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A Wilder View: Facial recognition used to track animals

Grizzly Bear Facial Recognition
Posted at 1:18 PM, Dec 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-30 15:18:10-05

MISSOULA — Facial recognition technology no longer applies only to identifying humans.

Scientists employ some interesting methods to track, test, and learn from wild animals and now, there may be an easier way to track some species of animals.

Using facial recognition software can make our lives easier every day and now, biologists have developed a facial recognition system to help identify grizzly bears.

Tracking the animals helps with research and conservation and can also help identify problem bears by figuring out which bears are getting onto farms or into your garbage.

Meanwhile, ranchers in Montana will have access to a similar software called CATTLE TRACS to track cattle.

The app will enable anyone to take photos of cattle and will be stored along with GPS coordinates and the date.

From producers to pasture operations to feedlots and then to meat packing plants, cattle pass through many different places during their lives.

But there isn't much tracking between, which makes it hard to investigate problems like animal-based diseases that can devastate livestock and may harm people as well.

The technology can help with tracing a diseased animal, find its source, quarantine it, and do contact tracing.