A camera trap (or trail cam) is a camera that is fitted with an infrared motion sensor. When the sensor is triggered, the camera can take pictures and/or video.
The contents consist of the camera trap itself (which is the wrong way up in this picture… oops!) and a strap which can be used to fasten the trap to trees without causing any damage. The traps run on batteries and the data is recorded to a micro SD card for downloading at a later date.
This is the front of the camera trap (the right way up!). You can see the sensor and the lens. The clips on the right hand side open up to the picture below.
(Disclaimer! I apologise for the quality of these photos. They were never intended to go online but since we currently only have 1 camera trap, these are the only pictures I have.)
Inside the camera trap is a screen for instant playback and a menu for changing up the settings, for example, you can change the length of the video capture, the amount of photographs the camera will take each time it is triggered, or if you are short on space, you can also change the quality (we hope we don’t need to do this so we can provide the clearest possible pictures!) This is then closed back up and clipped together which creates a watertight seal.
The camera is then strapped to a tree and tested (generally by somebody crawling along the floor in front of it) and then all we can do is hope for some exciting data!