, located in southern Burkina Faso along the international border with Ghana, aimed to define the methodology to survey elephants with UAS and determine the parameters, as well as the animals' reaction to the passage of the UAS.
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The conservation and management of many marine mammal species is dependant on monitoring their population status by conducting aerials surveys. In Australia, dugong (Dugong dugon) populations have been regularly surveyed over the last 20 to 30 years throughout large parts of their range. Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) may facilitate more accurate, human-risk free, and cheaper aerials surveys. A study in Western Australia by Hodgson et al. (2013) undertook the first Australian UAV survey trial in Shark Bay, Western Australia.
Fallen trees are an ecologically relevant indicator of forest biodiversity, since they provide habitat for so many species, such as small animals and fungi. Fallen trees are typically assessed by ground field surveys. Inoue et al. (2014) used high spatial photographs taken from an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to survey fallen trees in a broad leaved forest in Eastern Japan.