The yellow, four-legged robot walks up a grass slope, then marches through a forest full of twigs. It even mounts a stump and then climbs down unassisted.

It’s part of a trial run by Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute (FFPRI) and SoftBank Corp., using robots produced by Boston Dynamics. The goal: find a solution to Japan's chronic labor shortage in the forestry industry. If successful, it could increase reforestation in the country and help Japan achieve its carbon neutrality goals.

Forestry work is mostly manual and today's workers are aging and declining in number, so researchers are hoping that the robots will be able to help humans monitor and maintain Japan's forests.