Please do not use "post comments" to ask for camera help and advice. Use phone or Skype IM in the first instance.

Updates and posts to this web site are delayed due to ongoing problems I am having with internet access. This is because of the degradation of the existing phone line infrastructure which it is hoped will be upgraded by the end of the summer of 2017.

Saturday, 30 November 2013

TV VOTE SUCCESS FOR CALEDONIAN FOREST TRAINING PROJECT


Conservation charity Trees for Life is celebrating today following the announcement that it has won £50,000 of Lottery funding for a pioneering project to help restore Scotland’s ancient Caledonian Forest and protect its rare wildlife from extinction, while benefiting hundreds of disadvantaged people from the Inverness region.
 
The conservation charity’s plan to create a new volunteer training programme at its Dundreggan Conservation Estate near Loch Ness was

Friday, 22 November 2013

TELEVISED VOTE FOR PIONEERING CONSERVATION PROJECT


Trees for Life is urging people to help it win £50,000 of Lottery funding in a televised public vote on Thursday 28 November, to help restore Scotland’s ancient Caledonian Forest and protect its rare wildlife from extinction, while benefiting hundreds of disadvantaged people.
 
The conservation charity is a finalist in the People’s Millions – a partnership between the Big Lottery Fund and ITV, in which the public decide which local community projects will receive Lottery funding – for its plan to establish a pioneering volunteer training

Saturday, 9 November 2013

SanDisk SD 8GB Class 4 Compatibility with Ltl Acorn 6210MG

SanDisk Class 4 SDHC Cards
Before I dive into the subject of this post I would like to apologise for my lack of activity recently. October did its best to turn into the month from hell, in part because of a family bereavement and I just couldn't keep up to date; so I'm now behind with email requests and tech support. I am however starting to catch up again and if you are waiting for me to contact you, please be patient and I will do so a.s.a.p.

Early in the month I was testing a large batch of 6210MGXs for cellular function. I was about a third of my way through when I tested a camera that would not send. Rather than analyse it straight away I put it to one side and continued with the remainder only to find that all of them were manifesting the same problem.

On deeper inspection I found that none of the 'faulty' cameras was saving a compressed image to the MMS folder although they were taking and saving the full-sized image correctly. This explained why they weren't transmitting an image, but why weren't they saving to the MMS folder? All the cameras were from the

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Double boost for conservation charity offers hope for Caledonian Forest


Alan Watson Featherstone (centre) with Stuart Housden, Director,
 RSPB Scotland (left), and Richard Lochhead MSP, Cabinet Secretary
 for Rural Affairs and the Environment (right) after his receipt of the
'Outstanding Contribution to Nature' Award at the RSPB
Nature of Scotland Awards in Edinburgh on 30th October
Trees for Life received a double boost on Wednesday 30 October, when the conservation charity was announced as a finalist for the People’s Millions televised vote to win up to £50,000 of Lottery funding, and its founder won the Outstanding Contribution to Nature category at the RSPB’s Nature of Scotland Awards 2013.

The People’s Millions is a partnership between the Big Lottery Fund and ITV, in which the public decide which local community projects will each receive up to £50,000 of Lottery funding.

Trees for Life has been chosen as a finalist for its plan to establish its acclaimed Dundreggan Conservation Estate – a 10,000-acre forest regeneration site and biodiversity hotspot to the west of Loch Ness – as a leading conservation volunteer training centre. 

The public vote will take place by phone all day on 27 November, and STV North will broadcast a televised feature that evening.

Trees for Life’s project aims to specifically benefit people from diverse backgrounds – including 

Sunday, 29 September 2013

Ltl Acorn 6210MG Cellular Upgrade Performance and Availability


Ltl Acorn 6210MGX 940nm
Please note that the X suffix is used
by me to denote a camera with an
external antenna.
It is not an official Acorn mark.
I am sorry I have taken so long to report on the 6210MG with the upgraded SMS Remote Control but I have done a lot of testing over the last month or so and although the camera is now stable when connecting, the SMS remote control function still doesn't appear to work reliably in all circumstances (see below).

