I just got back my second roll of film and have 24 pics of a few coons and squirrels. But for the most part there are pics of nothing. Is this normal? You would think out of 24 pics there would have been atleast one of some deer.
Sometimes I get NOTHING on an entire roll of film, winds can give "False Alarms" and is usually the culpret in my case but also you must keep the Sensor out of the rising/setting Sun so face the unit NORTH if possible.
Some trees seem to cause a Heat Change and will give a false alarm, especially Cedars one guys said....
Not only does the sun's heat from the east or west fire the pir, just the sun heating the earth's surface fast with a little wind want's to fir the pir.The pir ismuch closer to the ground then when you use the same pir to protect your home. Usually the photo eye keeps the unit off, durning the day, so the light does not come on durning the day. If you put a light in the ms 20 or others, before it is fixed to run off of low D.C. voltage, and place it near the ground as you do with the camera, and place it in the test mode, you will find that the unit will come on and off with just the sun heating the earth, and a little movement of the things around the pir.
I use a sony camcorders and I find a lot of birds sit on top of the box, fly down to the ground in from of the my box, and I have video of birds that you wouldn' t get with the 35mm camera. The bird would be to low for the camera to catch it. I leave the sony's in the woods for weeks at a time. When I go to them for viewing, I have a lot of birds, leaves that fall close to the pir, and a lot of game. I have the timer on to take only 12 seconds of footage. This gives a lot of short clips, but you learn alot about what some times makes you think that you are just getting nothing from the 35 mm cameras. I do get nothing on the sony's, and see the tree's and the brush around it shaking from the wind.
Have a nice, and safe DAY!!!!
Jayboy, something else that may be triggering your PIR are animals that are out of viewing range of your camera, but not the PIR itself. This can especially be a problem if your camera is set up in or facing a dense thicket. The MS20 can detect motion out to about seventy feet, and sometimes visibility with the eye (or camera in this case) may only be about twenty feet in a thicket.
For example, on my last roll of film, there is a series of five pictures in sequence. The first two pictures have nothing in them, yet they were taken only a minute apart. The third picture, which by the way was taken within the same minute as the second picture, captured a doe as she peeked out from the thicket directly in front of my camera. The final two pictures captured her and an accomplice as they exited the thick brush and walked straight toward my camera.
Apparently, there are just enough openings in thick brush for a PIR sensor to detect motion while at the same time not big enough to capture a picture of the perpetrator.
Another problem I noticed is that a lot of the PIR sensors have a very wide detection range. On my first role of pictures, I think that the 6-8 pictures with no animals were caused by a deer that was just a little wide of the camera viewing angle. I plan to but some tape or something on the sides of the fresnel lens to focus the sensor to the center of the camera.
When you first start out with a trail cam there is a lot of trial & error involved. When I set mine up for the first few rolls, I made many mistakes and did not have this forum to help me out. I guess I went thru 5 rolls before I got the hang of it but I am still learning with every new setup even after 30+ rolls. When the weather warms up I found the need to move into the canopy of the woods. I was getting false pics off of the trees and ground warming up out in the open, but since I moved into the woods this has happened a lot less. As Tinhorn stated the direction is important. Face your cam north for best results. When this is not possible use the shade. I once kept getting false pics in one setup and found that the glare of the sun off of a very,very small piece of an old galvinized gate was setting it off (it was setup facing north with the sun directly overhead in each pic). The sun is moving all day and it will find cracks & openings thru the woods that you cannot foresee. You can cut down on the pics with no critters in them but they will always show up from time to time. Welby, myself and others agree also that the pics without an animal in them but occur shortly before or after a pic with an animal present were actually set off by an animal but it didn't make the pic in time. Make notes and learn with each setup..... 1 hr. photo awaits and they will soon know you by your first name .