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11-20-2020, 12:05 PM   #1
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Help for a young badger photographer ...

I've received an email from a friend's young son that asks :

As the longer nights grow, it becomes incredibly difficult to photograph badgers without the aid of flash.

Very much to my advantage, I have a night vision monocle at hand, and am eager to attach it to my lens.

Looking over the internet, I have failed to find a reliable enough product that will adapt to a 67mm lens (my camera) and the monocle (about 30mm).

I was wondering of you could point me in the direction of a lens monocle adaptor, that fills in the categories above.


Unless, I've interpreted it wrongly he wants to attach his monocle to the front of his lens. OK, quality will not be especially, great, but he's an intrepid type that just want to get something to fulfill his wildlife photography interest at night. Perhaps I could find a step-down ring for 67 to 30 (a big jump) or maybe the ring would have to strep down in stages. As I write this I'm beginning to doubt it would ever focus properly. Anyway, we're in Covid lockdown in the UK and helping him has to be remote. Anyone want to take a stab at helping him? I believe he has some type of bridge camera, maybe Canon.

11-20-2020, 12:42 PM - 1 Like   #2
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More detail on his night vision monocular would be helpful. There are adapters like this one that will allow you to marry the camera to the eyepiece of, for example, a spotting scope... but I'm wondering if, as a young lad, he owns a smartphone? If so, he might be better using that and adapter such as this...

EDIT: My apologies, I see he may be using a bridge camera... in which case, I still think his phone and the relevant adapter rig might be a better choice

Last edited by BigMackCam; 11-20-2020 at 12:56 PM.
11-20-2020, 12:49 PM - 1 Like   #3
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Stepdown rings may physically do the job but stepping down from 67mm to 30mm is going to give him one hell of a vignette, that is assuming his bridge camera can focus on the monocle view screen. I guess, since he is intrepid, cheap stepdown rings and gaffer tape may be worth trying but he would have to make sure there was no light ingress. No doubt canon being canon, they make a night vision attachment and charge the earth for it . Good luck
11-20-2020, 02:36 PM - 3 Likes   #4
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TBH I think this might turn out to be a fruitless mission.

Assuming the young bloke knows roughly where the badgers are, I would suggest setting up a remote motion-activated camera with night vision. To monitor animal movements we got a couple of cheap trail cameras (Campark T80 and T85). They run on AA batteries and use an infrared beam at night. They have excellent weather seals. They can do video and stills. The results are not publication material but they are fun - it's amazing what you see. Here's a still of a wombat.


There are plenty of these around. Look for ones with Passive Infrared (PIR) sensors. You can get them with wifi or bluetooth. Some take a SIM card for internet uploads.

Another approach would be to try using the existing camera with red LED lights for illumination. They shouldn't disturb the badgers' night vision. This could be achieved with a torch or spotlight or by positioning a red LED panel near the sett or the pathway with some way to turn it on remotely.

11-20-2020, 05:52 PM - 1 Like   #5
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Don't see how this could be done, but don't want to discourage the young lad either.
11-20-2020, 06:24 PM - 1 Like   #6
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Reading Des's post, I'm reminded of an old army surplus light I used to have. It had a few attachments for the light, one of which was a red filter. (It also had a clear diffuser that could be used along or with a color.) The light was at a right angle to the body and was designed to be clipped to one's jacket I believe. Perhaps one could find something like that or a more modern version?
11-20-2020, 07:22 PM - 1 Like   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Gorgarath Quote
Reading Des's post, I'm reminded of an old army surplus light I used to have. It had a few attachments for the light, one of which was a red filter. (It also had a clear diffuser that could be used along or with a color.) The light was at a right angle to the body and was designed to be clipped to one's jacket I believe. Perhaps one could find something like that or a more modern version?
Yes the red filter is a good idea. You can actually buy torches and spotlights now which have red LEDs, but the old spotlighter's trick was to cover the torch or spotlight with a couple of layers of red cellophane. That might work.
11-20-2020, 09:24 PM - 2 Likes   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by Des Quote
TBH I think this might turn out to be a fruitless mission.

