Comparison of Three Survey Methods Monitoring Forest Elephants at Three Sites in Gabon
Isohelix is proud to have been a part of a study conducted in Gabon to discover the advantages and disadvantages of different methodologies used to estimate population densities of the African forest elephant. By comparing DNA and camera trap based-spatial capture-recapture approaches (DNA-SCR and CT-SCR) against the widely-used, dung-based line transect distance sampling method (LTDS) this study looks to assess their feasibility for future use at national and regional scales.
The study was conducted across three sites in Gabon; Loango National Park, Ivindo National Park and Wonga Wongué Presidential Reserve. One of the methods tested was the DNA- Spatial Capture-Recapture (DNA-SCR). This method involved gently scrubbing the exterior surface of the dung pile using an Isohelix SK-3S Buccal Swab. The swab tips were then stabilized and extracted using the Isohelix Buccal-Prep Plus Kit (BPP).