Scaling up remote camera surveys to inform human-wildlife coexistence
Protecting healthy populations of wild animals is an important goal for British Columbians and all Canadians. Wildlife provide important economic, ecological, and cultural values, yet are increasingly under threat from a range of impacts, including land use change, overharvest, climate change, and growing recreational pressure on our parks. A key challenge facing wildlife managers is a lack of reliable data on many wildlife populations at the large scales relevant to land use planning. Remote camera (aka camera trap) surveys provide an important tool for collecting reliable information on terrestrial mammal species across large areas. We have initiated a camera trap network in western Canada—WildCAM—to advance the application of camera surveys to management challenges. By conducting new statistical analyses of WildCAM data, and developing evidence-based recommendations for camera sampling designs, the intern will help develop a strong scientific foundation for the continued development of camera trapping as a tool to improve wildlife management in western Canada and beyond.