Monday (14-September-2020) — New Jersey

Summertime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

Morning at the Birdfeeders: Mourning Dove, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Blue Jay, Black-capped Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse, Gray Catbird, House Finch, Song Sparrow, Northern Cardinal, and Rose-breasted Grosbeak.


Morning at the Birdfeeders. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Contact me if you are interested in a Time-lapse Video of the Morning session at the Birdfeeders. My setup for the birdfeeder images is a Nikon D850 camera and 200 mm f/2 VR lens set to take one image every 5 seconds over a 5 hour period (~3600 images). The new time-lapse video format is 720p (1080 x 720 pixels) and 1 frame/second. The length of the video is about 1 hour in a 1 GB MP4 file. The previous time-lapse videos of the birdfeeders were at 12 frames/second, and to be honest were too fast to identify the birds.

Out on the patio, I planted some Garlic for next spring and watered the Grow Towers. Theta Z1 Camera set to record images using program auto mode (shutter, aperture, white-balance, JPG + RAW (DNG) every 10 seconds. Camera mounted on a tripod just above head level. The camera collected ~ 360 images (~ 1 hour) before running out of internal storage space. The DNG dual fisheye images were processed with Capture One Pro, saved in TIF format. Then converted to 360 degree equirectangular pano images with PTGUI (batch process). The Little Planet time-lapse video was created using PhotoShop CC (image converted to 1:1 format (7430 x 7430), rotated 180 degrees, converted to polar coordinates, then exported as a MP4 video (1920 x 1920, 10p). Rotation to the video was added using Premiere Pro.

Daily Electric Energy Used (48.6 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (51.5 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Lots of clouds. A surplus of 2.9 kWh.

Monday (07-September-2020) — New Jersey

Summertime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

Birds of the day: Blue Jay, Gray Catbird, Northern Cardinal.


Birds of the day. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Neighborhood cat sitting under the birdfeeder. The reason not many birds visited the birdfeeder today.


Neighborhood Cat Posing for a Portrait. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Morning walkabout looking for flowers. White Morning Glory, Sunflower, Cosmos, Evening Primrose, Four O’clock. In the first Morning Glory image you can see the blue “Mile-a-minute” berries/seeds.


Flowers and Wildflowers. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Later in the morning I went out to spray the invasive “Mile-a-Minute” vine with a biosafe herbicide.

Daily Electric Energy Used (50.2 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (57.5 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Sun and clouds. A surplus of 7.3 kWh.

Tuesday (01-September-2020) — New Jersey

Summertime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

The immature Baltimore Oriole is willing to stand up to a gang of Blue Jay’s.

Morning at the Birdfeeders: Mourning Dove, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Blue Jay, Black-capped Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse, Gray Catbird, House Finch, Song Sparrow, Baltimore Oriole, and Northern Cardinal.


Morning at the Birdfeeders. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Contact me if you are interested in a Time-lapse Video of the Morning at the Birdfeeders. My setup for the birdfeeder images is a Nikon D850 camera and 200 mm f/2 VR lens set to take one image every 5 seconds over a 5 hour period (~3600 images). The new time-lapse video format is 720p (1080 x 720 pixels) and 1 frame/second. The length of the video is about 1 hour in a 1 GB MP4 file. The previous time-lapse videos of the birdfeeders were at 12 frames/second, and to be honest were too fast to identify the birds.

I went out with the DR Power Brush Mower to mow the wildflower meadows. Not much is blooming anymore, and the weeds including the invasive “mile-a-minute” vine are starting to take over. I attempted to capture the exercise with a Garmin VIRB-360 camera both on a fixed tripod, and a tripod I carried over my head. While mowing the sections I kept finding adult Praying Mantis which I tried to move away from the mower. The Praying Mantis are “good” bugs.


Saving the Praying Mantis. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

The fawns still have dots. While cooking dinner I saw these two in one of the wildflower meadow sections that I didn’t mow. You can see that the weeds have taken over. The deer seem to be immune to the electric fence.


Fawns with Spots inside the electric fence. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Daily Electric Energy Used (51.2 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (32.5 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Lots of clouds. A deficit of 18.7 kWh.

