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Wingscapes BirdCam: Durable Device That Takes High-Quality Photos

I’m ashamed to say it, but I haven’t had the opportunity to go birding the past few weeks. My schedule hasn’t been kind to my love of birds.

In fact, I was only able to revel in the world of wild birds three times those few weeks with no time for birding: During lunch, I would walk over to Central Park and observe the birds while eating my sandwich on a bench. From the 37th floor of the office overlooking the park, I could see hawks navigating the buildings. The final interaction was at Columbus Circle, where a bird had accidentally flown into one of the massive glass panes of a building. Fortunately, it was just a little stunned.

So, a few weeks ago, I made a break for it. I traveled up to New Hampshire for a temporary reprieve from the madness and to reconnect with nature.

The person I was staying with had a Birds Choice Classic Bird feeder, so I spent hours just looking at the visiting birds: nuthatches, jays, chickadees, finches and more.

After exploring outside for a little while, I realized that she had a Wingscapes birdcam focused on the bird feeder, and it was to my surprise that it hadn’t been checked in nearly two years!

In case you’re not familiar with Wingscapes, it’s a motion-sensored camera that takes a picture whenever something moves into the frame. I’m not sure how the technology works, but it seems to take a picture at the right moment—once the bird is in the middle of the frame, not just passing along the side.

The camera comes in a weather-proof box and can be affixed to a pole or the side of your house. The pictures are saved to a normal SD card or the internal memory in the camera. It was really easy to take out the 4GB SD card and pop it into my computer.

When I uploaded the images from the birdcam onto my computer, I was struck by the quality of the photos. For being something that has been outside for a few years through inclement without any attention, the images were amazing.


In the picture above, you can clearly see a Tufted Titmouse and an American Goldfinch eating from the feeder on a late fall afternoon.


Even after zooming in quite a bit and cropping the picture, you still retain most of the quality, except for a little graininess of course. Here you have a Blue Jay captured in a candid moment.


Here’s another image of a woodpecker showing the quality of the photos.


It works well in different lighting and weather conditions too, as demonstrated by this great picture of two finches on a snowy December morning.

I think these pictures could have been made significantly better by simply moving the feeder or Wingscapes camera closer to one another. More detailed and unique shots could have been captured. It would be interesting to see what kind of migrating birds stop at your feeder when you’re not around, which is what makes this birdcam so appealing. There’s also a new version of the birdcam that also has a flash.

Overall, I’m looking forward to picking one of these up when I move out of my NYC apartment to a place where I’m able to put up a bird feeder again.

Timothy Martinez Jr. is a writer and freelance journalist. His work has been published in The Times-Picayune in New Orleans, Remapping Debate in New York City and other publications. He’s been a bird lover since he was young and currently lives in New Orleans, L.A.

1 Comment

  1. Very cool camera, I agree that if you move the camera closer your friend could have gotten and can get some great pictures!

    -Sam

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