It has been a busy week at Yew View this week! I spent 2 days there to try to get lots done… sometimes it is difficult starting a job and not getting it finished, as I tend to work there once a week. Last week, we filled over the badger sett, so my aim this week was to get three cameras wired in and working at the sett; two cameras inside the chambers and one on the outside to monitor any visitors that might take a look but not make it to the chambers.
The cameras are dropped down the ‘chimney’ pipes that stick out above the sett. These allow me to easily remove the cameras if I need to (not if the badgers are in there obviously!) Getting them to drop down and be positioned perfectly has taken some fiddling, but I was excited about finally getting them into place. They also had to be cabled back to a hub, where they could be plugged in and send the signal back to the main computer in the office. The cables are all run through some armoured pipe to ensure the badgers (or other animals) do not chew or dig up and damage these cables.
After some fiddling and help from icodes with settings, our cameras were in position and giving wonderful internal views. These are external CCTV cameras with intelligent IR. This means that the camera ‘monitors’ the IR (invisible infra-red night-light) that it uses and adjusts it accordingly. I had no idea how well this would work in this space and had put pipes in place in case we needed more IR. In fact, these cameras are brilliant that the area is lit perfectly, with no ‘burn-out’ that was characteristic of older cameras.
These are IP cameras with a zoom and focus option. An IP cameras is like a camera with its own computer built-in and a web address. I am able to log directly onto the camera and then have the option to take control and make all sorts of changes. I can zoom in and then choose where I want the camera to focus. Once set up, I was able to have a play with the setting and made this little video, showing me zooming in and out and re-focusing. It gave me an idea of the scope I will have when (if!) something moves in and I am VERY excited! The image is amazing and, with a microphone in there as well, I can’t help imagining the kind of footage that might be possible!
It is just a waiting game now…… we could be looking at an empty chamber for a while… you just never know!
I am also keen to attract siskin and redpoll into the garden. There are already good numbers of goldfinch. I set up a feeding station of just niger feeders in a quiet part of the garden, where there is quite a lot of cover nearby.
I set in a position that I could monitor it using the PTZ camera we have at that end of the garden….
I also set a new perch for Kingfisher where I am using my Bushnell camera and a 60cm close-up lens. You will have seen some of my previous footage and I have lots of clips now. I want to see if I can experiment with different perches, so found a nice lichen clad one and popped it in exactly the same position as the last one. It has taken them several months to start using this perch regularly and I think they will take straight to this one. I took some pictures to show the set-up….
Finally, on checking through this week’s footage, I came across some great clips of both Fieldfare and Redwing visiting the clearing by the other sett. I have now placed some new apples and another Bushnell with a close-up lens by this, hoping to get some more , closer footage. They like using this little clearing, so there is a good chance of footage.
I also saved some great footage of a fox and badger feeding together and a great fox selfie.. I hope you enjoy them!