New Giraffe Cam at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park

first_img January 25, 2018 KUSI Newsroom, Posted: January 25, 2018 New Giraffe Cam at the San Diego Zoo Safari Park KUSI Newsroom It’s a first for the San Diego Zoo Safari Park, as staff members today (Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018) launched Giraffe Cam—the first camera to stream continuous live video from one of the Safari Park’s five field habitats. The new Giraffe Cam—now viewable online at sdzsafaripark.org/giraffe-cam —joins San Diego Zoo Global’s other live cams; but instead of showcasing just one or two animal species, Giraffe Cam is the first to feature a multitude of different animals in one expansive field habitat—including giraffes, rhinos, African crowned cranes, gazelles and other inhabitants that may mosey across the lens. It provides guests with a picturesque view of the Safari Park’s sizable 60-acre African Plains habitat from atop Kijamii Overlook.While Giraffe Cam will provide guests with a unique look at the various animal interactions and social dynamics in the habitat, San Diego Zoo Global researchers hope it will also inspire cam watchers to join the growing WildwatchKenya.org conservation project. This citizen science endeavor asks volunteers to use their home computers or smartphones to view motion-activated trail camera photos normally seen only by conservationists. Volunteers then identify the images to help researchers track giraffes and other wildlife throughout northern Kenya.Since its launch, WildwatchKenya.org has attracted more than 8,000 volunteers—who have made almost 3.5 million classifications and retired more than 315,000 individual images—completing around four years’ worth of conservation work in just six months. Each volunteer is asked to take part in the “1 Million Photo Challenge,” a virtual push with a goal of boosting the number of online volunteers to 20,000, to give conservation researchers 1 million volunteer-reviewed trail camera photos by June 2018. The completed work will provide researchers enough data to allow them to explore “giraffe hotspots” (areas that are showing high volumes of giraffe activity), as well as identifying areas with no signs of giraffes.The Wildwatch Kenya site was created using Zooniverse’s free Project Builder tool at zooniverse.org/lab, the largest online platform for crowdsourced volunteer research. Anyone who wants to participate can do so by visiting WildwatchKenya.org. Volunteers will be asked to identify what is pictured in trail photos by choosing from an animal list or indicating that no animal is pictured. Each image is viewed by multiple volunteers to ensure that any photos that are not needed are filtered out.Scientists hope this project, along with other conservation efforts, will help slow and eventually stop the continued decline of giraffe populations worldwide. Currently, there are fewer than 100,000 giraffes left in their native habitats—a decrease of more than 40 percent over the last 20 years. Last year, a team of conservationists made up of personnel from the Giraffe Conservation Foundation, Northern Rangelands Trust, Kenya Wildlife Service, The Nature Conservancy, Loisaba Conservancy, the Smithsonian Institution, Lewa Wildlife Conservancy, Senckenberg BiK-F, Goethe University and San Diego Zoo Global fitted 11 reticulated giraffes in the region with small solar-powered GPS tracking devices, made by Savannah Tracking. This unprecedented project is now providing real-time data on giraffe movements, the size of their home ranges, where they travel during seasons and the travel corridors they use. That information could assist community conservancies in developing better strategies for managing their lands and livestock, while also expanding the frontiers of giraffe science.Bringing species back from the brink of extinction is the goal of San Diego Zoo Global. As a leader in conservation, the work of San Diego Zoo Global includes on-site wildlife conservation efforts (representing both plants and animals) at the San Diego Zoo, San Diego Zoo Safari Park, and San Diego Zoo Institute for Conservation Research, as well as international field programs on six continents. The work of these entities is inspiring children through the San Diego Zoo Kids network, reaching out through the internet and in children’s hospitals nationwide. The work of San Diego Zoo Global is made possible by the San Diego Zoo Global Wildlife Conservancy and is supported in part by the Foundation of San Diego Zoo Global. Categories: Local San Diego News Tags: San Diego Zoo Safari Park FacebookTwitterlast_img


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