How Listening to Birds Can Shield the Seal River Watershed

An thrilling new collaboration was began this spring between the Seal River Watershed Alliance, an Indigenous non-profit coalition of 4 First Nations and one Inuit group, and Audubon’s Boreal Conservation program. The Seal River Watershed Alliance (SRWA) was began in 2019 by the Sayisi Dene First Nation, Northlands Dene First Nation, Barren Lands First Nation, and O-Pipon-Na-Piwin Cree Nation and with help of the Arviat Hunters and Trappers Affiliation. Collectively they’re transferring ahead a proposal for the institution of an Indigenous Protected Space for the extremely huge and vital 12-million-acre (50,000 km2) Seal River Watershed of northern Manitoba.

To showcase extra in regards to the Seal River Watershed’s significance to birds, the Seal River Watershed Alliance collaborated with Audubon’s Boreal Conservation program in 2021 to deploy ten automated sound recording models inside the watershed. The automated sound recording models, on this case the SwiftOne model bought from the Okay. Lisa Yang Middle for Conservation Bioacoustics (KLY-CCB) on the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, had been programmed to activate and off on a set schedule and report sound information to a built-in SD card. The models will be left for weeks or months after which the SD playing cards retrieved later within the season. The sound information can then be analyzed to be taught what birds (not less than those who make a sound) had been current at every location.

Indigenous elders and youth from the Sayisi Dene First Nation obtained the models in Could, 2021, and started transporting them by snowmobile throughout the still-frozen lakes to mount them at key areas in and across the Tadoule Lake space. After ice-out, a couple of extra models had been delivered to different areas by boat.

The breeding (and singing) season for birds winds down by mid-July and so the SD playing cards had been picked up from the sound recording models in late July. Quickly the sound information will likely be despatched to the KLY-CCB for analyses utilizing a machine studying algorithm, referred to as BirdNET, that they’ve developed for extra speedy processing of enormous quantities of sound recording information. However already a fast human take heed to a few of the information has revealed stunning recordings of species like Northern Waterthrush, Fox Sparrow, and White-crowned Sparrow that echoed out throughout the breathtaking panorama.

Hear the Sounds of the Seal River Watershed

At the moment as we rejoice collectively the Worldwide Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples 2021, we hope and count on that this collaboration between an Indigenous-led group (Seal River Watershed Alliance) and a standard chicken conservation group (Nationwide Audubon Society) to co-produce new details about the significance of the Seal River Watershed to migratory songbirds would be the begin of a protracted and significant new custom that provides hope to our world.  

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