Network Connection Stability
Tests with twelve cameras show that the camera now connects to the network reliably and in all my tests I have found the connection stable with no instances of repeat/continuous triggering.

SMS Remote Control
In 10 attempts the camera returned 2 images and I have not been able to change any menu settings remotely even though the camera received the text message. 

Others have reported to me that the function has worked more reliably for them and bearing in mind that all my testing is carried out on a two to three bar signal in a marginal coverage area where a signal is only possible using an 11dBi Yagi Antenna, I suspect my circumstances may have something to do with my poor results.

I will continue testing the SMS Remote Control Function and report again at a later date. I would be pleased to receive test reports from other users.

Transmission delay when using an Interval setting between

Monday, 23 September 2013

Scottish Wildcat Breeding Sanctuary on the West Coast Island of Carna



PL_NoScratches

The Aspinall Foundation Sets Up Island Sanctuary To Prevent Imminent Extinction Of The Scottish Wildcat
      
The Aspinall Foundation (TAF) today announces a unique initiative to save the Scottish wildcat which has become one of the most critically endangered species in the world due to mass

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Scots pine National Tree for Scotland call gathers momentum

Mature Scots Pine - RB
Glen Affric NNR
As Scotland’s Minister for Environment and Climate Change, Paul Wheelhouse, today formally launches a consultation on whether Scotland should have a National Tree, conservation charity Trees for Life welcomes growing calls for the Scottish Government and Parliament to establish a National Tree of Scotland, and to adopt the Scots pine for this.
 
The consultation on Scotland’s National Tree, requested by the Scottish Government, was launched by Forestry Commission Scotland in Edinburgh on the 3rd September 2013. ( Sorry I'm a bit late posting this. RB )
 
Alan Watson Featherstone, Trees for Life’s Executive Director, said: “The growing campaign for the Scots pine to be proclaimed Scotland’s National Tree is inspiring. The Scots pine is one of the world’s most beautiful trees, a powerful symbol of Scotland and a keystone species of the Caledonian Forest, which in turn is one of the country’s greatest national treasures.
 
“Declaring this remarkable and important species as our national tree in 2013, the year of Natural Scotland, would send a much-

First east Scotland sighting of west coast killer whales

The male Orca known as 'John Coe'
Nienke Van Geel, HWDT
There has been a confirmed sighting of the West Coast Community of killer whales off Peterhead – the first time members of this small and highly unique population have been reported off Scotland’s east coast.
Video footage of the sighting, by Peterhead man Ian Nash on 20 August, clearly shows a male whale known as ‘John Coe’ – identified by a very distinctive notch in his dorsal fin – along with another male and at least one female.
HWDT has been monitoring the movements of this group since the early 1990s, with sightings recorded mainly in the Hebrides as well as off Ireland and Wales. Following this week’s sighting

Thursday, 22 August 2013

New Trees for Life conservation scheme in Inverness region


New conservation scheme to offer health and training opportunities in Inverness region
A new programme of special Conservation Days designed to benefit disadvantaged people in the Inverness region is being launched by conservation charity Trees for Life thanks to funding from the People’s Postcode Trust.

The new initiative will provide an opportunity for people completely new to conservation volunteering to learn about Scotland’s Caledonian Forest and its rare species, and to take part in rewarding and effective conservation action in their local area.

Volunteers taking part will be able to enjoy the health and wellbeing benefits of moderate regular

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Ltl Acorn 6210MC Tested by Rhino and Elephant in South Africa

Fig 1:   Rhino at water hole

Martin supplied this 6210MC to a customer who has a holiday property available to let on thNatal South Coast, South Africa and they took this camera on one of their trips earlier this year.

During their stay they visited the greater Kruger National Park area and received special permission to place this camera at a waterhole.

As you can see from the images and video, there was a fair amount of activity and the local Rhinos and Elephant were quite interested in the alien object that had suddenly appeared.

