Transportation across the lake
At one camera site we cross a lake using the local canoes hollowed from a single tree trunk. Our crossing
takes about an hour, periodically bailing water as the rocking edge of the canoe hovers just inches from the water.
At another site, we have the good fortune of spending a couple of nights at one of the guides' farmhouse, which
is a small one-room shelter on stilts.
Once we select a suitable tree for a camera, it usually takes about thirty minutes to physically mount it
and set up the internal electronics. In addition, we must make careful note of the camera's position so that
we can find it later. We do this using a combination of GPS coordinates, tree markings, and forest landmarks.
On camera maintenance trips, we use this location information to find the cameras and then spend about twenty minutes
checking the integrity of the camera, its settings, and swapping memory cards and batteries. Checking the cameras often
takes all day, but the jungle is pleasant and full of exotic sights and sounds. We often hear the calls of gibbons and birds,
and occasionally sun bears and other animals.
Overlooking the jungle
Theft is naturally a concern. However, so far no camera we have placed has gone missing. A larger threat is moisture
and insects. Already, one camera succumbed to an ant infestation, which destroyed the internal workings but produced some interesting
images of gigantic, blurry ants!
Now that you have a feel for a jungle expedition, check out the next section for an overview of our long-term plan.
>> Expedition Continued >>