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Tree detection advances towards precision forestry

31 March 2024

Advances in sensors and aerial platforms continue to offer Forest growers an increasing array of precision datasets. Extracting further value to streamline management is desirable, though often limited due to software costs, computing constraints and iterations required to extract meaningful results.

Working alongside SKYCAN, Indufor’s resource monitoring team has overcome these challenges. The pilot commercial solution was deployed in 2021, where Indufor’s tree detection and analytical layers provide forest growers with precise information that confirms plantation establishment, provides auditable measures of stocking, and importantly improves efficiency of field inspections – with many tasks such as early age tree counts done from the desktop.

Building on this, Abdullah Madawi and Dr Pete Watt presented work at the Remote Sensing Cluster Group (November 2023) run in conjunction with ForestTECH 2023.to develop a novel online tree detection approach that uses UAV data.

Abdullah comments “UAVs have quickly become the forester’s choice for rapid area reconnaissance, utilising these images collected opens the door to extract further information”. In collaboration with Forest Growers Research and Scion, the team will look to build and deploy the fully operational system by mid-2024.

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NZ forestry H&S statistics updated – March 2024

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