Thursday, May 30, 2013

Flight Cam PTZ Installation

Today was a good day.  Hein woke up and after breakfast said "It would be great if Ace called today and could put the ends on the cables at 9 AM."  A few minutes later Mike from Ace Communications called and said he wanted to come out and put the ends on the CAT 5 wires!  Hein said he's put on his pants and be ready by the time he got here.

Ace donated alllll the wiring we've used for the cams in the Great Horned Owl breeding project.  Hein runs the wire, then someone from Ace comes out to put the ends on, since that job requires tools and some skill.

Right after Hein got off the phone with Mike I called Alan Stankevitz, our tech guru who installs all of the technology for the project.  He was willing and able to come over shortly after Mike was done, so we were in business for installing the new pan/tilt/zoom (PTZ) cam for the flight pen, and for hooking up the new wire for the cam who's wire got chopped when the PTZ wires were run.

When Alan arrived he went to work doing some soldering to put the correct jack on the microphone.

Then we unpacked what looks like R2D2 here--the PTZ cam.  We took out the packing materials and put in the moisture absorbing strips.

We freaked out the owls by shooing them into the breeding pen and shutting the door to the flight pen.  Alan then put a new end on the extension cord that Hein had strung into the flight pen for the PTZ cam.

Then I went up into the ceiling of the pen after Hein removed a few boards and we bolted the cam into place.

Then it was Alan's turn on the ladder to work his magic with wires and install the box for all of the connections.  I went inside to verify that things worked.  We had video, but no audio.  Then Alan remembered we needed a stereo jack instead of a mono jack for the mike.  Thankfully we had a stereo jack so he just did a little more cutting and soldering and we were in business.  Woo-hoo!

Hein spent the rest of the day finishing up the rat-proofing so we can release live prey into the flight pen.  He removed the ladder to the hatch door and installed a fold up ladder that the rodents can't reach but us humans can.  Then he put metal over the entry door, the last bit of metal needed to keep mice and rats from climbing up and out.

So enjoy the new views of the flight pen, and seeing the owls up close!

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