Perspectives and challenges for the use of radar in biological conservation

Ommo Hüppop , Michał Ciach , Robert Diehl , Don R. Reynolds , Phillip M. Stepanian , Myles H. M. Menz


Radar is at the forefront for the study of broad-scale aerial movements of birds, bats and insects and related issues in biological conservation. Radar techniques are especially useful for investigating species which fly at high altitudes, in darkness, or which are too small for applying electronic tags. Here, we present an overview of radar applications in biological conservation and highlight its future possibilities. Depending on the type of radar, information can be gathered on local- to continental-scale movements of airborne organisms and their behaviour. Such data can quantify flyway usage, biomass and nutrient transport (bioflow), population sizes, dynamics and distributions, times and dimensions of movements, areas and times of mass emergence and swarming, habitat use and activity ranges. Radar also captures behavioural responses to anthropogenic disturbances, artificial light and man-made structures. Weather surveillance and other long-range radar networks allow spatially broad overviews of important stopover areas, songbird mass roosts and emergences from bat caves. Mobile radars, including repurposed marine radars and commercially dedicated ‘bird radars’, offer the ability to track and monitor the local movements of individuals or groups of flying animals. Harmonic radar techniques have been used for tracking short-range movements of insects and other small animals of conservation interest. However, a major challenge in aeroecology is determining the taxonomic identity of the targets, which often requires ancillary data obtained from other methods. Radar data have become a global source of information on ecosystem structure, composition, services and function and will play an increasing role in the monitoring and conservation of flying animals and threatened habitats worldwide.
Author Ommo Hüppop
Ommo Hüppop,,
, Michał Ciach (FoF / IoEaS / DBL)
Michał Ciach,,
, Robert Diehl
Robert Diehl,,
, Don R. Reynolds
Don R. Reynolds,,
, Phillip M. Stepanian
Phillip M. Stepanian,,
, Myles H. M. Menz
Myles H. M. Menz,,
Journal seriesEcography, ISSN 0906-7590, e-ISSN 1600-0587, (N/A 100 pkt)
Issue year2019
Publication size in sheets0.9
Keywords in Englishradar, aeroecology, insects, birds, biological conservation, phenology
ASJC Classification1107 Forestry
Languageen angielski
LicenseJournal (articles only); author's final; Uznanie Autorstwa - Użycie Niekomercyjne (CC-BY-NC); after publication
Perspectives and challenges for the use of radar in biological conservation of 23-07-2019
4,7 MB
Score (nominal)100
Score sourcejournalList
Publication indicators Scopus SNIP (Source Normalised Impact per Paper): 2018 = 1.86; WoS Impact Factor: 2018 = 5.946 (2) - 2018=6.691 (5)
Citation count*12 (2020-04-08)
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* presented citation count is obtained through Internet information analysis and it is close to the number calculated by the Publish or Perish system.
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