Live nature cameras to watch while you’re stuck indoors

Are you running out of things to do indoors while it snows again? It’s harder than usual to get outdoors this winter but we can at least watch what’s happening outdoors while staying warm in our homes.

I’m a live camera fanatic. I almost always have one running in the background while I’m writing. If I hear activity picking up I can switch from the writing program to the camera. It’s nice to hear the birds in the background when nothing exciting is happening (which honestly is most of the time).

My favorite live camera right now is aimed at a Great Horned Owl nest. The pair has two owlets that are doing well. The nest is in warm and usually Savannah, Georgia and makes me wish, at least for the winter, that I still lived there. Just now I stopped writing to look because the female was clacking her beak. Whatever it is that was annoying her moved along quickly.

Great Horned Owl, live camera

A female Great Horned Owl feeds pieces of a bird to one of her two owlets.

You can visit the Ontario FeederWatch to see the birds coming to a platform and hanging feeders. I’ve seen Pine and Evening grosbeaks, a tufted titmouse (which I’ve never seen in person), Pine Siskins, Common Redpolls and even Ruffed Grouse. This is one of the cameras I like to listen to while I’m working.

In southeastern Iowa, a hardwired security camera features a corn feeder and some of the biggest deer in the country. The camera is provided by Crush (Tiffany and Lee Lakosky). There’s a community revolving around this game camera. It’s been live since July, 2014, and some of the larger bucks have been given names. More often than not there aren’t deer on the camera but when they show up in late afternoon (remember the two hour time difference) and at night it’s worth the wait. There are also coyotes, rabbits, turkeys, gray and fox squirrels, mice, a barred owl and an American bald eagle there from time to time. Cats have been showing up to catch the mice. This camera has infrared lighting so you can see what’s going on all of the time.

whitetail deer

The coyote trotted in and the deer ran out.

The Cornell Lab FeederWatch has a nice variety of birds and even deer. Canada geese and ducks are often in the background. The deer don’t come to the feeders but they do eat some of the seed tossed out to the geese and ducks.

A Laysan Albatross is featured on a camera in Kuaui, Hawaii. She’s rearing a single chick that’s easy. She’s at the base of a tree, which seems awfully risky to me but they’re doing just fine. This camera has infrared lighting and a great night view.

Laysan Albatross

Laysan Albatross in Kauai, Hawaii

WildEarth has a huge variety of live cameras. They have cameras on storks, elephants, eagles, geese, wolves and more.  Want to go on safari? Check out Africam.

Live cameras are a great way to be entertained and learn more about natural history.

Robin Follette

About Robin Follette

Maine Press Association award winner, 2013. Robin's Outdoors, Bangor Daily News, third place in Sports blogs. I grew up with a fishing pole in my hand and have always loved the outdoors. From gardening to hunting and fishing, kayaking, camping, hiking and foraging, most of my time is spent outdoors. I teach outdoor skills as a volunteer instructor for Hooked On Fishing - Not On Drugs and Becoming an Outdoors-Woman. Pro-staff at The Limb Grip. My personal blog is here. I'm currently working on my first book, a collection of short stories based on my outdoors experiences.