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Projects in India

Automated Elephant Tracking to Reduce Human-Elephant Conflict

Chris Rico

Automated Sensor-Based Elephant Tracking Device for Reducing Human-Elephant Conflict

Koustav Choudury Interim Report

This report describes a sensor and call alert system designed for detecting elephant intrusions into villages that border wildlife reserves and alerting threatened communities of the location of the elephants. The sensor system for detection is wireless and is connected with a Hooter and Elephant Alert Call Amplifier for alerting communities. In order to balance power consumption, cost, and ease of installation and testing in rural areas, novel strategies for hardware, firmware, and communication have been applied to the rareness of events to be detected and low data rates and light traffic load involved.

The system needs to be maintained by the communities, so attempts have been made to build in preventative maintenance measures and to build the system such that it is maintainable by personnel without technical expertise.

We have received permission from West Bengal Forest Department, India. Now we are ready to install 40 devices in 11 locations of Garumara South Range under Gorumara Wildlife Division. We have conducted 3 awareness workshops with forest villagers of that region regarding the device. We have already built the 40 devices, which was accomplished by myself, Koustav Choudhury, Shimu Saha and Pradyut Roy and all of our team. Hooter will be placed in 4 Forest Beat Offices: Ramsai-Kalipur Beat, Gorumara Beat, and Bichabhanga Beat. We have made iron poles and iron boxes to install those sensors and we have already 20 poles installed in the Ramsai-Kalipur, Bichabhanga, Gorumara, and Dhupjhora locations.

We have installed 10 devices, and they are working very well. With these 10 devices we have tracked elephants at least 5-6 times and have sent alerts to forest officials, and in these areas crop raiding is starting to decrease.