Five Top Tips for Trail Cameras

Update the Software Before You Use It

Something many people don’t pay attention to is updating their cameras software. Cameras have software known as FIRMWARE that needs to be updated as soon as you buy the camera. Doing this fixes many of the bugs and problems and it’s super easy to do. Just go to the website for the manufacturer of your camera and check for any updates. If there is then just follow the instructions.

Number the Cameras and Chips and GPS Their Location

If you use a lot of cameras you need to number them several times. You should also number the chips for each camera and avoid swapping chips unless you know for sure which chip you’re using. More modern trail cameras also allow you to attach a name or number to the photo. Everything should be named in a consistent manner so it’s easy to keep everything organised. You should also GPS where you put each camera. Do it now before you lose your cameras! Putting a GPS on the camera allows you to keep track of them no matter where they are so you can never forget where you left it.

Place The Camera to the South

Placing the camera to the south means also pointing it north. Doing this allows you to avoid the glare that can trick your camera into taking photos of nothing. It also prevents blow-out caused by a big backlight. Take a compass with you the next time you hang your cameras to ensure you take only high quality images of the game you’re tracking.

Angle the Camera to the Trail

This is another simple thing you should do but many hunters still don’t. If you’re not after bait, a lick, or a scrape then the camera needs to be pointed at a 45 degree angle to the trail. Doing this gives you a bigger trigger time to get a better quality photo of the entire animal. Hanging the camera perpendicular to the trail means that it takes a little time for the camera to wake up and snap the photo, which can leave you looking at nothing because a few seconds is all a deer needs to pass by the camera. Placing the camera at this angle gives you a better chance of getting the picture you need.

Deter Thieves

You know what sucks? Spending a few hundred dollars on a brand new trail camera only for it to be stolen by some jackass in the woods. Having said that you need to accept there is a risk any camera you leave in the woods will be stolen. If you don’t want to take the risk then don’t buy a trail camera. If you do buy a camera anyway then you need to do what you can to deter thievery. Here are some of the best thief deterring methods you can use:

  • Don’t leave the camera somewhere obvious. Trail cameras that are out in the open are just asking to be stolen or damaged. Hang the camera up a little higher in the tree, even if you need to take a stool or ladder with you to get it up there. Even if a thief spots your camera in a tree they won’t have a way to reach it themselves.
  • You can buy security cables but just be careful because a thief may choose to just destroy your camera if they can’t steal it. It also adds another cost to your trail cam so you might be deterred from this deterrent.
  • Modern cameras, much like phones, allow you to place a security code that is able to render the camera useless. While it won’t stop someone from stealing your camera in the first place you will at least have the satisfaction of knowing that they won’t get to use your camera themselves.