I'm convinced that the crash at the end of the first

Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Ltl Acorn 6210MGX Cellular Camera Function Tests

Fig 1:   Cellular camera test rig measuring the power output
from the GPRS module, the current drawn by the camera and
timing of the triggering and transmission event.
I have recently been assembling a test setup ( see figure 1 ) in preparation for testing the updated Acorn 6210MGX and then doing comparison tests with the ScoutGuard SG550M-8M and SG880MK-8M models.

I received the 6210 last Tuesday and have been working with it all week. This camera is the updated unit using the SIM900 GPRS module which has previously had connection and self triggering issues.

So far this test camera has had no problems other than not having functioning SMS remote control; and today I received word from Acorn that they have got the remote control working and cameras are now  available with this function.

I will be testing the remote control function as soon as possible but meanwhile I will continue putting this camera through the grinder to see if I can

Thursday, 18 July 2013

Trees for Life Newsletter - Summer Edition 2013

Trees for Life on FacebookTrees for Life on TwitterTrees for Life on Youtube

Summer Newsletter from Trees for Life

I'm delighted to send you our summer edition of Caledonia Wild! and to let you know about our beautiful new plant-a-tree gift certificates and greetings cards. I would also like to ask for your support with our latest appeal - the expansion of our tree nursery.


Dundreggan Tree Nursery Appeal
We have an exciting opportunity to increase the scale and range of the production at our

Saturday, 13 July 2013

DIY Voltmeter for checking SLA Batteries on location

SLA Battery, Power Lead and Voltmeter
Fig 1:  SLA Battery, Power Lead and Voltmeter.
If you are using a Sealed Lead Acid (SLA) battery as a power source for your trail camera this DIY Meter is an easy way to check the battery voltage on site.

SLA batteries are best float charged while they are working as in a vehicle system where the alternator is continuously charging the vehicle battery when the engine is running. If the battery is used for long  periods without charging it is important that it does not drop much below about 50% (6.03 volts) (see the chart below) of its charge state otherwise the battery may be permanently damaged.

This voltmeter provides an easy means for measuring the voltage when visiting cameras in the field.

Figure 4 shows the back of the meter inside the box and to the left is the power socket. The meter is powered by the battery under test so there are just the

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Ltl Acorn 6210MG Cellular Camera update and tests

Ltl Acorn 6210MGX hooked up to a
Cornet ED85EX
for measuring power output and monitoring
network connection attempts.
I expected to be writing this post in mid June but as always things are taking a lot longer than I would have hoped.

A month ago when I last wrote about Acorn's progress to correct network connection problems and repeat triggering, I made the decision to wait until Acorn had got the SMS remote control working before asking for a test camera.

I am beginning to regret that decision because I still have no news about the SMS and have given up on it for the time being. I have now asked for the test camera and hope that I will receive a fully up to date camera (without working SMS remote control) sometime this month.

Meanwhile I am creating a setup to make it easier to carry out tests on trail cameras (cellular and noncellular) generally. Functions that will be possible to test using this rig will include battery power consumption, trigger reaction times, RF power output, network connections, transmission sequences and frequency stability.

At the moment I am validating each part of the setup and when I

Friday, 28 June 2013

Ltl Acorn 5210 "Please re-upgrade" message problem


5210 Please re-upgrade message

If an Acorn 5210 camera is upgraded with the wrong firmware you will get the screen message shown on the left, asking you to re-upgrade. 

Post Update 04.10.13:
I've now discovered that there is a firmware update (v3.09A and v3.09M) for the 5210A and the 5210MG which cures the "Please re-upgrade" problem and also appears to enable the 5210 cameras to work with a 32GB SD card.
I need to verify this.

I have copies of this firmware but I'm not making it available to download because some users seem compelled to use the latest firmware for any or no reason at all, which can cause problems.

If you think you have a need for this firmware version please contact me and you must provide the camera model, serial number and existing firmware version. Once I've established if you really need it I will send you a copy.

It is important to note that the latest firmware does not provide additional menu functions but is released to cure problems and if you don't have the problem you won't gain anything and may possibly run into compatibility issue; so you use the firmware at your own risk.

Post Update 15.07.13:
Trying to use a 32GB card will also cause this message although the camera may appear OK when the card is first inserted.

