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Bird Box Camera – Watching Bird Feeder on Mobile Phone

Setup bird feeders with seeds can attract the birds to your backyard. It is joyful to hear their chirping. How to watch birds closely in the backyard? The binoculars are the simplest tools, but you have to stay around and check your feeders, and make sure you don’t miss the moments. The bird box camera is helpful to watch the bird up close. With the latest IP technology, you can have plenty of features including live streaming on mobile phones, recordings to micro SD card and even message notification to alert you if or when the birds land in. Herehe  are some key features to consider when you’re picking the camera.

Tiny IP Camera

Before you can watch the bird feeder on a mobile phone, the video has to be digitized. The Wi-Fi or IP bird box camera is a tiny camera built based on IP technology. You can connect to the camera with mobile phone, tablet or PC computer to receive the live video. There is no extra add-on required. Technically the Wi-Fi bird box camera is a kind of compact computer with a video sensor to capture the video.

Adjustable Lens

The camera’s lens should be adjustable. While the camera is shooting closely, the focus becomes very sensitive. It is easy to test this optical feature with the camera on our mobile phone. You change the shooting distance a little bit, the focus will switch, and the image gets blurry. You will need to adjust the lens to re-focus. That is one of the essentials with a bird box camera. You may have different distances while moving the feeder around. With the adjustable lens, the camera always be in focus.

WiFi vs Wire bird box camera

The camera has to be hooked up the home network for remote viewing the bird feeder. Whether to choose WiFi or wire bird box cameras depends on the situation. With a wire IP bird box camera, you should wire the Ethernet cable to one of the network ports(RJ45) for both power and data. The power doesn’t need to be present next to the bird feeder. You can connect the Wi-Fi bird box camera to your home network as long as the Wi-Fi coverage is good. With a DC extension cable, the AC outlet doesn’t need to present close to the bird feeder either. Both cables can be buried underground with outdoor grade cables. There is one more option: is the battery power. You may need to re-charge the battery constantly 4 days around. It could be a wire-free camera system with battery setup.

Audio Pickup

The audio pick up is required with the camera if you want to listen to the chirping. The bird box camera has a built-in microphone to hear the audio from the birds. You will watch the HD live video as well as hear the audio on your mobile devices.

Night Vision

There are some bird activities you may want to observe at night. Without any illumination, there is only a black image from the camera. The invisible infrared built-in birdhouse camera can light up the area without disturbing the  on the mobile phone after the infrared is turned ON.

Outdoor/Indoor bird box cameras

Most of the bird box cameras are not waterproof. It is good to have some enclosure to keep the camera out of the rain. The outdoor bird box camera is waterproof and it can be installed outside directly.

Recording – Sharing

Birds are a loving species, you may want to share the video to your friend or family. If the camera has been connected to a network, others can view the camera with its ID after they install the app on their mobile phone. If you don’t want to share the camera directly, the micro SD card recording feature allows you to record the video on the micro SD card, you can download the recording files to the mobile phone and share on other social platforms. Some of enthusiasts even manage to live broadcast the bird box camera on Youtube.

Message Notification

You may have no idea when the birds land in the feeder. The camera’s notification function can send you a message if or when there are any changes in the images. The camera will detect the change between two consequent frames and send out the alert message to the app. It is able to tell when the birds come.

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Bird Box Camera – Watching Squirrel Feeder on Mobile Phone

Place squirrel feeders can keep them away from the fruits and veggies in the yard. If you do have bird feeders setup, the Squirrel feeder can distract them form taking the seeds from the birds. Moreover, there is a lot of fun to watch the squirrels, these little creatures can be truly hilarious while they are eating food or interacting with each other.  By observing the squirrels you can even have little children learning a lot from the observation. The squirrel will move away while you approach the feeder. The Wi-Fi/IP bird box camera is one of the great tools to monitor the squirrels. The IP technology allows you to watch the squirrel remotely. You can even receive notification messages when the squirrels come back.Below are some features you may consider when choosing a bird box camera to watch the squirrels.

Tiny IP Camera

Before you are able to watch the squirrel feeder on a mobile phone, the video has to be digitized. The Wi-Fi or IP bird box camera is a tiny camera built based on IP technology. You can connect to the camera with mobile phone, tablet or PC computer to receive the live video. There is no extra add-on required. Technically the Wi-Fi bird box camera is a kind of compact computer with a video sensor to capture the video.

