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Cameras replace human observers in multi-species aerial counts in Murchison Falls, Uganda

Wildlife counts in Africa and elsewhere are often implemented using light aircraft with ‘rear-seat-observer’ (RSO) counting crews. Previous research has indicated that RSOs often fail to detect animals, and that population estimates are therefore biased. We conducted aerial wildlife surveys in Murchison Falls Protected Area, Uganda, in which we replaced RSOs with high-definition ‘oblique camera count’ (OCC) systems. The survey area comprises forests, woodlands and grasslands. Four counts were conducted in 2015–2016 using a systematic-reconnaissance-flight (SRF) strip-transect design. Camera inclination

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