Kaluta's Ecological services
At Kaluta we go further - we do things that others simply don't do, or don't make the most of. Not only are we knowledgeable in technology but we are always looking for ways to apply it in the land management and ecological realms.
Drones for ecology
FAUNA SPOTTER CATCHERS
Working with naTIVE FAUNA
At Kaluta we have a wealth of experience with fauna spotter-catcher roles and proudly offer them to you and your business. Did you know that in Queensland it is a legal requirement to have a fauna spotter-catcher on site for all land clearing activities?
We work with you and your crew to not only fulfill your legal obligations but to do so safely and with professionalism. We will:
- Conduct pre-clearance surveys
- Have people on site to deal with all fauna issues
- Provide excellent quality reports for your peace of mind
- Provide JSAs, SWMs and other documents on request
We work with your crew as efficiently as possible, communicating with operators in a clear and concise manner, adapting to the site specific rules and guidelines you may have. Talk to us today!
Protecting you and them
Did you know that:
- Most snake bites are caused by people trying to catch and/or kill snakes themselves?
- Snake bites can cause permanent health issues?
- It is illegal to kill snakes in Queensland
We've experienced snakes in: Australia, France, Germany, New Guinea, Malaysia and Indonesia! From the desert to the jungle and to the sea, let's say our experience is quite broad. We service the Brisbane area. Call us to safely and respectfully remove snakes because we care about them and we care about your safety too.
2D mapping and orthomosaics
There are so many uses for drone generated maps, far too many to list here. What you need to know is that all you have to do is nominate an area of land or shallow water and we can map it up to a resolution of 1cm/pixel!
Just imagine what you can do with that! Uses for outputs include:
- High resolution 2D
- Elevation map
- Plant health analysis
- Roof inspection for insurance
- Tools to assess damage on crops
- Map turkey nests and dams
- Maps to be used for stranded vessel salvage after a storm
In all of these cases, we come out, plan the flight to your specifications and hand you the stitched and ready data to use or forward to your specialist.
Along with 2D maps, we can provide a 3D digital model of the area we have scanned with the drone! Each image taken as the drone moves along its course is slightly different to the last. Angles are detected and calculated in the software during the processing phase. The output is a map that can be rotated, zoomed in on and used for a variety of purposes. It's great for looking at drainage lines, slopes and many other features within the landscape.
At Kaluta we will gather and process the imagery and deliver it to you online so you can make your own informed decisions.
Another potential output is handled by Developing Concepts. The mudflat example shown was exported to Developing Concepts and carved out of foam on a CNC machine! There are some limitations to this method, however in many circumstances it will be exceptionally useful. It will carve up to 800mm x 800mm x 200mm! This is an experiment, if you want to be part of it- please contact Kaluta to discuss how we can work with you!
Once upon a time, helicopter and fixed wing survey of habitats were about the only way to get a good look at them from above. Then came satellite imagery that formed the basis of GIS. Now, we can supplement this GIS satellite data with far more accurate, detailed imagery. The deliverables we provide allow land managers and conservationists make decisions with a resolution that was not previously available.
Create shape files, measure, find features that are not apparent at ground level.
Map vegetation communities with greater accuracy!
The example on the left was taken at Noosa, QLD, Australia. Here is how much time this assessment required:
- Setup time: 30 mins
- Flight time: 15 mins
- Analysis time: 25 mins
This work done by foot would have been damaging to the habitat and would have taken all day!
Welcome to a new and efficient tool in conservation and habitat management!
Data by hour, day, month, season or year
Now, more than ever we need to watch over habitats as they change with introduced species, changes in rainfall, fire damage and so much more.
The good news is that it just got so much easier than ever before. With a resolution that far exceeds that of satellite GIS, we can design a mapping path and re visit it as often as you like. The drone will fly the exact same path, with a remarkably small error margin. And you don't have a need to tramp through sensitive environments. Here are some simple solutions that are perfect for mapping over time:
- Map inundation at different stages of the tide
- Observe mangrove recruitment
- Map erosion and sediment deposition
- Map sand dunes
- Map seagrass beds
- Observe shallow coral reefs for damage
- Count particular organisms visible from the map
- Estimate stranded litter
- Check on health of Sphagnum and other bogs
- Map freshwater weed or native plant growth
- Assess cover of floating plants by season
- Assess damage to sensitive environments from feral species
- Assess damage due to vehicles over time
- Calculate cover of Spinifex before and after fire or over time
- Assess inundation following rain or as it recedes during drought
- Monitor land clearing
Map and compare ANY changes over time, the list of possibilities is likely limitless!
Individual species monitoring
This is where this technology comes in like never before.
Do you want to monitor a single species that is visible from the air?
The scope for this technology to be rolled out in species conservation and management is very broad.
From aerial counts via video files or live counts thanks to our comprehensive setup that will feed imagery to a separate ground station, you can assess populations like never before in a far less obtrusive manner either live on site or afterwards from a map.
Counting bilby burrows in the desert and assessing usage? No problem!
