Have you ever thought about what goes on in the forest when humans are not around? What about what happens at the bottom of the dark ocean floor? Have you ever even thought about what your pets do when you are not home? Well, now is your chance to find out the answer to all of those questions.
Crittercams allow people to get an inside look into the world of animals. A Crittercam is a small video camera that scientists attach to the backs of animals. The cameras are so small that the animals are not disturbed. Once the Crittercam is securely attached to the back of the animal, the animal is released to continue with their usual activities.
The National Geographic Society has been involved with the Crittercam project for decades. According to National Geographic’s website, Crittercams combine video and audio recording with a collection of environmental data such as depth, temperature and acceleration. The purpose of Crittercams is for scientists to study animal behavior without human interference. Crittercams are different than placing cameras in trees or caves because the animal wearing the camera travels into places humans would be unable to set up cameras. Instead, the animal becomes the videographer, taking us into their most intimate habitats.
The video below explains how the Crittercam works on lions in Africa.
Another live streaming video project is WildCam. WildCam is another National Geographic funded program. However, instead of being attached to animals’ bodies, the WildCam uses the internet to connect people from all over the world with Earth’s last remaining wild places. National Geographic created WildCam as a conservation initiative to raise money to protect wildlife and their homes.
While Crittercams and WildCams are mainly for scientific research and innovation, other live video feeds provide entertainment and education to National Geographic’s younger audience. On the Nat Geo Kids website, kids can choose from a number of different live feeds that range from bees to panda bears. These live video feeds allow kids to see what their favorite animals are like in their natural habitats. By clicking video on Nat Geo Kid’s website, users are brought to an outside page, explore.com. The video below is explore.com’s live footage of Alaskan bears.
Combining technology and conservation initiatives allows National Geographic and National Geographic Kids to educate and entertain fans.