While the possibilities for the naturalist and wild life watcher are numerous, game cameras offer hunters the ability to use data, collected from the field, to pinpoint game animals, there movements/patterns and target hunting times and locations that will most likely link sportsmen with the animal being hunted. In support of these valuable hunting tools, here are a few hints and suggestions I have amassed through the years.
Where & How to Place Your Game Camera:
- Place game camera facing north. If faced into the sun the photos will be washed out.
- Make sure there is no vegetation in front of camera, for aesthetics and to avoid false triggers.
- Point at a 45 degree angle to a game trail (NOT perpendicular).
- Set cameras at areas that funnel animals (edges of bodies of water, trails, etc.)
- Place camera 15-20 feet from the intended photo area. - Most trail cameras can detect motion out to at least 30'. Unfortunately, some flashes don't reach out past 20'. In addition, night pictures taken at 10' or closer can experience “White Out”.
- If you’re strapping your camera to a tree make sure it's large enough to not blow in the wind.
- Place camera 24”-36” off the ground. - Also, attach your camera lower than 24” and you'll likely get pictures of small undesirable creatures. Higher than 36” you risk missing targeted animals.
Hints & Suggestions for Setting Your Game Camera:
- Place camera in live mode, wait for time out period to expire and trigger camera to make sure it works. This also sets a reference date and time.
- Turn camera on and confirm all settings, especially date & time.
- Test batteries and replace as necessary. Buy a battery tester, it will prove invaluable.
- Check and verify motion detector's range. Test it out at home.
Care of your Game Camera:
- Your best defense against theft is a well hidden camera.
- Place moisture absorbing packs inside camera case if necessary.
- Make sure the glass in front of the lens is spotless. Small smudges show up really big in pictures.
- Cold temperatures will eventually kill game cameras.
- Make sure your hands are free of scent BEFORE handing the camera!