Monday, January 09, 2006

Night moves

For the past couple of years we've forgone exchanging Christmas presents, and bought something for the two of us. This year it was a game camera! It finally arrived, and we waited with bated breath for the first night's pictures.

Except there weren't any. It was pointed too high. So for the second night we lowered the angle, and by morning we had two pictures that were not a) Jasmine, or b) us.


3:56 AM: Coyote in a hurry.


5:03 AM: Star-struck spike buck.

We put out a mineral lick and some corn, to try to make the critters stop and pose. But we may need to move the camera to an area that's not quite so open, if the animals continue to stay so far from the flash area.


Close-up of the coyote.


Close-up of the deer.

Why is he looking directly into the camera, I wonder? I can't hear the camera trigger, but maybe he can.

I've wanted a camera like this since we first moved here. They say that there are no bears or mountain lions here anymore... we'll see!

The camera we got is the Cuddeback 3.0. The only downside is that the picture is taken about a second after the trigger. Still, that's a lot better than many of the competing models with 5 or 10 second triggers. And to get one faster (1/10 second) would have meant spending $1000, so...

I can't wait to see what all goes on at night when we're asleep!

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Go to the Cuddeback photo gallery for some really great wildlife pics from Cuddeback owners. Mostly deer, but also elk, bears, bobcats, and even a wolverine! Judging from the number of new pictures added daily, a lot of people received Cuddebacks for Christmas.

23 comments:

KFarmer said...

now that is a neat present! I have never even heard of such. I just bet a dollar you are going to have more fun with that new toy-

Eva said...

very cool! I too had never heard of such a camera. Now I look forward to seeing great nighttime photos, as well as the usual great daytime ones.

Sabine said...

great stuff! The deer's looks mesmerised. Its eyes are like spotlights.

Clare said...

Way back when, I made my own "game camera". I hooked up a basic infrared beam switch from Radio Shack (the type that would ring a door bell or set off an alarm if the beam was broken) to the motor drive on my camera. Set it up on a game trail and it worked very nicely, with a couple of pictures of a herd of elk moving though

Jean said...

How wonderful. Looking forward very much to seeing who comes along. The deer's eyes are a eerie - the classic 'deer caught in the headlights' look :-)

Rexroth's Daughter said...

That is so great. I can't wait to see what you come up with. I wonder how often that coyote scurries through your yard? We've been seeing coyotes during the day around here, but hear them chattering away only at night.

weldergirl said...

I want one of those cameras too! I looked up instructions on the web of how to make your own but i just don't have the energy for that now. It was interesting how people did it and the trouble alot had with other people stealing their cameras. the deer picture is so freaky. I meant to tell you the other day when you were in the store about having a Johnny West collection too! I thought i was the only girl that had that.

happyandblue2 said...

Cool. Except for the deers eyes.
Maybe you will snap a picture of a bigfoot or something..

Watchmania said...

Very very cool present! So exciting to see these night-time visitors, caught unawares.

Hick said...

You sure do take scary pictures. That deer looks like he ate one of those mushrooms on your other post...or maybe he hatched out of it.

I would love to see the kind of creatures that wander around our property, but then I would probably be too scared to go outside at night...more scared than I already am, actually.

Keep posting...it's fun to see.

Floridacracker said...

How fun! We don't have heat ray vision alien deer here in Florida.
That coyote looks really fluffy and well fed...you aren't missing any ducks are ya?

Wayne said...

Wow - how great! Love the deer in the headlights look - ours don't look quite that baffled.

I agree with RD - how many things go past the house that we have no idea about?

You're going to have fun with that!

Chickadee said...

WOW...I am in awe of the cuddleback. I'm an amateur photgrapher and I have never heard of such a thing. I want one! Where do you get cuddleback cameras? Is it an online only type of thing? Cool!

Rurality said...

They may have the Cuddeback cameras somewhere in stores, but we were not able to find them here, so ordered ours online at BossBuck. Or you can Google "scouting cameras" for other brands. Or if you're handy you can make one, like Clare!

I believe it's just in the past couple of years that you've been able to get one this nice, especially in the <$1000 range.

They are mostly for hunters who want to scout to see if there are deer in a certain area. (Personally I think they are missing out on a big customer base by not marketing to nature-lovers as well.)

We've got it set up now in an area away from the house, where we've seen evidence of critter activity in the past. We'll probably leave it there another week and then move it - no more pictures had been taken the last time I checked it.

That coyote is probably fat from eating our chickens! Actually though we haven't lost any in a while (knock wood).

Weldergirl this camera comes with a thing that allows you to lock it to a tree! If somebody stole it they'd definitely be trespassing.

Hick I don't go out at night without Jasmine!

Janet said...

Someone told me of a guy they knew who set up his camera.He couldn't wait til the next day to see what critters were lurking about.Surprise....his brother and friends had sneaked over and "mooned" the camera. eewww!

Dave said...

Wow. I've often thought this would be just the thing for blogging, but didn't know they were commercially available. You're not going to relinquish your position as Queen of the Country/Nature Bloggers anytime soon, I can see that!

Rurality said...

Janet - I'll make really sure not to tell any "friends" the exact location of the camera. :)

Thanks Dave. You are giving me such a big head that I won't be able to walk through a doorway!

yllstonewolf said...

how COOL!!!

beetlecat said...

That is a cool idea. I looked it up and the price is a bit steep for me. I have a background in electronics and just bet that I could whip something up that would be similar. Maybe not quite as good but who knows.

I built a bat detector based on schematics I found on the internet and involved making my own circuit boards and stuff (LOL, I just happened to work at a place that made this quite easy).

I'm sure I could pick up a camera and sensor from some of my surplus catalogs. I'll have to try it someday when I'm finally back out in the country. Hope that's soon!

Have fun getting your candids and surprising the deer!

Dana said...

Oh, that is truly cool! I wish my parents had one in Warrior. My grandmother has seen a few foxes and deer in the woods behind her house. We also saw a wild cat track last time we were there.

Rainypete said...

That is one of th ecoolest products I've seen in a while! I agree they are missing an entire market segment though. What about people trying to keep spouses on their diets. Plant one of these near the fridge and you'll have proof they are snacking late in the night!

kitten said...
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HALLEYVILLE said...

I think hubby would love camara ... a perfect birthday gift..