REVIEW – At the height of the pandemic when many of us were in lockdown, my sister and I became obsessed with watching birds. I got the idea to repurpose an old wireless camera into a birdwatching camera and since then birdfeeder cameras have become a new category of gadgets. Now the Soliom Hummingbird feeder camera makes hummingbird watching even easier. Let’s check it out.
What is it?
The Soliom Hummingbird feeder camera is a hummingbird feeder that has a built-in wireless camera that records hummingbirds when they visit for a drink.
What’s in the box?
- Soliom Hummingbird feeder camera
- Cleaning brushes
- Extra flowers
- USB-C charging cable
- Hanging hook
- 32GB micro SD card
- User guides
Design and features
The Soliom Hummingbird feeder camera is made of PBA free plastic with a wireless camera that can be removed when you need to clean the feeder.
The camera has a removable antenna on the back.
There’s also a weather resistant cover over the USB-C charging port.
For some reason, the cover has two layers… Weird.
The camera slides out of the feeder when you want to fill it with hummingbird nectar and/or wash the feeder.
Under a protective flap on the top of the camera is a reset switch, a power switch, and the micro SD card slot.
To get started with the Soliom Hummingbird feeder camera, you will need to disassemble it, wash it, and fill it with hummingbird food.
The cap unscrews from the top of the bird feeder and the base unscrews from the bottom of the feeder. You’ll want to also remove the camera and give everything a good wash in the sink (except the camera of course!).
After everything is washed, you can put the camera back in place and the top cap screwed back on. You will turn the feeder upside down with the base off and fill it with hummingbird food. You can either buy pre-made food/nectar, or you can make it yourself. It’s just a simple mixture of 1/4 cup of regular sugar into 1 cup of water. Stir till the sugar is dissolved and then pour into the feeder. You can then put the base back on and quickly flip the feeder back over to attach the metal hanging hook to the cap.
Note: Although you would think that it would be easier to just remove the top cap and fill from the top, don’t do it… When I tried, it immediately started draining out of the seams in the base. Live and learn…
Also note: Don’t forget to clean the feeder and replenish the food at least once a week. The sugar water can ferment in hot temperatures and mold can grow which will make the hummingbirds sick if you don’t keep the feeder clean and filled with fresh nectar.
The Soliom App
With the Soliom Hummingbird feeder camera ready for the hummingbirds, you will need to install the Soliom app on your iPhone, Android phone, or tablet. The app will guide you through connecting the camera to your wireless network.
Then you can hang the feeder outside in a good location and wait for the hummies to find it!
I was a little concerned about reviewing the Soliom Hummingbird feeder camera because I didn’t receive it until the end of September and that’s about the time when the hummingbirds start leaving Southern Indiana to migrate to South America for the winter. But, I got lucky because in no time at all I started receiving notifications on my phone that there were visitors to the feeder.
From the app, I was able to watch in real-time as a hummingbird was feeding. It was really cool.
The app automatically records a short video each time the motion sensor is tripped. That means that it also might record a video if it detects someone walking by the feeder. You can customize the sensitivity to help prevent false notifications, or you can set it to be super sensitive and use it as a security camera too!
At some point, there will be a feature added to the software that uses AI to report the type of birds that are detected. For me, we only have one type in our area: ruby-throated hummingbirds. A Basic Cloud service subscription is needed for the birds AI service but it’s not clear how much this will cost because the service is currently in beta testing. This cloud service will also increase the number of days that the videos will be saved. Without the service, the videos are only saved in the cloud for 3 days.
See it in action
What I like
- Easy to setup
- Easy to clean
- Doubles as a security camera
What I’d change
If you don’t mind the price, the Soliom Hummingbird feeder camera is a fun and easy way to watch hummingbirds without scaring them away when you’re outdoors. The built-in microphone even lets you hear their cute little chirps!
Where to buy: Amazon
Source: The sample for this review was provided by Soliom.