Wildlife population assessment: changing priorities driven by technological advances

S. T. Buckland*, D. L. Borchers, T. A. Marques, R. M. Fewster

*Corresponding author for this work

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Advances in technology are having a large effect on the priorities for innovation in statistical ecology. Collaborations between statisticians and ecologists have always been important in driving methodological development, but increasingly, expertise from computer scientists and engineers is also needed. We discuss changes that are occurring and that may occur in the future in surveys for estimating animal abundance. As technology advances, we expect classical distance sampling and capture-recapture to decrease in importance, as camera (still and video) survey, acoustic survey, spatial capture-recapture and genetic methods continue to develop and find new applications. We explore how these changes are impacting the work of the statistical ecologist.
Original languageEnglish
Article number20
Number of pages22
JournalJournal of Statistical Theory and Practice
Issue number2
Early online date2 Feb 2023
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2023


  • Acoustic surveys
  • Camera-trap surveys
  • Distance sampling
  • Genetic surveys
  • Occupancy
  • Spatial capture-recapture


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