Integrating research using animal-borne telemetry with the needs of conservation management

Jennifer McGowan*, Maria Beger, Rebecca L. Lewison, Rob Harcourt, Hamish Campbell, Mark Priest, Ross G. Dwyer, Hsien-Yung Lin, Pia Lentini, Christine Dudgeon, Clive McMahon, Matt Watts, Hugh P. Possingham

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

67 Citations (Scopus)


1. Animal-borne telemetry has revolutionized our ability to study animal movement, species physiology, demography and social structures, changing environments and the threats that animals are experiencing. While there will always be a need for basic ecological research and discovery, the current conservation crisis demands we look more pragmatically at the data required to make informed management decisions. 2. Here, we define a framework that distinguishes how research using animal telemetry devices can influence conservation. We then discuss two critical questions which aim to directly connect telemetry-derived data to applied conservation decision-making: (i) Would my choice of action change if I had more data? (ii) Is the expected gain worth the money and time required to collect more data? 3. Policy implications. To answer questions about integrating telemetry-derived data with applied conservation, we suggest the use of value of information analysis to quantitatively assess the return-on-investment of animal telemetry-derived data for conservation decision-making.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)423-429
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Applied Ecology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2017


  • adaptive management
  • animal behaviour
  • animal-borne telemetry
  • biotelemetry
  • conservation science
  • demography
  • movement ecology
  • species physiology
  • threat mitigation
  • value of information

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