Sunday, 2 November 2014

#SafariLive begins ...

photo Rafael Garcia

Well the day has finally arrived ... LIVE safaris at Djuma and Arathusa!!! :-)

Today at 16h00 CAT [Central African Time] WE will be going out on our first LIVE drive of this series. This will be around 09h00 EST [Eastern Standard Time] ... remember that the United States moved from daylight savings time today. Expect the drive at 06h00 Pacific.

We will be driving for 3 hours per game drive and so will end at 19h00 CAT [12h00 EST and 09h00 PST].

There will also be another show each day in the African morning, which we are going to call: "the sunrise drive/safari". This LIVE broadcast will begin at 06h00 CAT and run for 3 hours till 09h00 CAT. 23h00 to 02h00 EST and 20h00 to 23h00 PST.

All safari shows will be broadcast on WildEarth [www.wildearth.tv/cam/wildearth-safaris] and on NatGeo [www.wildsafarilive.com] both the sunrise and sunset safaris.

Please remember that you can email questions through to our final control at questions@wildearth.tv we will also be monitoring #SafariLive on Twitter so if you are tweeting don't forget to use this hashtag.

Above all we need you all to appreciate that this is our first rehearsal safari and there are going to be problems, technical gremlins and a lot of learning and catching up. Please be gentle with us ...

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

LIVE safaris at Djuma & Arathusa are back!!



photo: Johan Dannhauser

WildEarth is super excited and proud to announce that LIVE safaris are back! On the 2nd November 2014, if all goes to plan, WE will begin broadcasting twice daily 3-hour safaris on the Internet. We will be traversing both Djuma and Arathusa game reserves and that means that all our favourite animal characters are back: Karula, the Nkuhuma lion pride, Shadow, Mvula and so many more.

This time we are broadcasting from 2 safari vehicles [the Jigga and now also "Wendy"] in the same show. That means that Will Fox [director] will cut between the two vehicles so that you see far more sightings and less driving around. To begin with Pieter Pretorius and Hayden Turner will be presenting from 2nd November to the 7th December. After that Marc Weiner and Scott Dyson will be joining us [8th December] and will carry us through to the 31st January 2015, when this series is scheduled to end.

In addition to broadcasting every safari LIVE on the Internet on wildearth.tv we will also be broadcasting on National Geographic's Big Cat Week website and during Big Cat Week [29th November to 7th December] we will be broadcasting our PM Safari LIVE on NG Wild and National Geographic TV channels in High Definition.
You will be able to ask questions via email and also Tweet using the #safarilive hashtag to help identify the cats we see and ask the hosts questions.

Saturday, 4 October 2014

Welcome to the Chula Vista Barn Owls


WildEarth would like welcome the 'OwlCamGuy' and his Owl Channel to our growing group of passionate live wildlife broadcasters. 

The OwlChannel is the home of a family of wild barn owls. The owl box is located on the property of a home in Chula Vista, CA, USA and is known among its followers as The Hideout. It has two cameras inside it. Two other boxes on the property, The Lookout and The Outpost, house outside cameras. Together these four camera allow viewers to follow the coming and going both inside and outside of the HideOut in great detail.


The current pair of Barn Owls, Hans and Didi, tried for the their clutch in March of 2014 but were unfortunately unsuccessful. They are now back and have been seen mating, so we're crossing our fingers for more success in the next breeding season.

The cameras can be viewed on wildearth.tv as well as the OwlChannel's own website. Checking out and liking the OwlChannel's FaceBook page is another good way to easily follow Hans and Didi's continuing adventures.

Enjoy!

--Peter


Friday, 4 April 2014

The Eastern Screech Owl nesting project


The purpose of this PixController project is to study the Eastern Screech Owl during the winter roosting and spring nesting periods. The winter roosting period is typically between October to March, and the nesting period from March to June. During the fall of 2011 PixController discovered an Eastern Screech owl roosting in one of the nest boxes they had put up. They quickly installed a webcam into the box to watch the owl. On advice from local screech owl expert: Dick Byers, they installed several more owl boxes in the same area and started a study to monitor their behavior. Although screech owls are fairly common little is known about their behavior since they are nocturnal.

During the first year of monitoring the owl boxes there was a red phase owl using the boxes which was named Hunter. In 2013 PixController expanded the study to include six owl boxes in a dry wetland area which was called: "study area 1". Study area 1 has owl boxes #1, #2, #3, #4, #5 and #6. Three further owl boxes were installed in an over grown farmland field which is called: study area 2, owl boxes: #7, #8, and #9. In study area 1 there is also an external pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) camera which we can remotely control and view all five cameras for an outside view. Study area 1 and study area 2 are about 300 yards apart.

The owl boxes in study area 1 are currently being used by a mature gray phase eastern screen owl named "Allie" and a red phase eastern screech owl in study area 2 which was named "Dakota". At this point we do not know if these owls are male or female. The ultimate goal of this project is to have one of the owl boxes used for a nest in the spring 2014 mating season.

The screech owls will use the boxes during the day to roost and leave at night to go hunting. We will try and use the external PTZ camera to locate the owl at night hunting if in the range of the owl boxes. During the day we will position the PTZ camera on the box the owl is roosting in. When the owl roosts in the morning it will sit at the opening of the owl box for 1/2 to 1 hour before going in to roost for the day. Before the owl leaves the owl box at night it will sit at the opening for 1/2 to 1 hour before leaving. The PTZ camera will give you an outside view of the owl during these times.

Each owl box camera is set up to detect motion and capture photos when triggered. These photos can be viewed in the PixController Archives Section. We also record box activity such as which boxes are roosted in, box activity, and weather data in an Excel spreadsheet. We believe this is the first time a study such as this has been done for screech owls. For more information on the camera system click here: Camera Information.

This project is fully funded by PixController Inc. and by donations from our viewers for educational purposes. If you would like to know more about the project or become involved for educational purposes please Contact PixController. They would love to hear from you!

A major part of the success of this project belongs to Dick Byers of Stahlstown, PA. Dick's intimate knowledge of the screech owls has helped attract the birds and keep them in the study area.

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

New underwater cam off Grand Cayman

WE are super privileged to have the Teens 4 Oceans (T4O) and View Into The Blue’s (VITB) underwater Grand Cayman cam on our platform. You can visit the cam directly here: beta.wildearth.tv/cam/grand-cayman-east-end

The Grand Cayman East End cam is deployed at the East End of Grand Cayman Island in the Caribbean. It is situated just inside the fringe reef, 952 meters from the dock at Ocean Frontiers Dive Resort. The webcam is solar powered and the video stream is a wireless link from a floating platform. The instrument is a HD54-PTZ-cs2 self-cleaning camera with CleanSweep™. Tours of the reef are scheduled every ten minutes. and the video stream is used for a number of different educational and research purposes. Please visit Teens4Oceans for more information.

During T4O’s most recent trip to the East End in February 2014, students had the opportunity to witness and learn about the research of two scientists who joined us for our stay on the island. Dr. Yannis Papastamatiou of the University of St. Andrews shared his stories and videos of his deep wall survey for a future study of deep water coral reef ecosystems (specifically mesophotic coral ecosystems, or MCEs, as he described in this blog post). Students also had the opportunity to learn about the patented Biorock technology developed by Dr. Tom Goreau of the Global Coral Reef Allicance directly from Dr. Goreau himself. A prototype Biorock dome structure was placed near the Cayman Cam and can be viewed on the camera’s 360-degree tour of the reef. Read more about the plans for this project in this related blog post.