Loading the right firmware for the camera model or inserting an SD card size no larger than 16GB will correct this and the camera will then work normally.

Recently a number of users have contacted me
to say that after a period of normal operation the camera is showing this message when no attempt has been made to update the camera's firmware.

Users are also saying that when they attempt to load the correct firmware the screen is still showing the same message.

I have made Acorn aware of the issue and so far they are insisting that it's caused by users attempting to load the wrong firmware.  See post update 04.10.13 above.

If you have the same problem try the following:

Do not use a 32GB SDHC card in the 5210.

1) Remove the camera backpack.

2) Remove the batteries and SD card and leave the camera without power for at least 24 hours.

3) Download the correct copy of V3.06 (V3.06A for the 5210A and V3.06M for the 5210M) firmware from my download page and save file FW5210A.bin onto the root of the SD card.

4) After 24 hours reload the camera batteries but do not switch to ON

5) Insert the SD card then hold down the OK button while you switch the camera to TEST. Keep the OK button pressed until you see a screen message confirming the update.

6) If none of the above cures the problem check for SDHC card compatibility by trying a Sandisk 4GB SDHC card.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Dundreggan Biodiversity Discovery Day

Trees for Life on FacebookTrees for Life on TwitterTrees for Life on Youtube


Dundreggan Biodiversity Discovery Day

Sunday 14th July 2013


Dear friend,
I am delighted to invite you to Trees for Life’s Biodiversity Day at Dundreggan, near Loch Ness. 2013 marks the fifth anniversary of our purchase of Dundreggan, and to

Saturday, 1 June 2013

6210 Upgrade News and new Model 5310 announcement

Ltl Acorn 6210MGX 940nm
In this post:
6210MG Upgrade news
New Model 5310 Wide Angle Camera

I had originally intended to write this post two weeks ago but got tied up with testing a camera for a commercial application which swallowed up a whole week. Afterwards I was away for a week and simply didn't have time to gather and collate all the information.

This last week I have been playing catch up with emails, forum posts and checking my own cameras. I think I am just about up to date now and my apologies to anyone I have kept waiting.

6210MG Upgrade news

At the end of last week I received more information from Acorn regarding their progress with the update of the 6210MG and their battle to get the SMS Remote Control function working.

1. GPRS function perfected (SIM900 module) and now supports SSL;

2. Current cameras do not support 3G, which is still in R&D stage;

3. The interference problem which I wrote about here is corrected;

4. The "SMS remote control" function is now working OK but is in turn causing an interference problem with the

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Climate changes shift wintering ranges of waterbirds

Tufted Duck - Photo: Nigel Picknell
Migratory waterbirds have shifted their wintering areas north-eastwards due to climate change in Europe, according to a group of scientists including Richard Hearn of the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust (WWT).

Their new study published in Global Change Biology found a strong link between changes in the numbers of goldeneyes, tufted ducks and goosanders wintering across northern Europe and changes in temperature in early winter.

In Finland and Sweden, the mid-winter numbers of these three species are more than 130,000 individuals higher than three decades ago. Correspondingly, on

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Ltl Acorn 5210 and 6210 Close Focus Adjustments

Fig 1:   Lens assembly sitting over the image
sensor on the main camera board.
Following on from last month's posts about close focusing, the following shows how to make the adjustments to the lens to achieve various ranges of closer focus with the Ltl Acorn 5210 and 6210 cameras.

Please be aware that if you mark or damage the camera when carrying out the following procedure it may affect or negate your right to claim under warranty; so you do this at your own risk.

To access the lens assembly you will need to remove the six screws from the back of the camera. This will release the camera front which can then be lifted away to expose the lens and IR filter assemblies.

Warning: There is a small sealing washer located internally in the pillar at the back of each case screw. They may become dislodged when the camera case front is removed. Do not lose them and make certain they are relocated before the case front is refitted otherwise water may gain entry past the case screws.

The IR filter assembly is actuated by a servo and can be manually moved back and forth across the lense to position it out of the way; but be careful not to knock or damage it while using the pliers to shift the lens.

