Fauna photo tagging

Leadbeater’s Possum (Gymnobelideus leadbeateri) being identified from wildlife cameras in Victoria’s forests. Sorting images for scientific data using Digikam (source: Forest Survey Protection Program).

Tagging camera trap photos is an important first step in analysing and understanding the biodiversity in a specific geographic location. Treetec cameras are set up in the forest for an average of one month, sometimes generating thousands of photos on each camera. Our specialist team of ecologists examine each photo, identify the species present, and label the photo accordingly. Only then can data analysis be undertaken.

Smoky Mouse (Pseudomys fumeus) identified on Wildlife camera trapping in Victorian forests (source: Forest Protection Survey Program).

The primary aim of photo tagging is to identify threatened nocturnal species, demonstrating that they occupy a specific location. Of the thousands of photos, the rarer species may be present in only a few photos, therefore requiring careful examination of each photo in detail. 

Treetec has extensive experience in setting camera traps and completing photo tagging and data collation. We have participated in many government contracts throughout Victoria’s forests, working to identify threatened species locations. The target species Treetec specialises in are Leadbeater’s Possum (Gymnobelideus leadbeateri), Smokey Mouse (Pseudomys fumeus), Broad-Toothed Rat (Mastacomys fuscus), Long-footed Potoroo (Potorous longipes) and Long-nosed Bandicoots (Permameles nasuta). Treetec has also been involved in camera trapping of invasive species, such as deer, and our cameras often pick up other non-native species such as feral cats. All species identified are registered onto the Victorian Biodiversity Atlas.

Sorting wildlife camera trap images using Digikam. Common species in many images are Bush Rats and Agile Antechinus. (source: Forest Protection Survey Program).

Treetec are experienced in a number of additional ecological survey techniques, including Elliot trapping, spotlighting and thermal imaging cameras. Additional survey techniques are sometimes required to confirm threatened species identification, particularly for smaller species such as dunnarts.

Melbourne Arborist