Adjustable Lens

The camera’s lens should be adjustable. While the camera is shooting closely, the focus becomes very sensitive. It is easy to test this optical feature with a camera on our mobile phone. You change distance a little bit, the focus will switch, the image gets blurry. You will need to adjust the lens to re-focus. That is one of the essentials with a bird box camera. You may have different distances while moving the feeder around. With the adjustable lens, the camera will always be in focus.

WiFi vs Wire Bird Box Camera

The camera has to be hooked up the home network for remote viewing the squirrel feeder. Whether to choose WiFi or wire bird box cameras depends on the situation. With a wire IP bird box camera, you should wire Ethernet cable to one of the network ports (RJ45) for both power and data. The power doesn’t need to present next to the bird feeder. You can connect the Wi-Fi bird box camera to your home network as long as the Wi-Fi coverage is good. With a DC extension cable, the AC outlet doesn’t need to present close to the bird feeder either. Both cables can be buried underground with outdoor grade cables. There is one more option: is the battery power. You may need to re-charge the battery constantly 4 days around. It could be a wire free camera system with battery setup.

Audio Pickup

The audio pick up is required with the camera if you want to listen to the audio. The bird box camera has a built-in microphone to hear the audio from the squirrels. You will be able to watch the HD live video as well as hear the audio on your mobile devices.

Night Vision

There are some activities you may want to observe at night. Without any illumination, there is only a black image from the camera. The invisible infrared built-in birdhouse camera can light up the area without disturbing the squirrels. It is 940nm invisible infrared. You will see clear image on the mobile phone after the infrared is turned ON.

Outdoor/Indoor bird box cameras

Most of the bird box cameras are not waterproof. It is good to have some enclosure to keep the camera out of the rain. The outdoor bird box camera is waterproof and it can be installed outside directly.

Recording – Sharing

Squirrels are truly hilarious, you may want to share the video to your friends or family. If the camera has been connected to a network, others can view the camera with its ID after they install the app on their mobile phone. If you don’t want to share the camera directly, the micro SD card recording feature allows you to record the video on the micro SD card, you can download the recording files to the mobile phone and share on other social platforms.

Message Notification

You may have no idea when the squirrel returns. However the camera’s notification function can send you a message while there is any change in the image. The camera will detect the change between two consequent frames and send out the alert message to the app. It is able to sense when the squirrel comes back.

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Bird Box Camera – Watching Bat House on Mobile Phone

The bat house provides roosting habitat for bats which can reduce pest and insects, like mosquitoes, moths, and beetles in your yard. Have you ever considered watching and exploring the bat’s activities inside the bat house? You can buy a thermal video camera that produces images from the heat emitted by objects (rather than light reflected off them) for less than $5,000, complete with a fully weatherproof enclosure and the ability to automatically record several nights of video on a removable memory card. However, We need to watch the bat house more efficiently, cheaply and for longer periods. The Wi-Fi/IP bird box camera is a suitable tool to observe your bat house with.

There are certian challenges to watch the bat house with a video camera. The bat house is usually flat so it is usually impossible to shoot from the top of the bat house. According to the Mark Guyton’s idea, the best position to shoot the bat house is to set up the camera on the side in order to shoot into the bat house. There’s space needed to be reserved inside the partitions, so the camera can view the bat’s activities. Besides the bat’s house design, you should consider the features of the camera as well.

Tiny IP Camera

Before you can watch the bat house on a mobile phone, the video has to be digitized. The Wi-Fi or IP bird box camera is a tiny camera built based on IP technology. You can connect to the camera with mobile phone, tablet or PC computer to receive the live video. There is no extra add-on required. Technically the Wi-Fi bird box camera is kind of a compact computer with a video sensor to capture the video. The size should be small to fit into the bat house. The bird box camera definitely could fill it.

Adjustable lens

The camera’s lens should be adjustable. While the camera is shooting closely, the focus becomes very sensitive. It is easy to test this optical feature with a camera on our mobile phone. You change distance a little bit, the focus will switch, the image gets fuzzy. You will need to adjust the lens to re-focus. That is one of the essentials with a  bird box camera. There is no way to have a pre-focus camera to match depth between the space inside the bat house.

