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Contributor: Travel editor Kerri Westenberg.

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Couch safari

Posted by: Kerri Westenberg under International travel Updated: December 18, 2012 - 3:10 PM

Can't travel to Tanzania's Serengeti National Park, the focus of last week's top Travel story? Now you can take a virtual trip there to see the wildlife. In fact, researchers at the University of MInnesota would like you to do that, and play scientists at the same time. As part of a project called Snapshot Serengeti, researchers have set up 225 cameras in the park to capture wild creatures, from lions strolling through the grasses to hyenas that sometimes chomp on the cameras. Log onto the site, and you'll be given a picture-driven tutorial on how to identify the various animals, from aardvarks to warthogs, a treat in itself for animal lovers. After the tutorial, you can begin looking through the captures (what the site calls a collection of three images captured when an animals movement triggers the cameras to shot) and identifying the animals and their behavior (based on simle descriptors such as "moving" and "interacting"). Speaking of capture -- the whole exercise caught my attention. When you get an image of African grasses through the tell legs of a giraffe, how can you stop?

 

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