NC State professor transforms data into conservation

Read the full story from the NC State Technician

Roland Kays, a research associate professor in the College of Natural Resources and scientist at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences, has dedicated years to transforming data into conservation. 

In the early 2000s, Kays was tracking the movement of animals on an island in Panama. Kays, Martin Wikelski and other researchers built an automated telemetry system. According to MOTUS, automated telemetry systems use receivers that record signals from transmitters to track large animals. 

“We built another system, which was an automated telemetry system, that let us locate animals, and it was generating a ton of data,” Kays said.

Due to the large amount of data their system was generating, Wikelski and Kays developed software Movebank capable of managing that data. Kays said Movebank was initially just a database where people could upload files. Then, they added livestreams, and have been expanding ever since.

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