Some of the most basic questions in wildlife research were, for a long time, surprisingly hard to answer. Where do wild animals live, if they still live at all? How many are there? What do they eat?
In the past 15 years, the answers have gotten a lot more accessible, thanks in large part to digital photography. Researchers can now place cameras with big memory cards and motion sensors in remote places. Known as “camera traps,” they snap photos when animals walk by, and they’ve revolutionized the study of wildlife.