Assuming the young bloke knows roughly where the badgers are, I would suggest setting up a remote motion-activated camera with night vision. To monitor animal movements we got a couple of cheap trail cameras (Campark T80 and T85). They run on AA batteries and use an infrared beam at night. They have excellent weather seals. They can do video and stills. The results are not publication material but they are fun - it's amazing what you see
There are plenty of these around. Look for ones with Passive Infrared (PIR) sensors. You can get them with wifi or bluetooth. Some take a SIM card for internet uploads.
This is the way I would go too, I've seen some pretty decent photos from these, and you may be amazed at what you find.

6 Days Ago - 1 Like   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by BigMackCam Quote
More detail on his night vision monocular would be helpful. There are adapters like this one that will allow you to marry the camera to the eyepiece of, for example, a spotting scope... but I'm wondering if, as a young lad, he owns a smartphone? If so, he might be better using that and adapter such as this...

EDIT: My apologies, I see he may be using a bridge camera... in which case, I still think his phone and the relevant adapter rig might be a better choice
Thanks Mike, I'll see what he has re smartphone ...

---------- Post added 11-21-20 at 09:22 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Cerebum Quote
Stepdown rings may physically do the job but stepping down from 67mm to 30mm is going to give him one hell of a vignette, that is assuming his bridge camera can focus on the monocle view screen. I guess, since he is intrepid, cheap stepdown rings and gaffer tape may be worth trying but he would have to make sure there was no light ingress. No doubt canon being canon, they make a night vision attachment and charge the earth for it . Good luck
Thanks, I too was thinking vignetting, but I know he want to experiment, which is great. Gonna to be interesting to see what he comes up with.

---------- Post added 11-21-20 at 09:27 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Des Quote
TBH I think this might turn out to be a fruitless mission.

Assuming the young bloke knows roughly where the badgers are, I would suggest setting up a remote motion-activated camera with night vision. To monitor animal movements we got a couple of cheap trail cameras (Campark T80 and T85). They run on AA batteries and use an infrared beam at night. They have excellent weather seals. They can do video and stills. The results are not publication material but they are fun - it's amazing what you see. Here's a still of a wombat.


There are plenty of these around. Look for ones with Passive Infrared (PIR) sensors. You can get them with wifi or bluetooth. Some take a SIM card for internet uploads.

Another approach would be to try using the existing camera with red LED lights for illumination. They shouldn't disturb the badgers' night vision. This could be achieved with a torch or spotlight or by positioning a red LED panel near the sett or the pathway with some way to turn it on remotely.
Thanks, Des. Actually, the trial camera is what he currently does now and is getting decent results. The wombat looks good. He's started taking photography lessons at school and it's the hands on camera use that's pushing him this way. The red filter is a good idea, I was thinking IR filter, so I reckon a filtration approach rather than the adapter makes more sense.

---------- Post added 11-21-20 at 09:29 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by DWS1 Quote
Don't see how this could be done, but don't want to discourage the young lad either.
I agree. Thankfully, there's little that could be done to discourage him, I feel. He's very determined, which is a great characteristic at his young age.


I have a roll of red filter material that I'll give him some to experiment with. When this Covid risk has died down I'll be able to help him more. I'd manged to squeeze in one help/tutoring session with him, socially distanced of course, in the summer, but until there's little risk I can't help him face-to-face. He's keen to experiment with my 'studio' lighting and I'm keen to have an assistant :-) Fingers crossed we get protected soon ...

Last edited by BarryE; 6 Days Ago at 03:05 AM.
6 Days Ago - 2 Likes   #10
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Getting something out of the combination of ingredients he has, this sounds similar to the technique of afocal photography sometimes used in astronomical imaging. I've never tried this myself, but here are links to ways of doing this for astrophotography that may be adaptable to the night vision monocular.
6 Days Ago   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Thagomizer Quote
Getting something out of the combination of ingredients he has, this sounds similar to the technique of afocal photography sometimes used in astronomical imaging. I've never tried this myself, but here are links to ways of doing this for astrophotography that may be adaptable to the night vision monocular.
There may well be something in there for him. Many thanks, I'll check it out in more detail later and pass on what I find.
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