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Archive for August, 2017

Botched shutter speed and focus…!

Friday, August 11, 2017 posted by Bruce 1:44 PM

 Two Asian leopards pass-by my Canon 600D

For the most part, I usually catch something interesting on my camera traps in the ‘Western Forest Complex’ of Thailand. This place is one of the last great Asian forests where rare wild cats like leopard and tiger still thrive plus many other cryptic animals like sambar, banteng, gaur and tapir living alongside the predators. It does not matter if the camera was set right or wrong. I still manage to get some good record shots of black and yellow phase leopards at this new location.

A black leopard on my birthday: May 19th at 1.49pm, exposure: 2.5 sec…a lucky catch…!

A yellow phased or spotted leopard on May 28th at 8.13am, exposure: 1/8 sec.

A spotted leopard on June 19th at 2.41pm, exposure: 0.3 sec.

A spotted leopard flashing by on May 28th, exposure: 0.6 sec.

I’m not sure how my 600D jumped from ‘Manual’ over to the ‘Tv’ setting (shutter speed priority) but the answer is obvious. I somehow moved the wheel and did not double check it before closing up the cam. So all the shots had very long exposures hence blurry and out-of-focus images. However, the proof that leopards do thrive at this location is still good news. And the bad news is:

Stolen Nikon D90 DSLR camera trap…!

Nikon D90 trail cam in a PLano box

My first DSLR camera trap; a Nikon D90 and SB400 flash with a Yeti’ board in a clear Plano box…!

After capturing leopards on my Canon 600D, I hated to pull it out but had no choice. When I set the Canon, I also set a Nikon D90 DSLR (shown above) in an ‘elephant proof’ box a little bit further down another well-used trail (about 100 meters away). After I checked the Canon, I went straight to the Nikon but it was gone. Someone had stolen it plus two Nikon SB-28 flashes and a SSII (Snapshotsniper) sensor. The complete rig had been taken including the ‘aluminum housings’ and all the hard-wiring. This is my third camera stolen in this ‘World Heritage Site’…!

I have no idea who it is but one thing for sure; it’s the same group that stole my Bushnell Trophy Cam video and ‘Fireman Jim’ 125 DXG video in another section of the sanctuary earlier this year. It means that someone has the special ‘power-torque’ wrench to open-up the ‘elephant proof’ housings, and a 17mm socket wrench (for the 3/8 X 3″ stainless lag bolts) to remove the aluminum boxes from the trees. The ‘power-torque’ wrench is only available at a few special tool shops in Bangkok, or it was found in the forest where I lost one awhile back. Needless to say, it’s back to the drawing board to beef up security of all my cams. I have a new design that will make it even harder to steal that I will post at a later date…!

 

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Nikon D700 catches an Indochinese tiger

Saturday, August 5, 2017 posted by Bruce 11:38 PM

A female tiger returns again…!

About five months ago, I set a Nikon D700 DSLR camera trap at a hot spring deep in the interior of the Western Forest Complex of Thailand. I managed to get some nice shots of a female Indochinese tiger as she walked back and forth, and up and down to the mineral seep. I then moved the D700 to another tree close by for a better capture and composition. When I got to my camera last week and checked my files on the Nikon, I almost fell off the log I was sitting on. There she was again but this time with expression, behavior, focus and exposure perfect. This shot is one of my best all time tiger camera trap images….great success at last at this new location…Enjoy…!

Camera: Nikon D700 full-frame body

Lens: Nikon 35mm manual lens (very old)

Sensor: Snap Shot Sniper SSII

Case: Pelican 1150

Box: Aluminum ‘elephant proof’ housings for camera, flashes and sensor

Flashes: Two Nikon SB-28s

Exposure: 1/200th – ƒ5.6 – ISO 400

The first shot in the string…!

 

 

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