Posted by: Loren Coleman on May 30th, 2008
What is it? Sasquatch? Bear? A person?
How important are trail cams? They are having more and more impact in discovering elusive known animals and adding to the enigma of cryptids.
One region of the world where trail cams routinely document rare creatures like tigers and rhinos is South Asia.
Below is footage released May 29, 2008, of a female Javan rhino from Indonesia’s Ujung Kulon National Park, captured on video attacking a trail camera. No one knows why she decides to launch an assault on the cam, but wildlife experts say she apparently sensed that the lens was a threat to her calf.
The rhino video, with sound, can also be seen here.
Trail cams can image the mundane…but beautiful…
(Please click on image for full-size version.)
Or the highly unusual:
The extremely rare large-antlered muntjak (Muntiacus vuquangensis) had never been captured on film before, and yet it (above) and unidentified poachers (below) were photographed in the Nakai-Nam Theun National Protected Area, Laos, by trail cams in 2007. The photo of this muntjak confirms its Laotian location, as it was first known only from skulls in Vietnam.
The Sumatran striped rabbit (Nesolagus netscheri) was also captured for the first time ever on a trail cam.
The potential of trail cams is unheralded.
Something could soon happen to either push that potential onward, into the next level, or completely muddy the waters.
While only a hint of what’s behind it, with a “Coming Soon” sign denoting more details later, Bushnell Trail Cameras has posted a notice that you can “Win $1,000,000″ from them by capturing “a verifiable photo of Sasquatch with your trail camera.” The mini-alert on their site shows two of the iconic “peas-in-a-pod” Bigfoot tracks (and thus unfortunately, examples of probable Ray Wallace fakes, I must acknowledge).
…some trail cam photos can be extremely unique and weird, without even bringing cryptids into the picture, so to speak.
Bushnell Corporation (also known as Bushnell and Bushnell Outdoor Products) is an American company specializing in optics and imaging. Its products include binoculars, spotting scopes, telescopes, night vision equipment, GPS devices, laser-guided rangefinders, riflescopes, holographic gun sights, and other high-end optical equipment. The company also sells Bollé ski goggles and sunglasses, H20Optix water sports sunglasses, and Serengeti all-purpose sunglasses. It was founded in 1948 by David P. Bushnell, during his time in Allied-occupied Japan.
One of the best little trail cam models to use is Bushnell’s new camouflage Trail Scout Pro 5.0 night vision digital camera, which is designed to be mounted to a tree in the forest. It automatically snaps 5-megapixel digital photos of anything that crosses its path.
In a review of this trail cam, Technabob says, “In addition to being able to shoot night vision pics, the $270 (street price) camera switches into a full color mode during daylight. You can also set it up to snap 15-second movie clips instead of high-res photos if you’re trying to capture that elusive Sasquatch in action. The battery powered camera is supposed to work for about 30 days on a single set of batteries, since it’s not wasting any juice unless it’s triggered.”
It appears to be a trail cam in such demand, the price is actually gone up to over $360, even for used models. See here.
The infamous “Pennsylvania Young Sasquatch” photographs of what was also called “Jacob’s Creature,” were taken with a trail cam. Specifically the camera used was none other than a Bushnell model. Even though the object of the trail cam (left) was probably a bear (right), it generated a lot of attention for the use of trail cams in the American woods.
Below is a trail cam photo from Mt. Hood of a probable bear manipulating its body into a weird position (similar to the Jacob’s Creature?), taken on June 7, 2007, at 7:11 p.m.
I’ll post an update as soon as I obtain more details on Bushnell’s Sasquatch trail cam photo contest.
If my experience with being the consultant to the “One Million Dollar Prize” for a Bigfoot or similar cryptid photo, first floated in 2005, from Wizards of the Coast, is any indication, watch for a good deal of media attention to this one too. Bushnell is in for a stampede of interest and, perhaps, a bit of a revision of their full contest rules before we hear the final version unveiled.
Still, indeed, we do live in interesting times.