The location of your trail cameras matters a lot. In fact, knowing the best place to put a trail camera is a crucial technique that every hunter should learn if they want to be a successful hunter.
The difference between getting photos of animals you are looking for and not getting hundreds of tree photos lies in your camera’s location.
Best Place to Put a Trail Camera for Optimal Results:
One of the ideal locations to place your trail camera is where the animal you are hunting regularly settle or rest at night. For instance, if you are hunting buck, one of the best places to put your trail camera is where the bucks regularly rest at night. Bucks usually hide in tall grasses, bush and dense foliage, where they cannot be easily spotted.
The closer you are to the area where they regularly rest, the higher your chances of getting the information you are looking for.
Another great spot to place your trail camera is the area where the animals feed. You are more likely to capture the photos and videos of the animals you are looking for if you place your trail camera around the areas where the animal feeds. For instance, bucks primarily eat browse (a woody portion of leaves and stem), mast (the fruit of beach, oak, chestnut, and other forest trees), forbs (flowering plants other than grass), and grass.
So it would help if you did extensive research to know areas where the animal you are targeting are likely to feed and what they feed. Besides knowing what they eat and their feeding areas, it is also important to know the animal feeds. For instance, bucks mostly feed right after sunrise and right before sunset. During the day, when temperatures are high, they prefer to hide and rest.
Placing your trail camera along the feeding area is highly recommended, especially during September when bucks start to build their testosterone and decide to break from their bachelor group and go their separate ways.
During this time, bucks are usually scattered all over the place, and locating them is not easy. The bucks that you easily located in the summer months will suddenly disappear during September.
However, one thing that they still do during this month is feeding. Bucks are still in feeding mood during this month and will still visit their feeding areas to feed.
The best place to place your trail camera during this time is near their feeding areas.
Placing your trail camera close to where your target animals drink water will increase your chances of getting the information you are looking for. This strategy works well, especially during summer when bucks drink plenty of water. Sooner or later, the animal will go to the river to drink. So you won’t go wrong if you place your trail camera close to the river, spring, or any other place where the animal drinks water.
Game trails are paths or marks made by footprints of animals that have walked around or stayed in that particular location. You are more likely to get the information you are looking for if you place the trail cameras along game trails. Animals such as bucks usually follow a certain route when going to resting or feeding areas. Game trails are prime spots to consider when installing your trail camera.
Another great place to put your trail camera is near wallows. Animals such as bucks normally use wallows to leave a scent, cover their body in mud to remove insects and parasites, and cool their body, especially during warm summer months.
Mineral Lick Sites
Another great spot to place your trail camera is along mineral lick sites. This strategy works best during April and August, when bucks have reunited with their bachelor groups and desperately want to add some weight after the hard winter months. During this time, bucks usually visit mineral lick sites to licks minerals such as sodium for optimal antler and fawn development.
Placing your trail camera near the mineral lick sites during the summer months will increase your chance of getting the photos or videos you are looking for from your trail camera.
Tips When Setting Up a Trail Camera
- Before you hit the field, test the trail camera at home to ensure that it works well. Important things to check include the memory card, batteries, and camera settings.
- Create a list of all gears you will need while in the field and check them before leaving your home.
- When setting your trail camera, avoid obstructions such as leaves, branches, or wind that will prevent the camera from taking quality videos and photos. Also, avoid setting your trail facing the sun. Instead, install it facing north or south. If your trail camera faces east or west, it will get blasted by the sun, meaning you miss getting the data you are looking for.
- Pick an optimal distance. The general rule of thumb is that your trail camera should be about 10 yards from where you expect the animal to be. However, when determining distance, consider your trail camera’s focus range.
- Before you walk away, double-check your trail camera to make sure everything is okay. Check the status of your memory card again. Also, check if the camera is on.
If you are asking yourself, what is the best place to put your trail camera? We recommend that you consider the locations recommended above. However, it is also important to appreciate the fact that every property is different. The amount of food, water, and cover in one hunting area may differ from another hunting area in a different state.
The tips given above are just a guide, but you need to figure what works best in the area you hunt. Trail cameras are powerful hunting tools. However, where they are placed matters a lot. If you want to benefit from them during this coming hunting season, ensure that you place them in the right location.