Wildlife Survey

Walrus Survey: UAS Noise Research on Marine Mammals

Three management agencies within the Department of the Interior (DOI) are interested in estimating the number of Pacific walruses in the U.S. waters of the eastern Chukchi Sea.  The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has leased substantial sectors of the northeastern Chukchi Sea for oil and gas development, and these leases are near the offshore foraging areas used by Pacific walruses. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) has an interest in knowing the number of walruses in the…

Sea Grass and Sea Otter Survey in Homer Alaska

For this study, ACUASI engaged in two important partnerships: First, ACUASI partnered with the Coastal Marine Institute (CMI) (https://www.sfos.uaf.edu/cmi/) to perform a survey of intertidal sea grass species at low tide on beaches; second, ACUASI partnered with the UAF School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences to fly unmanned aircraft to monitor feeding sea otters. For the intertidal portion of the study with CMI, ACUASI evaluated the use of UAS in gathering low-tide data from beaches near Homer…

Chena River Drainage : Salmon Survey

In mid-May 2015, US Fish and Wildlife Service contacted Alaska Center for UAS Integration (ACUASI) about the potential for a one day unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) mission to document Chinook salmon spawning on the upper Chena River.  An operations team was formed and began discussing logistics and airspace requirements; it appeared the project would not be possible until 2016.  At that time, a Certificate of Authorization (COA) was required for each project and the standard timeline for…