Martins struggle to film an Otter on the River Eden. Day one commenced with gathering all the photographic equipment for the project. Outdoor filmmaking requires all material to be checked and in working order. The leading protagonist Martin Pullan is a Wildlife Media Undergraduate studying at the University of Cumbria. Martins goal is to put into practice researched fieldcraft techniques. The outcome is to meet the second protagonist the otter. Research identifies how to track an otter from footprints and spraint which the mammal leaves behind. Day 2 commenced with a long 8k walk along the river bank seeking out signs of otter tracks. The evening draws near with no signs of the otter along this part of the Eden. Day 3 started with Martin meeting an expert Cain Scrimgeour to seek out any further advice. Consultation leads to new research in the campus library. An early start to Day 4 with a new location further down the Eden. Despite the fact of the rain and cold weather, tracking was severe along the edge of the river banks. The spirit of the monitoring and imminent threat of no otter on the River Eden, the mood was low. A new location was selected which looked more favorable. Challenging days ahead and perseverance paid off with the sighting of some possible footprints. Lifting the apprehension of otter tracks, consultation with the expert for clarification. An unfavorable outcome and determination to succeed.
Martin set about seeking new areas of the river Eden from further library research. Perseverance pays off from sighting more footprints in a new location near a bridge. Photographic evidence seems to match the presence of an otter.
Further clarification is needed. Spirits are high with a confirmed otter presence. A camera trap was deployed and fixed to the lower part of a tree and camouflaged — excitement and accomplishment of the otter tracks. Returning the following day with anticipation of capturing some otter media, Martin reviews the footage. All hopes dashed there were no recordings of the otter the mood was low. Dark times loomed ahead following daily visits to the site location. No otter captured on the camera trap. Was Martin missing something?
Further research needed to identify the habits of the otter. New tracking was the answer, additional areas identified as more favorable down the Eden. Another camera trap set up looks promising and hopes raised with more tracks left by the otter. Utilising a Nikon D800, PIR Sensor, and Flash Remote, a revised camera trap was set up. Security-minded, a cable to secure equipment used on the nearby tree. The weather was turning with sunshine forecasted. High spirits, determination prevailed to seek out further habitat locations. Early morning walks commenced in more favorable sites along the River Eden. The awakening, is today the day for otter media? With the weather improving and sunshine forecast, it is an 8k walk along the other side of the river. Approaching the camera trap with anticipation, like running downstairs on Christmas morning to opening the presents. Eagerly unlocking the padlock on the camera trap, emotions are high. Glancing over in front of the location to see fresh otter tracks. Surely today is the day of some video media of an otter? Lifting out the camera from the enclosure to review the media. An ecstatic response, we have video media of an otter.
Excellent, an otter in colour stood with its front paws on the tree log in front of the camera trap. All the hard work and perseverance has paid off. Tracking, and walking 28k every week along the River Eden for two months has provided some outstanding media of the otter. Is there anything on here? The camera was pointed out towards the river in the hope of capturing the otter approaching the river bank. Such a delight, long wait and hard work, will we see anything? Hands were shaking whilst opening the case to review the footage on the inbuilt screen of the camera trap. Yes, we have an otter, looking again at the media to see an otter laid on its back looking towards the camera. As the otter floated downstream is it cheekily swimming away. Indeed, the cheeky mammal was enjoying a swim right in front of the camera trap.
Mood, Tone & Genre Narratives
Storyboard & Camera Actions
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