Strange Trail Cam Anomaly Deconstructed

Strange Trail Cam Anomaly Deconstructed

As many GT regulars know, on occasion I do what I like to call “deconstructions”. Sometimes the answers are fairly evident and other times, they require extensive research and manipulation. Today’s deconstruction was very refreshing, requiring little time or effort. While we try to get to the bottom of the subject matter we present, often we are short of time or information, or both. Often, we rely on the readers to find the answers and they do very well, but in this case it was just a matter of clear recognition.

Originally posted by Lon Strickler over at Phantoms & Monsters, below we are shown three trail cam photos.

The person who sent the photos to Lon claims the trail cam is set to take 3 photos in a 6 second series. First, lets take a look at the pictures in question and some commentary from the submission.

In photo #1, we catch a glimpse of the “anomaly” just coming into the frame on the right:


In photo #2, we can now see the entire object seemingly flying a few feet off the ground:


Finally, in photo #3, we find the oddity is almost center screen and it does look as if it’s moving:


Lets see what the submitter has to say about the photos in question:

I had these photos on my trail cam and am mystified what it could be. At first thought it was an arrow, but in the last photo it is going up and it is way to colorful to be an arrow. The camera is set to take 3 pictures – 6 sec. apart when it is triggered. the date is wrong but the time is correct, They were taken on 8-18-2013. If you have any ideas what this is I would sure like to know. Thank you for any help you can give me.

“Mystified” is the word used to describe this series of shots. But, is it really all that mystifying? Lon was nice enough to enlarge the anomaly for us and this is where either my deconstructive sense started to kick in or I merely put my glasses on.


I’m not going to drag this out as it may be the easiest deconstruction I’ve ever done. If we take a much closer look, more specifically a closer look at the front end of the anomaly, we can clearly see something that snaps our minds into familiarity.


Now, correct me if I’m wrong, but that looks strikingly similar to the top of a taper candle, wick and all! And when I say “strikingly similar”, what I mean is, it is a taper candle, wick and all!

Below is a collage type view of some various taper candles. While I don’t have the exact color scheme of the subject in question, I think this pretty much wraps it up and if pressed, I’m sure I could find the exact candle we are looking for. The fact is, there are hundreds of different colors and configurations as any thinking person can attest to. I will say this, I couldn’t find a more festive candle, although the color drip style is pretty cool if I do say.


None of the familiar tactics were needed here. No red circles, overlays, resizing or color manipulation on this one my friends.

I’m not sure if someone is playing a trick on the trail cam guy or he’s trying to pull a fast one himself. What I can say is Lon is a fair person who will give the benefit of the doubt, so he was just doing his duty. Speaking closer to home, seldom do I put my neck this far into the deconstruction guillotine, but I’d bet my last dollar I’m right on this one. If anyone cares to disagree, by all means pony up! Well, don’t pony up because I’m not even sure what that means….Comment! That’s what I’m getting at, comment….

Thanks to Lon over at Phantoms & Monsters for providing this puzzler for us.

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