Creating a Floating Yew View Otter Cam Platform

As you may remember, some weeks ago now, a sudden dramatic rise in the River Severn overnight meant we lost a wired HD camera and a Bushnell trail cam under water. The River Severn levels can fluctuate dramatically and we were not quick enough to save the cameras as it happened overnight. We have really missed watch  the coming and going of the Yew View otters and have been determined to get another camera in there as soon as possible, but this time it had to be safe from the floods!

This week, I designed a platform for the site that would sit raised above the ground, but float if and when the river rose. Tethered to the bank, this set-up should give us enough time to keep the camera safe, pull it to the bank to safety and re-deploy when levels dropped again.

I collected a pallet-type base I had rescued from school, some insulation foam and some additional bits of wood ….

Using these materials, I ‘sandwiched’ the insulation foam between the wood and the pallet. I secured a ring hook from which to tether it… with a little helper of course!


I took it down to the wildlife pond to test….


I then created a  mount for the camera from some other materials on site and tested float-ability again! It was fine!


I will complete it next week, when I place 4 small posts into the bank, on which this platform will sit, about 50 cm off of the ground. It will float when the river rises above this and, accessing the camera via my phone, I will be able to see if the river has risen and rescue the camera! Well, that is the plan! We can then look forward, once again, to watching our otters visit the holt for a daytime nap!


I have created a similar, smaller set-up for the Bushnell! Let’s hope it all works!

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