Camera Placement Strategies

Discussion in 'Trail Cameras' started by HB_Hunter, Dec 8, 2018.

  1. HB_Hunter

    HB_Hunter Active Member

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    Location:
    Eastern Kentucky
    Hardiness Zone:
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    I’d like to hear how you all place your cameras and what strategies you use to get pictures of the deer that use your property.

    I have good luck with cameras over corn and minerals in the early season. I get consistent pictures until acorn drop then nothing. Pictures at these sites pick up again mid December.

    I tried cameras over scrapes that I found as well as cameras in pinch points and didn’t get many buck pictures. I said I was going to put in mock scrapes but didn’t.

    What has worked best for you?
     
  2. Drycreek

    Drycreek Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    I seldom put cams on scrapes, but if I do, I get up on the back of my golf cart, hang them as high as I can and point them down. I usually use the little bracket that screws into a tree for this because you can aim the camera well.

    I keep cams on my food plots, two to three depending on how large they are, and the one in the middle is usually on video mode.

    I also put out mineral blocks each January and put cameras on them also. If something very interesting shows up, I'll set that cam to video. Some trails I will put cameras on and if I get lots of pics, I'll keep them there. If not, I'll move them somewhere else.
     
  3. tlh2865

    tlh2865 Active Member

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    I hunt a smaller piece of property that is used primarily as a bedding and staging area where deer spend all day, then move out to feed at night then come back in the wee hours of the morning. I have been able to very effectively get pictures without any bait or attractant whatsoever just by placing my cameras in pinch points. My best producing cameras are the ones that cover the primary ingress and egress routes to bedding areas. Narrow sections of food plots can also be really good, if it is narrow enough that a camera can capture a picture all the way across it. I would also say that in my mind, bait or minerals don't really attract deer that aren't already there; it just brings the deer that are already in the area in front of your cameras. Extrapolating from that I would say that your bucks are either heading elsewhere when the acorns drop or have access to a wide enough area of oaks that they don't have to travel very far to find something to eat. But if you are struggling with getting pictures where you think you have choke points, I would say put cameras where you see deer. When you hunt where are you looking most for deer to come out? Put a camera there. Where do you look next when a deer hasn't come out from your first spot? put your next camera there. Rinse and repeat until you have covered all your bases or run out of money for cameras and batteries and sd cards etc.
    PS, don't check them too often especially if you are putting out minerals or bait, you get LOTS of scent pollution that way. Interesting story: I was running cameras on a different farm that I used to hunt, and had corn out with minerals, got loads of pictures too. But one day I decide for the heck of it that I would put another camera up in the same spot, but facing the opposite direction of the camera I had looking at the corn. Low and behold I got pictures of the biggest buck I have ever seen actively avoiding the bait site. since then I go conservative with checking cameras.
    Long post but hopefully something useful in there.
     
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  4. Mitch123

    Mitch123 Active Member

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    Location:
    Eastern WV
    Hardiness Zone:
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    Water sources! We have a couple little water holes throughout our property and year around we always seem to get good pictures around there. This year has been tough with the record rainfall, water is everywhere. Yet I was still surprised the pictures that we got.
     
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  5. E_308

    E_308 Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    I can't use bait or minerals anymore since they found CWD in MO. I have been setting mowed trails for the last couple of years. You end up getting a lot more other wildlife than just hanging over a salt lick.
     
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  6. Chainsaw

    Chainsaw Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    northern New York
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    literally on the line of 4b/5a
    The timing you describe as not getting deer pictures sounds like during the rut timing. During that period, I have had good results so far placing a camera on a single doe bed and in multiple doe bedding areas, in well hidden micro food plots, and in trails the bucks regularly use in their travels as they check for and chase does. I am still in the early learning phases of using the cameras effectively but this is what has worked so far. My goal is not to just get their pictures but to pinpoint the exact spots that I will be stand hunting in for each feeding and rut phase of the 2019 season and beyond. I will post some doe bed/buck pictures on my Recreating A Deer Woods thread later today or tomorrow.
     
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  7. Drycreek

    Drycreek Well-Known Member

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    I guess I mainly use cameras for inventory and entertainment purposes anymore. After multiple years of hunting my four areas, I know where they travel, I'm just trying to see what's there.

    I normally run my sd cards at three weeks to a month intervals. I'm usually on a golf cart so in and out in a hurry without leaving much scent. I think it's important also to use the wind to your advantage just as you would when going to your stand. I can't always come in with the wind in my favor, but when I can, I do. I have replacement sd cards, so unless I need new batteries, I'm only there a minute or two.
     
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  8. Native Hunter

    Native Hunter Well-Known Member

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    The scent issue is different depending on the location and circumstance. The deer on my place are so used to me being around doing habit work that they would get confused and worried if they couldn't smell me.

    "Rudolph, I can't smell Native Hunter. I wonder if something has happened to him. What will be left for us to destroy and rip up if he isn't creating new goodies for us? We may have to leave and find a new place to ravage???"

    Seriously, I keep cameras out of bedding areas at all times and stick to perimeter trails and food plots. I think that catches them all, but the pics in the open areas will only be at night. I'm only wanting to know what is there, so night pictures are fine. If the deer I want is there, there is a good chance I will see him in daylight when I'm hunting him - unless he gets killed somewhere else.
     
