Gps tracking banner


When scientists want to track animals they use Global Positioning System. They use it to study where animals go. GPS stands for Global Positioning System.


The Global Positioning System (GPS) can track the movement of both land and aquatic animals. GPS wildlife tracking provides scientists with accurate data readings. It can help locate animals in the wild.

how gps wildlife tracking is done
  • People can track animals using radio receivers that tell them where the animal is. These receivers are placed on the animal, like a collar.
  • Radio receivers pick signals from GPS satellites. Each satellite orbits the earth twice a day.
  • The satellites send data to the receiver in the form of radio waves.
  • The receiver will calculate the animal’s geographic location and pattern of movement.
  • GPS receivers can store location data for future references. (Data from Rewire Security


GPS receivers used for wildlife tracking are often attached to collars. This is the commonly used method of tracking wildlife.

  • GPS tracking collars are usually fitted around the animal’s neck. Each species has a specially made collar that suits it.
  • GPS collars are light and don’t weigh the animal down. They let you know where the animal is.
  • It can be placed around the neck of an animal, such as a wolf, bear, or cheetah.
  • GPS tracking collars are put on an animal’s ankles too! Sometimes you need to do this with bigger animals like rhinos because their necks are too big for their heads.
Gps tracking birds


For birds and water animals, we use small radios-tracking receivers that are easier for them to carry.

  • There used to be a way to track birds using radio transmitters. Then scientists thought of a better way: they put a GPS on a harness and put it on the bird.
  • Like tracking collars people put on their dogs and cats, harness-attached trackers allow birds to fly freely from one place to another without experiencing any problem.
  • Scientists put trackers on sea turtles to see where they go. They use glue or resin instead of metal.
  • Leatherback sea turtles are different from other sea turtles. They have soft shells, so trackers are often put on the shell ridge. (Data from Conserve Turtles Org)


Animals like penguins, tigers, monkeys, and lions can have their locations tracked by people who want to see where they live. These wild animals can have atomic clocks fitted on their body. These clocks are used to perform calculations.

  • A GPS device can tell where an animal is by getting signals from 4 GPS satellites.
  • The purpose of the microprocessor in receivers is to make sure data is processed quickly.
  • GPS receivers calculate distance using time. The rate of radio wave transmission depends on the animal’s location.
  • There is a lot of information that can be stored on older GPS models, but they have to be retrieved one by one by hand.
  • In the new models, the location data can be sent from afar.
  • The GPS tracking of wildlife is fully automated. For most receivers, sending animal location data is simple.


GPS trackers can provide scientists and wildlife conservation agencies with useful information about animal behavior. GPS tracking has bountiful benefits on wildlife and the environment:

Benefits of GPS tracking
  1. Provides Data for Further Research

  • GPS trackers can collect a series of data that can be used for further research.
  • Scientists collect data, and they can use it to find out why animals do things.
  • Researchers can make a better environment for animals by using GPS wildlife tracking.
  • Animals live in certain places because of how it is there. We use location data to help scientists and conservation agencies know where there are animals and why they are there.
  1. Aids in the Study of Migratory Behavior

  • Animals like to go from place to place. They do this to find new food, new water, and new animals to mate with.
  • If you put a GPS tracking device on animals, you can track where they go. If you know where they are and what they eat, you can make the place for them so it’s like the natural environment. Then those animals won’t be endangered.
  • The information we get can tell what happens to the environment when species are introduced that did not live there already.
  1. Understanding Human-wildlife Conflict

  • Wildlife tracking systems can reveal how animals and human beings interact in an environment.
  • Animals become upset because more and more people are moving in, and they want to fight us. There is not enough room for people and animals. We are trying to use technology so that animals can find places to live.
  • Humans entering animal habitats endanger certain species. This can lead to food shortages as animals have limited grazing and hunting space.
  • GPS receiver data can be used to build fences around habitats to keep out humans and animals.
  1. Wildlife Protection 

  • Poachers and traffickers endanger wildlife. These actions have destroyed many species.
  • GPS trackers can help game rangers keep track of tagged animals.
  • Some receivers have motion sensors that can detect a stationary animal. So injured or sick animals will get help quickly.
  • GPS data can show poachers’ hotspots. This will allow conservation agencies to help stop them.


With the help of GPS trackers, wildlife conservation agencies can easily monitor animal behavior. Data retrieved from the Global Positioning System (GPS) receivers can help scientists make conscious decisions when studying endangered species.

Additionally, location data can provide conservation agencies with an accurate and deeper understanding of habitat use.

Helpful Teaching Resources:

Other Recent Posts:

  • what is habitat conservation

What Is Habitat Conservation

Comments Off on What Is Habitat Conservation

WHAT IS HABITAT CONSERVATION? Habitat conservation means protecting the places where things on earth live.  A habitat is a place where a certain animal, plant, or other living thing lives. These places are [...]

  • sick building image

What Is Sick Building Syndrome?

Comments Off on What Is Sick Building Syndrome?

WHAT IS SICK BUILDING SYNDROME? Sick building syndrome is a term that describes a wide range of undefined symptoms that people have when they live in a building. It is mostly because of [...]

  • What Is Hydrology

What Is Hydrology?

Comments Off on What Is Hydrology?

WHAT IS HYDROLOGY? Hydrology is the study of water from a scientific standpoint. It includes the study of water's occurrence, properties, circulation, and distribution on, beneath, and above the earth's surface. Hydrologists are [...]

  • define ocean acidification

What Is Ocean Acidification?

Comments Off on What Is Ocean Acidification?

WHAT IS OCEAN ACIDIFICATION? Ocean acidification is the process by which the ocean absorbs carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, thus decreasing the ocean’s pH. The ocean absorbs up to one-third of the carbon [...]

  • what is the wildlife trade

What Is the Wildlife Trade?

Comments Off on What Is the Wildlife Trade?

WHAT IS THE WILDLIFE TRADE? It is called the "wildlife trade" when people trade and sell living or dead wild animals and plants. This practice has a direct effect on biodiversity and also [...]

  • Why corals are important

Why Are Coral Reefs Important?

Comments Off on Why Are Coral Reefs Important?

Why Are Coral Reefs Important? At first look, you may think you’re looking at a lump of colorful rocks. But, these are not rocks. These eye-catching figures are coral reefs! Found in oceans [...]

  • ocean dead zone

Ocean Dead Zones

Comments Off on Ocean Dead Zones

Ocean Dead Zones The ocean is an important part of our ecosystem. It produces most of the oxygen we breathe. It’s also very important for our economy, providing food for many people around [...]

  • walking outside and fitness

Walking for Fitness

Comments Off on Walking for Fitness

Walking is an excellent way to stay fit and healthy. In fact, walking has been proven to be one of the best ways to lose weight because it burns calories. It also helps [...]

  • What's Avian Flu

What’s Avian Flu?

Comments Off on What’s Avian Flu?

What is Avian Flu? Avian flu, also known as avian influenza or bird flu, is a viral disease that primarily affects birds. The virus can be transmitted between different species of birds, but [...]

  • what is carbon absorption

What is Carbon Absorption

Comments Off on What is Carbon Absorption

What is Carbon Absorption? Carbon absorption, or carbon sequestration, is the capture and storage of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere. This process occurs naturally through photosynthesis in plants and algae, which absorb [...]

Have a Topic Suggestion ? We are Open to New Ideas!