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This blog is predominately about camera trapping in California. We camera trap to save our souls and to teach primary school students about biology and conservation. We will also touch on other camera trapping news and musings, sets from afar, mediocre herpetology, sucky birding, and other natural history discussions.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Bobcats in the Mist

The great camera trap bloggers don't post their mistakes often.  They may make a few, but not many and have so many great shots that they just don't have the time to post misadventures. CTC is not quite there yet, so I present a misadventure.

Yes, that is a roadkill brush rabbit placed in front of the camera. I happened to have a plastic bag in the car on my way to camera trap when I saw the smashed little rabbit in the middle of the road. So of course, like a good Codger student, I pulled over and grabbed it, making sure no one was watching and jumped back into the car and headed on to the reserve.

This set is not necessarily a brain fart mistake, but the set has some obvious problems that are exacerbated in foggy, coastal Santa Cruz County, and made even worse when the camera is 100 feet from Monterey Bay.

A fogged up homebrew camera.  Woulda been, shoulda been, great shots.

I have tried silica packets but they don't seem to help all that much.

I was thinking Rain-X.  It might put a slight film on the glass, but has anyone tried putting Rain-X on the inside glass of their homebrew? It works pretty great on my windshield, water just flows right off of it.  I think I may give it a try on one of my homebrews. Any other thoughts on combating condensation?


  1. even with the fog and condensation, that first shot is rather neat and eerie! :)

  2. There are various anti-fogs solutions/sprays for goggles (like for swimming or snowboarding), maybe one of those would help?

  3. Giving the bobcats little mini squeegees probably won't work, so try these tricks:

    Clean the glass - condensation is sticking to the small bumps and dirt on the glass, so use some toothpaste and water to polish the glass clean.

    Put on Rain-X. It will help prevent water from sticking.

    Put desiccant in the trap. The silica packets lose their potency and have to be redesiccated, and then protected from moisture til use, which is a pain. So this year I'm going to be trying small packets of rice, wedding style - it's a classic desiccant and is easily recycled.

    Seal the trap well. As we've discussed... I'm going to try some with electrical tape wraps to see how they handle the rain.

    Ah, the wet weather is upon us. At least the day time false triggers will go away and we can set for 24 hours again. :)

  4. that's pretty sweet (despite the foggy fog). Looks like he's got some crazy aura going on, nice!

  5. @RT. I left out the misadventure of 800 pictures of moving grass in 3 hours, but I may have to post a movie of that later. I will give the Rain-X a try or look for the goggle anti-fog that @Bay Laurel suggested.

    @TexWisgirl and @Johnny Nutcase thanks for stopping in and the comments. It is kinda an artistic shot. Maybe I should have saved it for a Halloween post.