  9. catscratch

    catscratch Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    I put them over water and mineral for most of the year, scrapes during the rut. Never put camera's up where I actually hunt.
     
  10. Mennoniteman

    Mennoniteman Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Huntingdon Co. PA
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    I enjoyed reading the above camera comments, we do about the same as most of you are doing. One thing that works great is to let your teenage son do all of the cam placement, that way you can sit back on your heels and tell him what he is doing wrong when a well placed camera produces less than desired results, which will inevitably happen if you're hanging gamecams.
     
  11. Deadeye

    Deadeye Active Member

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    Location:
    Central Florida with Hunting Lease in NW Florida
    Hardiness Zone:
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    I’ve started placing a cam at the end of each food plot line, facing back into the plot and towards the stand site if there is one.

    I have started placing at least 2 at each site facing in different directions since I have learned that a single cam rarely catches all the movements.

    Because our place is 6 hrs from us, I let the cams set for 2-6 weeks and switch out the cards. I have cards dedicated to each Cam and only use them in that cam.

    I keep track of what I see at each cam and when it is there in Pic Folders on my laptop.

    As I expand my knowledge of the property I will adapt both Cams and Stands as needed. For examples this location better suited to a Stand watching the Plot or a Stand set back in the woods watching for movement towards the plot or both.

    What trails produce better sightings and which don’t.

    Really this is all brand new for me as I just took over this piece in July.
     
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  12. Drycreek

    Drycreek Well-Known Member

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    All this camera stuff is almost as much fun as hunting.....but you don't get anything to eat at the end of it. :)
     
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  13. dogghr

    dogghr Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    Usually put mine on a man made man pee scrape. Buckspay no attention to camera while working scrape. Sex wins every time.
    If you want an addiction worse than cocaine buy a SPYPOINT evo link camera ad get ur pics everyone a deer passes. Got mine for 180$. May cost me another marriage w time checking it. Lol
    [​IMG]


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  14. j-bird

    j-bird Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    I like high mounted and in high traffic areas, but that tends to be because I am trying to get an inventory on all deer on my place. I don't target a particular buck pattern. Mineral sites in the spring and summer, scrapes and rubs in the early fall and then plots in the winter tend to be how mine tend to progress... Scrapes can be hit or miss for me as it's easy to miss the right timing or to be on the wrong scrape.

    Last year I had a grape vine that got it's share of attention....this year...not much at all. Last year I tried a mock scrape and got little interest...this year...I have a scrape 3 fee tin diameter that I "missed" with a cam.
     
  15. HB_Hunter

    HB_Hunter Active Member

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    Location:
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    Lots of good information here. I’ll just keep doing what I’m doing.

    I’ve been looking hard at the cell cams dogghr. I’m afraid one would turn into ten.
     
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  16. E_308

    E_308 Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    The way I have avoided the cell cams = the last thing that I want is a cam emailing me pictures of nice deer while I set at a desk three hours away! I also like that Christmas morning feel of pulling cards not knowing what your going to get.
     
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  17. Mitch123

    Mitch123 Active Member

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    Location:
    Eastern WV
    Hardiness Zone:
    6
    Nothing like scrolling through a full card! Reason we don’t have the cell cameras is simply that we don’t have service back at camp so that makes it an easy choice.
     
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  18. dogghr

    dogghr Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    Yea I thot the same thing and while this was a gift and I hardly have signal exept on the back ridge, it became addicting really quick. A nice pick up while at work. I 've got buddies that have the 500$ cell cams and they are awesome. And this comes from me who does not ck cameras once season starts as I like to not know exactly what may walk in front of me. I like the surprise.
     
  19. farmhunter

    farmhunter Well-Known Member

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    Location:
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    definitely water source in mid summer - fun to watch how the deer come in to a water hole.

    Come Sept - I rely on community scrapes I open up - sometimes you can get a mock scrape to become a communal scrape - but its better to work with a real one. I find that I get deer pictures on these spots year round, with or without scent. I set up cameras over 6 ft up but not always.

    In summer I always have a camera on fields where I expect deer to enter and exit - it gives me a pattern to consider. And tells me what comes and goes. Most plot fields have preferred entrance and exits - and that is what I cover.

    I also like cameras right out in the middle of a plot if its big enough -

    In winter - I like cameras right on beans or turnips - not on corn because the turkeys will fill up a card in two days.

    Apple trees are also a great camera spot ion fall - especially on a field - often they will open up a scrape here too - or I will.

    some examples from this year - same buck each picture - different set ups

    communal scrape
    [​IMG]

    apple tree on field edge
    [​IMG]
    field corner - entrance spot
    [​IMG]

    waterhole
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2019
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  20. Beechnut

    Beechnut Member

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    Location:
    Chesterfield County, SC
    Hardiness Zone:
    Chesterfield, South Carolina
    One other tid bit of info I didn't see mentioned...I try and face the camera south or north. If it faces east or west, you'll get those important pictures of deer and the picture or video is whited out because the sun is either coming up or setting.
     
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