Recent intensive research on the canvasback has focused attention on the need for more precise estimates of population parameters. During the 1972-75 period, various types of aerial photographing equipment were evaluated to determine the problems and potentials for employing these techniques in appraisals of canvasback populations. The equipment and procedures available for automated analysis of aerial photographic imagery were also investigated. Serious technical problems remain to be resolved, but some promising results were obtained. Final conclusions about the feasibility of operational implementation await a more rigorous analysis of the data collected.