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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.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Thinking Fellers Suburban Studies #7

In order to prepare my class for a camera trapping project with the Felidae Fund, we went out to the small oak-covered rise above our school that separates us from the industrial parks that litter the eastern portion of Terra Linda, San Rafael. Here we were to practice making a set and getting comfortable with the equipment.

The students made observations of animal trails, scat and other possible areas of interest to decide the camera location.

As we were leaving our set, a cry went out with an arm pointing to the trees -- above us, a large raccoon was napping! Truly a treat for the kids to see and even for myself this was a great first time experience. All of the time I have spent looking in trees for birds, while holding onto the hope for a gray fox or 'coon, had resulted in nada up until now.

The camera was in place for five days and all captures came from the first night.

video 
gray fox


video
our napping friend?!

Before checking the cam, we quickly scanned the trees for the napper, but our glimpses discovered nothing. However, after unlocking the cam and then walking halfway out of the oak grove, another cry gathered our attention -- a sharp-eyed student had spotted the masked sleeper once again:






Monday, April 2, 2012

Camera Trapping with the Codger


SFSU-5573


Simple and straightforward. What RT said. If you have not read his post click through because he said it better than I can.

I will only add that this was an amazing class for all the reasons, RT laid out, but it was also one of those experiences that will change the way you look at natural history.  As great of a professor Chris is, the thing he left me with was his nurturing of your excitement about wildlife. It is so contagious that you will start to dream of small rodents and elusive mustelids even if you would rather not.

But really the most important thing is that you will have a mentor for life. Chris will continue to help you out with your camera trapping for years after the course with advise, encouragement, and questions if my experience is typical and I am sure it is.  I also met RT during the course I took two Summers ago and with him and the Codger I made two great friends for life that I have continued to have adventures with to this day.

I could not recommend this course any more highly and I hope to stop by and see some of you there in the Summer of 2012 for a little alumni reunion.

Flickr images from 2010 course.