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Big Data in Practice by Bernard Marr

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10 ZSL Big Data In The Zoo And To Protect Animals

Background

As well as running the world-famous London Zoo, ZSL are responsible for far-reaching conservation efforts around the world, in an effort to tackle the ongoing extinction threats that many species are facing.

Traditionally, most conservation work has been fieldwork carried out on the ground by zoologists and other scientists, manually tracking the movement of animal populations or the spread of vegetation using tracking devices or their own eyes.

However, with the increasing sophistication of data collection and analytics technology, along with the increasingly urgent need to take action to save an ever-growing number of species from extinction, new methods are being constantly developed to aid in the monitoring and tracking of wildlife.

Last year, ZSL together with other research organizations, including NASA and the European Commission’s Joint Research Council, held the first international symposium on “remote sensing” for conservation. In essence, remote sensing involves combining the latest high-resolution satellite imagery with zoological, demographic and geographical data and advanced computer modelling and predictive analytics, to better understand the effects that human activity is having on animal and plant populations.

What Problem Is Big Data Helping To Solve?

The threat to biodiversity from human activity is one of the biggest challenges facing us as a species. The ecosystem which we all depend on for ...

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