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(Animal monitoring device project) Idea feedback






Hey guys im doing an A-level electronics course for which im doing an animal monitoring device for which i have to base it around the users needs and what they want. so im asking you if you would be interested in what sort of animals come into your garden then which idea would be best for you.


This idea has an external sensor which can be positioned where you want around the camera. it also has a flash for taking pictures at night.


This idea uses a sort of trip wire (using infrared technology) which would be used on animal trails or a path.


This idea use an intergrated sensor so it is less area specific


  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,864

    Hi Ben image

    My initial thought is that using flash for night time photography would disturb the animals and consequentally the results would not be a true picture of what animals usually visit the garden.  Although more expensive, I think that a night-vision camera would be much better.


    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 17,574

    If you google wildlife cameras, there are lots of cameras with infra red, taking pictures or video, using movement sensors. 

    Have a look at what is out there. No point in reinventing the wheel unless it is better than what is already available.

  • I have considered this and i have seen some ifrared cameras which im going to use, these are just idea, i can change them. This is the sort of feedback i need thankyou!image

  • ClaringtonClarington Posts: 4,949

    Things I would consider when buying such an item.

    1. Is it fully water and weather proof? After all its no good if it doesn't work in the rain or is designed so that it falls to bits in the rain and allows snow to sit upon the lens.

    2. How is stores the images. Are we talking about it saving them onto an SD card that I must go and retrieve to insert in my laptop, does it send me images by Wi-fi (no everyone has wi-fi in their gardens of course), or for more remote areas (for instance I would love to have such a device at the very top of our three storey museum to broadcast images of the birds nesting in the roof broad casting onto a screen on the floor below, I'd also be interested in putting them in my pear tree near a nesting box at home - neither easy to get at to recover an SD card!) Does it would with a phone sim card automatically texting or emailing me pictures when it detects motion

    3. Power source. I am not going to be impressed if its running on batteries that need replacing every week. At the same time I don't want to drag a car battery around with it! Perhaps it is solar panelled but what if I want to hide it in the trees or bushy undergrowth. Is the solar panel attached or (like my fairy lights) are they on length of electrical wire so that they can be placed up to a metre away.

    4. Does it have a flash? I can't see the point in a flash. How sensitive would it need to be to work in what weather conditions and what if it scares the animals? Infrared cameras would be ideal as they'll also work in fog / rain / typical Yorkshire grey and damp.


    Hope it helps!

  • Thankyou for this feedback, it helps. Im now considering to not using wireless components then it will be easier to conserve battery life. Idea 3 did have a solar panel in the design and i've done research into infrared cameras.image

  • Hi Ben,

    Most video cameras, including webcams and 'board cameras' have an infra-red blocking filter which can often be removed.  Sometimes the IR-block is glued to the bottom of the lens (usually the case with web and board cams) but can be removed if you are careful.  I do this both in my line of work (university technician) and in my other hobby (astrophotgraphy.)  It is much cheaper than buying a special IR camera which, ironically, are standard cameras with no added IR-blocking filter so should really be cheaper!  Most imaging sensors (either CCD or CMOS based) are naturally sensitive in the IR region but the IR-block is added to give more natural colours in daylight.  If you use monochrome cameras, that isn't an issue of course.

    If you would like any detailed advice in this area, feel free to send me a personal message by clicking on my avatar and clicking 'Message'. image

    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
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