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Native Californian, biologist, wildlife conservation consultant, retired Smithsonian scientist, father of two daughters, grandfather of four. INTJ. Believes nature is infinitely more interesting than shopping malls. Born 100 years too late.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Postmortem of a camera trap

The solemn concentration of a postmortem 

Chas Clifton of Southern Rockies Nature Blog recently chronicled the chilling demise of his camera trap, with photos of the tragic final moments of its life lying on its back looking up into the trees above.

Chas sent  the camera  to me as a donation to science.

Many thanks, Chas.

Participants of my camera trapping workshop conducted the postmortem under the guidance of camera coroner and pathologist Randomtruth.

Was the camera jawed and pawed to death?

Or were its circuits blown as a result of a dousing in the spring?

The dissection revealed that blunt force trauma was counterindicated.

Though the bear had eviscerated the camera and thus robbed it of battery power shortly before death, there was no evidence of mechanical damage externally or internally.

A thin silty film however was evident throughout the body cavity.

Conclusion: assault and battery temporarily denied the camera its vital functions, but the cause of death was irreversible electrical damage resulting from immersion in the spring.

Pervasive silt was the deciding evidence.

RIP dear camera trap.

Though your life was brief, your service was unflagging and your courageous passing was in the call of duty.


Chas S. Clifton said...

Thanks to you and your students for the PM. It's all much as I suspected.

Camera Trap Codger said...

Our pleasure, Chas, and let's hope none of our cams meet a similar fate in the future.