WiFi vs Wire bird box camera

The camera has to be hooked up the home network for remote viewing the bat house. Whether to choose WiFi or wire bird box camera depends on the situation. With a wire IP bird box camera, you should wire Ethernet cable to one of the network ports (RJ45) for both power and data. The power doesn’t need to present next to the bat house. You can connect the Wi-Fi bird box camera to your home network as long as the Wi-Fi coverage is good. With a DC extension cable, the AC outlet doesn’t need to present close to the bat house either. Both cables can be buried underground with outdoor grade cables. There is one more option: is the battery power. You may need to re-charge the battery constantly 4 days around. It could be a wire-free camera system with a  battery setup.

Audio pickup

The audio pick up is required with the camera if you want to listen to the audio inside the bat house. The bird box camera has a built-in microphone to hear the audio from the bat house. You will watch the HD live video as well as the audio on your mobile devices.

Night Vision

The bat is sensitive to the light. The visible light at night is one factor that the bats don’t feel safe. However, there is only black image from the camera without light. The invisible infrared built-in birdhouse camera can light up the area without disturbing the bat. It is 940nm invisible infrared. You will see clear image on the mobile phone after the infrared is turned ON.

Outdoor/Indoor bird box cameras

Most of the bird box cameras are not waterproof. So you will need extra space to keep the camera out of the rain, like Mark Guyton’s bat house. The outdoor bird box camera is a little bigge rin size than the indoor bird box camera. You may consider the dimension while you select the outdoor bird box camera to fit into your bat house.

Recording – sharing

If the camera has been connected to a network, others can view the camera with its ID after they install the app on their mobile phone. If you don’t want to share the camera directly, the micro SD card recording feature allows you to record the video on the micro SD card, you can download the recording files to the mobile phone and share on other social platforms.

Message Notification

You may have no idea when the bats move into the house. The camera’s notification can send you a message while there is any change in the image. The camera will detect the change between two consequent frames and send out the alert message to the app. It is able to tell if or when is entering the bat house.

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Bird Box Camera – Watching Owl Box on Mobile Phone

There are roughly 250 owl species worldwide. If you happen to find cavity nesting owls in your area, build and install a nest box that can attract owls, at the same time you can install the bird box camera to watch the owl remotely. Owl are very clever, they may leave the box if they don’t feel safe enough when or if someone were to approach their nesting box. In which case you may be interested in how to choose a bird box camera to spot the owls?

Tiny IP Camera

In order to watch the owl box via mobile phone, the video has to be digitized. The Wi-Fi or IP bird box camera is a tiny camera built based on IP technology. You can connect it to the camera via mobile phone, tablet or PC computer to receive the live footage. There is no extra add-on required. Technically the Wi-Fi bird box camera is a kind of a compact computer with a video sensor to capture the footage. The size should be small to fit into the owl box. The bird box camera definitely could fill it. Usually the birdhouse is smaller than most owl boxes.

Adjustable lens

The camera’s lens should be adjustable. While the camera is shooting closely, the focus becomes very sensitive. It is easy to test this optical feature with the camera on our mobile phone. If you change the shooting distance a little bit, the focus will switch, and the image gets blurry. You will need to adjust the lens for it to re-focus. That is one of the essentials of the bird box camera. There is no way to have focus to match different depth from different birdhouse design.

WiFi vs Wire bird box camera

The camera has to be hooked up the home network for remote viewing the owl box. Whether to choose WiFi or wire bird box cameras depends on the practical situation. With a wire IP bird box camera, you should wire Ethernet cable to one of the network ports (RJ45) for both power and data. The power doesn’t need to present next to the owl box. You can connect the Wi-Fi bird box camera to your home network as long as the Wi-Fi coverage is good. With DC extension cable, the AC outlet doesn’t need to present close to the owl box either. Both cables can be buried underground with outdoor grade cables. There is one more option: is the battery power. You may need to re-charge the battery constantly 4 days around. It could be a wire-free camera system with a battery setup.

Audio pickup

The audio pick up is required with the camera if you want to listen inside the owl box. The bird box camera has a built-in microphone to hear the audio from the owl box. You will watch the HD live video as well as the audio on your mobile devices.

Night Vision

Owls are sensitive to light. The visible light at night is one key factor that results in the owl not feeling safe. However, there is only pure black image from the camera without light. The invisible infrared built-in birdhouse camera can light up the area without spooking the owl. It is 940nm invisible infrared therefore you will be able to see clear images on the mobile phone after the infrared is turned ON.


