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Artificial Intelligence Is Helping in Bird Study in China

Armed with six eyes and the power to listen to and feel, a tool powered by synthetic intelligence lurks amongst waterbirds at Penfold Park in Sha Tin, as a part of authorities’ pilot venture for conservation.

The AI system identifies, tracks and analyses birds on the park, one of many most important habitats for egrets within the metropolis. The machine is formed like a flower pot, full of six cameras, sound and vibration sensors, and shielded from the elements by a glass dome.

The Drainage Services Department, which has a sewage therapy plant close to the park, has been testing the system for nearly a year to plan conservation measures for an undertaking to relocate its facility to a nearby cavern.

Observers have mentioned the most recent scheme was a part of the government’s ongoing effort to encourage innovation and construct a wise metropolis.

The therapy plant is situated lower than 500 meters from the park and lies beneath each day flight path of egrets.

The division invited a staff on the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology to develop the monitoring system, which now contains about 15 units in and across the park, in addition to a knowledge center.

The crew taught the AI system to learn how to determine completely different species by deep studying, wherein a myriad of images and 3D models of birds in various backgrounds are fed into its database.

Wang mentioned the system might now precisely establish a species more significant than 90% of the time, so long as the fowl was in full view. If a part of the animal’s physique is hidden from its cameras, the speed drops 70 to 80%.

The gadget may also cross-verify calls of various species and observe the motion of a person to keep away from double counting when recording a listing of a gaggle of birds.

Species recognized on the park embody the great egret, little egret, Chinese pond heron, black-topped evening heron, and gray heron. The division stated it was unable to offer precise inhabitants figures as this was nonetheless underneath evaluation.

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