Checked my camera trap at the bear wallow in the Big Woods and immediately noticed mud smeared all over the sensor’s lens and the glass covering the camera lens. A small piece of old bedsheet dampened with water and white vinegar is always in an old film canister in the pack to clean lenses and it really came in handy this time. Should have taken a photo of the mess, but I didn’t – too bad.
Got home and downloaded the photos, finding pictures of the lovely and gracious opossum –
Followed by photos of a raccoon coming toward the camera –
The raccoon climbed the tree holding the camera; great if you like pictures of a ‘coon’s belly. I figured the raccoon was the culprit that smeared the lenses; but the next photo, of a young buck, was taken through a clean lens –
Only a minute later a nice 8-point buck stepped in front of the camera –
Two days later the camera captured the first photo one of my camera traps has ever gotten of a broad-winged hawk – an immature that must have been trying for one of the wood frogs that frequent the vernal pool.
Two more days went by before the bear wallow lived up to its name as a bear showed up to soak in the water –
When it emerged from the water it headed for the camera tree –
The guilty party is revealed as every subsequent photo was taken through the muddy smear –