Within the last decade motion activated trail cameras have grown in popularity amongst wildlife biologists to help better understand wildlife behavior especially near roadways and their use of wildlife crossings. In 2015 the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) District 1 purchased its first motion activated trail camera and began monitoring existing bridges to determine/confirm wildlife usage. With quick initial success, FDOT invested in additional cameras but quickly discovered a data organization issue. Around the same time both FDOT and NGO partners desired to have a data source of example wildlife crossing structures with the species type and wildlife frequency using the crossings. FDOT District 1 determined that a location based (GIS map) with representative pictures of wildlife utilizing the crossings would be a great tool. To start a SharePoint site list was created with each camera/wildlife crossing location with relevant location information such as crossing type (bridge or culvert), crossing size, wildlife fencing presence, etc. Google Photos was selected to store the photos and album was created for each camera/crossing location. A link was created from the Google Photos Album to each entry in the SharePoint list and all of the data was then broadcast onto FDOT’s public facing GIS site. An autonomous workflow routine was developed which updates the GIS site every week to reflect new data being added to the SharePoint site.
The FDOT Wildlife Bridge Crossings GIS site now lists over 150 locations with over 5000 pictures and videos of wildlife using existing bridges and wildlife crossings. This tool allows users to quickly determine where wildlife crossings are located and the species that are using them. The presentation will expand on organizational decisions of developing the tool and showcase the ease of use.