Meet Dr. Roland Kays, zoologist and animal super-spy. Roland has pioneered the use of technology – like GPS collars that send text messages and motion-triggered cameras — to study animal populations in the wild.
With these techno-tools, Roland and colleagues track animal movement across landscapes, monitor behavior, and learn more about how critters use their habitat, particularly in areas affected by human activity.
When he’s not off discovering ridiculously cute new mammals in South America, chasing baboons in Africa, or tracking great egrets flying up the East Coast, Roland is working with an extensive network of citizen scientists to study mammal populations in the mid-Atlantic region through a project called eMammal.
Soon, Roland and his team (based at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences) will be bringing these high tech approaches for studying mammals to middle school classrooms in North Carolina and beyond as part of our new Students Discover project.
Roland and his camera traps were recently featured on UNC-TV’s North Carolina Science Now. Check out the video below where he demonstrates how they work and the related Q & A where Roland explains how he became a scientist.