Cooperative Research Units
Education, Research And Technical Assistance For Managing Our Natural Resources
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Integration, Validation and fusion of Small Unmanned Aircraft systems


August 2016 - August 2019


This project addresses the design and development of unmanned aerial platforms and their control and support systems, integration of sensors, and post-processing of data outputs in support of natural resource-related investigations.

Research Products and Activities

Technical Publications

  • Rees, A. F. and R. R. Carthy. 2018. The Second Annual Workshop on the Use of UAVs in Sea Turtle Research and Conservation at the 38th International Sea Turtle Symposium: 19 Feb 2018. Marine Turtle Newsletter.Abstract |


  • Burgess, Matthew A. 2017. Small unmanned aircraft systems and their payloads as aerial data collection platforms for natural resource-based applications. PhD Dissertation. May 2017. University of Florida.
    Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation.

    Download  | 


  • Carthy, R.R., M.A. Burgess, P.G. Ifju, B.E. Wilkinson, and H.F. Percival. 2014. Development and application of small unmanned aircraft systems (sUAS) for natural resources: logistics, legalities, and lessons learned. 68th Annual Conference of the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies. Destin, Florida.
  • Burgess, M. A., Zweig, C. L., Newman, S., Cook, M. I., Rodgers, H. L., Carthy, R. R., Wilkinson, B. E., Whitley, T. J., Ward, T. S., DiRodio, J. G., Frederick, P. C., Ifju, P. G., Smith, S. E., Percival, H. F. (2015, April). Applications of high-resolution aerial imagery and a small unmanned aircraft system in everglades science. Presented at the 2015 Greater Everglades Ecosystem Restoration (GEER) conference, Coral Springs, Fl.
  • Carthy, R.R., M. Burgess, P. Ifju, B. Wilkinson, S. Smith, and T. Whitley. 2016. UAs Technology for Sea Turtle Research and Conservation.Workshop Presentation at the South East Regional Sea Turtle Network Meeting. Mobile, AL, February 10-12,2016.

Current Staff

Federal Staff: 2

Masters Students: 4

Phd Students: 5

Post Docs: 0

University Staff: 3

5 Year Summary

Students graduated: 8

Scientific Publications: 24

Presentations: 44



Funding Agencies

  • USGS-Land Remote Sensing Program


Florida Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit Cooperators

  1. Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission
  2. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
  3. U.S. Geological Survey
  4. University of Florida
  5. Wildlife Management Institute