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The BeetleCam Project

Updated on September 17, 2012

Have you ever heard of the BeetleCam Project??

I stumbled upon this story one day surfing the net on one of my photography sites. I was astounded at the ingenuity and imagination of the two brothers William and Matt Burrard-Lucas wildlife photographers from the UK. They have a unique approach to wildlife photography that involves working as a team. They used their teamwork to imagine how they could take interesting pictures of wildlife in their natural habitat.

How did the project get started?

In 2009, the brothers worked on a way to get a camera close-up to some of the world’s most dangerous animals at ground level. They built what they call the BeetleCam which is a remote controlled buggy with a DSLR camera mounted on top. Their first shoot that they used it in was in Tanzania. During that shoot Not only were they able to get BettleCam over the rough terrain they were also able to get ground level photographs of elephants and buffalo. But then when they tried to take pictures of the lions they lost their camera and BeetleCam to an encounter with one of the lions.

When they returned home after their trip they wrote about their adventures. Their story went viral and quickly caught wind of the media. The brothers were not satisfied with just media attention though. They wanted to figure out a way to make a BettleCam that was indestructible. So they went back to the drawing board and came up with a BettleCam with an armored shell. They then went back into the field to try it again. This time they were able to get pictures of the lions and the camera was not destroyed.

The Brothers have received numerous awards for their work and have had their work displayed in the Natural History Museum in London and the Smithsonian Museum in Washington DC. Their goal is to inspire people to celebrate and conserve the natural wonders of our planet.


What are they doing now?

If you would like to learn more about the brothers or learn more about the BeetleCam you can go to They have a photo gallery of their trip to Tanzania. William also has photo tours that you can join him on. He just finished a photo tour to Masai Mara that ended in July. The photos are not posted yet on their web site. William also has another photo tour planned to Madagascar October 27-Nov. 8, 2012 that you can attend for just £3,395 per person in twin share accommodations. After looking at their photo gallery I think this would be a tremendous honor to be able to go on this tour. Not only to see Madagascar first hand but also to learn side by side with William or Matt. It would be such a learning experience to see what they see.

If you live in the UK or are planning a trip to London you can enjoy a one-on-one two hour photo tour with either William or Matt. They will teach you different ways to look at your subjects and also things you can do with your camera. They do tours Monday through Friday for two hours during the day and two hours at night for those who work during the day. The price for this is much more reasonable. Again, this still would be a great learning experience.

I encourage anyone reading this that has an interest in photography at all to go in a look at their gallery. The macro photography is just phenomenal to see. I came away from the site totally inspired and knowing I have a lot of growing to do before I ever get to that level. But it is something to shoot for, right?

I hope you are as inspired as i was. I now want a BettleCam of my own.


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    • RhondaHumphreys1 profile image

      Rhonda Humphreys 5 years ago from Michigan

      I believe it could handle fairly rough terrain. You should check them out, they sell them on their website for like$3900. Wouldn't that be great to have??

    • profile image

      Casimiro 5 years ago

      I'd love a version of this cam that could handle rough and steep terrain like we have here and with IR capability! We could get some incredible pictures of night-time wildlife here in Costa Rica.

    • RhondaHumphreys1 profile image

      Rhonda Humphreys 5 years ago from Michigan

      Yes,like I said in the piece I'd love to have a bettlecam of my own. Can you imagine what you could do with it?? I also read another article yesterday where a photographer bought an 8' wide kite to tie his camera to so he could get higher up and get a different perspective on his subject.

      I can't believe that you are not a pro photographer yourself. The pictures that I have seen of your are fantastic. Thank you for stopping by Deb.

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 5 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      The Bettlecam is a good idea in order to retain one's safety. I like learning new things and photograph the same things over and over, but it does make me a better photographer. A retired pro photographer that is a friend of mine says that I have grown so much even after a few months. I have been experimenting with a lot of different things and have been having a lot of fun doing it.