Outdoor/Indoor bird box cameras

Most of the bird box cameras are not waterproof. So it is better to install them inside the owl box, as long as you keep the camera out of the rain it will work smoothly. The outdoor bird box camera is a little bigger in size than the indoor bird box camera. You may consider the dimension while you select the outdoor bird box camera to fit into your owl box.

Recording – sharing

Owls are loving species, you may want to share the video to your friend or family. If the camera has been connected to a network, others can view the camera with its ID after they install the app on their mobile phone. If you don’t want to share the camera directly, the micro SD card recording feature allows you to record the video on the micro SD card, you can download the recording files to the mobile phone and share on other social platforms. Some enthusiasts even manage to live broadcast the bird box camera on youtube.

Message Notification

You may have no idea when the owl enters the box. However the camera’s notification can send you a message while there is any change in the image. The camera will detect the change between two consequent frames and send out the an alert message to the app. It can alert you if or when something is entering the owl box.

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Long Distance Wireless Bird Box Camera Setup

The Wi-Fi bird box camera can be hooked up to the Wi-Fi network to stream the video online. We will be able to access the video through different devices including mobile phone, tablet, PC computer or Mac. As the Wi-Fi bird box camera has a tiny case that is required to be as small as possible, the high power antenna is not able to equip the camera, thus the Wi-Fi is usually weaker than other Wi-Fi products. How can we set up the long distance wireless connection to stream the video back? We will need a wireless bridge that can send the video back at a maximum of 1 kilometer far from your bird box.

The wireless bridge usually works in pairs. One unit will be deployed next to the camera, the other unit will be set up in your house. It is better to have a clear sight between these two units. Both wireless bridges still require power. It should be easy to power up the bridge close to the house. If the power is not present at the camera, the solar panel power system is a possible solution. The total power consumption is around 350mA for one bridge plus bird box camera. The 40AH battery and 75W solar panel should be good enough to provide 24/7 continuous power.

After the wireless tunnel is formed by the other wireless bridge, we can hook up the camera to the edge bridge. In this case, we don’t need the Wi-Fi bird box camera, we choose the wire IP bird box camera. The camera is able to be connected to the edge bridge through cat5e patch cord. The video will go through the wireless tunnel to reach the other end. At the house, we will use another patch cord to connect that bridge to the main network. Basically the system setup is complete. The wireless bridge is transparent to your IP camera. As long as the bridge forms the wireless tunnel, there is no configuration needed for the bridge. The wireless bridge uses a different IP address subnet from your IP camera. Once the IP camera works with your main network, you can move the camera to the edge bridge and the whole system should work exactly the same. It is good practice to test the camera with the main network before you move it to the edge bridge in the birdhouse.

It is the primary challenge is getting the wireless tunnel between these two bridges. There is a signal indicator at the side of the bridge. The indicator will be always full at the house which is sending out the full power. The edge bridge’s indicator will show how good the connection is. You can simply adjust the angle of the bridge to see the wireless connection. Full range will be best, but two range is enough to carry video signals from the IP bird box camera.

The edge bridge has two RJ45 ports allowing it to connect two IP bird box cameras. If you have multiple birdhouse camera systems, you may need another equipment——outdoor switch to gather all the data together before sending it back to the house.

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How to Watch the Wi-Fi Bird Box Camera on Mac OS

The latest developed IP-based bird box camera can live stream the video from birdhouse to mobile devices. It is convenient to watch the birdhouse through mobile phone, tablet and PC computer. How can we view the bird box camera on the Mac OS? Viewing the bird box on the Apple Mac OS could be a little bit of a trick. We have covered all the possible solutions here from directly URL like RTSP command to more sophisticated solutions like Mac software.

Generic URL.

The most easiest way is to grab the snapshot from URL. The camera only delivers the standard resolution snapshot over the URL. It is a static image instead of the live video. What you need to do is copy the URL below and paste it to safari. Every time when you refresh the browser, it will pull up a new image from the Wi-Fi bird box camera. This is the only way to upload the image to a web page without involving 3rd party platform.

http://192.168.1.12/webcapture.jpg?command=snap&channel=1&user=admin&password= (replace the IP address and fill in the password if the camera is password protected.


