#polaroidcube for #pollinator & #pollination ecology

A few years ago, my collaborators and I cooked up the idea of recording pollinators instead of sitting in lawn chairs with binoculars like I did for my MSc.

http://www.pollinationecology.org/index.php?journal=jpe&page=article&op=view&path%5B%5D=123

We tried older generation ipod nanos, and these units were very successful. The model with cameras was quickly discontinued by Apple (and the used market is very expensive) so we switched to ipod touch units. These latter models were not successful however and overheat, shutdown recording time, and are much larger. Consequently, I was thinking it might be time to explore new technology.

polaroid-cube-camera-0164

The Polaroid Cube is only $99 and seemed like a good bet. I popped out and purchased one, with a 32GB card, and a $30 USB booster battery.  After several days of testing, the unit seems pretty great. The next step is test with battery pack and under very high heat in the desert.

Advantages
Relatively low cost.
Very low footprint.
Easy to use, splash and dust proof.
Magnet on bottom is very strong so can secure to metal peg in field.
You can enable timestamps.

Considerations
The internal battery lasts only 90 mins but in my testing so far typically stops video recording at 70mins.
The videos are recorded in 5min clips. I think this is easier to process relative to giant files but will require more careful data handling post hoc.

cube & battery