Both camera models are basically the same except for the focal length of the lens. The 5210 models

Friday, 19 April 2013

Acorn 6210MG/5210MG Wireless Camera Instability - Continuous Triggering

Fig 1:  A lot of nothing!
There have been a lot of theories floated about recently regarding the problems with Acorn wireless cameras released since last December with the new SIM900 GPRS Module.

The new GPRS module is supposed to have a higher output than the old M10 and although I don't have the means to measure this accurately I'm fairly certain I've worked out what's happening. When the camera is triggered and tries to send an image (doesn't matter if it's MMS or SMTP) the RF output from the wireless module is causing interference with the camera PCB and upsetting its functions. 


Continuous or self triggering:


The amount and type of interference varies from camera to camera.  In particular the interference will cause self triggering in both MMS and SMTP  modes, but as I said before. not in all cameras.


Continuous or self triggering is the most annoying and undesirable of the problems caused by this interference but remove the SIM card and the camera behaves normally.


I had tested several of these cameras and was not getting any self triggering. In fact they were working completely OK sending via SMTP during bench tests and I couldn't understand why so many users were reporting this problem. Then I realised

Pioneering marine research surveys in Hebrides announced

Bottlenose Dolphin

The Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust (HWDT) has announced details of its 2013 surveys, in which volunteers and marine scientists will carry out pioneering research into the lives of whales, dolphins and porpoises off Scotland’s west coast.

The surveys – carried out from the charity’s research yacht Silurian between May and September – will gather data on the numbers and behaviour of whales, dolphins and

Thursday, 18 April 2013

Acorn and Bushnell Trail Camera Night Time Infrared Lighting Comparisons

Fig 1:   Bushnell - High IR Light setting
It's always interesting and useful to make comparisons between different camera brands and models, particularly if you're looking for the right camera for a specific purpose.

All makes and models have their pros and cons and none more so than when it comes to IR night illumination.

Pete from Crowle in Lincolnshire kindly sent these comparisons between the Bushnell 119477 and the Ltl Acorn 6210MC.

These images clearly illustrate the difference in light output between the 28 LED Array of the Acorn and the 40 LED Array of the Bushnell which is

Friday, 12 April 2013

Norwegian animal rights activists take Norway's wolf issue to Strasbourg


Image source
NOAH - For Animal Rights has this week sent a complaint to the secretariat of the Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats - also called the Bern convention, regarding Norway's management of wolves. The purpose is to defend the animals' right to live within Norwegian borders.

The consequence of the current management is that the wolves in Norway are unable to get out of the critical situation in which they now are. The policy is clearly not made to protect but to minimize the number of individuals of a critically threatened species.

Only in the last few weeks have we seen new

Thursday, 11 April 2013

Pine Marten taken with an Ltl Acorn 5210A using Infrared light


Pine Marten taken with an Ltl Acorn 5210A Trail Camera using Infrared light.
This image takes current pride of place in my close-up test results.
The Marten's nose is about 35cm from the lens and the original image has been 
cropped at the sides but not top and bottom.
The image is full size within the crop and has not had any noise filtering or sharpening.
You can download the image to enlarge to full size but please remember that the image is my copyright and can only be reused with my permission.

Close Focusing with the Acorn 6210MC Trail Camera

Fig 1:   Feeder test for the 6210MC
The apple is 1 metre from the camera lense

This third post about close focus adjustment of Ltl Acorn Trail Cameras shows the bench test results for a 6210MC set to focus down to 50cm.

Compare the test cards on this page with those of the 5210A set to focus down to 20cm in
Close Focusing with the Acorn 5210A Trail Camera figures 2 through 8.

Compare figure 1 (left) with the cropped images in
Garden Birds Close up with Ltl Acorn 5210A and 6210MC  figures 2 through 7.

All the images in this post are full size (2560 x 1920

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Garden Birds Close up with Ltl Acorn 5210A and 6210MC

Fig 1:  Blue Tit - 5210 at 45cm - 640 x 480 pixels crop from 2560 x 1920
Following on from my last post these are a few full size crops from the original images taken during the first close up tests.
Compare figure 1 top (crop) with figure 1 (full size image) in my last post.

