Mohave ground squirrels and other desert animals are such a problem that the US Air Force wants someone to build an acoustic sensor system to track these elusive creatures.
At first glance, this proposal seems crazy but this task is required by the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Each military base must detect and track nearby animals that are threatened. Many of these creatures like to hide and the government is wasting lots of money and manpower trying to find them.
Rather than use soldiers, the Air Force wants an automatic sensor system to do their dirty work. The sensors must operate in the harsh conditions of the desert where wind gusts up to 50 MPH and temperatures of 120 degrees Fahrenheit are common. The system must also compile two-weeks worth of data and produce 24-hour activity maps for each animal. All this is done to make sure the military's mock wars are not upsetting the delicate balance of our desert land creatures. [Wired and Department of Defense]