We are pleased to announce our open access latest paper, which is an
applications/methods paper describing the modification of a UAV (drone) to
obtain echolocation sounds and video from bats during flight.
Fu, Y., Kinniry, M., and Kloepper, L.N. The Chirocopter: a UAV for
recording sound and video of bats at altitude. Methods in Ecology and
Evolution, Advanced online publication 2 March 2018. doi:
1.Most recordings of bats are conducted with fixed equipment, which relies
on opportunistic data collection. Unmanned aerial vehicles (such as drones)
are considered inappropriate for recording bats due to ultrasound noise
2.We developed a UAV system that physically isolates UAV noise so we can
record, with 3D maneuverability, ultrasonic audio and spatial thermal data
of bat flight at altitude.
3.We tested the noise of our UAV with various payloads and microphone
configurations to characterize the ultrasonic noise of our system,
physically isolate drone noise from the microphone, and maximize UAV flight
4.Over 84 minutes of recordings, we captured 3,847 echolocation signals
from bats with corresponding thermal data of bat flight. Our system
provides a feasible mechanism to capture both acoustic and video data of
bats aloft at flexible locations and altitudes.
5.We include information on how to extend our method to apply to acoustic
recordings in the audible (20 Hz-20 kHz) range for recording sounds of
Saint Mary's College
Notre Dame, IN