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Native Californian, biologist, wildlife conservation consultant, retired Smithsonian scientist, father of two daughters, grandfather of 4 small primates. INTJ. Believes nature is infinitely more interesting than shopping malls. Born 100 years too late.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The lesson of an anonymous camera bumper and 3 hooters

When something jars your camera trap it usually ruins the set that you so painstakingly composed.

Consider set # 394 at the Chimineas ranch last month.

My colleagues made the set to capture thirsty carnivores at one end of the pond, and they did a commendable job.

Besides the pleasing image of the buck and doe, the camera also captured one frame of this great horned owl, which I have cropped.

On day 19 of the set something bumped into the camera, and the frame changed from this:

to this:

The camera was then viewing a completely different and limited part of the pond.

This kind of thing has been known to evoke some rather colorful language.

In this case however we discovered that two other species of hooters were visiting the pool in the area less trafficked by deer and coyotes.

There was a single image of the barn owl,

and a western screech owl buzzed about and left 6 images.

It stands to reason that not all species use the same area of the pond.


brdpics said...

Nice serendipitous owl shots!!

I'm seriously considering getting a game camera to put at a Barn Owl nesting box I have. Seeing your owl shots is tipping me more in that direction!!

Zach said...

Wow, that's neat!! I've also had a few run-ins with "camera bumpers." In my case, I blame raccoons. I have pictures of a raccoon eating some moldy hotdog buns I set out, and then in the next picture all I see is it's tail off to the side of the picture. The pictures taken after that were offset.

Camera Trap Codger said...

Hi Bill, I just put up my 4th screech owl box, and want to wire it for video. You'll need to get a cam with a short focal length if you want to put the cam in the box, but you can get a lot of neat pictures placing it outside, like I did with the screech owls a couple years ago.

Stay tuned for some very interesting barn owl shots.

reverend dick said...

I loves owls even more!

Henry said...

Nice post. It looks like a very pretty set and great owl shots!

Do you think the camera bumper might have been one of the owls (or other bird)? I found that my cameras are usually moved either by heavy birds perching on them or antelope inspecting them.

Camera Trap Codger said...

Henry, usually the post is driven into the ground firmly and would only budge for a big owl. More likely it was due to pigs.

Owlman said...

Awesome pics - LOVE the Barn Owl!

Anonymous said...

These are great shots Codger.
You are good man.