Viewing Live NestCams
One of the best ways to get up close and personal to birds is to spend some time watching a live streaming bird nestcam. With TV programmes such as BBC’s Springwatch becoming ever more popular more and more people want to see wildlife at first hand and viewing a nestcam is one of the best ways you can do this.
Watching an online nestcam gives viewers some fantastic insights into the life of birds throughout breeding and nesting season and then from the moment the eggs hatch to the day the baby birds are ready to leave the safety of the nest and take their first flight.
Viewing this activity online ensures that you can watch your favourite bird species safe in the knowledge you are not disturbing them during some of the most important months of their lives.
Nestcams are tiny cameras that are fixed inside a nest box or a short distance away. Cameras tend to be live only during the nesting season, although some are turned on all year round. It’s unlikely you’ll see a lot outside the spring months,although some birds will return to the nest boxes during colder months to roost and for shelter.
The feed is produced in one of two ways; live streaming video or a set of images refreshed at regular intervals. Live streaming nestcams are the most popular but they can be expensive to run due to website and bandwidth costs. Still image nestcams may be refreshed at intervals from a few seconds to a few minutes so that you could miss some crucial live action if the camera isn’t rolling at that particular moment.
Spend some time learning the habits of the birds you are observing so that you get aligned with when the birds are most active. Many online nestcam providers will include a written commentary and highlights of the previous day so you can get a recap incase you have missed anything.
If the nestcam comes with sound turn on your computer’s speakers to listen to the begging calls of the baby birds, sounds that are generally difficult to hear in the wild.
To make the most of watching an online nestcam make sure you are using the recommended browser and a high-speed internet connection. When you’re not viewing the nestcam close down your browser to save on bandwidth for the nestcam provider who usually relies on charitable support or public donations to provide the stream.
If you regularly have birds nesting in your garden then you might consider getting your very own nest box camera and setting up a live stream either to share with friends and family or on social media channels.
Click here to view some of the UK’s best bird nestcams.