The R package for analysing and visualising data generated from the VEMCO suite of passive acoustic receivers



V-Track is a collection of R functions designed to enable storage, analysis and visualisation of detection data from the VEMCO suite of receivers and transmitters.
V-Track will assimilate acoustic transmissions derived from the VEMCO suite of continuous and coded tags and detected by the VR2, VR2-W and VR100 receivers.This enables the user to process data from both passive and active acoustic telemetry within a central database. Archived acoustic data stored within the Australian Animal Tagging and Monitoring System (AATAMS) database can also be processed and visualised using the V-Track software.

V-Track contains a number of tools for analysisng your passive acoutic detection data. The routine steps for processing data are:

1.  Archiving of the detection database

2.  Creation of sub-archives based upon study parameters

3.  Generate summary tables based on transmitter or receiver data

4.  Creation of a distance matrix using direct or circuitous distances between receivers

5.  Identification of animal behavioural events within the detection sub-archives

6.  Organise behavioural events by temporal conditions

7.  Visualisation of animal movements through time using Google Earth 



V-Track is now available on CRAN!

This updated version (Version 1.11) features new visualisation tools, summary tables and compatability with R > v3.0.0. 

To download and install V-Track, simply follow these steps:

1.  Connect to the internet

2.  Open R

3.  Type the following code into your R console



If successful, this should now have installed VTrack to your Windows, Mac or Linux machine.

To load the software and access the reference manual, type the following code into your R console:




Want to read more about V-Track?

You can see the list of Frequently Asked Questions about V-Track here.

For more information see our V-Track publication in Marine and Freshwater Research or other listed publications which have used V-Track to analyse detection data from the VEMCO suite of receivers and transmitters.

There are also teaching materials for V-Track: V-Track, R and the Analysis and Visualisation of Animal Telemetry Data. This course was run by Ross Dwyer at the Sydney Institute of Marine Sciences in 2014. The workshop focused on the steps involved in processing, analysing and plotting acousic tracking data from fish and sharks using the R programming language and the V-Track R package.  


Publications using V-Track

Dwyer, R.G., Campbell, H.A., Irwin, T. and Franklin C.E. (2015) Does the telemetry technology matter? Comparing estimates of aquatic animal space-use generated from GPS-based and passive acoustic tracking. Marine and Freshwater Research 66(7): 654-664.

Hanson, J.O., Salisbury, S.W., Campbell, H.A., Dwyer, R.G., Jardine, T.D., and Franklin, C.E. (2015) Feeding across the food web: The interaction between diet, movement and body size in estuarine crocodiles (Crocodylus porosus). Austral Ecology 40(3): 275-286.

Campbell, H.A., Dwyer, R.G., Wilson, H., Irwin, T. and Franklin C.E. (2014) Predicting the probability of large carnivore occurance: a strategy to promote crocodile and human coexistance. Animal Conservation 18(4): 387-395

Micheli-Campbell, M.A., Campbell H.A., Connell, M., Dwyer, R.G. and Franklin, C.E. (2013) Integrating telemetry within a predictive model to assess habitat preferences and juvenile survival in an endangered freshwater turtle. Freshwater Biology 58(11): 2253-2263.

Campbell, H.A., Watts, M.E., Dwyer, R.G. and Franklin, C.E. (2012) V-Track: software for analysing and visualising animal movement from acoustic telemetry detections. Marine and Freshwater Research 63: 815–82.

Campbell, H.A., Hewitt, M., Watts, M.E., Peverell, S. and Franklin, C.E. (2012) Short- and long- term movement patterns in the freshwater whipray (Himantura dalyensis) determined by the signal processing of passive acoustic telemetry data. Marine and Freshwater Research 63: 341-350.

Notes from our users

What an awesome package! You saved me a massive amount of work!  PH. PhD student, University of Waterloo, Canada
Thanks for developing such a great product as V-Track. And it’s great you guys have made it free! BC. Water Scientist, Department of Natural Resources, Australia.

Just what I need to kick start me in an analyses of over 4 million hits from our acoustic array in the Caribbean, SP. NOAA, USA.

I found V-Track to be a fantastic tool, and I was able to use it to create all sorts of additional visualizations, from modeled salmon movement data to estuarine hydroacoustic biomass survey data. I greatly appreciated being able to open and edit output files, as that greatly added to V-Track's flexibility and allowed for such diverse uses. It has proven very useful to help in understanding this endangered species and its environmental interactions. Thank you again! KL. NOAA, USA.


For further information or enquires about V-Track please contact Ross Dwyer at <ross.dwyer@uq.edu.au> or Hamish Campbell <hamish.campbell@cdu.edu.au>