VLC player

The VLC player is free open source software which allows you to view the camera on Mac. You can watch the live video directly. You can even hear the audio from the birdhouse if your camera has a built-in microphone. You can even record the live video and save as avi files to your Mac. There is functions such as digital zoom available with VLC players. The downside of the VLC player method is you can’t manipulate the camera. Only live video is available with the player. You can’t watch the video either when you are on travel with your Mac unless you have tweaked the port forwarding setting on your router. The RTSP command could be different from different suppliers. The below is the RTSP command from Green-Backyard’s WiFi birdhouse camera.

Example:

rtsp://10.6.10.6:554/user=admin&password=&channel=1&stream=0.sdp?real_stream (replace the IP address and fill in the password if the camera is password protected.)

Free VMS software

If you want to have full control with the birdhouse camera, such as watching the bird house when you are in different locations, you can’t do much better than VMS. This is the free Mac software provided by Green-Backyard. Currently we have released beta Mac OS software, you are able to test the software with your bird house camera. We can’t guarantee the software working perfectly with your Mac OS so you will have to download and install the software manually as it is not available in the Mac Store.

VMS software download link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/koac0ys1zmlc0wg/VMS_Mac_V120014.dmg

This software supports P2P connection which means you don’t need to change the settings on your router, you will be able to watch the camera remotely. If you have chosen a WiFi birdhouse camera that supports micro SD card recording, you can download and view the recording files on the Mac. Once the video is downloaded to the Mac, it can be shared with friends or family easily in 1080p high definition video quality. Below is the screenshot of the software.


SecuritySpy

The SecuritySpy is a paid software. SecuritySpy is good, reliable and works extremely well on Mac OS. It allows you to easily monitor your birdhouse camera wherever you are, from your iPhone, iPad and Apple TV. As this is the 3rd party software. You will need to make sure your birdhouse camera to be compatible with the SecuritySpy. The Onvif is the protocol which can be used to integrate the camera video with SecuritySpy.

SecuritySpy provides a 30 days free trial, so you do have enough time to test it before you make the purchase. As the Onvif protocols basically cover the video and audio, you definitely can’t access the recording files from the camera’s micro SD card by using the SecuritySpy. The biggest investment will be the Mac OS, because you will need to keep the Mac OS 24/7 running if you want the features like instant notifications of motion events. All the video will go through SecuritySpy before passing to your mobile phone or tablet.


Synology NAS station

Synology NAS is the online driver for data storage that is designed to provide a solution of file storage and sharing in your home or commercial environment. The good thing is the Synology NAS has a web-based operation system (DSM) built-in which can be accessed directly by Mac and other OS and Synology NAS has default plugins which can take in the IP based bird box camera. There are workarounds to view the camera on the Mac. Similar to Securtiyspy, you will need to integrate the bird box camera to Synology NAS station. There are two ways to connect the camera to Mac, either by using the Onvif protocols or the RTSP command. The below is the example to use the RTSP command to connect the bird box camera to Synology NAS.

Once you complete the settings, the camera will start live streaming to the NAS, and you can access the camera on your Mac though the NAS. At the same time, the video will be recorded to the hard drive inside the NAS. Just be aware that the bird box camera could take up your hard drive space very soon. One 1080p bird box camera needs 1TB for 30 days recording. The Synology NAS also forwards the live video to your mobile phone, however, I don’t recommend you to take this way, because it has very serious delays. I guess the reason is synology needs to transcode before forwarding the video. The synology is good at recording, the files are saved in mp4 format which can be shared and uploaded to different social platforms.

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Recording Bird Activities with Bird Box Camera

Watching the bird box camera on TV is a convenient way to observe the birdhouse. However, we can’t just sit in front of the TV 24/7, and wait for the interesting moments to come up. Thanks to IP technology, birdhouse watching is being moved to different devices such as smartphone, tablet, PC computer. It is easy to keep your eyes on the birdhouse remotely. The notification message is even available with the IP bird box camera. Still we may don’t have all the time to keep tracking the cameras. The recording feature is a great solution to save the video, so you will not miss any interesting moments.

The video can be saved in 24/7, but it brings up another issue, you may need to spend plenty of time to view the footage even if you use 4X speed to playback. The motion detection recording feature is needed. The motion detection allows the camera to record the video while it detects the change in the image. The detection is not that accurate, the camera checks the two consequent pictures and see whether there is any change. The vibration and flash light could trigger the alert. This still can save plenty of time. You can either make the camera record only with change or continuous recording by flag the video section in red while the motion is triggered.

