Whenever I rock up to a camera trap, I sort of hold my breath and brace myself for what I’m going to find. Sometimes I find nothing — elephants have tossed the camera off the tree and into the green grassy oblivion, or hyenas have left dribblings of mangled plastic and tooth-dented batteries — but stories about the never ending crusade to protect the cameras from overenthusiastic large mammals will come another day. Today is about the wildlife that try to make my cameras home.
I’m always a little surprised at what I find. Geckos love to lay their eggs in the metal cases, though they and the skinks tend to act rather molested when I disturb them.
Other inhabitants are a bit slower to react, like this caterpillar:
And then there are some mysteries…
The only thing that I really can’t bear is the ants. Don’t get me wrong, ants are cool – and they do *really* cool things – but they also bite. And when they’ve turned a camera into their home (as in the photo below — those white bits are eggs or larvae), they aren’t particularly welcoming to researchers. I’ll try to get som clearer photos this field season – because I guarantee you, there will be many, many ants to come.