All the original images are 5MP 2560 x 1920 pixels and the crop is 640 x 480 pixels.

Click on an image to view a slideshow.

Close Focusing with the Acorn 5210A Trail Camera

Fig 1:  Great Tit and Blue Tit trying out the feeder I'm 
using for the close focus tests with the Acorn 5210A
Click image to view full size
There have been a number of close focus experiments with trail cameras recently carried out by users of these cameras.

Adrian Jevons using an Acorn 6210 http://ourwildlifegarden.weebly.com/

Kate MacRae using Bushnells http://wildlifekate.wordpress.com/category/close-up-kit/

Both have achieved good results applying external close up lenses of various diopters.

Kate has produced her own piece of

Monday, 8 April 2013

Iconic and rare Highland birds in spotlight for new Conservation Week

Roy Dennis with Osprey

Conservation charity Trees for Life is running a new ‘Iconic Birds of the Highlands’ Conservation Week from 25 May to 1 June 2013 – offering people the chance to see and learn about the area’s magnificent and rare bird species, and to take part in hands-on habitat restoration work.

Highlights include a day trip to the Isle of Skye to see white-tailed eagles, the UK’s largest bird of prey, and to discover more about the programme that has successfully reintroduced these stunning birds to Scotland’s

Friday, 5 April 2013

Sponsor an Acre at Dundreggan to restore wild forest in the Scottish Highlands.



Trees for Life on FacebookTrees for Life on TwitterTrees for Life on Youtube

Dundreggan is a very special place, with wildflower meadows and aspen woods

along the River Moriston, rising through ancient Caledonian pinewoods
to the mires, lochans and heathlands on the higher mountain slopes.

With your donation of £5 per month, you can

Buckingham Palace reception for Trees for Life celebrates Jubilee Wood

Right to left at Buckingham Palace
Executive Director Alan Watson Featherstone;
 Trees for Life patron Gordon Buchanan,
Rosalind Grant-Robertson, who generously supported
Trees for Life’s purchase of Dundreggan;
Steve Morris, Operations Manager for Dundreggan

Trees for Life’s creation of a Diamond Wood in Inverness-shire to celebrate The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012 has been recognised at a Buckingham Palace reception this week (27 March), hosted by HRH The Princess Royal.
 
The event recognised the creation of 60 new Diamond Woods across the UK, each at least 60 acres in size, to symbolise the Queen’s 60-year reign. As part of this tree planting campaign, Trees for Life planted a new 60-acre Jubilee woodland of native trees at its Dundreggan Estate, to the west of Loch Ness in Glen Moriston.
 
Two million trees have been planted across Scotland in a range of locations during this project, which was organised by The Woodland Trust.

Thursday, 21 March 2013

International Day of Forests


Call for renaissance of Scotland’s forests
 
Conservation charity Trees for Life has welcomed the first United Nations International Day of Forests today (21 March), with a call for more people to get involved in helping to create a renaissance for Scotland’s beleaguered forests.
 
The UN General Assembly has proclaimed 21 March to be the International Day of Forests – a day to celebrate and raise awareness of the

Monday, 18 March 2013

Wireless Connections - Acorn 5210MG and 6210MG - MMS Sending

Fig 1:  11db Yagi Anttenae
In this post:
Using a Yagi Antenna.
RF Propagation at GSM Frequencies.
MMS Problems with the Acorn 5210MG and 6210MG.


Using a Yagi Antenna

At my indoor location a connection to the local cell tower is mostly non-existent and to enable bench testing I have recently set up two 11db gain Yagi Antenna.

The reason for two antenna is to enable simultaneous up and down links without insertion loss from the use of a splitter/combiner.

These antennae are the same as the one on my sales page and are working well, providing a steady 2 to 3 out of 5 bars on the Acorn wireless cameras. Since I installed them I've been able to carry out tests with a consistent almost 100% sending performance sending

Animal Cruelty - The Terrible Price of Fur Clothing

Racoon Dog
Often skinned alive to provide vanity clothing.
The issue isn't so much that it's fur but how it's obtained. Most seems to come from China and very often from Racoon Dogs that have been skinned alive. Can you imagine the suffering of these animals and all for peoples vanity. 

