Technological Exchange Day at Los Amigos Unites Rangers and Satellite Specialists to Improve Protection of the Amazon

November 18, 2021

As part of the 20th anniversary celebration of the Los Amigos Conservation Concession in mid-July our Los Amigos Biological Station hosted a Technological Knowledge Exchange Workshop to enhance protection systems for the 360,000-acre Los Amigos Conservation Concession. This exceptional event, powered by mutual learning between technology experts, conservationists, and forest park rangers, focused on the development and application of different surveillance strategies to protect the Los Amigos forests from forest crimes such as illegal deforestation, logging, and gold mining.

At this workshop, Los Amigos’s Forest Rangers, who regularly go on multi-day excursions deep into the Amazon to monitor the concession, met with the Satellite Monitoring team that operates from Peru’s capital city of Lima, to create a holistic strategy that more effectively organizes each of their communications. They also increased planning coordination, reporting and feedback tasks, as well as protection and monitoring actions.

The size of the Los Amigos protected area and its location with respect to the Madre de Dios and Pariamanu rivers make it extremely difficult to control and detect illegal deforestation, thus being on top of current technological advances is essential to improving its surveillance. “Technology allows us to enhance the work we do on the ground,” explained Lucio Villa, who is a Senior GIS and Remote Sensing Specialist at our sister organization Conservación Amazónica – ACCA, during a presentation on the analysis of satellite monitoring images and information from the base in Lima. “In this way, thanks to the use of satellites, drones, and GPS, we can perform more efficient and effective work when carrying out activities related to monitoring and surveillance in the Los Amigos Concession.”

They also addressed topics such as reports, monitoring, findings, and analysis. At the end of the day, the satellite monitoring specialists shared their conclusions on the search for evidence and the generation of actionable information for patrols. The latest field activities included the evaluation of data collection (findings, coordinates, tracks and use of drones in the field), which generated new agreements that increased cooperation between both teams. All in all, this workshop was a fantastic day of co-learning, experiential and collective, that reaffirmed everyone’s commitment to protect the environment.

None of this would not be possible without the valuable support of our partners, to whom we express our sincere thanks: Re:Wild, ICFC, Erol Foundation, Amazon Rainforest Conservancy – ARC, and Andes Amazon Fund.