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Equipment/Setup

On this page I will share with you what equipment I use, how I set it up and some thoughts about approach and results. There is most likely many ways how to do it, but this i my way.

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Trail Cam

When I started this project I wasn't sure I would succeed.

The lynx is a very shy animal and I didn't know much about it.

First I needed a good location.

I followed some elk traces to a higher point where you have a good view over the area.

This seemed to me a perfect location for my project.

In 2017 I didn't had much camera equipment so I bought a trail cam to monitor the location.

As bait I used a dead fox.

Photo Blind

The next stage in this project was building a photo blind.

I couldn't use any motorized vehicle so I had to carry everything up to the location.

The photo blind is not very comfortable and just for one person.

Unfortunately I haven't used the photo blind very often.

The lynx mainly appears at night and I wouldn't have a chance to see the lynx.

We have some golden eagles in our areas and I probably will use this hide in a few years for an eagle project. 

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Motion Detector

Self made 

The project was a success.

My trail cam took several photos and videos of the lynx the first year.

Now I had to find a way how I can use my Canon DSLR to get photos with a higher quality.

My father-in-law is very handy and built a motion detector of parts he bought in China.

This motion detector I could connect to my Canon camera and the camera would take a picture every time something was moving in front of the detector.

Motion Detector

Commercial

I replaced the self made motion detector with a detector by Camtraptions.

This motion detector is weather proved and I have the possibility to do some settings.

With this detector I can decide if I want to take one or more pictures when the detector is activated.

I can decide the sensitivity or if the detector activates in darkness or light.

This detector gives me several possibilities for my camera trap.

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My Cameras

I have 4 older Canon DSLR which i use for this project.

1 Canon 6D

2 Canon 5D mark II

1 Canon 5D mark III

I use to have 2 cameras installed during the entire winter which means almost 6 months.

One camera is set up for day light, while the other one is set up for night time.

When the motion detector is not activated the camera falls in sleep and the battery can last for around 4 weeks.

My lenses

I have a few older lenses I use.

For night images I use the Canon EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM and

for the day camera I have a Canon EF 17-40mm f/4L USM.

In 2019 I shortly used a Samyang 14mm f/2.8, but this lense is not very weather sealed and it was broken after just one season.

I always try to seal everything with tape and plastic bags, but sometimes I'm not carefully enough and water entered inside the lense or even the camera.

An other good reason to use older equipment and not the new and best one.

I also know that there are photographers using waterproofed and sealed boxes around the camera where the camera and lense is completely safe.

I may try out this boxes in the future.

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Other Camera Equipment

For this project there is some other camera gear I use.

At the start of the winter with less snow I usually use some tripods which allows me to keep the kamera very low to the ground.

Later at winter I use regular tripods and keep the camera high up so it will not snow down.

I also use a flash with a diffuser for the night images and even for the day set up,  

Set up

I use 2 cameras at my camera trap.

One camera is prepared for photos at nighttime and one for photos at daytime.

For the night camera i use mainly a long exposure so I'm able to catch the northern light, if it appears.

My usually setting are 1,6sec/f2.8 and ISO3200, but I experiment sometimes and do some changes.

For the day camera I just try out different settings.

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© by Alfred Lucas