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  • July 19, 2018

Valuable Support For A Revolutionary Biodiversity Study

  • Space for Life
Drone carrying the hyperspectral camera used to map plant biodiversity.
Photo: Pablo Arroyo

Five Canadian researchers, including Associate Professor Étienne Laliberté from the Institut de recherche en biologie végétale (IRBV), an Espace pour la vie partner located on the grounds of the Jardin botanique, will be studying changes in plant biodiversity across Canada as part of a very special project by the Canadian Airborne Biodiversity Observatory (CABO), using emerging spectranomics technology.

The data collected will make it possible to monitor the distribution of invasive species, changes in land use and the composition of plant communities. This revolutionary approach, led by the

Université de Montréal, will change the way plant biodiversity data are collected in Canada and around the world!

Spectranomics has enormous potential, since it uses hyperspectral sensors mounted on aircraft or unmanned drones that give researchers access to inaccessible, remote regions with a wealth of different species. Its high-resolution images are nearly as detailed as ground-based inventories, but cover much larger areas.

A timely $4 million grant

The Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada has awarded funding of $1 million per year over four years to support this innovative collaborative research project. This generous assistance will help Canada position itself as a world leader in biodiversity and conservation science!

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