Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: Mississippi
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Mississippi Project

Use of machine learning to quantify habitat for the Oktibbeha Rivulet Crayfish: College of Forest Resources

August 2021 - August 2022


Participating Agencies

  • Mississippi State University

Mississippi supports a complex of rivulet crayfishes (Hobbseus spp.) that specialize on ephemeral headwaters and ditches. Ditch habitats are rarely georeferenced in existing stream network geospatial datasets, meaning it is difficult to quantify available habitat for rivulet crayfishes. This is an undergraduate-led research project that will determine whether video and machine-learning algorithms can be used to rapidly quantify wetted ditch habitat for rivulet crayfishes. The College of Forest Resources at Mississippi State University funded this research through a competitive award for qualified undergraduate students. This research could inform management by helping managers quantify available habitat rapidly for rivulet crayfishes.