Snapshot Serengeti Talk

Special images in Extended Survey season

  • maricksu by maricksu moderator

    You may have already noticed that, this season is special, different and interesting in many ways.
    Information about this season and the research connected to it can be found from our Blog.

    Images are from different areas in Serengeti Ecosystem (Blog) and also seem to be from several years, if timestamps are correct.

    We all still would like to get more information. Many questions have already appeared about e.g. these 2 following things.

    In several images we see 2 different kind of exclosures, constructed for the research but the purpose and use is still unclear.
    My thought is, that they are probably for tree seedlings, soil moisture sensor or maybe both, but not sure and would like this to be confirmed or corrected by our researchers. Also would like to know, are they both for same purpose?

    Image examples ASG001qvsf , ASG001qpx6 , ASG001stya
    Exclosure ASG001qvsf

    Exclosure ASG001qpx6

    Exclosure ASG001stya

    We have also seen many images of cattle (various domestic animals) this season, so far from 2 cameras. We all know that cattle presence is not allowed in Serengeti National Park, though we occasionally have seen them. In this season, we have images from Serengeti Ecosystem (Blog) meaning that the cattle images maybe also from outside the Park, from areas where their presence is allowed. We would also like this to be confirmed by the researchers and are e.g. these images outside the Park.
    ASG001qhne , ASG001rv8l

    Cattle ASG001qhne

    Cattle ASG001rv8l

    Thank you already, we all love to learn more about this great project! πŸ˜ƒ


  • tam10 by tam10 scientist

    (posted by Dr. T. Morrison, a researcher on the project)
    Hi -- one of our camera traps is located outside of Serengeti National Park in the world-famous Ngorongoro Conservation Area, which is managed for both livestock grazing and wildlife. Thus, most of the images with livestock come from this area. Our camera is about a kilometer from Ol Duvai Gorge in an area frequented by both pastoralists and wildlife. One of our research focuses is understanding the extent to which livestock and wildlife compete or facilitate one another -- since this area is used by wildlife in the wet season, our expectation is that there is plenty of food for both livestock and wildlife, at least before the wildlife (specifically wildebeest) migrate away.

    The exclosures protect tree seedlings from being eaten by herbivores, and are part of an experiment to understand how seedlings grow from seed to sapling in the savanna. Like any good experiment, we also have other treatments -- we have other seedlings planted outside exclosures (not visible) which can be eaten, and half of our seedlings get supplementary water.

    More details (and results) to come!


  • maricksu by maricksu moderator in response to tam10's comment.

    Thank you Dr. T. Morrison, for your fast response and all this clarifying, fascinating information! πŸ˜ƒ


  • maricksu by maricksu moderator

    You may have also noticed, that we see many images of fire (fire or smoke) and burnt plots/areas in Extended Survey season. These fires are controlled burns in certain plots at certain research sites, connected to the Research Project. These are an important part of experiments to understand the effect of fire. In some images we also may see people working and helping with these controlled burns.

    See more info also in Blog and e.g. Dr. T. Morrison's comment in image ASG001pp9z.

    Example images of fire (fire or smoke) ASG001oyah , ASG001qdvy , ASG001s36w

    Fire ASG001oyah

    Fire ASG001qdvy

    Fire ASG001s36w

    Example image below of burnt ground/grass ASG001rs9s

    Burnt groud,grass ASG001rs9s

    Classifying same way as all other kind of fires and burnt areas, we may have seen in other Snapshot Serengeti seasons:

    When Classifying and you see in images:

    Fire or smoke - please mark "fire"

    Only burnt ground/grass - do NOT mark "fire"

    More examples in link πŸ˜ƒ


  • aliburchard by aliburchard scientist, translator

    Thanks for the great explanation, maricksu!


  • maricksu by maricksu moderator

    I think that this following info is useful to add also here πŸ˜ƒ

    When you see domestic animals, classify as 'Cattle'.

    We classify all domestic animals (cattle, sheep, goat, donkey, dog) as 'Cattle'.


  • maricksu by maricksu moderator

    Also the camera-heights are special in Extended Survey season.

    Usually in Snapshot Serengeti seasons cameras are set about 0,5-1 m above the ground. In Extended Survey season researchers have set the cameras at variable heights, most of them are set about 1,5 m above the ground. In this research they need good, wider view of the herbivores in the vegetation area in image. Mentioned e.g. in discussion, link below.

    This is useful to know, when identifying animals close the camera and also at far distance from the camera. πŸ˜ƒ


  • maricksu by maricksu moderator

    I think these 2 following 'Not animal'-objects may be nice and useful to know when classifying this season, so I add these into this Info-link.

