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Showcase of new wildlife population techniques

Nearly 100 wildlife biologists from across the world will gather in St Andrews next week to discuss new ways of determining the density or abundance of wildlife populations.

The first international conference on distance sampling (ICODS) will focus on the estimation of wildlife abundance using distance sampling methods, a key component of population ecology, wildlife management and biological conservation.

The conference, organised by the University’s Research Unit for Wildlife Population Assessment (RUWPA) will be held from Monday 30 July until Friday 3 August and will bring together a range of experts including St Andrews statisticians Dr David Borchers and Professor Steve Buckland.

The event will also showcase new research being carried out, provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, techniques and methods and provide world-class training for those new to the subject. It is hoped that the conference will prove an important milestone in the application of wildlife survey techniques, leading to increased effectiveness of field studies and stimulating many new areas of research.

RUWPA is a contract-funded research group specialising in the development of new statistical methods and innovative applications of existing methods. The team has expertise and experience in most aspects of wildlife assessment and survey design. Ongoing research in the field of distance sampling includes the design of surveys to monitor elephant abundance in areas of Africa affected by poaching, estimation of deer abundance in Scottish forests from surveys of their dung and modelling whale abundance as a function of oceanographic and other spatial variables.

NOTE TO EDITORS – Should you wish to contact either Dr Borchers or Professor Buckland, please contact Claire Grainger, contact details below.

Issued by Beattie Media on behalf of the University of St Andrews For more information please contact Claire Grainger on 01334 462530, 07730 415 015 or email cg24@st-andrews.ac.uk Ref: icods/standrews/chg/25july2001

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