There are several ways to record the video from an IP bird box camera. The most simple way is you can click the record icon on the app, the live video will be saved to the mobile app. Your app should turn on and receive the live video before you can record. This is easy but not convenient. You never know when it is the best time. The video quality depends on network transmission form. If it is the WiFi bird box camera, the video may become choppy while the WiFi signal is not strong.

The second solution is PC software. You can install the latest CMS5 and record the files to the PC computer. The latest CMS5 supports schedule and motion recording. You can make the PC only record in specific time while there is any change in the image. It saves hard drive space. Again, the video quality depends on the network connection. We would recommend you use the wire POE IP  bird box camera, which can provide a more stable network transmission.

If you have a NAS station that supports IP cameras such as Synology, that would be a good news to you. You can integrate the bird box camera to NAS station which has plenty of space for camera files recording. It may save files to the NAS station for months or even a year. The Synology NAS doesn’t support motion detection recording. You will have 24/7 continuous recording only.

In addition, the video recorder is designed to record bird box cameras. One video recorder can connect up to 4 WiFi or IP bird box cameras. You need to install an external hard drive to the recorder and the record will start recording automatically. Moreover, the video recorder has HDMI which allows to connect TV and output the live video on the TV directly. The recorder uses the mouse operated interface. It works similar to the PC computer.

Most of the cameras from Green-Backyard including WiFi and Wire IP box camera have micro SD slots that support on-board recording. The On-board recording is a cost-effective and reliable solution. The video quality doesn’t depend on the network transmission. Even if the network is cut off, the camera still will save the video to the micro SD card. Like the video recorder, the on-board micro SD card offers motion detection as well. You can set the camera only record while the change comes up to save the memory space. The camera supports the 128GB max. micro SD card.

One more thing needed to address is the space that the files will take per day. If the camera is set to 6 frames at 1080p resolution, it takes around 15GB per day. The real performance depends on the environment. In the low light condition, it takes more space because there is much noise in the image, the video compression is not so high efficient. Enabling H.265 compression can save some of the space.

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Set Up 600ft PoE Power Bird Box Camera

The Power over Ethernet (PoE) can transport both power and data to the camera. The power source doesn’t have to be present next to your birdhouse. However, most of the IP cameras only can reach 100 meters far which is the same as the PoE IP bird box camera. While the birdhouse has to be installed beyond 100 meters, it requires an extra device to extend the POE network. The PoE extender is a handy tool to deal with the situation. Each PoE extender can repeat 100 meters PoE network. If there is 200 meters between the birdhouse and your home, you should add one PoE extender in the middle, you will have another 200 meters in total. The daisy chain setup allows the PoE network to have 500 meters of maximum distance with the PoE extender.

As we mentioned, there is both data and power we have to deal with. The PoE usually employs DC48V. During the power transmission, there is always voltage drop, that is why DC48V comes in, but not DC12V for PoE. The voltage drop margin has been reserved. Technically, there is not much to deal with for voltage while extending the POE. The voltage is good enough to transmit up to 800 meters in ultra PoE power systems. The PoE extender is an inline power solution which doesn’t require external power supply. It will pull the power inline and forward the rest to the next device in the daisy chain.

Unlike the power, there is always a data booster built in the PoE extender. According IEEE802.3 specification, the network only can reach 100 meters in cat5/cat6 Ethernet cable. The data booster can repeat the network without breaking IEEE802.3 specification.

There are some practical advice for setting up a long distance PoE bird box camera system. The first thing is the waterproof especially while you plan to bury the cable under the ground. Make sure you follow the instructions to fasten the waterproof cap on both sides of the PoE extender. You should use the wrench to close the gap, so the water will not lead back to the RJ45 connector. The next thing is that you may consider adding the surge protector next to the camera. The cat5e or cat6 is the copper cable which could absorb the surge in the environment, and the surge will go to the camera. If the camera is not strong enough to take up the surge, it could be damaged. The pigtail of the camera is easy to forget. Making sure the water will not lead back to the pigtail connector is important to be quick as well.

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Battery Powered WiFi bird box camera Setup – Solar Panel

We have reviewed the battery power Wi-Fi bird box camera system in previous articles. With 20AH DC12V sealed lead Acid battery which is the most common battery, the WiFi bird box camera can continuously live stream and record up to 4 days before you have to recharge it. You still have to bring back the battery to recharge periodically. If you are looking for the solar panel to keep the system running 24/7, the below you may find your answer.

