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Phil's Nestbox 2018
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fsphil



Joined: 09 Mar 2006
Posts: 1598
Location: Cookstown, N.Ireland

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 1:07 am    Post subject: Phil's Nestbox 2018 Reply with quote

Greeting all,

It's that time of the year again where I have a last minute rush to get everything ready! My box is beginning to show its age (10 years!), the wood is starting to rot and one of the cameras has failed over the winter. So I figured it was time to build a new one.


Nestbox 2009
Nestbox 2009
Poster: fsphil, viewed 10 Time(s)


Right now the old box is still up and has been claimed by a pair of BTs. Last year's nest is still in there and the female has been removing bits of it over the weekend. The new box is not ready yet but I'm hoping to get it all finished for next weekend. Outside it's identical to the old one but inside it's all new. I've gone for some Raspberry Pi's this time, with one top down camera and another wide angle camera on the side. The HD-ish video will be streamed directly to the internet from the Pi's via wifi, so much simpler than my previous setup Smile

Here's a test shot from the wide angle:


Nestbox 2018 test
Nestbox 2018 test
Poster: fsphil, viewed 12 Time(s)

_________________
-Phil
https://webcam.sanslogic.co.uk/
https://twitter.com/fsphil
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WildlifePaul



Joined: 28 Apr 2015
Posts: 1773
Location: Liverpool

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 2:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome back Phil,
Camera in new box looking great! Looking forward to your updates Very Happy

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Check out my twitter for all wildlife updates
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hfriel



Joined: 19 Apr 2010
Posts: 669
Location: Dublin

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 8:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Phil, welcome back, canโ€™t wait for your videos and photos.

Will be very interested in your Rasberry pi set up as we almost went for it this year but it was getting complicated and time was running out. But want to set up another box or two next year so will try again.......

Happy Easter to all ๐Ÿ‡๐Ÿฃ

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Helen
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SueP



Joined: 08 May 2008
Posts: 1939
Location: Ferndown, Dorset.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 9:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Phil, glad to see you back. Loving the test shot occupant. Good luck with all.
Sue
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Matt1973



Joined: 20 Mar 2018
Posts: 240
Location: West Sussex

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pictures look great Phil, also keen to hear more about your camera setup. You've got great colour there, but I assume that is natural illumination and you are running a camera with an IR filter? I have a pi zero w in a box with a no-IR wide-angle lens (130 degree). Picture is fine, but of course colours are strange and washed out in the day under natural light, and black and white under IR light. I want to improve that next year, maybe use an "ir cut" camera (uses IR filter in day, but not under IR). That does start to get a little complicated though.
How are you streaming? I was for a while, but wifi a bit touch-and-go out at the shed so I now have a motion detect script running which takes 30s of vid and emails me on a movement event. Would be good to compare notes as I hope to get a couple more pi-equipped boxes up for next year..
cheers,
Matt
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sammi



Joined: 24 May 2007
Posts: 894
Location: Cornwall

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:48 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome back Phil. Love the action in your box! Very Happy Remind me what day it is? Roll on the floor laughing
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Beechnut



Joined: 11 Apr 2011
Posts: 766
Location: Cambridgeshire

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 01, 2018 11:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Phil
Your 'new' box looks like a des res and the pictures superb!!

Hope Sod's Law doesn't apply and your 'old' box with the not so great camera setup is the only one nested in.

Be watching with interest.. Wink
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jimjack



Joined: 25 May 2009
Posts: 365
Location: Dresden, Germany

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2018 6:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Welcome back Phil,

I'm looking forward to the pictures from your box.

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http://meisenkasten.family-hildebrandt.de

And...Sorry for my german english. Wink
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fsphil



Joined: 09 Mar 2006
Posts: 1598
Location: Cookstown, N.Ireland

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2018 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Matt1973 wrote:
You've got great colour there, but I assume that is natural illumination and you are running a camera with an IR filter? I have a pi zero w in a box with a no-IR wide-angle lens (130 degree). Picture is fine, but of course colours are strange and washed out in the day under natural light, and black and white under IR light.


That photo was from a ZeroCam (https://thepihut.com/products/zerocam-fisheye-camera-for-raspberry-pi-zero), it's got an IR filter. The light was from the torch on my phone Smile There will be 8 white LEDs in the roof of the box for daytime, and 4 IR LEDs for night. I'm waiting on some bits arriving before I can wire these up. The other camera will be a Pi NoIR, looking straight down onto the nest area.

Matt1973 wrote:
I want to improve that next year, maybe use an "ir cut" camera (uses IR filter in day, but not under IR). That does start to get a little complicated though.


Yeah I was hoping to use something like this but there's no simple solution for the Pi cameras, at least none that I could see. And there was no time to experiment. Maybe next year!

