How many trail cameras should I use? This is a question that you are probably asking yourself right now if you are thinking of collecting information on a specific area.
While you may want to cover every possible route, it is impossible to have trail cameras all over the area you wish to cover. Trail cameras are costly, not to mention the time and effort it takes to maintain and monitor them.
However, you can still get the data you need with a limited amount of trail cameras. In this post, we will discuss the number of trail cameras you need to use.
How Many Trail Cameras Should I Use?
This question does not have a specific answer because the number of trail cameras you need depends on various factors. The size of the area you need to cover, the predictability of the animal you are hunting, the number of travel corridors, terrain, the type of land (public or private), and much more all play a role in deciding how many cameras to set out.
Trail cameras can be your best asset or the biggest liability, depending on how you utilize them. Having the right number of trail cameras will ensure that you get the information you are looking for within a short period, without incurring huge costs.
On the other hand, having tons of trail cameras in a given piece of land will make the entire process more expensive, time-consuming, and energy-draining, which is something you don’t want. Therefore, it is important to ensure that you use the correct number of trail cameras to get optimum results.
So how many trail cameras do you need? According to experts, you need an average of 4-6 trail cameras per 40 acres or 8-12 trail cameras per 200 acres.
Is it Okay to Use More Cameras Per Acre?
Absolutely, but you need to ensure those trail cameras that you use offer value. There are some instances where you need to install more trail cameras to get the information you are looking for.
For example, the number of trail cameras to use when hunting deer differs from the number of cameras to use when hunting wild rabbits. Unlike deer, wild rabbits are more discreet thus tricky to spot.
As a result, you need to use more trail cameras when hunting them than when hunting deer.
Factors That Determine the Number of Trail Cameras to Use
Type of Trail Camera
The type of trail camera will determine the number of cameras you will need to use. For instance, a camera with a 90-degree viewing angle provides less coverage than a camera with a 180-degree viewing angle.
This means that if your trail cameras have a 180-degree viewing angle, then you will need to use fewer cameras per acre than a person using trail cameras with a 90-degree viewing angle.
Type of Land
The type of land will also determine how many trail cameras you will use. There are two types of land where you can install your trail camera. They include private land or public land.
Generally, people install more trail cameras on private land than on public land. This is because private land is more secure and has more space than public land, where you have to share the space with other people, thus limiting your area of coverage.
The Terrain of the Area
The terrain where you plan to source information will also play a huge role in determining the number of trail cameras to use.
For instance, if you are a hunter tracking deer in rugged terrain, you have to use more trail cameras than when hunting deer in a flat terrain where a single trail camera can view a large area.
Size of the Area
The area of coverage will also determine the number of trail cameras to use. Generally, the larger the area of coverage, the more trail cameras you need to use.
For instance, the number of trail cameras for 200 acres of land is different from the number of trail cameras used in a 40-acre land. 200 acres of land need more trail cameras than 40-acre land.
The Purpose of the Trail Camera
Most people use trail cameras for hunting. However, besides hunting, a trail camera can be used for other purposes, including data collection, wildlife surveys, patterning, and much more. The purpose of the trail camera will determine how many you will use.
For instance, surveying a particular animal does not need you to install many cameras compared to patterning, which requires at least 6 cameras per 10 acres.
How to Get the Best Results from Your Trail Camera?
Focus on quality over quantity
The mistake that most people make when installing trail cameras is focusing on quantity over quality. Remember that you can have cameras installed in all corners of the land and still not get the results you are looking for.
When determining the number of cameras you need to use, you should focus more on quality over quality. For instance, instead of installing numerous low-quality cameras with a small range of view, you should install a few high-quality cameras that are durable, reliable, and with a wide range of perspectives.
Using fewer but high-quality trail camera will also limit your overall maintenance cost.
Location! Location! Location
Where you place your trail cameras will also determine the quality of results you will get and the number of trail cameras you will use. Before you place your trail cameras, it is crucial to first survey the land where you want to source data to know more about the area.
For instance, when hunting deer, you need to research more about deer habitat and their movements. This way, you will not have to use many trail cameras because you already know specific areas where deer are likely to pass by.
In review, the number of trail cameras you need to use depends on many factors, including the size of the area you need to cover, the predictability of the animal you are hunting, the number of travel corridor, terrain, the type of land (public or private) and much more.
However, a general rule of thumb is 4-6 trail cameras for every 40 acres.