When to Put Up Trail Cameras

when to put up trail cameras

One common question that most people ask me is when to put up trail cameras? Trail cameras are primarily used to trail something. For instance, if you want to know what animals feed at night, a trail camera can help you get the information you are looking for.

Knowing when to put up trail cameras is crucial to getting accurate results. If you don’t put them correctly and at the right time, chances are that you will not get the data that you are looking for. In this article, we will discuss important factors that determine when to put up trail cameras.

Information You Want to Gather

When figuring out how many trail cameras and when to put up trail cameras, you must clearly identify the information you want to obtain. Do you want to gather information about specific animals’ physical characteristics, their eating habits, or their bedding area?

For instance, when looking for a deer’s food source during the hunting season, you need to research to identify food sources that deer love and place your trail cameras near those food sources.

Therefore, the information that you want to gather will determine when to put up a trail camera. For instance, if you’re going to collect information about the feeding pattern of deer, you should put up trail cameras at the time when they feed the most.

Your Trail Camera’s Ability

Another crucial factor that determines when to set up a trail camera is its ability. Trail cameras are available in different qualities. Some are equipped with powerful batteries, and storage can take pictures or videos even for months without charging the battery, while others have very little storage space, and their batteries cannot last for long.

If your trail camera has a very powerful battery that can last for long and huge storage space to gather information for days, then you can put it up at any time. On the other hand, if your trail camera cannot last long before recharging, you need to be very strategic on when to up the camera because a slight miscalculation can cost you dearly.

For instance, if your trail camera battery can only last for 24 hours, you need to conduct extensive research and put up your trail camera when you are most likely to obtain the information you are looking for.


Most hunters usually put up trail cameras just days before the hunting season starts and store them once the hunting season is over. This is a big mistake. If you want to have a successful hunting season, you need to learn more about the animal you are hunting, meaning you need to put up trail cameras during the hunting season and after the hunting season.

The more you learn about the animals, the greater the chance of bagging one during the hunting season. So, don’t remove your trail cameras after the season; instead, you should place them in strategic locations throughout the year to help you learn more about the animal to increase your odds of bagging one on the next season.

Below is how I usually put up my trail cameras when hunting deer.


January to April is not a hunting season, but I usually ensure that my trail cameras are up and running. During the winter season, food is typically scarce, and most deer usually gather in areas where food is available.

I usually put up my trail cameras in strategic places to monitor their feeding, shedding of antlers, and bedding areas. This is important because it allows me to gather essential data that give me an upper hand over other hunters during the hunting season.

May to August

During these months, I usually put my trail cameras on mineral sites. During this period, deer usually visit mineral-rich sites. Some deer usually come to mineral sites regularly, while others typically come to a couple of times a month.

Hunting season is generally around the corner by the end of August. During this time, I usually move my trail cameras around their feeding sites. This is important as it helps me know where the deer are moving and what time they are likely to feed in a particular location. The information gathered usually helps me to easily track deer when the hunting season starts.


This is the time when deer antlers become fully mature. It also the time when they shed their velvet. During these two months, I usually focus more on third feeding habits. Most deer feed on soybeans and alfalfa during this period because they are highly nutritious and widely available.

Archery season usually opens in mid-September. Putting trail cameras on time before the season officially starts is crucial if you want to make your hunting season successful.

Most buck groups usually break up in late September. My trail cameras are generally on set, ready to help me track every move of the deer. During this time, trail associated with feeding usually offers the best results, but things typically change when the breeding season starts.


This is a crucial month. During this month, I usually want to know the breeding areas and install trail cameras between their bedding site and the trail where they go to eat. November is also the breeding month for deer, and fights among bucks are common.


The breeding season is over, and bucks put their attention to replenishing their lost energy. All their attention goes back to eating foods rich in carbs to boost their energy and bulk up.

During this time, the best place to find them is in corn fields because their bodies are yearning for corn. Their bedding routing is also predictable during this time as most will sleep close to their food sources.

Wrapping It Up

When you put your trail cameras matters a lot because it determines whether you will get the information you are looking for. As discussed above, many factors determine when to put trail cameras, including the information you want to get, the time of the year, and your trail camera’s quality.

I recommend that you put up a trail camera at the time when you need to gather information about animals or during hunting season.