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Remote Sensing for Primate Conservation by Claudette Sandoval-Green: Interactions Between Savanna Chimpanzees & Multi-scale Mining Land Cover/Use Changes in Senegal

Remote Sensing for Primate Conservation: Interactions Between Savanna Chimpanzees & Multi-scale Mining Land Cover Changes in Senegal, Advisor: Dr. Jill Pruetz

Claudette Sandoval-Green

on 2 October 2017

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Transcript of Remote Sensing for Primate Conservation by Claudette Sandoval-Green: Interactions Between Savanna Chimpanzees & Multi-scale Mining Land Cover/Use Changes in Senegal

Interactions Between
Savanna Chimpanzees
& Multi-scale Mining
Land Cover and Land Use Changes in Sénégal

photo by paco bertolani
Claudette Sandoval-Green
Jill Pruetz


photo by frans lanting
Using remote sensing to track multi-scale mining land cover changes combined with savanna chimpanzee nesting patterns to determine if mining development is having an effect on habitat preference and connectivity.
Dr. Jill Pruetz, for the opportunity to work with you and some "very awesome chimpanzees!"
Dr. Monica Haddad, for being a great mentor
and friend these past few years.
Dr. Noha Hola, for teaching me the art of remote
Dr. Gray Tappan from the USGS, for providing
his services and imagery for gratis.
My husband, (soon to be Dr.) David Green,
for his love and support.
Maua & Claude 1992, my brush
with greatness, I still find it
incredible that we share space
and time with these amazing beings.
My intent is to apply GIS to a primate conservation problem, as not many primate research projects are utilizing GIS technology today.
Western Chimpanzees also known as Savanna Chimpanzees
(Pan troglodytes verus)
are endangered due to deforestation, loss of habitat, and human encroachment...the same culprits over and over again.
Currently, according to the IUCN Red List (International Union for Conservation of Nature), their populations range from
21,300 - 55,000.
Today, in Senegal, mining is the biggest threat to the Western Chimpanzees' survival.
The objective was to efficiently apply remote sensing techniques to monitor land cover changes due to mining development in proximity to savanna chimpanzee populations.
... and additionally try to correlate these land cover changes with nesting data as an indicator of change in chimpanzee behavior.
Slightly smaller than South Dakota.
Westernmost country on the African continent.
Population is about 13.6 million people.
Southeastern Senegal has been experiencing
an extraction boom in gold, iron ore, and uranium.
Mining in Senegal
1. Corporate Mines
2. Artisanal Mines (Djouras)
Large-scale industrial mining.

Trained employees using large scale mechanized tools to expedite extraction.

The investors are foreign and West African miners.

Small-scale subsistence mining.

Gold panning or iron tools to small
powerful machines are used to extract.

An untrained workforce.

Investors are traditional local people.

In this study, there is a third kind, an
Intermediate Mine
- a large-scale artisanal mine.

Savanna Chimpanzees or Western Chimpanzees
(Pan troglodytes verus)
photo by jill pruetz @ savanna chimp blog spot
Senegal is the extreme
northernmost limit for
chimpanzee geographic
Most studies have been
conducted in forested areas.
In Senegal only 2% of chimpanzee
habitat is made up forested areas.
... and these behaviors help us to better understand how our ancestors survived in an open, hot, dry, and mosaic environment.
... and they do amazingly different things in a savanna habitat
photos by jill pruetz
They use caves to cool down.

They soak in pools of water to cool down.

They make and use spear tools to hunt galagos.

They termite fish (too).

They patrol their range as a group.

Their range is 10 times larger than Central African chimpanzees.

Ancillary Data
Roads, rivers, national parks, mines and town points, chimp populations, and Senegal boundaries were georeferenced and digitized from various map sources aquired from:

Dr. Jill Pruetz
Google Maps
DIVA database at U.C. Davis
Dr. Gray Tappan (USGS)

Created Composite Images
Computed Normalized Difference Vegetation Index
Supervised Land Cover Classification
Plot Nesting Data and Density Kernels
It is hard to know if the chimpanzees are moving
north, and if they are moving north due to mining activities.
Already sparsely forested areas are shrinking as mining development increases.
Remote sensing is absolutely essential for primate conservation in this region.
Remote sensing is the foundation for not only analyzing and modeling land cover changes, but also the means for restoring, protecting, monitoring and managing sensitive areas.
Senegal is a difficult area to acquire FREE satellite data.
Selecting training sites for the classifications is very subjective.
Generalizing dominate features may over simplify smaller important features.
Imagery is at 30 meters, which is considered medium resolution, and the process becomes more accurate with higher resolution.
Opportunistic Bantan Group Nesting Data
(A peek back in time)
Landsat 7 Scan Line Corrector (SLC) Failed on May 31, 2003 ... to the present. But Landsat 8 ...
"You don't go with the data you want, you go with the data you have."

- Rummy
Artisanal miners working
You often see artisanal & corporate mines side-by-side.
Fongoli is 86 km squared!
Map Land Cover Change
Currently, these chimps are experiencing ecological pressures from human associated activities such as mining and the infrastructure that comes with mining development.
Remote sensing has been used widely to monitor land cover changes around mining activities and ecologically sensitive areas.
Remote Sensing
Any information acquired without touching is "Remote Sensing."
Official Definition:
"The science of acquiring information about the earth using instruments which are remote to the earth's surface, usually from aircraft or satellites. Instruments may use visible light, infrared, or radar to obtain data. Remote sensing offers the ability to observe and collect data for large areas relatively quickly, and is an important source of data for GIS."
- The Fundamentals of Remote Sensing by Campbell & Wynne
Results are only as good as the quality of data.
There is a new mine going in at Mako.
Satellite swath of the study area.
Fongoli chimps Bilbo and Jumkin use a new gold mining road in their range.
(published March 13, 2012)
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