Researchers at Boise State are reporting on their use of lidar to better understand vegetative cover, from the vantage point of the animals.
In November of 2014, a group of universities published a paper titled “Fearscapes: Mapping Functional Properties of Cover for Prey with Terrestrial LiDAR.”
According to Jordan Nobler, masters student in biology, the paper was meant to serve as proof that LiDAR can be used effectively.
“In traditional methods you have to pick and choose what vantage points you get,” he said. “You can’t go and get a comprehensive view of every possible vantage point from every possible height.”
“(LiDAR) allows us to assess climate change’s impact on structure,” Forbey said. “Now let’s say you put in a power line for energy development. Now you get a look from the perspective of a raptor sitting on a power line and if that makes it scarier for the prey down on the ground using shrubs for cover.”