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Looking for a place to discuss camera trap troubleshooting, compare models, collaborate with members working with other technologies like machine learning and bioacoustics, or share and exchange data from your camera trap research? Get involved in our Camera Traps group! All are welcome whether you are new to camera trapping, have expertise from the field to share, or are curious about how your skill sets can help those working with camera traps. 

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Designing a Camera Mount with FLIR and WWF

Ashley Rosen
Today, WWF conservation engineering intern Ashley Rosen shares insight into the process of redesigning a camera mount for FLIR thermal cameras used by rangers in the fight against poaching. Ashley's design will become a...

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Metal Detecting Sensors for Anti-Poaching

Sam Seccombe
Since 2016, ZSL’s Instant Detect team have been working on improving metal detecting sensors for anti-poaching. The team believe that using metal detecting sensors will provide a highly targeted detection of potential...

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Camera trap repairs

Hi all, thank you for the fascinating camera trap workshop, I found it super helpful in my battle against camera trap repairs. I am currently at a research station in the...

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Apologies for the super late reply and thank you for all your comments and help. WE had wifi problems at the research station. I managed to fix a few by removing the rust from connectors, leaving them in a sealed container with silica gel. I am not back at home so will look at the different documents and order some equipment before I go back out to be ready for more repairing. Is there a list of other suggested items I should invest in to help with repairs? 

That is great to hear, Mark. I'm interested as to which repair related to each of the symptoms you intially listed, but for now, knowing that more of your cameras work is excellent. I think your use of silica gel to properly dry out the cameras is underrated - this might have to top suggestion for malfunctioning cameras in the future.

A list of basic tools is a good idea. Maybe we should start a separate thread for this, but I'll throw a few in here to start.

Screwdriver set  - small electronics screwdrivers, Phillips and flat head. Some cameras are using "torx" heads, so check your equipment and what you may need.

Multimeter - most problems can be checked using a volt meter only, but checking resistance of leads and continuity is very useful.

Pliers and snips - small needle nosed pliers are great for hard to reach pieces, side cutters help a lot for accurately trimming wires. If you start rewiring and soldering then wire strippers are very useful, but the job can be done carefully with a sharp knife if needed.

Soldering iron, solder and flux - if parts are coming loose, cables are getting torn off by animals or you just need to secure old wires better, then soldering is usually needed. A cheap soldering iron will do the job on wires for batteries and general hookup, but fine temperature control and a small tip is better for circuitboards. Do you have mains power - 240V/110V? A battery powered or 12V iron might be needed for a remote field/station. Fine electronics solder is most useful. Flux help clean surfaces for soldering but should be rinsed off to avoid corrosion - I have a "flux pen" that is small, portable. Practice is the key to soldering. There are lots of tutorials online about soldering but give it a go on something sacrificial first to get a feel for temperatures and how molten solder works.

Spare wire - size the wire accoring to the amperage that is needed. Passing too many amps through a fine wire may cause a fire (trust me). Multiple colours are avaialble so you can colour code your +/- and data lines. 

Insulation - this should be higher up the list! Electrical tape wrapped around wires and terminals will get the job done, but heat shrink tube in various sizes is more robust (just remember to put it over the wire before you connect it). Kapton tape is good for covering flat, internal electronics like circuitboards.

I hope that helps. Any other suggestions?

Cheers, Al

I also just found this similar summary of equipment on youtube - https://youtu.be/pNBkfE8UPDI. The breadboard and components are a good addition for building and testing circuits.

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Event: StreamingScience's #Tech4Wildlife Thursdays

StreamingScience
Join Conservation Technology Educator Andrew Schulz each Thursday at 7:00pm EST for #Tech4Wildlife Thursdays, a casual chat event with friends from the conservation tech community. Many of these chats will feature...

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Tech Tutors: How do I repair my camera traps?

Hi Wildlabbers,  It's almost time for our fifth Tech Tutors session tomorrow with Laure Joanny, Rob Appleby, and Alistair Stewart, who will...

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Hi all,

I know we mentioned this in the episode and collaborative doc for this episode, but I just wanted to make sure everyone knows about the camera trap troubleshooting spreadsheet our presenters created! The goal is to build up a bank of common problems so we can help each other and have an ongoing resource to use.

Please consider adding your problems into the spreadsheet as well as here in the forum!

-Ellie

Hi all,

This camera trap repair video about sulfated batteries was shared with us on Twitter and I thought it might be interesting and helpful for this Tech Tutors group! Check it out here and let us know if you find this useful!

-Ellie 

 

Hi all, 

Just saw this on Twitter - a database of all kinds of camera trap user manuals across brands and models. Thought it might be a helpful resource if you're struggling with an old or used camera that you don't have the manual for.

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Did you buy your #cameratrap years ago and you have lost the user manual?

that's my case, but I've the solution!

find here thousand of #cameratrap user manual. Different brands, models...https://t.co/c9FchfINzR

— cameratraps (@cameratraps1) November 3, 2020
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BearID To Go

BearID Project
In this article from BearID Project, Director and Software Developer Ed Miller walks us through using their application to identify individual bears from photographs. Ed shows us how to easily use BearID remotely in the...

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