Video Cameras on Wild Birds

  title={Video Cameras on Wild Birds},
  author={Christian Rutz and Lucas A. Bluff and Alex A. S. Weir and Alex Kacelnik},
  pages={765 - 765}
New Caledonian crows (Corvus moneduloides) are renowned for using tools for extractive foraging, but the ecological context of this unusual behavior is largely unknown. We developed miniaturized, animal-borne video cameras to record the undisturbed behavior and foraging ecology of wild, free-ranging crows. Our video recordings enabled an estimate of the species' natural foraging efficiency and revealed that tool use, and choice of tool materials, are more diverse than previously thought. Video… 

Tool use by wild New Caledonian crows Corvus moneduloides at natural foraging sites

Two complementary lines of investigation provide the first quantitative description of larva fishing by wild crows in its full ecological context and evidence for tool selectivity by New Caledonian crows under natural conditions.

Activity profiles and hook-tool use of New Caledonian crows recorded by bird-borne video cameras

Video recordings of New Caledonian crows reveal an ‘expanded’ foraging niche for hooked stick tools, and highlight more generally how crows routinely switch between tool- and bill-assisted foraging.

Grass-Stem Tool use in New Caledonian Crows Corvus moneduloides

An observation of a wild New Caledonian Crow Corvus moneduloides manufacturing two tools from dry grass stems, and using them to extract lizards from the crevices of a fencepost confirms earlier observations with animal-borne video cameras.

Bird-Borne Video-Cameras Show That Seabird Movement Patterns Relate to Previously Unrevealed Proximate Environment, Not Prey

Using miniaturized video cameras and GPS tracking recorders simultaneously, it is shown for the first time that information on the immediate visual surroundings of a foraging seabird, the Cape gannet, is fundamental in understanding the origins of its movement patterns.

A quick guide to video-tracking birds

A brief description of the basic equipment and field techniques are provided to enable other researchers to start their own video-tracking studies.

The Ecological Significance of Tool Use in New Caledonian Crows

Stable isotope analysis reveals the nutritional benefits of tool use in wild New Caledonian crows and provides estimates of larva-intake rates and shows that just a few larvae can satisfy a crow’s daily energy requirements, highlighting the substantial rewards available to competent tool users.


Over the past three decades, technological advances for monitoring wild animals have expanded the ability of ecologists to study animal behavior and space use. Currently, researchers are deploying

Vocal culture in New Caledonian crows Corvus moneduloides

The findings reveal that the New Caledonian crow Corvus moneduloides exhibits sufficient social learning mechanisms, and within-population structuring, to generate and perpetuate cultural variation in at least one behavioural domain, opening the door for the simultaneous investigation of vocal and material culture in a nonhuman species.

Development of camera technology for monitoring nests

Photo and video technology has become increasingly useful in the study of avian nesting ecology. However, researchers interested in using camera systems are often faced with insufficient information


Tool-related Cognition in New Caledonian Crows

The evidence for physical understanding in the remarkable tool-oriented behaviour of New Caledonian crows cannot prove that this species is capable of understanding physical causality, but it is argued that the conventional mechanisms become less likely as such observations accumulate.