Welcome to the Distance project website

The Distance project provides software for the design and analysis of distance sampling surveys of wildlife populations. This software takes two forms: a Windows-based program and a suite of packages for the statistical programming language R.

Photos of a polar bear, grouse and lizard, taken by Tiago Marques (bear/lizard) and Steve Buckland (grouse)


Introductory workshop 10-21 July 2023

11 May 2023

Accepting widening participation scholarship applications now; General registration open 23 May 2023

Introductory workshop 20-31 March 2023

27 January 2023

Accepting widening participation scholarship applications now closed

Design and Simulation R packages

12 January 2023

We would like to make you aware that our design and simulation packages (dssd and dsims) are temporarily only available from our development repository on github. Please follow link for instructions on installing them.

New versions of R packages

16 November 2022

We are pleased to announce the imminent release of new versions of our R packages Distance and mrds. The information below will be particularly relevant to users of dht2. We recommend all users of these packages update to the newest versions.

Introductory workshop 09-20 January 2023

24 October 2022

Registration is now open; closing on 30 November 2022

Release of Distance 7.5

07 September 2022

We are pleased to announce the release of a new version of Distance for Windows, Distance 7.5. This version upgrades to use 64 bit R and also contains new versions of our R packages which are also now on CRAN.

Distance workshops autumn 2022

16 August 2022

Registration is now open for our autumn online training workshops, on camera trap distance sampling, methods for when animals are missed on the trackline, and design and simulation.

Distance for Windows and R 4.2

06 June 2022

This message is relevant for users of Distance for Windows who make use of the analysis engines that call R - that is the MRDS, DSM and MA analysis engines. Distance for Windows currently is not compatible with the latest version of R (4.2); we suggest a workaround and announce that we will be releasing a new version of Distance for Windows in August.

New Release of Distance 7.4

25 May 2022

We announce the release of Distance 7.4 release 2. This unplanned interim release was deemed necessary to fix a bug relating to project creation of analyses involving cluster size and / or double observer data. We advise users to update Distance to this latest version, especially if Distance 7.4 release 1 has already been installed.

Bug and workaround for Distance 7.4

23 May 2022

This bug affects you if you are

  • starting a new Distance project and either
    • animals occur in groups (group size is one of your data fields) or
    • you have double observer data with the fields object, observer and detected

Never fear, there is a simple work around

Old news entries