WOW! I’ve been slacking writing and I apologize to my followers for that. Tyler and I were actually discussing today while picking up our fifth deployment and beginning our sixth that it’s been a while! Don’t worry though, I’ve made a plan to set aside time to write at least once a week going forward. I’ve got a lot to say, especially with deer season coming up… That being said, let’s go back to our fourth deployment…
For our fourth deployment with the NC Candid Critter project we stayed in Madison County and this time we ventured into bear sanctuary. If you haven’t heard of this awesome citizen science run project check out my first post on our experience with the NC Candid Critter project.
We picked spots not too far away from areas where we’ve hung personal cameras in the past. In the past we hung these cameras in the fall/winter and got some activity but not a whole lot of note. Luckily, since NC Candid Critter gives us the GPS coordinates instead of us picking them, it gives us the opportunity to hang cameras near areas we are familiar with but also check out areas we hadn’t thought about looking at.
For my spot I decided to pick a point off of a field I call “Bow Field,” since the satellite picture reminds me of the shape of my bow! Walking in off of the field, the forest quickly sloped downward. My actual coordinate seemed to be on a steep slope but luckily you don’t have to hang your cameras on the exact GPS coordinate, there is some wiggle room.
I ended up hanging my camera within a small clearing that was surrounded by rhododendron. We’ve hypothesized in the past that deer would like areas like this since they are cooler and pretty dense in terms of coverage. That hypothesis seemed to hold up when we picked up my camera.
During the deployment bears did find my camera. As we’ve seen with some of our personal cameras in the past, bears are incredibly inquisitive. These bears played with the camera, tried to move it, and possibly even tried to taste it! When we got the camera home the dog was very interested in the smells that were on the camera and there was some minor damage but nothing serious. Fortunately, the bears didn’t move the camera too much and I still got some great pictures once they did move it.
In the slideshow below are some of the pictures on my camera. My favorites from this deployment are of the bears stretching.
Stay tuned as I catch up on our fifth deployment and then when we pick up our sixth deployment in another area of the Pisgah National Forest!