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The Snapshot

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Issue 4: November, 2018

November Science Update

It typically takes some manipulation and critical thinking to transform Snapshot Wisconsin data into something that can answer a specific question. Recently, we needed to determine which camera sites best fit the criteria for a research project. Ideal camera sites for the project needed to have many total active days and a large proportion of their photos already classified. Additionally, the research project required camera sites from a variety of land cover types across the state (e.g. farm land, prairie, forest, wetland, etc.).

Combining measures of time, space and work remaining into one visual presented some challenges, especially because there were about 1,500 locations available. To highlight our best options, we created a map that displayed all these metrics at once, as seen below. To protect the privacy of our camera locations, no landmarks or scale bars are visible.

Deer population map

Examining the size and color of each point as well as the corresponding land cover type allowed us to quickly assess the suitability of each camera site. To illustrate the utility of this map, the locations labeled A and B seemed to be favorable because they are large and on the darker end of the blue gradient. The camera at location C may have been active for many total days, but relatively few of the photos are classified. The camera at location D has only been running for 80 days or less. Taking all these points into consideration, we determined that camera sites A and B were best suited to the purposes of the research project in question. While statistical methods of evaluation would likely have led to similar conclusions, visual representation of the history and status of our trail cameras was just as effective in helping us evaluate our data and apply it to the problem at hand.



November 2018 Volunteer of the Month: Roger from Sawyer County

Roger from Sawyer County

Roger from Sawyer County

November’s Volunteer of the Month is Roger from Sawyer County. Roger was one of the first Snapshot Wisconsin volunteers. This month marks two and a half years with the project – wow! Roger enjoys hunting, fishing and being outdoors every day.

Roger’s camera site is a fan favorite and a go-to source of exciting photos for staff. Roger recently stated, “One of the coolest things that ever happened to me was early in the program, I had a picture of eight otters going down a trail that I maintain on my property. This picture was used in a publication for the University of Wisconsin.” Images from Roger’s camera have also been used in the Snapshot Wisconsin lesson plan Making Observations, where students are able to catalogue observations about animal behavior over time and space.

Thank you, Roger! Thank you to all our trail camera hosts and Zooniverse volunteers for helping us discover our wildlife together.



Trail Camera Host Announcements: New Training Videos

Training Video Introduction

Training Video Introduction

We recently updated our training videos for the first time since they were originally released in spring of 2016. If you ever need a refresher on how to collect GPS coordinates, upload photos or anything else associated with hosting a Snapshot Wisconsin trail camera, consult the Resources tab in your MySnapshot account. Our new and improved training videos are well worth a look if you have any questions or are curious to learn something new about the project



Snapshot Wisconsin Wildlife Management Decision Support

White Tail Fawn, June 2018

White Tail Fawn, June 2018

One of the primary goals of Snapshot Wisconsin is to use information from trail camera photos to inform wildlife management decisions. During this time of year, we process data on observations of fawns and does from late summer to calculate county-level fawn to doe ratios. Determining a fawn to doe ratio (FDR) is as simple as counting the number of fawns seen and dividing that figure by the number of does seen. The resulting ratio is an input into the formula used to estimate deer population size. For a second year, Snapshot Wisconsin photo data are combined with information collected by DNR staff for the Summer Deer Observation and information procured by volunteers through Operation Deer Watch. FDR calculations will be made in December, so please get your trail cameras checked and your photos classified by the end of November to ensure that information from your trail camera is included in this year’s FDR. In the coming months we will share the results of our FDR calculations for 2018.



Zooniverse Season 10

Bobcat, Clark County, December 2017

Bobcat, Clark County, December 2017

Season 10 of Snapshot Wisconsin on Zooniverse [exit DNR] launched on October 24th. Log In to help classify photos from our statewide network of trail cameras and to chat with other volunteers and the research team on the talk boards.







Recently on the Blog

NRFW Elk Monitoring Field Trip, September 2018

NRFW Elk Monitoring Field Trip, September 2018

Did you miss any of our blog posts over the last month? Below are links to a few highlights. This month we have had posts about some of our travels this fall, our recent volunteer recognition event and an in depth look at volunteer surveys.





Snapshot Wisconsin Headlines

Sussex Nature Kindergarten Class, Reviewing Snapshot Wisconsin Photos

Sussex Nature Kindergarten Class,
Reviewing Snapshot Wisconsin Photos

Snapshot Wisconsin was recently featured on the local news in Milwaukee. We partnered with the nature kindergarten class at Woodside Elementary in Sussex, WI to present on CBS58 news. Mr. Dargatz's nature kindergarten class has been hosting a Snapshot Wisconsin camera for the last few years. On this segment, we shared the ways that the kids engage in the project and how other people in Southeastern Wisconsin can get involved now that the project has opened statewide.

Snapshot Wisconsin on CBS58 in Milwaukee [exit DNR]



Snapshot Photo of the Month

The Snapshot Wisconsin Photo of the Month highlights favorite photos shared by our volunteers. To enter one of your favorites from a Snapshot Wisconsin camera, please send the image as a .jpeg attachment with the animal classification, county location, the date it was taken, and the reason you love the image to DNRSnapshotWisconsin@wisconsin.gov. We will include your first name and county location in the newsletter featuring your submitted photo.

This month's images were submitted from Sue, who is a trail camera host in Iowa County. The images, captured at 9 am on August 28th, 2018, show a bobcat with fox squirrel prey. Sue shared that she first saw the bobcat earlier this summer on June 5th and she looks forward to checking her camera every 6 weeks or so to see if the bobcat is still around.

You can view and classify other interesting photos from our cameras on our Zooniverse page [exit DNR].

Bobcat with Prey, Iowa County, August 2018

Bobcat with Prey, Iowa County, August 2018


Last revised: Monday November 05 2018