IBM Saves Rhinos by Strapping Smart Collars to Prey Animals

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In Style Engineers Worldwide Volume Three: Saving Hope, Tilly and the gang travel to Tanzania to help a Circle member named Nataana deploy her anti-poaching technology. Saving Hope was inspired by the work being done in the real world to help end poaching and save rhinos. From a variety of sophisticated drops to GPS chips, hidden cameras, and smart fences, technology has become critical in thwarting poachers. As more people create innovative technological solutions to combat poaching, the safer rhinos become. 

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One example of innovative thinking in the quest to end poaching is IBM's use of its Internet of Things (IoT) in South Africa's Welgevonden Game Reserve. Alongside telecommunications company MTN, Wageningen University in the Netherlands, and tech company Prodapt, IBM has found a way to use smart collars to stop poachers.  

Video/IBM Watson Internet of Things

Video/IBM Watson

It works like this: Researchers place collars with sensor technology on prey animals (like zebras and impalas) in order to track their behaviors. Because poachers will likely come across a zebra or impala before they get to a rhino, these prey animals become a first alert system. They run from threats, such as poachers, and because they are connected to a network, the researchers can observe their movements in real time, allowing them to quickly find and stop the poacher. The data supplied by these smart-collar-wearing prey animals is also used to create algorithms that can predict the animals' future behavior.

 

 

Technology like this keeps conservationists steps ahead of poachers who rely on guns and other weapons. Style Engineers Worldwide believes in finding peaceful solutions rather than resorting to gun or other violence in order to solve global issues, and this kind of initiative by IBM is a perfect example of using tech for good. It gives us a lot of hope!