Tyler Fingert

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Arizona national parks use technology to deter thieves

TUCSON – Microchip IDs similar to those in pets have been embedded in hundreds of cacti at Saguaro National Park near Tucson in a move to guard against theft.

Officials said the microchips can be used to identify stolen cacti, but acknowledge the technology is limited. The chips can’t be used to track the stolen saguaros, a familiar silhouette in the Southwest. Instead, officials are counting on the devices to deter thieves.

Such technology systems are being used to protect national park resources from thieves, such as a photo mapping system in the nearby Petrified National Forest that tracks whether visitors are taking fossilized wood.