Pasoh Forest Reserve (04.01.2012 to 06.30.2012)

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Year: 
2012
Quarter: 
April - June
Communications activities: 

The TEAM Pasoh Project was presented at a 2-week Biology Course by Tunghai University, Taiwan, 20 participants - 30 June 2012 held in Pasoh FRIM Research Station.

Unusual Events at the TEAM Site: 

None

New Species: 

None

Protocol Activities: 

None

Protocol Problems: 

Camera trapping picture upload

There are two problems with photo processing:

-     Photo processing in deskTEAM is extremely slow because the program crashes all the time.

-     Shahfiz has been unable to export the data from deployments analyzed so far (26 or so) to an TPK file. 

We expect to have solved both problems by next month, maybe already this month. This involves a new pre-prepared computer dedicated to deskTEAM, a technically savvy MSc student trained in Wageningen to help at pasoh, and probably also a visit to FRIM from me (on my way to Sydney). 

We face constant problems trying to process the camera trapping pictures unto DeskTEAM. It took 5-10 minutes to process each photo unto DeskTEAM. After 2-3 pictures, the computer would hang and needs to restart. It was very time-consuming considering there are almost 8,000 pictures from Array 1 and another 4,000 pictures in Array 2. At this rate, it would take 6 months to complete the uploading process.

We have been working closely with Kai and Eric to troubleshoot and resolve this issue but there are many bugs to overcome. Other factors include the institute's server which disallows the uploading process using Firefox and thus we have to use our personal broadband connection - which is slower than the institute's internet speed.

Climate station - fan datalogging

The fan in the sensor shield was found not to be working efficiently. After troubleshooting (re-checking wiring, software, datalogger) with Jorge and Patrick, it was found out that the battery power used was insufficient (12V 60 AmpH). However, this was in accordance to the Climate protocol drafted in 2010. The protocol was later revised in October 2011 (a month after we had already installed the climate station) which recommended a more prowerful battery (12V 100AmpH).

After replacing the battery, the fan started to work again, however the fan Tach_tot was not being recorded in the datalogger. After acquiring help from a couple of experienced Japanese technicians visiting the site, it was learned that the cabels at the shield may not be working properly anymore, probably due to the previous problems. The station was set up anyway, but weekly checks on the fan speed and function is required.

Schedule Problems: 

Camera trapping

The camera trapping for the second array can only begin in September, after the Ramadhan month. Thus data collection from Array 2 will spill over to early October 2012.

Suggestions: 
  1. 1. The camera trapping uploading protocol needs to be re-visited and improved to be more user-friendly, compatible with different computer and internet capabilities to make it more time-efficient.

2. Hands-on technical assisstance at the set-up process, especially for the climate station would be very useful. Otherwise a lot of time is spent in communicating back and forth over email to resolve technical issues.