AeroecologyCam AC1

Optical bio monitoring as stand-alone product or the perfect companion for your MR1

Looking for in-depth information about species diversity and composition of the aerial-fauna? – The AeroecologyCam AC1 is an optical bio monitoring system for monitoring birds, insects and other flying objects in real-time all year long. During daylight the system gathers data continuously and with our accompanying software the data can be accessed easily for optical identification, labelling and studies.

General description

AeroecologyCam AC1 gathers data continuously by looking upwards into the sky and tracking objects in real-time. An image series is stored for each detected target and can be retrieved, replayed, identified, labelled or exported with our accompanying software. 

  • 4k resolution for maximal optical information and target identification
  • 50 fps (frames per second) allows for in depth analysis of flying and wing beating pattern
  • Outdoor deployment and plug and play installation
  • Accompanying software for analysing and exploring the extracted data. This includes replaying, labelling and exporting the data for each target.
  • Can be used in conjunction with an MR1 to gather more information about individual targets/echoes. 
  • Birds can be detected up to several hundred metres away, depending on the size of the object and optical settings like zoom and focus.

Typical targets detected by AC1

As the target detection is primarily based on motion there is minimal bias as to what is detected in the first place. However, filters for detection as well as filters in the analysis software afterwards allow for quicker extraction of specific targets.

Echo continuously flapping bird

Wing beating activity of birds is clearly visible in the optical track (image time-series)

Wing-flapping pattern

With the right set-up certain insects can be detected as well.

Continuous Monitoring

Typically, there is a lot more going on than one might expect from just observing the sky. To the left is a short demonstration of two-hour time periods with all detected tracks overlayed in a single plot.

Once the AC1 is running and gathering data a quick selection in the software is all that is needed to create these plots. 


July 4th, Switzerland 08:00 - 10:00 UTC

May 5th, Switzerland 05:00 - 07:00 UTC

Deploy together with BirdScan MR1

The AeroecologyCam AC1 can work together with the BirdScan MR1 radar. By deploying the systems next to each other a matching between radar signal and optical track can be achieved. By running our automatic matching algorithm the radar signals can be complemented with optical information. 

Echo Signature from Radar

Matching Optical Track

Characteristics in detail

The camera pointing upward into the sky can be easily adjusted and zoom and focus changed in order to optimize the set-up for the specific use case. Depending on lens-objective settings targets can be detected from a few metres away up to several hundred metres away.

Built-in is all the equipment for 24/7 outdoor operation (for targets to be detected daylight is necessary) as well as a data storage solution.

AC1 has also a built-in LTE router and two external LAN ports. The second LAN port can be used to connect an MR1 to the same network eliminating the need for two LTE connections when set-up adjacently.

A transparent dome at the top is designed to minimize the need for cleaning stains after rainfall.


Inside life of MR1

BirdScan MR1 and AeroecologyCam AC1 comparison

Although the AeroecologyCam AC1 is an amazing aeroecology system, a radar based solution (BirdScanMR1) may be the better choice especially for quantification and night-time monitoring.

BirdScan MR1
AeroecologyCam AC1
object detection

(except for heavy precipitation)

only during daylight
(cannot see through fog or clouds)
quantification big surveyed volume, accurate quantification with migration traffic rate (MTR) output, accurate altitude measurement smaller surveyed volume, object count over time
range 30 m – 1500 m for big/medium size bird (e.g. red kite) 5 m – up to several hundred meters (depending on set-up)
object identification automatic based on size, radar signature, flapping pattern, wing beat frequency, shape features and more manual species identification based on extracted image series
wing beat frequency detection automatic, up to 200 Hz manual, up to 25 Hz
flight and flapping pattern longer detection time
(big surveyed volume)
with many flap-bounding phases for passerine-type birds
shorter detection time
(smaller surveyed volume)
flap-bounding phases detection still possible
automatic classification and feature detection well-proven algorithms



Replay & Animation Example

Slow motion of detected bird

Animation of detected bird

Product Specification 


Features and functionality Details
usage biomonitoring
area of application  research, environmental studies, continuous long term monitoring, gathering reference data
sensing technology  optical camera with zoom lense
horizontal field of view 84° – 12°
resolution 4k (3840 x 2160, 8 MP)
frame-rate 50 frames per second
range (height)  small birds about 200 m, large birds up to 500 m
data  available for offline analyses 
analyses semi-automatic comparison with MR1 data, optical tracks, speed (pixels per second), flight direction (in degrees), average size in pixels
operation  automatic 24 h (daylight needed)
power consumption 230V / 700 W max. (including 300 W heater and air conditioning unit)
communication  LAN / WAN / LTE
weight  approx. 50 kg 
dimension (LxWxH) 600x300x600 mm
operating temperature range (ambient) -40°C to 40°C
(-40 °C to 55 °C upon request)
maximum temperature range
(standby with electrical power supply)
-40°C to 55 °C
storage temperature range 0°C to 55 °C
(operating humidity range (ambient) 10 – 90 %
environmental protection IP66


Are you looking for a radar solution?

Tell us about your project. We are looking forward to hearing from you.