Advanced Forest Data Acquisition

Project Start Date: 16/03/2023

Project End Date: 18/01/2024

CRIBE Funding: $50,000

Project Total Value: $212,287

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Project Lead: Ne-Daa-Kii-Me-Naan Inc. (Nedaak)

Project Goal

Ne-Daa-Kii-Me-Naan Inc. (Nedaak), a 100% First Nations owned company, works in partnership with the Province of Ontario, industry, and First Nations on the Kenogami forest. Nedaak has been successfully deploying a modern approach to Sustainable Forest Management which works to optimize value from the Kenogami Forest.

This approach necessitates the deployment of new equipment and technologies that become available to improve forest stewardship and the ongoing sustainability of the resources that our communities rely upon, i.e., drone deployment. Market research in this specific area has led Nedaak to the WingtraOne GEN II, which is an easy-to-use mapping drone that delivers consistent, high-quality survey data faster and at a lower cost than other surveying tools, with less carbon emissions than traditional helicopter or fixed-wing aircraft surveying. CRIBE is supporting Nedaak in purchasing, testing and successfully deploying the WingtraOne GEN II drone in its forestry and related operations.

Uses identified immediately for the WingtraOne drone are to obtain annual  supplemental aerial photos for forest harvest mapping. Nedaak will also use the drone to obtain photos for regeneration surveys, take aerial images of current harvest blocks to ensure compliance with the forest management plan, and survey roads and other future harvest areas to produce long term plans.

Project Updates

Spring 2023

Nedaak has now purchased and received the drone. Initial flight tests were successful.

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Image taken from initial flight test.

Summer 2023

The drone was deployed for Supplemental Aerial Photos (SAPs), achieving success in producing high-resolution imagery. This data proved invaluable in assessing harvest operations, compliance reporting, and values identification

Fall 2023 & Winter 2023-24

The drone’s prowess in Aerial Tending Surveying was demonstrated, exceeding Needak’s expectations with detailed imagery and leveraging Pix4D Mapper software for advanced functionalities like Wood Volumes, 3D Mesh, and 3D street view.

The drone’s versatility was evident in Free to Grow (FTG) surveying and Future Planning. The drone’s imagery, coupled with Pix4D Mapper software, provided accurate orthomosaics and 3D rayClouds, offering insights into species ID, crown closure, heights, and more.

This transformative journey has not only enhanced Needak’s forest management practices and resulted in groundbreaking achievements in forest survey information, but has opened doors to further deployments, including wildlife monitoring and wood volume analyses, reinforcing the positive impact of CRIBE funding on Needak’s trajectory.