The purpose of technology is to apply what we learned from science to solve real-world problems that we have right now and prevent future problems from even happening. Next to health technology and research for medicine, another important field is to sustain the world as it is along with all its flora and fauna. Because without that, humans as well cannot exist.
How the Alibaba Cloud AI supports rangers to prevent poaching
The Chinese company Alibaba has next to their ecommerce unit also a group of people working on Alibaba Cloud’s AI to support the environment and help humans prevent harm. Poachers are following illegal practices to hunt animals, to claim resources, which mostly leads to the death of an animal. This is bad enough as it is but for animals that are close to being extinct, this is an ever more severe crime. For example, the giant panda bear, as adorable and popular it is, is also an endangered species.
Thanks to the smart patrolling system developed by #AlibabaCloud, rangers in in Sichuan’s Laohegou Nature Reserve can more effectively prevent poaching, and the number of giant panda sightings in the area has doubled.
Join us in celebrating #WildlifeConservationDay#TechForChange pic.twitter.com/3X562m2qkc
— Alibaba Cloud (@alibaba_cloud) December 4, 2019
While China is doing as well as it can to support the population of the giant panda bear, poachers, on the other hand, are hard to track and fight when you are talking about huge remote areas. For example, the Laohegou Nature Reserve in Sichuan, China, has a size of about 27,325 acres, and due to how the environment is built there, it’s difficult to patrol the area.
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The AI system from Alibaba Cloud was developed to support the fight against poachers there, by monitoring the area and helping to protect the pandas along with other wildlife. In just one year, they managed to double the number of panda bear sightings, which is a testament to their success on its own.
Be the eye of the animals this #EarthHour & revolutionize forest protection with us.
The wildlife AI recognition system Alibaba Cloud helped create for Laohegou Nature Reserve in SW China had tripled the efficiency of recording giant panda activity trajectories in just one year. pic.twitter.com/v6fj7hVoWe
— Alibaba Cloud (@alibaba_cloud) March 27, 2021
In the video below, you can hear from Gan Mingdong, who used to be a poacher and then became a ranger, who leverages both his insight of knowing how a poacher’s mind works as well as the cutting-edge AI to redeem himself and to create a better future for the pandas, and for us humans.
Related story: Intel Tests TrailGuard AI to Fight Poaching in Africa
Because who would want to explain to their offspring how we failed to save the pandas and other endangered animals? I’m referring to pandas here in this article many times, but actually, every animal and every species is important. They all play a part in the ecosystem. Now is the time to use the technology that we have to turn things around.
YouTube: Alibaba Cloud AI Helps Rangers to Protect Endangered Species
Photo credit: All material shown is owned by Alibaba and was made available as part of a press release.
Source: Alibaba press release on Alizila