Matt1973 wrote:
How are you streaming? I was for a while, but wifi a bit touch-and-go out at the shed so I now have a motion detect script running which takes 30s of vid and emails me on a movement event. Would be good to compare notes as I hope to get a couple more pi-equipped boxes up for next year..


Each Pi in the box will produce an HLS video stream, which is basically just a series of small video segments. A program on my web server will copy these segments and make them available to viewers. I'll publish the code for this up to github at some point. It's still a work in progress Smile

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-Phil
https://webcam.sanslogic.co.uk/
https://twitter.com/fsphil
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Matt1973



Joined: 20 Mar 2018
Posts: 240
Location: West Sussex

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2018 12:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Phil - interesting stuff.

There is an IR cut camera available off-the-shelf now for the pi, but you do need to manually trigger the filter from a gpio pin. That part isn't too tricky, but deciding when to filter might be - at least for my setup, as I use the IR leds that are permanently powered but with their own light-sensitive trigger. If you are controlling the white/ir leds yourself anyway, then it should be fairly trivial to trigger the filter at the same time. I also like the 130 degree wide angle I currently have in the box, as it lets me see hole and bottom at the same time - but this is not (yet?) available as an IR cut version, although it might not be impossible to change the lens.

I've been doing a bit more research on how to handle multiple cameras, and motioneyesOS with each camera acting as a fast, simple camera and all motion triggering/streaming handled by a central server seems like a very good option.
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petes box



Joined: 20 Apr 2017
Posts: 132
Location: SE London

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 10, 2018 12:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Phil, i've always enjoyed watching your videos in the past, that was before i joined the forum.
I decided this year i would do my own nest box project with lighting it consists of two 18mm deck lights although i shall only use one as i think that is enough,
an LDR sensor and circuit board with adjustable sensitivity.
I did have one problem though and that was with the cameras auto white balance, it would over saturate the colour of the wood, the only thing that would overcome this would be more daylight entering the box or something white in the box then it would adjust correctly.
So i've had to paint a small white stripe just inside the camera view which seems to do the trick.
So a question for you have you ever had problems with white balance?
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fsphil



Joined: 09 Mar 2006
Posts: 1598
Location: Cookstown, N.Ireland

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 10, 2018 12:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The white balance on the old analogue cameras seemed to be fine. but the Pi cameras where a bit off. They can be adjusted manually, which I did using a white reference card placed into the bottom of the box. Here's the final calibrated images:


Reference card A
Reference card A
Poster: fsphil, viewed 9 Time(s)

Reference card B
Reference card B
Poster: fsphil, viewed 7 Time(s)

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-Phil
https://webcam.sanslogic.co.uk/
https://twitter.com/fsphil
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petes box



Joined: 20 Apr 2017
Posts: 132
Location: SE London

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 10, 2018 11:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for that Phil, thats looking really good.
Unfortunatley my capture cards in my computer won't allow me to adjust, brightness contrast color, something to do with drivers i think, tried other drivers with no luck.
I'll be getting a new capture card at some point so i'll post some pics of the setup.
Also if it ain't to much trouble could you post a picture of your LED configuration in the box.

Cheers.
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fsphil



Joined: 09 Mar 2006
Posts: 1598
Location: Cookstown, N.Ireland

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2018 12:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's some pictures of the top section, which has a camera, audio (missing in this photo) and the lighting.


Nestbox 2018 lighting 1
Nestbox 2018 lighting 1
Poster: fsphil, viewed 12 Time(s)


Nestbox 2018 lighting 2
Nestbox 2018 lighting 2
Poster: fsphil, viewed 12 Time(s)


There are 12 LEDs in all, 8 white and 4 IR. They're driven by a little board from Adafruit (https://www.adafruit.com/product/1455), which is in turn controlled by the Raspberry Pi. I thought the white LEDs where a bit too bright so I placed them in boxes with frosted windows at the bottom to attempt to diffuse them a little. This is probably overkill to be honest, but it does look cool. Smile

_________________
-Phil
https://webcam.sanslogic.co.uk/
https://twitter.com/fsphil
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fsphil



Joined: 09 Mar 2006
Posts: 1598
Location: Cookstown, N.Ireland

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PostPosted: Fri Apr 13, 2018 8:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got the new box up earlier this week, and almost immediately some moss was brought in (and out again) and the usual fussing about. But there's been almost nothing the last two days, just the odd visit to the entrance. It's so typical that when I finally get the webcam online, they abandoned it Smile Hopefully not! Fingers crossed.

Just the overhead camera at the moment, and IR lights only so everything looks blue: https://webcam.sanslogic.co.uk/ No sound, I had some last minute issues with it that I didn't have time to fix.

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https://webcam.sanslogic.co.uk/
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