The Michigan Engineer News Center

Fishing for Gobi’s

A photograph of researchers working on an underwater camera.

Gideon Billings, Robotics PhD Student, and and Peter Esselman, U.S. Geological Survey - Aquatic Landscape Ecologist, film a round goby fish in a tank in the USGS Building on North Campus of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI on July 24, 2017.

Matthew Johnson-Roberson, NAME Assistant Professor, and his researchers in the Deep Robot Optical Perception (DROP) Lab are using these fish as subjects for development of a neural network camera. The neural network camera is able to teach itself to identify round goby via a database of imagery and visual that DROP researchers provide. By producing these visuals of round goby in a variety of environment, the neural network camera is able to adjust to a variety of conditions in nature (such as murky or unclear water) and help users identify round goby. Being able to identify these round goby via such a camera will help reduce the amount of resources and time allotted to eliminating this invasive species. Round goby were first accidentally introduced to the Great Lakes in 1990 and have resulted in substantial reduction of snails and mussels, and eggs of native fish, which are important to the angling industry.

Photo: Joseph Xu/Senior Multimedia Content Producer, University of Michigan - College of Engineering