In December of 2012 I finally acquired a camera that I’d been waiting a long time to get my hands on. The Bushnell Trophy Cam is a motion-activated surveillance camera of the type that I first saw in the BBC nature documentary series, Lost Land of the Tiger (which is well worth watching). This rugged plastic box doesn’t look like a typical camera at all but if you’ve ever wanted to get a glimpse of the wildlife that emerges when us humans aren’t around, whether it’s in your own backyard, or somewhere in your local forest, these cameras are a fantastic and affordable solution.
Known as ‘camera traps’ or ‘trail cams’ you simply position your camera out in the wild, and leave it to document whatever creatures pass within its field of vision. Ours captures either still photographs or video files and has excellent battery life so you can leave it out overnight, for a week, or even a month, before retrieving the memory card to download the results. It’s versatile enough to operate in extreme temperatures, through rain or snow, and uses infrared light to capture at night.
There is one particularly rare creature in Northumberland that I am hoping to capture with this camera (which for now will remain nameless), but here is the best image from a 3 week visit to England – a young male roe deer on a Christmas Day walk through our neighbouring pine forest. We’d deliberately positioned the camera to overlook what appeared to be an animal highway of some sort, so it was really rewarding to get these results, and encouraging for our future endeavors.
The images and videos that we capture on our camera trap will be a regular feature here on The Oak and Feather, so whether we’re at our base in Bergen County, New Jersey or off on a trip somewhere else, let’s hope we get some exciting results! We look forward to sharing them…