Monday (31-August-2020) — New Jersey

Summertime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

The Theta Z1 camera has Dual 3 mm fisheye lenses and uses two back to back 1.0-inch back illuminated CMOS image sensors with an output size of approximately 23MP (6720×3360). The camera can be programed to collect images in JPG or Raw (as DNG) format. The JPG images are transformed in the camera from two 360 degree fisheye images to a single 360 degree equirectangular format (6720×3360 pixels). The DNG images are the two individual 360 degree fisheye images (6720×3360 pixels). In order for the DNG images to be used the two 360 degree fisheye images need to be transformed to a single equirectangular image. Ricoh provides the Theta program (runs on Windows 10) that can be used to view and rotate the 360 degree images. No save or output capabilities. They also provide Ricoh Theta stitcher plugin for Lightroom that can be used to transform the dual fisheye images into an equirectangular image. You have to export the file to the Theta stitcher to do the transformation (one at at time), no obvious batch transform capability. I found that I could do batch transformations with the PTGUI.exe

Backyard Sumertime Nature in New Jersey. Image taken with a Theta Z1 360 camera (DAVID J MATHRE)
JPG 360 degree equirectangular format image out of the  Theta Z1 360 camera (DAVID J MATHRE)
Backyard Sumertime Nature in New Jersey. Image taken with a Theta Z1 360 camera (DAVID J MATHRE)
DNG dual fisheye image format out of the  Theta Z1 360 camera (DAVID J MATHRE)
Backyard Summertime Nature in New Jersey. Image taken with a Theta Z1 360 camera (DAVID J MATHRE)
TIF 360 degree equirectangular format image transformed from Theta Z1 360 camera DNG image using PTGUI.  (DAVID J MATHRE)
Backyard Summertime Nature in New Jersey. Image taken with a Theta Z1 360 camera (DAVID J MATHRE)
TIF 360 degree equirectangular format image transformed from Theta Z1 360 camera DNG image using PTGUI then edited with Capture One Pro. (DAVID J MATHRE)
Backyard Summertime Nature in New Jersey. Image taken with a Theta Z1 360 camera (DAVID J MATHRE)
DNG dual fisheye image format out of the  Theta Z1 360 camera then edited with Capture One Pro (DAVID J MATHRE)
Backyard Summertime Nature in New Jersey. Image taken with a Theta Z1 360 camera (DAVID J MATHRE)
Above DNG dual fisheye image format out of the  Theta Z1 360 camera  edited with Capture One Pro then converted to TIF 360 degree equirectangular format using PTGUI. (DAVID J MATHRE)

Daily Electric Energy Used (41.3 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (32.0 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Lots of clouds. A deficit of 9.7 kWh.

Wednesday (26-August-2020) — New Jersey

Summertime Backyard Nature in New Jersey.

The Montgomery Township work crew finally came back to pick up the remaining logs and brush from the two downed Oak trees at the top of my driveway. They pushed the remains from the tree on the west side back upright into the whole created by the root ball. They also cut the remains of the tree on the east side that was laying over the wall into the street. There is some damage to the rock wall. The panorama image shows the current status of the front driveway (note the tree crews in the image are not the Township, but another crew working on the damage across the street). While the township crews were working I mowed the lawn (time-lapse video). Later in the afternoon, I took some images of the Coreopsis and Zinnia flowers in the soft pots on my patio garden.

Isaias Aftermath -- Cleanup. Composite of 32 images taken with a Nikon N1V3 camera and 70-300 mm VR lens. (DAVID J MATHRE)
Isaias Aftermath — Cleanup. Composite of 32 images taken with a Nikon N1V3 camera and 70-300 mm VR lens. (DAVID J MATHRE)


Wildflowers in Soft Pots on the Patio. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.


Wildflowers in Soft Pots on the Patio. Individual images in the slideshow are available in my PhotoShelter Gallery.

Daily Electric Energy Used (51.6 kWh) from Sense. Daily Solar Electric Energy Produced (61.6 kWh) from Sense and SolSystems. Sun, clouds, and not as hot outside. A surplus of 10.0 kWh.