It’s now been over a month since our flagship J-term course wrapped up. Everyone is starting to feel the crunch as classes are getting into gear and calendars are flooded with meetings, workshops, sessions, and office hours. But those of us who are continuing what we started back in January have other things on our mind…
…But we’re not talking about your typical spring break here. Although 10 of us will be spending the first part of our break down on St. Catherines Island, off the coast of Georgia, we don’t just have sand and waves on our minds. We are thinking about drones (what else?) and how we can use our developing skills as drone pilots to help with conservation efforts in the area.
Jon was contacted by Princess Aliyah Pandolfi, the Executive Director of the Kashmir World Foundation. In partnership with the Barrier Island Sanctuary and the Sea Turtle Conservancy, the Foundation is especially interested in tracking sea turtle nesting sites on the island. The image resolution from our drone missions is high enough, at two centimeters per pixel, to discern the different types of turtles based upon the tracks they leave in the sand. In addition to learning more about the turtles, we will be helping these groups obtain the imagery they need without physically disrupting the beaches where the turtles are hatching.
In the meantime, however, we still have a few more weeks of cold, snowy Massachusetts left, and still plenty of prep work to do before we can enjoy the southern sunshine.