This has got to be the most repulsive practice perpetrated by humans and people still keep buying fur products.
Even fur products labelled as Faux Fur have been found to be real fur so some traders at all levels are complicit in this disgusting and

Sunday, 17 March 2013

Ltl Acorn Trail Camera Technical Support and Repairs


First of all I would like to apologise to anyone who hasn't received an answer to their email this last week, and promise that I will get back to you over the next few days.

I've recently become overwhelmed with support requests and found it impossible to keep up to date. As a result I'm afraid I've been forced to make decisions about the level of free support that I am able to provide.

I've been so busy sorting out users individual problems that I haven't had enough time to do other work and make posts, or keep the web site updated. As a result I will in future, only be able to offer free technical support to customers of this web site and Wildlife & Countryside Services.

I suppose I have become a victim of my own success and I regret that I'm having to make these restrictions; but from now on I will only be providing free help and technical support within the camera's warranty period to our own customers.

If you have purchased a camera elsewhere you can

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Eight UK biodiversity firsts discovered in ‘lost world’ near Loch Ness

Aphids (Cinara_smolandiae) on Juniper

Biting midge in the genus Atrichopogon
feeding on a cranefly (Helius longirostris)
Pictured on Eared Willow
Eight UK biodiversity firsts discovered in ‘lost world’ near Loch Ness
Biodiversity surveys in 2012 at Trees for Life’s Dundreggan Estate near Loch Ness revealed eight new species never recorded before in the United Kingdom, and brought the total number of species recorded on the forest restoration site to over 2,800, it was announced today.

New species for the UK discovered at the 10,000-acre site in Glen Moriston, Inverness-shire are a sawfly (Nematus pravus), an aphid (Cinara smolandiae), two species of aphid parasitoids (Ephedrus helleni, Praon cavariellae), three species of fungus gnats (Brevicornu parafennicum, Mycomya disa, Sceptonia longisetosa), and a species of mite (Ceratozetella thienemanni).

Another key discovery, made by Trees for Life’s Executive Director Alan Watson Featherstone, included the first record in Europe of a biting midge in the genus Atrichopogon feeding on a cranefly (Helius longirostris). Although known in the tropics, this behaviour has never been observed in Europe before.

Alan Watson Featherstone said: “The surprisingly rich variety of life at Dundreggan highlights the vital importance of conservation work, and of protecting

Thursday, 28 February 2013

GPRS Wireless Module Problem in Acorn Series 2 Wireless Cameras

Post Updated: 06.03.2013

Please note that the information in this post only relates to wireless cameras produced from December 2012 to February 2013.
Fig 1: 6210 Wireless PCB and SIM 900 Wireless IC

Fig 2: 5210 Wireless PCB and M10 Wireless IC
Early in February 2013 I received news from Acorn that they were having problems with the production of their wireless cameras.

I've delayed posting about this until now because I wasn't sure of enough detail to make an informed comment

It was obvious that something wasn't right because of recent problems with display and connectivity with the 6210MG which started last December. I've now got more information from Acorn and basically the situation is as follows.

I'm informed that the manufacturers of the original M10 GSM/GPRS Wireless Module (produced by a Shanghai local company) discontinued the product and forced Acorn to look for an alternative.

The new module is the SIM 900 which is produced by a big Shanghai international company; and is shown on the 6210 wireless

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Help to save Sweden's Wolves


I have no way of quickly validating this story but if it's accurate then the Swedish Government needs to re-consider the way they are dealing with any conflict issues between wolves and reindeer.

Please go to the petition site to register your support for protection of this wolf.

