Satellite Anti-Poaching System Tested in the Altai-Sayan Ecoregion, Russia

UNDP press release the satellite anti-poaching system, from the Altai NGO list serve on Tue Dec 16, 2008


16.12.2008 Satellite Anti-Poaching System Tested in the Altai-Sayan Ecoregion

UNDP/GEF Project “Biodiversity Conservation in the Russian Portion of the Altai-Sayan Ecoregion” has successfully tested a unique satellite anti-poaching system in Altaiskiy nature reserve. It has never been applied in the Altai-Sayan Ecoregion before. The system was developed by Wild Land Security NGO, USA. It is intended for poacher detection in protected areas (PAs). Mr. Stephen Gulick, an electronic engineer and designer of the system, has tested it for the first time in national parks of Africa to protect endangered species. It consists of various detectors (a geophone, a metal detector, a PIR (passive infrared) detector, a photo-detector, etc.), a portable transmitter, and a satellite modem to transmit an alarm to a phone or an e-mail account of a PA ranger station. The satellite anti-poaching system enables rangers to quickly spot and intercept poachers coming to a protected area by providing real-time information about their location.

Altaiskiy nature reserve received 4 sets of “TrailGuard” satellite anti-poaching system, which were installed in areas known for frequent musk-deer poaching. Ultra-compact anti-poaching detectors were hidden along trails, in log cabins, and in other locations visited by poachers to transmit an alarm on an unauthorized entry. Reserve’s ranger station has a “Thuraya” satellite phone now to receive an alarm from the anti-poaching detectors. While in the mountains, ranger patrol groups would also use “Thuraya” satellite phones to keep in constant touch with the reserve’s duty station, police, and emergency service.

Satellite high-tech would allow Altaiskiy nature reserve to protect the area much more efficiently by early poacher spotting and safer patrol group operation. Moreover, this technology could save considerable part of the reserve’s budget due to effective raids to specified locations. If the satellite anti-poaching system proves successful, Altaiskiy nature reserve will locate anti-poaching detectors in all the sites infamous for poaching.

Jennifer Castner
jennifer@jennifercastner.org

2 Responses to “Satellite Anti-Poaching System Tested in the Altai-Sayan Ecoregion, Russia”

  1. Jennifer Castner Says:

    This project was co-funded by The Altai Project (http://altaiproject.org/) and Altai Assistance Project (http://www.altaiassistanceproject.org/).

  2. Rana Bayrakci Says:

    Re: UNDP press release the satellite anti-poaching system UPDATE
    Posted by: “Matt Foley” riverat@igc.org
    Mon Jan 5, 2009 12:57 pm (PST)
    An update:

    Not mentioned in the press release are the three GPS receiver based boat monitoring systems also delivered, for use in tracking boat traffic in the Sayano-Shushenskaya Zapovednik. They’ll be tried out next year after the river thaws.

    Steve continues to work on this project since returning to the US. His field experience in the Altai showed that some locations would be better served with different types of detectors than those he took with him, and that the installation of detectors in three additional locations before this winter’s musk deer poaching season would be highly desirable.

    The project so far has been paid for in equal amounts of $2000 by Altai Assistance Project (Weeden funds), The Altai Project, the Snow Leopard Conservancy, and a private donor, with an additional donation of $5000 from UNDP/GEF. After all travel and equipment expenses of this initial trip were paid, $1916.25 remained. This amount, with an additional $1000 from AAP, has been sent to Steve to cover the cost of the improved and additional detectors, which he will ship to Russia in January.

    Having gotten to know Altai Zapovednik staff people and their capabilities on his recent trip to the Altai, he is completely confident of their ability to install the devices.

    We’re hoping for at least one poacher bust, and that the equipment will prove equal to the challenge of operating in the severe Altai winter.

    For 2009, Steve would like to return to the Altai in late spring to install ten more anti-poaching systems. Each system consists of 1) a satellite gateway modem unit which is typically located in the treetop where it has a clear view of the satellites and is well hidden from poachers. 2) a detector unit (may be multiple units) that detect human presence and communicate that event to the satellite modem from where it is sent to Wildland Security’s US-based server, which can be accessed (with permission) by anyone connected to the internet.

    The 2009 budget for engineering, equipment manufacture, and installation is estimated at $15,000. The Altai Project and UNDP/GEF have so far committed to providing a substantial portion of the needed funds. Travel will be an additional expense, which AAP expects to arrange and pay for.

    More about the musk deer poaching problem at http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2004/09/0907_040907_muskdeer.html

    Thanks to all who have helped in this initial phase of what we hope will be a continuing and productive project!

    – Matt Foley, AAP

    —– Original Message —–
    From: Jennifer Castner
    To: altaingos@yahoogroups.com
    Sent: Tuesday, December 16, 2008 11:43 AM
    Subject: [AltaiNGOs] UNDP press release the satellite anti-poaching system

    Slightly different interesting details…

    16.12.2008 Satellite Anti-Poaching System Tested in the Altai-Sayan Ecoregion

    UNDP/GEF Project “Biodiversity Conservation in the Russian Portion of the Altai-Sayan Ecoregion” has successfully tested a unique satellite anti-poaching system in Altaiskiy nature reserve. It has never been applied in the Altai-Sayan Ecoregion before. The system was developed by Wild Land Security NGO, USA. It is intended for poacher detection in protected areas (PAs). Mr. Stephen Gulick, an electronic engineer and designer of the system, has tested it for the first time in national parks of Africa to protect endangered species. It consists of various detectors (a geophone, a metal detector, a PIR (passive infrared) detector, a photo-detector, etc.), a portable transmitter, and a satellite modem to transmit an alarm to a phone or an e-mail account of a PA ranger station. The satellite anti-poaching system enables rangers to quickly spot and intercept poachers coming to a protected area by providing real-time information about their location.

    Altaiskiy nature reserve received 4 sets of “TrailGuard” satellite anti-poaching system, which were installed in areas known for frequent musk-deer poaching. Ultra-compact anti-poaching detectors were hidden along trails, in log cabins, and in other locations visited by poachers to transmit an alarm on an unauthorized entry. Reserve’s ranger station has a “Thuraya” satellite phone now to receive an alarm from the anti-poaching detectors. While in the mountains, ranger patrol groups would also use “Thuraya” satellite phones to keep in constant touch with the reserve’s duty station, police, and emergency service.

    Satellite high-tech would allow Altaiskiy nature reserve to protect the area much more efficiently by early poacher spotting and safer patrol group operation. Moreover, this technology could save considerable part of the reserve’s budget due to effective raids to specified locations. If the satellite anti-poaching system proves successful, Altaiskiy nature reserve will locate anti-poaching detectors in all the sites infamous for poaching.

    Jennifer Castner
    jennifer@jennifercastner.org

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