Back to overview

Thermal imaging camera as a tool for counting partridges (EVINBO)

(photo Glenn Vermeersch)
(photo Glenn Vermeersch)


Since 2021, a standardised counting protocol has been adopted by hunters throughout Flanders for counting partridges. The counts take place around sunrise and sunset. This study aims to evaluate the use of a thermal imaging camera as an additional aid for counting partridges.

Thermal imaging cameras were developed recently and offer several advantages. Because the cameras form an image based on temperature differences, they do not require the presence of light during the night to detect warm-blooded animals. Cameras can also offer an advantage during the day by not interfering with the visual camouflage of animals. Both at night and during the day, thermal imaging cameras could therefore increase the probability of detection.

This project therefore aims to investigate whether using a thermal imaging camera as an additional tool could result in a reduction in the number of counting cycles required under the current counting protocol. In addition, this project aims to evaluate an alternative counting method, namely estimating the number of breeding pairs via mapping the roosts of partridges using a thermal imaging camera during the night.
Status Running
Actual start/end date 01/01/2024 - 31/10/2024


INBO Research theme(s)

  • Protected nature
  • Wildlife management
  • Agriculture