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AudioMoth: Evaluation of a smart open acoustic device for monitoring biodiversity and the environment

AudioMoth: Evaluation of a smart open acoustic device for monitoring biodiversity and the environment
AudioMoth: Evaluation of a smart open acoustic device for monitoring biodiversity and the environment
1. The cost, usability and power efficiency of available wildlife monitoring equipment currently inhibits full ground-level coverage of many natural systems. Developments over the last decade in technology, open science, and the sharing economy promise to bring global access to more versatile and more affordable monitoring tools, to improve coverage for conservation researchers and managers.
2. Here we describe the development and proof-of-concept of a low-cost, small-sized and low-energy acoustic detector: 'AudioMoth'. The device is open-source and programmable, with diverse applications for recording animal calls or human activity at sample rates of up to 384kHz. We briefly outline two ongoing real-world case studies of large-scale, long-term monitoring for biodiversity and exploitation of natural resources. These studies demonstrate the potential for AudioMoth to enable a substantial shift away from passive continuous recording by individual devices, towards smart detection by networks of devices flooding large and inaccessible ecosystems.
3. The case studies demonstrate one of the smart capabilities of AudioMoth, to trigger event logging on the basis of classification algorithms that identify specific acoustic events. An algorithm to trigger recordings of the New Forest cicada (Cicadetta montana) demonstrates the potential for AudioMoth to vastly improve the spatial and temporal coverage of surveys for the presence of cryptic animals. An algorithm for logging gunshotevents has potential to identify a shotgun blast in tropical rainforest at distances of up to 500 m, extending to 1km with continuous recording.
4. AudioMoth is more energy efficient than currently available passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) devices, giving it considerably greater portability and longevity in the field with smaller batteries. At a build cost of ~US$43 per unit, AudioMoth has potential for varied applications in large-scale, long-term acoustic surveys. With continuing developments in smart, energy-efficient algorithms and diminishing component costs, we are approaching the milestone of local communities being able to afford to remotely monitor their own natural resources.
2041-210X
1199-1211
Hill, Andrew
bfc05b70-7a90-40ab-8240-4d1f56aa3e4d
Prince, Peter
78127c3d-514f-42fb-a70b-9360feab337a
Pina-Covarrubias, Evelyn
a3202474-20c4-4a8c-b34d-713d8e060f0f
Doncaster, Charles
0eff2f42-fa0a-4e35-b6ac-475ad3482047
Snaddon, Jake
31a601f7-c9b0-45e2-b59b-fda9a0c5a54b
Rogers, Alex
60b99721-b556-4805-ab34-deb808a8666c
Hill, Andrew
bfc05b70-7a90-40ab-8240-4d1f56aa3e4d
Prince, Peter
78127c3d-514f-42fb-a70b-9360feab337a
Pina-Covarrubias, Evelyn
a3202474-20c4-4a8c-b34d-713d8e060f0f
Doncaster, Charles
0eff2f42-fa0a-4e35-b6ac-475ad3482047
Snaddon, Jake
31a601f7-c9b0-45e2-b59b-fda9a0c5a54b
Rogers, Alex
60b99721-b556-4805-ab34-deb808a8666c

Hill, Andrew, Prince, Peter, Pina-Covarrubias, Evelyn, Doncaster, Charles, Snaddon, Jake and Rogers, Alex (2018) AudioMoth: Evaluation of a smart open acoustic device for monitoring biodiversity and the environment. Methods in Ecology and Evolution, 9 (5), 1199-1211. (doi:10.1111/2041-210X.12955).

Record type: Article

Abstract

1. The cost, usability and power efficiency of available wildlife monitoring equipment currently inhibits full ground-level coverage of many natural systems. Developments over the last decade in technology, open science, and the sharing economy promise to bring global access to more versatile and more affordable monitoring tools, to improve coverage for conservation researchers and managers.
2. Here we describe the development and proof-of-concept of a low-cost, small-sized and low-energy acoustic detector: 'AudioMoth'. The device is open-source and programmable, with diverse applications for recording animal calls or human activity at sample rates of up to 384kHz. We briefly outline two ongoing real-world case studies of large-scale, long-term monitoring for biodiversity and exploitation of natural resources. These studies demonstrate the potential for AudioMoth to enable a substantial shift away from passive continuous recording by individual devices, towards smart detection by networks of devices flooding large and inaccessible ecosystems.
3. The case studies demonstrate one of the smart capabilities of AudioMoth, to trigger event logging on the basis of classification algorithms that identify specific acoustic events. An algorithm to trigger recordings of the New Forest cicada (Cicadetta montana) demonstrates the potential for AudioMoth to vastly improve the spatial and temporal coverage of surveys for the presence of cryptic animals. An algorithm for logging gunshotevents has potential to identify a shotgun blast in tropical rainforest at distances of up to 500 m, extending to 1km with continuous recording.
4. AudioMoth is more energy efficient than currently available passive acoustic monitoring (PAM) devices, giving it considerably greater portability and longevity in the field with smaller batteries. At a build cost of ~US$43 per unit, AudioMoth has potential for varied applications in large-scale, long-term acoustic surveys. With continuing developments in smart, energy-efficient algorithms and diminishing component costs, we are approaching the milestone of local communities being able to afford to remotely monitor their own natural resources.

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Hill_et_al-2017-Methods_in_Ecology_and_Evolution - Accepted Manuscript
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MEE-17-09-786.R1 Hill AudioMoth Accepted Article
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More information

Submitted date: 15 September 2017
Accepted/In Press date: 3 December 2017
e-pub ahead of print date: 13 December 2017
Published date: 15 January 2018
Additional Information: Copyright: 2017 The Authors. Methods in Ecology and Evolution published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd on behalf of British Ecological Society.

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 416402
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/416402
ISSN: 2041-210X
PURE UUID: deee7335-a03d-4567-9af6-45d8d264232c
ORCID for Evelyn Pina-Covarrubias: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-3564-7467
ORCID for Charles Doncaster: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-9406-0693
ORCID for Jake Snaddon: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-3549-5472

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Date deposited: 15 Dec 2017 17:30
Last modified: 28 Oct 2022 02:12

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Contributors

Author: Andrew Hill
Author: Peter Prince
Author: Evelyn Pina-Covarrubias ORCID iD
Author: Jake Snaddon ORCID iD
Author: Alex Rogers

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