I’ve been experimenting with a DJI Phantom quadcopter for aerial video and landscape photos. The Phantom is a radio controlled quadcopter with built-in GPS. It carries a GoPro camera and is simple and easy to fly. Neat machine!
Here are a few sample shots
The video below was shot with a Hero 3 Black set on 1080 60 fps M. The camera was mounted to the Phantom via a vibration dampener with no stabilizing gimbal.
The video below was shot with a Hero 3 Black set on 1080 60 fps M. The camera was mounted to a Tarot 2D brushless stabilizing gimbal. These Tarot 2D gimbals are awesome at keeping video footage level and fluid.
The Snow King Pleco (armored catfish) is an invasive species that was likely introduced by aquarium/tropical fish hobbyists who released them into local streams. They are found in many Texas rivers but are especially problematic in spring fed rivers or bayous where the water temperatures do not drop significantly in the winter. Plecos are established in the San Antonio, San Marcos, Comal, and Guadalupe River systems, as well as Buffalo Bayou.
Plecos have been described as one of the most destructive and potentially threatening invasive fish in Texas. These tough, algae-eating fish can withstand a wide range of water quality conditions and can outcompete many native species for space. Their body is dense and bony, and they can survive out of water for long periods of time. Plecos often dig burrows into river walls and embankments which then collapse and erode.
To learn more about Snow King Plecos and the rules intended to prevent them from becoming more widespread, check out the TPWD page here:
This Pleco was inadvertently caught while bass fishing.
Here are a few short video clips of bumblebees and butterflies buzzing around giant sunflowers and zinnias. The camera used was a GoPro Hero 3 Black Edition set on WVGA 240 fps and then rendered to 30 fps on the iPad Tiltshift Video app.
A big summertime grasshopper on the windshield makes a surprisingly good subject, and a decent reference photo for tying a few foam hopper patterns. Shot with Nikon D7000, 55mm, 1/120 sec, f18, flash.
A small cluster of flowering herbs attracts a myriad of crawling, hopping, and flying bugs.
The black hickory is a large, slow-growing hardwood tree found primarily on sandy well-drained hillsides from San Antonio eastward, often mixed with post oaks and live oaks. It has dark grey bark and Continue Reading
Interesting what you get when you strap a camera with a wide angle lens to the end of a push pole. Continue Reading
The “Trail Camera Pic” thread started in 2012 continues in 2013.
Here is a short time lapse made using a Gopro Hero 2 camera taking 11mp photos every 5 seconds.
Blackbirds and Grackles at a water hole, filmed with GoPro Hero 2 set at 120 FPS in WVGA mode.
I thought it would be entertaining to post an ongoing thread of trailcam photos here. These are photos & videos of skunks, coons, birds, deer, hogs, coyotes, or whatever else passes in front of the camera.
A trail camera (camera trap) is a covert digital camera equipped with a motion sensor to detect movement and trigger the shutter when animals pass in front of the camera. Trail cameras are weatherproof, will operate day and night, and some will record both high-resolution still images and HD video.
Trail cameras are used primarily by hunters to scout for game or monitor hunting areas. They are also used by researchers to study elusive or secretive wildlife, and by folks like me who enjoy the excitement of capturing images of creatures that sneak by when no one is around.
There is a bit of an art to positioning a trail camera so it takes advantage of the light and aims in a northerly direction toward the trail or crossing. I house my cameras in thick steel camo boxes that are internally lag bolted to the trunks of trees and locked closed. The boxes protect the cameras from damage by wildlife or cattle and cannot be removed by theives.
Opening a trail camera that has been left out in the woods for several weeks or even months is always a thrill. And when you get it all right, the results can be really cool.
I get my trail camera stuff from Trailcampro. This is a good outfit and they know their cameras. Whether you want a simple inexpensive camera to find out what’s getting into your attic, or a top of the line model for serious field work, they can set you up.
The cameras Used for the 2012-2013 photos on this site are Bushnell Trophy Cam HD 8mp trail cameras. These cameras can be set to take 8mp still images or 720p HD video. They are loaded with 32G SD cards and can run for many months on a single set of 8 AA batteries. They are housed inside indestructible 10 gauge steel Camlock boxes.
Wildflowers in mid-summer, 2012, White Mountains, Alpine, AZ.
Here are some photos from a fishing trip with Captain John Spencer at his Posada del Colorado Lodge in Arroyo City, TX, June 2012. A great place! Continue Reading
Crossed paths with this buck while hunting with my son last winter in Atascosa County. Beautiful deer at close range in the morning fog. We opted to watch him and take pictures.
By Casey R. Smartt
On a sultry June morning, I stepped aboard Captain John Spencer’s Hells Bay skiff and we pulled away from a sun-bleached dock on the Arroyo Colorado in deep South Texas. Continue Reading
Kayaks and saltwater flats are a great combination. Here are a few shots from a trip recently near Aransas Pass, TX with my longtime fishing buddy Jon Fisher from San Antonio.
Longnose gar sometimes leap impressively when hooked. Here is a short clip of a longnose catching some summer air at Canyon Lake.
Tumblebugs (a.k.a. “Dung Beetles,” or “Scarab Beetles”) play an important role in nature’s nutrient cycle and pastureland hygiene. They are also fun to watch!