Back ground

Drones have great potential for monitoring programs and environmental and years have seen a large increase in their utilization for such projects.

Knowledge of habitat use, intra- and interspecific foraging interactions, mating behavior etc. is crucial for conservation efforts.

There is also growing interest in understanding how they are affected by human activities, e.g. noise created by car and boat traffic, or physical and acoustical obstacles such as r wind farms. However, we are still far from utilizing the full potential of drones for such purposes.

The technologies and biological knowledge obtained during this project will have important implications for future use of drones in such studies and for conservation efforts of bats and whales.

The aim of the project

The project wants to combine the latest in bioacoustics research with cutting-edge drone technology, utilizing SDU’s expertise within both fields to synergistically develop research tools to study the bio-sonar of bats and whales in their natural environment.

The project will afford us an unprecedented insight into how the animals utilize this unique sensory system in the context it has evolved to function in, and will provide important technological development for the use of drones for environmental monitoring in general.

The project outcome

Development of a multi-drone platform which is capable of acoustic and visual monitoring in “hard to reach” areas, both on land and at sea.


Work package leader: Associate Professor Magnus Wahlberg, Department of Biology


Professor John Hallam, Centre for BioRobotics, The Maersk Mc-Kinney Moller inst.
Assistant professor Lasse Jakobsen, Centre for BioRobotics, Department of Biology

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