The solar panel can convert the energy from the sun to the power. It is important that the solar panel can receive sunshine. The sun will move from east to west every day so you may need to observe how good the solar panel can pick up sunshine. If there are trees or houses blocking the view, you may need to consider changing the installation place of the solar panel.

Now let’s see how to pick the solar panel for the bird box camera system. We just need to consider the cloudy days. While the sunshine is strong, the battery will be charged fast. In the previous article about the battery, we know 20AH Sealed Lead Acid batteries can supply 4 days which means the system will keep running even if there is charging (sunshine) in 4 days.

The current consumption is 0.135A of the camera. We can calculate the power demand from the solar panel. 2.43W (0.13518V) The voltage output is DC18V in the solar panel, but not DC12V. We will discuss the solar panel converter in the next article about the voltage of the solar panel. It only requires a 2.43W solar panel. Of course not.  In the cloudy days, the solar panel performance is around 10%. It will be 24.3W (2.43/0.1). Like the battery we have reserved 4 days extra. We need 3 times solar panel 72.9W (24.33). The final specification is a 20AH battery plus 75W solar panel. It should provide power for 24/7 continuous running. If you worry about the power not enough, increase the battery to 40AH which is the insurance mechanism. The system will keep running in 8 days without charging from the solar panel. Sealed Lead Acid (SLA) batteries are a low cost solution.

Now we have gone through the mathematical calculation. We still need one more component to set up the solar panel power system. As we mentioned the solar panel actually outputs DC18V. The solar panel control is the key component to protect the battery over charge, overload short circuit. We do even need the DC12V power regulator built-in, we will explain why in the solar panel controller.

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The Bird Box Camera is Offline After Rain – The Best Practical Installation

Your Wi-Fi bird box camera may become offline after a storm in summer. The Wi-Fi bird box camera is built based on IP technology. It is the small computer capturing the high definition video and streaming to the network. The Wi-Fi bird box camera or IP birdhouse camera require some protection. Imagine you place your mobile phone or iPad outdoors, you know something needs to be taken care rather than just through it outdoors.

The waterproof is the first thing to look into. Most of the birdhouse cameras are not waterproof. It is important to keep the camera out of the rain. Usually the camera is installed under the roof of the bird box. It depends on how the birdhouse is designed. The rain may still go through the gap and lead back to the body of the camera which could cause the camera to be defective. One of the typical ways to seal the gap is the 3M double-sided tape. Choose the tape that is designed for the vehicle. These tapes can still keep the stickiness in wide range temperature. The 3M double-sided tape is included in Green-Backyard Natural Cedar Birdhouse.

Not only the gap of the roof, the pigtail cable could introduce rain to the body of the camera as well if it isn’t set up properly. Place the cable lower than the camera’s installing spot. If the pigtail cable is higher than the camera, the rain could go through the pigtail cable and reach the camera.

Once we have set up the camera properly inside the birdhouse, we will look into the connector and the DC12V extension cable. The 10 meters DC12V extension cable allows you to place the power adapter far from your birdhouse. The AC outlet doesn’t have to present next to the birdhouse. While connecting the pigtail to the DC12V extension cable, maintain ‘S’shape and make the connector facing down which can keep the waterproof out of the water. Not all the DC12V extension cable is waterproof. Green-Backyard has upgraded both DC12V extension cable and Ethernet cat5e cable to outdoor grade. You can directly bury the cable underground.

As we don’t want an AC outlet present next to the birdhouse, we use the extension cable that will create another possible issue – surge. The surge that existed in the environment could be picked up by the extension cable and strike the camera. The camera has built-in surge protection, but it may not be strong enough to stand the lighting storm. The surge protector is needed sitting next to the camera. The surge protector will absorb the surges. If the protector can be grounded, it will be even better. The surge will be guided to the ground.

If the camera keeps going ‘death’after heavy rain, you probably need to double check the birdhouse and the DC12V extension cable. The technology is brought from the IP surveillance, which is designed for 24/7 running to build the camera, but it is not waterproof. If camera installation space is not an issue, such as owl box, bat house, hedgehog house, squirrel box, you may consider to use the outdoor waterproof birdhouse camera