Thursday, May 10, 2012

Baby Rabbit Decomposition in Time-Lapse

This young rabbit was found at my dad's doorstep several weeks ago. We believe it was killed and delivered by his cat. I had been thinking about doing a time-lapse of a decomposing animal for quite a while and figured that I would make the best of this fresh carcass. I built a box using a wooden frame and chicken wire to allow smaller animals and bugs in while keeping out the larger animals that might just drag it off.  Here is the "rot box".  Since the lid is removable to allow full sunlight, I may call it the "grow box" for future projects.
Here is the box after this project was completed with the lid open and the camera in place.


For the filming I used my new Pentax Optio WG-1 which is really durable and versatile. I started taking 1 picture every 12 minutes, but as the action sped up over the last two days I increased the frequency to once every 5 or six minutes. On the last day when I went out to check the progress, I was disappointed to see the whole rabbit was gone. There were no bones or anything left, so I thought a snake or something had gotten in and carried it off.  However, after watching the playback, I realized that the maggots had devoured the entire rabbit. I was expecting a skeleton to stay together for several weeks and had planted some grass seeds to grow up and eventually beautify the whole gory scene, but it went way faster than I expected.  The entire process took only 4 days.
 

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2 Comments:

Blogger Keisan Gittens said...

how did you maintain the lighting conditions throughout the 4 days? I am doing a time lapse of an ivy plant dying and not sure how long it will take to wither. I have two fluorescent bulbs pointing at it. Can I simply skip the night scenes until significant change begins to occur? Great video btw, most people only have things growing, but things die too!

8:56 PM  
Blogger Jamie said...

Oh, wow! This is amazing and somewhat frightening, but beautiful.

2:01 PM  

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