Sponsored on the Care2 Petition site 
by: Mats Carnmarker

Susi, the female wolf, is extremely important to the whole of Sweden's wolf population. She has genes that are "fresh" and different from the rest of the populations which is inbreed. She needs to be

Monday, 18 February 2013

CONSERVATON VOLUNTEERING OPPORTUNITIES IN HIGHLANDS

Volunteer planting Juniper

Conservation charity Trees for Life has announced details of its Conservation Weeks for 2013, the Year of Natural Scotland – offering people the opportunity to make a positive difference to the environment whilst experiencing an unforgettable visit to the Scottish Highlands.
 
Alan Watson Featherstone, Trees for Life’s Executive Director, said: “The Year of Natural Scotland is the perfect time to enjoy Nature and wild Scotland, and to take action to restore the Caledonian Forest and its unique wildlife. Our 2013 Conservation Weeks offer an inspiring hands on conservation experience in breathtaking Highlands scenery of mountains, forest and rivers.”
 
Trees for Life is restoring the Caledonian Forest to a spectacular wilderness region of 1,000 square miles in the Highlands to the west of Loch Ness and Inverness.
 
The award-winning weeks will allow people from all sorts of backgrounds and experience to directly help in the restoration of Scotland’s equivalent of a rainforest. Trees for Life is running Conservation Weeks at

Monday, 4 February 2013

MORAY DISTILLERIES TAKE ACTION TO RESTORE CALEDONIAN FOREST

Representatives from Diageo’s Speyside East distilleries
receive life membership certificates
from Alan Watson Featherstone (far right)
of Trees for Life, at Drummuir Castle.

Staff from six Moray distilleries are helping to bring Scotland’s ancient Caledonian Forest back from the brink by taking up life memberships of conservation charity Trees for Life.
Representatives from the Speyside East distilleries, run by leading drinks company Diageo, recently received life membership certificates from Trees for Life’s Executive Director Alan Watson Featherstone at a special event at Drummuir Castle, Diageo’s home of Scotch Whisky on Speyside.
Matthew Desmond, who works at Mortlach Distillery near Dufftown, developed the scheme in order to promote the importance of a healthy

Friday, 1 February 2013

The world beneath our feet

So what did I do this morning. Had my breakfast, checked my email and got so captivated by this film of insect life that now it's nearly afternoon. It made a pleasant change from all the usual stuff.

Well worth watching but make a drink first.



Thanks to Nick Mann at Habitat Aid for finding this video

Thursday, 24 January 2013

WWT WELCOMES LEAD POISON REVIEW





WWT has welcomed the Government’s announcement to review the progress of the Lead Ammunition Group, of which WWT is a member.

The Group was set up in 2010 in response to urgent concerns about the toxic effects of ammunition

Ltl Acorn 6210 Wireless Module - IMEI Code

Fig 1:  LTL-6210-MMS-05
Quad-band GSM/GPRS
A user in Turkey recently asked if I knew how to find the International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) number for the wireless module fitted to the Acorn 6210MG.

I had to admit that I had no idea so I emailed the factory and at the same time dismantled a 6210 to find it for myself. I've had no reply from Acorn but I discovered the number on the white label on the back of the wireless module (see figure 1) below the first bar code.

In Turkey, and probably in other countries, private users are obliged to register the IMEI number of any GSM device brought into that country. I'm hoping there is a way of getting the information from the camera without going to the extreme of taking it apart; because this presents a real problem for users, either for the camera's warranty or getting the SIM blocked by the MPNO, which it is legally obliged to do. 

I hope Acorn will tell me if there is some way of interrogating the module, possibly by SMS, to get the IMEI number. When I have more information I will update this post.

Figure 1 shows the Acorn printed circuit board (PCB) number LTL-6210-MMS-05 which is physically located between the camera's main PCB and the rear battery compartment.

Click on the image in figure 1 to get a larger view of the module and printed
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
This web site is about the wildlife, particularly the mammals, of the Glen Affric National Nature Reserve area in the north west Highlands of Scotland, UK; and the equipment I use to search for them, which is chiefly trail cameras.

I provide a technical support and parts service for the Ltl Acorn range of cameras and the income from this provides for the upkeep of this site and the purchase of cameras for my own surveying.

I hope you find the site useful and informative; and please contact me if you have any questions that I haven't already covered.