Assessing hairy nosed wombats burrows in the saltbush and grasslands? Also a great use.
AND ULTRASOUND ANALYSIS
We think bats are awesome.
We have the tools to take a peek into the world of bats and discover so many things about them that, thanks to leaps in technology were simply not possible up until very recently.
ECHO METER TOUCH 2 PRO (EMT2P)
The EMT2P is a fantastic tool that plugs into phones and tablets and allows automated recording of bat's sonar - with the option to play it back at a lowered pitch so human ears can easily hear it. As bats fly around hunting for food or interacting with each other we can detect their calls and identify them based on analysis of the call shape and characteristic frequency on desktop software. This professional kit is very similar to Anabat's system and produces:
- Zero crossing data
- Location data for each call
- Time stamps
- Automated grouping of all similar calls
- Desktop playback at lowered speed
- Coloured spectral visualization
- Automated bat call recording
WHO CAN USE IT?
This system is very useful for those that want their local bat population/bat boxes monitored, such as land managers, conservation groups and Government/NGOs; not to mention any other person or group that may be interested.
OTHER BAT DETECTION METHODS
Another simple method of bat monitoring is simply viewing bats on active infrared cameras. Unlike thermal imaging, we do not see their body heat but use light invisible to us and them to observe bats in their natural habitat. This is great for monitoring roost emergence at dusk.
KALUTA AND THE INFRARED "ELECTRONIC HARP TRAP"
A device to monitor bats on flyways without touching or disturbing them
Microbats are enigmatic creatures, certainly to us. We can't usually hear them, they are difficult for us to see as they fly in the dark and the vast majority of them are very small. For a long time, the best option to monitor them along flight paths has been the traditional harp trap - a device that captures them as they fly through it. This is still an excellent device for capturing any bats that need to be handled for any reason, however there are also many considerations that need to be addressed for ethical use.
What about monitoring bats on flyways that do not need to be captured? This is where this device comes in. It is about the size of many harp traps with an active "trapping area" of 1m x up to 4m.
The difference is that this device has no ability to catch or harm a bat - the strings are made of light! 100 infrared beams crosses from one side to the other every 8 milliseconds. When something interrupts a single one of those beams, a signal is sent to a device to take action.
That device can be a camera, high speed flashes or a multitude of other devices. The red circle on the sonogram shows the moment the flashes fired for this image
To set it up, simply line up the posts parallel - either horizontally or vertically, aim the camera at it on a 90 degree angle and plug in the desired device. There are a number of methods to doing this depending on the outcome.
When used with a camera, any bat that flies through it will have its photo taken. Digital photos record time and this can be synchronized with the EMT2P to gather important ultrasound data - great for reference calls. Prototypes are ready and the commercial version will be out soon as a few points are being refined.
Contact us now if you would like to have us come out to monitor a flyway or drinking point.
KALUTA NON CONTACT FROG SURVEYS
Monitoring frogs without touching or disturbing them
Today we are more conscious of the plight of frogs than ever before. Kaluta is certainly not new to frogs, in fact these creatures were much of the driving force behind the business in the first place. Luckily we can determine the species to be found in a given area by their calls. There are a couple of ways to do this:
Generally, frogs have distinctive calls which can be used to identify the species with a very high level of confidence. We can go out on site and take a recording or even be sent a sound file of the chorus and identify the range of species present. This is especially useful for ascertaining the diversity of the site and detecting species of concern as well as assessing the approximate number of frogs.
Another highly successful method of checking frog populations is by simply observing them. Many species remain highly active, even when not breeding and can be detected in their habitat easily by eyeshine alone - particularly in wet weather. We can also "road cruise" along areas of interest and identify and count frogs as well as other ground dwelling species.
HIGH RESOLUTION CAMERA TRAPPING
Exceptional photographs of shy species
You can have grainy, low resolution camera trap images of shy animals or you can have beautiful, well lit photographs that are fit for the wall! In 2005 there were few, if any commercial camera trap sensors on the market for DSLR cameras, so Nathan, the founder made them from industrial sensors, eventually as technology advanced he moved on to making his own from basic components.
The end result is that we can offer you the opportunity to have sophisticated systems deployed virtually anywhere from treetops to the forest floor. Kaluta can capture amazing photographs of almost any species.
Tracking elusive nocturnal animals
Many Australian animals, especially mammals are mostly active at night which is why spotlighting is so important as a surveying tool. A number of methods may be employed such as working transects and using red filters to minimize disturbance and allow closer approaches. Data delivery can be as simple as determining what species are present to recording the full range of species seen, each sighting individually recorded with GPS coordinates and time.
It's not just mammals that can be recorded but a range of native fish, reptiles and amphibians that are much more likely to be seen at night. This helps to round off just about any baseline survey.
Contact us to find out how it can work for you!
PROTECTED FLORA SURVEYS
Get in touch with plant experts
Most development sites require thorough surveys that target protected plants. Kaluta is proud to put you in touch with the very best Queensland has to offer. Click on the button below to get in touch with Queensland's leading flora experts! A new window will open.