Saturday 2 February 2013

Mouse recorded by Raspberry Pi Compost-cam

The compost-cam (my Raspberry Pi powered webcam in a compost heap) has confirmed there are regular mouse (or mice) visits, I've even spotted a visitor via the live webcam feed from motion.
Mouse eating old melon in our compost heap.
IR image taken with a modified XBox Live Vision webcam,
image captured with Motion running on a Raspberry Pi.

The large round thing on the right is three quarters of a melon which we didn't finish. I had carefully positioned under the camera hoping for some mouse photos like this. The small black dots are mouse droppings, you'll notice more as the time progresses.

This is using the very first IR LED Xbox camera I made, with four IR LEDs all pointing almost straight ahead. The infra-red illumination is a bit too focussed in the middle of the view, but it seems to be working OK.


I had a check online for other compost heap webcams, and found the Horsted-Keynes compost-cam - described by UK television's Channel 4 as "The most boring page on the internet!", but sadly it has been offline since 2004 when their compost heap was moved.

I'm toying with the idea of setting Motion to take timed snapshots of the compost, which could be compiled rotting compost. For this it would be nice to have colour (to see what happens to bright red tomatoes, or orange melon), so perhaps I'll swap out the IR sensitive webcam with IR LEDs for normal colour one with white light LEDs instead?


Here's a photo of the compost-cam and the Raspberry Pi trail-cam I've replaced it with:

(modified Xbox Live Vision with IR LEDs)
(Unmodified Xbox Live Vision)

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