Thursday, October 1, 2020

Using Drones to Rescue Wildlife From Climate Disasters

Douglas Thron travels to fire-ravaged forests and towns struck by hurricanes to save animals among the rubble.

A dog left stranded among the ruins of Hurricane Dorian in the Bahamas in 2019.Source: Courtesy Douglas Thron

Todd Woody
Bloomberg

Scientists have long deployed drones to do everything from counting caribou to collecting whale snot. Now the flying machines are helping to rescue animals as climate change takes an increasingly deadly toll on wildlife.  

For the past year, a California videographer named Douglas Thron has chased climate catastrophes around the world, piloting drones outfitted with infrared cameras and spotlights to help find survivors of hurricanes and firestorms whose frequency and intensity are growing with rising temperatures. After Thron locates the animals, wildlife rescuers can move them to safety.

“The potential for these drones to save animals, whether wild or domestic, and help in their recovery is just huge,” says Thron.  Read more >>