Thermal imaging technology provides a useful tool to understand nocturnal activity of wildlife. We used thermal imaging to document American woodcock use of pine stands in Arkansas. A thermal imaging camera was used along logging roads on sampling dates ranging from December 2009 – February 2010 and in February 2011. We located 4 woodcock in 2010 in 20.27 hours of sampling within all stand types. For 11.55 h we only sampled pine seedling/clearcut stands due to vegetation structure inhibiting our ability to identify woodcock with the camera. In 2011 we found 2 woodcock in 7.42 hours of sampling on pine seedling/clearcut stands. Detection was highest during the peak in woodcock courtship and it increased by 75% when only pine seedling/clearcut stands were sampled in 2010. We detected almost 2 times as many woodcock per hour in 2010 than 2011. We feel that thermal imaging is a viable tool for documenting woodcock. However, we suggest that a handheld thermal camera be used as this would likely increase woodcock detection.
Long, A. and Locher, A.
"The Efficacy of Thermal Imaging Technology for Documenting American Woodcock on Pine Stands,"
Journal of the Arkansas Academy of Science: Vol. 65
, Article 26.
Available at: https://scholarworks.uark.edu/jaas/vol65/iss1/26