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WIFI Bird Watching Video Camera Recommendation? (1 Viewer)

minorhero

New member
United States
Hello folks,

My wife is a very casual bird watcher and I wanted to get her something related for her birthday. There is a bird feeder on kickstarter with a camera built in that sends you pictures of birds eating at the feeder right to your phone. I thought this would be a pretty spiffy idea but the product won't launch for at least a year. Then I thought I could recreate the product pretty easily with a solar powered wifi security camera. And THEN I wondered if people had already gone down this rabbit hole before and had some recommendations to smooth the way.

Ideally a camera that doesn't have a wide angle lens on it but honestly I'd go for anything that could take quality pictures (quality for a phone screen anyway). Decent software that would take pictures and push notifications to a phone is a definite plus.

Thoughts? Thank you in advance for any guidance.
 

Mono

Hi!
Staff member
Supporter
Europe
Lots of people are after a similar product, hence the popularity of the Kickstarter, if it is the one I'm thinking of. The suggestion is always to go down the security camera route, but I am not aware of any one coming back having completed such a setup. The market has expanded recently with IOT devices such as ring.

Solar will always be a problem for an always on device, running a 12v supply is easy and safe.

Good luck, hopefully some one will come along who has made it work.
 

Jessie-66

Germany
You can use a good webcam with WLAN (or ethernet, if you can relocate cable to bird feeder). This records onto a NAS. The NAS is accessed from our smartphones via Internet and VPN (Virtual Private Network with secure keys and encrypted connection).
Software for DIY NAS: OwnCLoud, NextCloud, ...
You can store a lot of other data on the NAS: films, music, photos, backups, etc.
NAS: Network Attached Storage
Also available as a ready-made solution, QNAP and Synology are well known.

There are also webcams whose web server can be reached directly via the Internet. The internet connection must allow this by means of public IP addresses and port forwardings in the router. However, one should change the default passwords and not use such cheap solutions for confidential recordings. I do not consider a birdhouse to be security-critical, but unauthorised access to your LAN over the insecure webserver must be prevented with a dedicated VLAN.

There are also webcams that record into a manufacturer's cloud that can be accessed via the internet. For bird records, data sharing with strangers is probably acceptable.

Turning webcams on and off with motion detectors may be possible or researching software for motion detection and then recording first. Look for smart webcam software.

Have fun and enjoy crafting!
 
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