We have set up a waterproofed nest box on a north-facing wall of the house, to avoid the intense heat that would be experienced by a nest box on a southerly facing wall. The nest-box has been equipped with an endoscope camera pointing directly down into the nesting area. The nestbox has been in place since January.
As I write this article, the nest-box has been adopted by blue-tits and a nest is in the process of being built.
The beauty of this technique is that is does not intrude on the occupants, who are unaware of the surveillance.
The Ubuntu laptop being used to monitor activity in the nest box.
The female blue tit can be seen as she brings nesting material into the box and carries out the laborious process of nest construction.
AstroDMx Capture for Linux is set to capture 1 frame per second into a SER file. This SER file can then be used in a variety of ways to show the activity in the nest-box.
Screenshot of AstroDMx Capture saving frames, one every second into a SER file
After 24h considerable progress has been made
Animation made from a SER file
Nicola is working on a feature for AstroDMx Capture that will facilitate this kind of nature study.