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In recent times, camera traps have revolutionized the study of wildlife, mainly mammals. Due to the data obtained with this tool, it has been possible to document the richness of species in geographical areas of special interest, in addition to providing valuable information regarding the occupation and abundance of species that are usually the object of study in several conservation processes. Camera traps are usually installed at ground level in the hope of capturing species with terrestrial habits, however, the possibility of using the camera trap method to evaluate tree systems has been opened. In this context, some studies have been reported in which researchers have climbed trees to install the cameras, and others in which they have been able to install the cameras in the canopy, from the ground. The Orion Camera System (SCO) (Méndez-Carvajal, 2014) allows cameras to be installed in the medium-high stratum of the canopy without the need to climb the trees, being a practical method that does not imply prior training to climb the trees and eliminate the risk to the researcher. In addition, the costs for such a demonstrator using such a method may be lower compared to a professional climbing team. In order to evaluate the effectiveness of the SCO, two pilots were carried out in two zones in Colombia. The first was carried out in the department of Antioquia, it presented 10 photo-trapping stations, 8 in the canopy and 2 on the ground, completing 462 traps-night and recording 21 species of mammals and 10 birds; With the cameras located in the canopy, the 5 species of primates that inhabit the area were recorded. In the second, carried out in the department of Putumayo, 10 photo-trapping stations were followed, completing 2762 traps-night, registering 10 species of mammals and 1 of birds. In both studies, species of arboreal mammals were recorded, which were rarely recorded in photo-trapping and biological characterization works. It is concluded that this method is practical for implementation in the field and can complement the information in biodiversity inventories and can even be used in monitoring and behavior studies, with an adequate design.


Mammals, Arboreal species, Biological characterizations

William Bonell, Silvia Alvarez, Leonor Valenzuela, Carlos Saavedra, Juliett González

Presentation within symposium:

S-47 The High Frontier revealed: Arboreal camera trapping’s potential to unlock the canopy’s mysteries

Experiences in the implementation of the Orion Camera System


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