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  • Wildlife cameras inc infrared
  • Premier Icon the00
    Free Member

    We have bats living locally that come and feed around the house. Their flight and acro’bat’ics are quite impressive, and I wondered about using a wildlife camera to capture some of their exploits.
    I know that disturbing bats is an offence, so I was thinking about a motion activated camera. There seem to be a few on the market.
    Anyone here have experience of any of them or any tips?

    Premier Icon dashed
    Free Member

    In my experience, they’re no good for fast moving stuff. I’ve got loads of shots of blurred birds flying up to them in the daytime so I suspect performance at night is much worse. Also, the trigger times mean that the bird / fast moving animal is usually half out of the frame by the time the shot is taken.

    I’ve got 2 out permanently to track deer movements so pick up plenty of other wildlife as a result. One is a decent Browning and the other a cheaper Crenova from amazon – both the same result.

    Premier Icon konagirl
    Free Member

    wot dashed said, there is a lapse (usually about 0.3 to 0.5 s) before the video starts / photo and the frame rate is not good for fast moving. We have a cheap chinese (campark, same as apemap) version that works well for the price for larger and slower stuff (fox, hedgehog, badger) but is only reasonable for birds in daylight so wouldn’t capture bats even at dusk, they’re way too quick. I suspect getting something that could video but isn’t disturbing (i.e. no flashlights, good infrared and high enough frame rate to capture their flight) would be crazy expensive.

    If you can solder, you can ‘make your own’ heterodyne listening device cheaply (e.g. bat detector). Unfortunately the cheap versions like that can’t tell you the frequency you are listening to so it’s a guess what species you have, though usually pipestrelle.

    Premier Icon zilog6128
    Full Member

    been pondering this myself recently as we’ve just moved and there is loads of bat activity in the garden! I’m not sure it’s worth filming though… even when you see them with the naked eye you only glimpse them really as they flit about so fast! Having a bat-box setup with a camera so you can capture them going in/out & see them up close when they’re relatively still would be quite cool though, and you wouldn’t need a particularly expensive camera either!

    If you can solder, you can ‘make your own’ heterodyne listening device cheaply (e.g. bat detector). Unfortunately the cheap versions like that can’t tell you the frequency you are listening to so it’s a guess what species you have, though usually pipestrelle.

    this is something I looked into a while back. There are a few Raspberry Pi projects that use a USB broad-spectrum ultrasonic mic (which is expensive, but everything else you need is pretty cheap) that will log all bat activity & even tell you the species. I think this is potentially more interesting as it would give you a broad overview as to what’s going on, as well as alerting you as to when it’s worth going outside to have a look! If you don’t want to go down the DIY route there’s a standalone device with an App that features a suitable mic and plugs straight into a smartphone. https://www.wildlifeacoustics.com/products/echo-meter-touch-2-ios

    Premier Icon the00
    Free Member

    That bat detector looks mint. Think that might be a better bet you’re right.

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