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Author Topic: Trail Camera Placement by Duane72  (Read 624 times)

Offline TalkHunting Mag

  • Button Buck
  • Join Date: Mar 2013
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Trail Camera Placement by Duane72
« on: March 03, 2013, 04:34:52 PM »
The sun is rising sooner, the weatherís getting warmer. Hunters and farmers alike are in the fields and woods getting food plots and crops in the ground. For some, the seasons have ended, for others another season has only begun. In most cases though, the scouting will be persistent throughout by the overgrowing use of trail cameras, one of the most valuable scouting tools since the introduction of binoculars. The trail camera lets a hunter see whatís thereÖ without being there. An ever-watchful eye when you canít be present.

Many factors can affect the quality and quantity of pictures you get on your trail camera. There are many variables in the trail camera itself that change from manufacturer to manufacturer. Anything from trigger speed, to color, to battery life can all be different from model to model even. We wonít go over all of that here, but all things considered; any trail camera can be successful to a degree if you avoid some of the more common mistakes.

Here are some basic things to think about to hopefully help your next camera location is as successful as it can be:

1st Location:
Often times, our cameras are placed logically where we see sign. But too often we see a track, find a tree, strap it on and hope for the best. Take some time and treat the location like you might a tree stand or blind location. Donít just consider any sign positive, but look for well used areas, trail convergences, funnels, etc. Obviously feeding stations if you have them, and food plots and natural food sources can be good, but even then consider the impact on movement. Often times trails to and from those sources can be best.

2nd Placement:
Once the location is found, there are several things to consider determining the placement of the camera. Consider a tree further off the trail, yet with good viewing lanes.  The goal is to place the camera where it will not be an obvious addition to the surroundings. If you aim the camera directly at the trail, or too close to the feeder or corner of that food plot, often youíll come up with tail-end or head-only shots. Many may be blurred from rapid movement. Aim the camera down the trail at an angle, or further back from the feeder for a broader shot. This allows the cameraís trigger time to function and also may provide time for that second or even third shot depending on your make and modelís trigger speed. Think of the sun as well. You donít want to place the camera where it will be in direct morning or evening sun as it can cause ďwash outĒ shots, or confuse the daylight sensors and send the camera in or out of night mode too early, or late leaving you with dark shots. Often overlooked is wind. Try not to aim the camera where the movement of brush and weeds from the wind will be constantly setting off the camera. Though you may have a few shots of animals mixed in, youíll find yourself searching through empty shots by the dozens, sometimes even hundreds! Another overlooked thought is the direction of the tracks on the trail. See if you can determine which direction they go in predominantly. Sometimes itís obvious, other times not so much, but taking the time to look is beneficial. Youíll always have a few of those backside shots, but you can hopefully sway the balance.

3rd Scent:
This may be the most overlooked thought, and most common mistake made while setting out trail cameras. We donít go into the woods to hunt without making every provision to ensure we are not seen or smelled. Yet, when setting out and checking trail cameras in the off season, many often go in and out without taking the time to take precautions on scent. At the very least, take a moment to spray down with a scent killer before going to check or set up/move your cameras. (Dead Down Wind is always a great choice I might add!) Use a scent killer wipe or spray on your camera (wipes preferred to avoid lens contamination) before you leave the area so it doesnít stand out in the air like a human flag. Rain and time may kill or reduce your scent print on the area & camera, but it can still alert animals to the cameraís presence.

Take some time to consider these things when setting up your camera and you may greatly increase the quantity and quality of the pictures you capture.


Offline buckone1

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  • Location: Indiana
Re: Trail Camera Placement by Duane72
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2013, 03:30:53 PM »
Good advise! Thanks Duane!! @--0--0123
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2015 Turkey Champion


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