Wildlife Identification App Now Available on Apple Devices
WildScan, Southeast Asia’s application for species identification available on Android, devices, can now be downloaded and used Apple devices in a move that can significant increase the reach of the tool across the region.
Wildlife trafficking is driving many majestic species towards extinction and often the animals being trafficked are difficult to identify. WildScan helps law enforcement and the general public quickly and easily identify protected species by providing photos, critical information and identification clues for more than 350 species.
With more than 1,000 downloads of the Android version, the app is quickly gaining popularity with many more expected now that it is also available on Apple devices.
“This app is a game-changing approach that empowers law enforcers and the public at large across the region to work together and fight back,” said Do Quang Tung, former chairperson of the ASEAN-Wildlife Enforcement Network.
Developed with support from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) by Freeland, a Bangkok based counter-trafficking organization, the also app contains information on relevant contacts, temporary care instructions and a tool to report suspected wildlife crime. Reports can be forwarded to a local law enforcement agency allowing anyone to report wildlife crime wherever they are.
Since the app was launched in 2014, law enforcement officials and more than 800 airport and airline staff have attended workshops where they have learned how to the use the app to help stop the smuggling of endangered species.
Already available in English, Thai and Vietnamese, WildScan developers are currently planning to expand use of the app in Cambodia, Indonesia and Malaysia and will release a version in Africa later in the year. Along with the release for Apple devices, the WildScan team updated the Android version to allow for faster downloads and more user-friendly handling.