Trail Cameras: An Introduction

I stumbled upon the idea of using trail cameras quite by accident while on the internet. The idea hooked me and I soon purchased a cheap camera (Bushnell Trail Sentry) to see what i could do with it. Trail cameras are self firing with modern designs utilising a thermal/motion dector to  pickup differences in heat, which signify the passage of an animal and this triggers the “shutter”.

 

_20090531_448editMy dad and I recently modified the camera to use a rechargable Lead Acid battery. The entire thing is then attached to a tree or other suitable object, wherever you want to study (forest etc). You can then either bait the area or leave as it depending on your objective, and then you leave it there for as long as you wish. If unbaited you really should leave it a long time (like a couple months or so) along animal trails or water/food sources to avoid disappointment. If you decide to use a bait you can expect results the first night.

Of course you won’t discover anything new to science.  Professionals have used such systems in Trinidad and Tobago to track/catalog mammals. Mostly i do this to get an idea of what animals live in an area. And also it is a lot of fun. I would encourage anyone to give it a try. You can see some photos taken in the TT NatureLink Gallery

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