This video shows images from camera traps of wildlife in the zone around the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in Ukraine. While on the one hand the nuclear radiation has killed and continues to make sick and to kill slowly many birds and other animals, on the other hand human activities disturbing wildlife have stopped, favouring some wildlife.
From Wildlife Extra:
Camera traps reveal Chernobyl‘s wildlife
The 42 cameras were installed in the exclusion zone by The Tree Project in November 2014. In order to get a true picture the cameras are moved to new, randomly selected, locations at approximately 8 week intervals, which will mean by the end of 2015 the cameras will have been positioned at 84 locations.
TREE is one of three consortia funded by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), the Environment Agency (EA) and Radioactive Waste Management Limited (RWM) under the Radioactivity And The Environment (RATE) programme.
“The overall objective of the TREE project is to reduce uncertainty in estimating the risk to humans and wildlife associated with exposure to radioactivity and to reduce unnecessary conservatism in risk calculations,” explains its website.
“This will be achieved through four interlinked science components beginning with improving our understanding of the biogeochemical behaviour of radionuclides in soils through to studying the transgenerational effects of ionising radiation exposure on wildlife. Our studies will combine controlled laboratory experiments with fieldwork; most of which will take place in the Chernobyl Exclusion.”
Four months into the project the team has already captured more than 10,000 images of animals, suggesting the 30km zone, established shortly after the April 1986 disaster when a nuclear reactor exploded, ejecting radioactive material across the surrounding terrain and high into the atmosphere, is thriving in wildlife.