Looking Ahead: Future Directions and Considerations for Using Detection Dogs in Aquatic Environments and Ecosystems
This concluding chapter reviews all topics covered in the book via eight broad themes: (1) working with dogs in aquatic environments, (2) monitoring presence/absence of aquatic species in water and at terrestrial/aquatic interfaces through biological/ecological surveys, (3) evaluating and maintaining water quality, (4) law enforcement and anti-poaching initiatives, (5) promoting public education, awareness, and compliance, (6) ensuring standards and best practices, (7) optimal uses of dogs in relation to other available tools, and (8) pragmatic considerations of selecting, training, and working with dogs and handlers. Ensuing considerations (e.g., gaps in knowledge in, and perceptions related to, current enforcement and anti-poaching efforts) and a plea for dissemination of proof of concept findings at the early stages of discovery are also offered.
KeywordsDetection Dog Conservation Enforcement Aquatic ecosystems Water search Fish Mussel Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) Invasive Endangered Sewage Water pollution Aquatic contaminant Poaching Canine standards and best practices Proof of concept
Heartfelt thanks to all those who contributed to this book via a chapter or during informal conversations. I am very grateful to Matthew Wheeler and Karen Viste-Sparkman for taking the time to share their thoughts about some of the benefits and constraints of employing detection dogs for conservation purposes. Finally, many thanks to the reader for coming along on this little journey with us. I absolutely cannot wait to see how the next few years will unfold.