Homebrew PIC challenge to ALL!

gizz

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Thought it'd be kinda neat to start a "Challenge" thread for pics. Not sure if it is possible or not because they are usually slow moving but I'd like to challenge you all to get a pic of a Snake. I'm going to set up a couple cams on some known Rattlesnake dens here in Central PA. Imagine a pic of a snake striking head first at the Cam as the flash goes off.
 



spectr17

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Wud I win?



I ain't gettin anywhere near them snakes. I almost stepped on one turkey hunting in Missouri. Just a glimpse of him as I went to take  a step. Looked like a black snake but neither of us hung around long enough to do introductions.

Hate em, hate em, hate em.
 

Jon Bain

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I thought about this before, but doesn't the PIR work off of heat(like body heat) and movement combined?  Snakes are cold blooded animals that have to warm their bodies in the sun.  I wonder if one would have enough body heat coming out of a den to trip the PIR?  Interesting challenge.  Can't wait to see the results.
 

Archilochus

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Hi gizz,
I worked with a woman once who was studying timber rattlers up here in the Northeast Kingdom.  We tried using PIR sensors with the idea that a sun-warmed snake moving through a shaded spot might present enough temperature differential to set off the PIR sensor..... NO luck.  I ended up slapping together a couple makeshift active IR "break-beam" type sensors that worked fairly well.  Got a few rattler pics, but she kept the photos and has since moved out west somewhere (more snakes to play with I guess).

spectr17....  Aww...  snakes ain't  too bad... kinda cute once you get up close!  ;)

Archilochus
 

gizz

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Nice animation, that's what I'm talking bout Spectr!

Darn, never even thought of the cold blooded stuff. I'm still gonna try. I have a "demo" cam that I like to try new stuff with, i'll see what I can rig up.
Maybe something like some very fine netting rigged up to the two camera wires that would touch them together when the netting is tampered with. Sort of like the old trailtimer with thread thingy.
Archilochus - Is that kind of setup your talking about easily adaptable to the type of cams we're all building?

(Edited by gizz at 10:36 am on May 11, 2001)
 

Tinhorn

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Animation, there is suspose to be Animation ? ? ?

my snakes are just laying there like dead things???

What could be wrong?

My son has a PET snake (I used to keep them too) and I will try the cam on it but Like  the guys already mentioned, I don't think it will work.....

Tinhorn
 

Fubar

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I got a rubber snake. Would pics of that count? Spectr17 got some good pics of a rubber snake someone left by the side of the road in MO. He said it didnt move much but he didnt want to get close enough to it to see why. Next day he went back when he got his courage up and poked it with a stick. Only rubber.             Fubar
 

Archilochus

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Hi gizz,
Sure, you can use just about any sensor or switch to trigger your cams.  Like you mentioned, the string used by Trail-Timer, or lever switches, simple light level sensors (like the ones used in those "Billy-Bass" singing fish things), active IR "break-beam" detectors (Trail-Master makes these as well as PIR types), pressure sensitive mats, level change detectors used with CCD cameras, etc.

A low power consumption "break-beam" active IR detector is more complex to build than a PIR sensor.  You can just buy a manufactured unit like the RS #49-551.  Many commercial "break-beam" detectors (the RS 49-551 included) are power hogs, since they are usually designed to be powered from a 12 Volt  security system controller which is in turn powered from household line voltage.

I've built a few active IR "break-beam" detectors, but have not gotten the power consumption down to an acceptable level, so I don't use them much.  I'll have to dust one off and see if I can get some rattlers to meet your challange (just need to remember where we found them!).

If you look at the timer schematic I posted a link to, you'll see an input for "optional trigger inputs".  This is where I can plug in just about any external sensor or switch to trigger my cams.  I just turn the "set-up/run" switch to "set-up" - which disables triggering by the PIR sensor - and hook up the external sensor or switch to the "optional" input.  If the "set-up/run" switch is left in "run" , then either the PIR or the external sensor/switch can trigger the cam.

Good Luck!,
Archilochus
 

gizz

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Arch - Nice explanations, Thanks!
So I can use a RS 49-551 to trigger the cam just need to beware of the power consumption?? I'm using PS-1212 (12V 1.2A) batteries for all my cams so I have a decent power reserve. Think I'll go check them out after work. Would be nice to have one with the active IR for things that move rather than radiate heat.
 

Archilochus

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Hey gizz!,
I finally got one! I don't count those pics that the researcher I mentioned above got - I didn't do much of the 'field work' and, well, I don't have the pics

Ever since you posted this challange, I've been tinkering on&off with set-ups to get timber rattlesnake pics. I dragged the cam to some really nasty places this summer! Even found a few good possible den sites with snake droppings nearby. After lots of pics of leaves with no animal in the frame, rodents, birds, even a few large bugs, I put the project aside - got to be expensive. The cam I was using has been sitting on the shelf the last month or so and the other day I realized it still had film in it. Got the roll developed and there was my first snake pic!  Kind of a crummy pic, and just a garter snake, but it's the only snake pic I have so far, so it'll have to do.

See:
http://www.geocities.com/archilochus57/pics.html
Click on the "thumbnail"

Archilochus
 

Arrowhead

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I had a set up where I had a turkey decoy set up in front of the camera. I was hoping to get a pic of a bobcat pouncing on it.

Hasn't worked out yet, but I haven't given up yet either.
 

gizz

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Hey, Nice Work Arch! If you can get a garter you can get any snake!! The snakes are really diggin in around here so not much of a chance to equal you on that one. That's really cool!

What's the next challenge gonna be?. I'm thinkin I like arrowhead's idea. Hey Arrowhead do you have that decoy set up to move a bit in the breeze?
 

Archilochus

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Hi gizz,
It's gettin' a bit late in the year, but maybe next year I'll get one of the bad boys - a timber rattler or a copperhead.
>>>
I've been thinking of using some sort of recorded calls to lure in predators.  I think EagleEye worked out plans for something like that.  Anyway, maybe combining a caller with Arrowheads decoy idea might bring in some predators.  Wonder where to find a turkey distress call recording?
It would be neat to have some sort of tilt switch on the decoy itself that triggers the cam.  That way you don't get a pic of the animal approaching, but only when it strikes the decoy.
>>>
Here's a difficult one.. Try to get a pic of a bat in flight!

Archilochus
 

Passthru

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About stepped on a Timber Rattler here in Missouri once while bow hunting early season(hot out that year)Scared hell out a me,but he just layed there unconcerned.Stepped on many a Copperhead though,dont know how ive kept from getting bit by one,nasty creatures.
 

Arrowhead

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I had a stick in the deke's tail so it wouldn't move. I'm gonna get that pic one of these days.
 

h2obobh2o

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Hey Arch,

Dennis Kirk, or Johnny Stewart, they both have recordings of turkey in distress.  I bought a Dennis Kirk, it's a recording of a turkey being attacked by a coyote. I am looking at the "Nite Lite" catalog, and Dennis Kirk has Coyote killing a wild turkey, and turkey chicks in distress, but if you look up either of these two guys above, they both have loads of distress sounds for predator hunting. Nite Lite's web site is Huntsmart.com. Hope this helps.
 

davered1

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The only snakes we have around here are a couple of my "friends", Will they count?????????
 

Archilochus

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Hi Bob,
Thanks for the info on the recordings.  Hopefully something is available in a digital format - maybe Mp3?
>>>>>
davered1....Ummmmm...maybe some new "friends" are in order?? ;)

Archilochus
 

Tinhorn

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Is that a Garter Snake?  Ours here in Missouri don't quite look like that one?

at least I don't think it does......
 


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