Skip to main content

Camera traps for monitoring insects - supporting information

Cite this dataset

Naqvi, Qaim (2022). Camera traps for monitoring insects - supporting information [Dataset]. Dryad.


Insect and pollinator populations are vitally important to the health of ecosystems, food production, and economic stability, but are declining worldwide. New, cheap, and simple monitoring methods are necessary to inform management actions and should be available to researchers around the world.

Here we evaluate the efficacy of commercially available, close-focus automated camera traps to monitor insect-plant interactions. We compared two video settings—scheduled and motion-activated—to a traditional human observation method.

Our results show that camera traps with scheduled video settings detected more insects overall than humans, but relative performance varied by insect order. Scheduled cameras significantly outperformed motion-activated cameras, detecting more insects of all orders and size classes.

We conclude that scheduled camera traps are an effective and relatively inexpensive tool for monitoring interactions between plants and insects of all size classes, and their ease of accessibility and set-up allows for the potential of widespread use. The digital format of video also offers the benefits of recording, sharing, and verifying observations.