    We have seen this season these 2 mysterious objects, in fairly many photos from 2 cameraplaces. Thanks to all you dedicated volunteers, for your great help in noticing and solving these mysteries.

    In the camera below, we see this orange object on the ground, middle in right, that is a Bucket. Confirmed by our researcher from the field, commented e.g. in ASG001q8jz , ASG001q92p , more examples ASG001pqsp , ASG001p650 , ASG001snvm , ASG001pmy4 , ASG001oox7 , ASG001rsgr , ASG001rsrq

    Bucket on the ground

    In this camera below, in front we see part of a Branch, looks so very much like animal ears when very low in down edge, swinging in front of camera in various positions. Also at night or with other branches in some photos. I think the most tricky branch this season and has confused most of us, also me, when saw it first time. But now we know, not an animal. More examples ASG001sfi4 , ASG001pos1 , ASG001syaz , ASG001r1gz , ASG001r4a3 , ASG001pj5d , ASG001q5h3 , ASG001qf7m , ASG001pqjv , ASG001sy9r , ASG001p964 , ASG001s7ln .



    Please note though, these objects are certainly not in every photo of these 2 cameras. We need to remember that photos this season are from several years (2012-2015) so things change in vegetation, background, set angle of camera-view etc. There may be animals elsewhere in photo (I chose examples with no animals) and some day it may of course be possible to spot a real animal also in exactly same spot in photo.

    It is impossible to know these kind of mysteries before or in the beginning of the season. We all volunteers here are the ones who classify these photos, thus we are the ones who find these some very interesting mysteries. Also, these kind of mysteries could not understandably have been avoided, especially this season, because in this research some cameras had been set so remote places that researchers could go to those places only every 3-4 months to check them. more about that e.g. in links

    Fortunately with the great co-operation of all of us, most of these kind possible mysteries will be solved during the season, when classifying lots of photos. πŸ˜ƒ


  • rcooley001 by rcooley001

    Thank you so much for all the great info and solving various mysteries


  • maricksu by maricksu moderator

    I add here the direct links to those Blog posts, that has been posted about the research this season, so that those are easier to find also later πŸ˜ƒ


  • maricksu by maricksu moderator

    I add these 3 photos, that have been found of this tree, also here (below). Here the great photos of elephant pushing tree down, also in Blog with more info.
    ASG001pfdm , ASG001qdk7 , ASG001qkk2 ,




    This tree is one of those many, individually marked, longterm study trees, that researchers monitor. Here also a few more photos of this moment a bit later. ASG001qdju , ASG001qdjx , ASG001qdj6

    One interesting extra detail, we have also seen these following photos a few days later from this same place.
    ASG001q5v6 , ASG001q5tc , ASG001q5v2 .
    Looks a lot like same magnificent elephant, but of course we can’t be any sure without more details to see.

    I think, this tree actually may be this same tree here ASG001qoor (photo below), which we have seen from different angles of view in many photos. (By comparing it’s branches, also trees in background and dates). Would be nice, if researchers confirm/correct this thought. Same tree or not, it is though nice to see how a fallen tall tree offers great opportunity for e.g. giraffe to feed. More nice giraffe photos from this place e.g. ASG001pkt8 , ASG001p09p , ASG001p0ah, ASG001s67x , ASG001rav0 , ASG001r3oq , ASG001p3e1 , ASG001qyqw , ASG001pdyg πŸ˜ƒ



  • maricksu by maricksu moderator

    Extended Survey season is succesfully completed, thanks to you all great volunteers!

    I thought it is nice to add this collection here, in the end of this info link.
    We saw these exclosures to protect tree seedlings in many photos. Here are some moments by those exclosures. Some animals were very interested in them and this research, too. Some chose to investigate them a bit closer. Here is also that one handsome male giraffe, which spent quite a while resting by one, almost like proudly guarding it πŸ˜ƒ


  • maricksu by maricksu moderator

    Wildebeest was one of the 'stars' in this season. I wanted to share with all of you this collection I made about some of those magnificent wildebeest views. (I chose these from my favorites and tried to organize some of them a bit here). I thought, it is nice to end this info link with these memorable moments πŸ˜ƒ


  • davidbygott by davidbygott moderator in response to maricksu's comment.

    Wonderful collections M! Thanks for sharing these.


  • Babyballerina by Babyballerina

    Thank you so much maricksu! I have only just seen your collections. I love the warthog 'helpers'. They are keen Ecologists.