Building a connected nesting box network. Part 5

The boxes build we decided to deploy 3 of the boxes in the forest. (1 RPi Master, 2 Slave nodes). The nesting boxes were already prepared a few months in before and it was just a matter of placing them in the nesting boxes and connect everything together.

The nesting boxes are running since then, in the middle of a forest, without much problems. We needed to replace the mobile stick on the RPi one time and have some trouble with the mobile connecting depending on weak signal and weather. Which isn’t much of a problem because the RPi caches the pictures and uploads them as soon a mobile connection is established.

The nesting places itself are empty at the moment and there isn’t much we can do about that other then wait.

“Real time” pictures: RPi Master, Slave node 1, Slave node 2 and  Garden nesting box.

We also decided to use the last year prototype again this year in a great tit nesting box, located in the garden, which yields more satisfying results.

Update on the garden nesting box:

Bird is gone. Bye bye little bird. ;( We removed the garden nesting box. We will rebuild the lightning system and readjust the camera lense.  Hopefully a second breed will follow in this box this year.

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10 Responses to Building a connected nesting box network. Part 5

  1. Pingback: Networked Solar Birdhouses Deep in the Woods | Hackaday

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  4. Johan says:


    This is really a great project!

    I’d love to build one to show my children
    what is going on inside a nesting box.

    Is there a BOM and source code available?


    • Oitzu says:

      Hi Johan,

      unfortunately there is currently no BOM or source available.

      Which setup do you want to build. Just a RPi node or a whole setup with Arduino satellite nodes?

      I maybe could compile some build-instructions für die RPi node.


  5. Johan says:

    Hi Oitzu,

    thanks for your quick reply!

    I have an OV2640 and an OV5642 here with two rpi’s with
    camera, a lot of arduino pro mini’s, a nodeMCU (wlan) and
    some ESP-07 modules.

    I had in mind to power an Arduino with
    a small solar panel and a goldcap (waiting on delivery from China)
    and use a centralized rpi to gather all the images @home.

    As the distance between the arduino and the rpi is to big for Wlan i want to try the NRF24L01 but i have no experience with them and special how to transfer a captured image from the OV2640 with the NRF modules.


    • Oitzu says:

      Hi Johan,

      well do you have actually a way to get the image-data from the OV2640/OV5642 to the Arduino? I’m using the arducam mini in this project which is basicly an CPLD (Altera MAX II) which does the lifting to a fifo buffer from which the arduino reads the picture (through spi).


  6. Johan says:


    I have the arducam ov2640 currently running on a
    nodemcu ( so i think it’s the same.

    The only thing what i need to accomplish is sending out the
    image over the NRF24L01 instead of the Wireless LAN to
    the rasperry i think?


  7. Johan says:

    Hi Oitzu,

    Yes, that is the same Camera module and that is also
    my email address.


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