Semi-automated photo-identification of Bahamian Racers (Cubophis vudii vudii)
Copyright (c) 2021 Sebastian Hoefer, Andreu Rotger, Sophie Mills, Nathan J. Robinson
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Photo-identification is a non-invasive option for mark-recapture. Here, we tested the effectiveness of APHIS, a semi-automated photo-identification software, to distinguish between individual Bahamian Racers (Cubophis vudii vudii) on the island of Eleuthera, The Bahamas. Over 10 months, we photographed 50 Bahamian Racers. We first identified individuals by manually comparing colouration and scale patterns in the pileus and labial regions. Next, we used APHIS to identify recaptured individuals after manually identifying the locations of intersections of the scales in the pileus and labial regions. In addition, we assessed whether images taken with a hand-held camera or by a smart phone affected the accuracy of APHIS. All recaptured snakes were correctly identified using APHIS from both camera or phone images as validated by our manually derived results. We conclude that APHIS is an effective tool for photo-identification in snakes.
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