Physical offices closed January 18 for Martin Luther King Jr. Day
Dr. Mark Hulme
University Of The West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad And Tobago
Since receiving the news of my Wildlife Acoustics Scientific Product Grant the Pawi project has been proceeding well. I now have an MSc student, Alisha Koulen, working on developing the methods to be used for the project and so far we have deployed Wildlife Acoustics SM4 recorders over 25 days at four different locations in the Northern Range of Trinidad know to have recent records of the Pawi (Trinidad Piping-guan). Three of these locations have resulted in positive detections, which is great news. The data for the fourth was retrieved recently and we are hopeful for more good news there. Analysis of the arrays of recorders at these locations and of planned playback experiments will help us to determine the detection distance for Pawi calls and wing drums in different forest habitats which will inform the survey design for next dry season, when the birds will start vocalising much more frequently than during the current wet season. We have started using Kaleidoscope software to automate the detection of Pawi calls and wing-drums, with some encouraging results. I will fine-tune this process and combine automation with manual identification. The sonograms for the piping calls and wing-drums are quite distinctive which makes our job a lot easier! The grant from Wildlife Acoustics, which has paid for the Kaleidoscope licenses, has added a vital element to the analysis and we hope the results will play an important role in the ongoing protection of this critically endangered species.