Why You Need A Trail Camera

A lot of novice hunters think that deer hunting is just setting up a deer stand and waiting for something to shoot. People also think fishing is just getting out on the dock or getting in a boat and putting a baited line in the water. They have no idea how much strategy goes into hunting and fishing. If you’re just getting into deer hunting, you’ve probably already heard that you need to get yourself a trail camera, but why? Here’s an overview of just a few of the advantages you get from using trail cameras.

First of all, let’s say you’ve picked a spot on your hunting property that you think is just perfect. You don’t have a trail camera, so you just go ahead and hang your deer stand. Then you get up there, and you wait…and you wait…And nothing comes your way. You either see no deer at all, or all you see are small, immature deer. There’s no meat and not a single trophy in sight. You’re back to square one. You have to tear your deer stand down, find a new trail or trail intersection, and start all over, with no guarantee that you’ll have any better luck.

deer stand

A Deer Stand

If you have a trail camera, you can hang it up at your hopeful position and wait a few days. You’ll see how many and what size deer are coming through. If nothing’s moving, all you have to do is find a new spot for your camera. It’s a lot less work, and it’s a lot more fruitful.

To make you a better hunter, you can study how your baiting is going, too. Set up a trail camera at a deer trail intersection where you’ve placed a salt lick or other game bait. The footage will show you what kind of animals are taking the bait and when. You’ll be able to switch out bait, change the location of your baiting area, and learn the patterns of your game. All of this will make you a much, much better hunter.

Speaking of patterns, you’ll be able to watch the movement patterns of bucks and does, and you’ll be able to get an idea of the buck to doe ratio in your area. If you notice that there are significantly more does in the area than bucks, you should consider hunting them for a time to even out the numbers. This kind of culling keeps the deer population balanced and healthy, which means more plentiful hunting in the future.

Finally, you need a trail camera for evidence. We’ve all had this happen. You see something crazy, something totally rare or completely out of place, like a bear, a bobcat, or a coyote. You tell everyone about it, but no one believes you. Why should they? Where’s the proof? With a motion sensor trail camera, you’ll capture images of anything that moves in your hunting area. You’ll be surprised by some of the wild things you’ll see, and your camera will capture them all, with a time and date stamp for further proof.

deer and trail camera

The evidence part doesn’t just apply to hunting however, many people place this type of cameras on their own property so they could know when unwanted visitors are lurking around, someone has stolen something off their land or perhaps their sheep herd has been getting attacked the past few weeks. Having a trail camera will allow you to gather a lot more information about this type of situations without having to be on the lookout yourself 24/7.

That should be enough to convince you that you need a trail camera. If you want to be a better hunter, you need to know where the deer are. You need to learn the bait they like, and you need to know when they’re moving and where. A trail camera will help you with all of this, and it’ll keep you from looking like you’re telling tall tales when you see a bear come trundling out of the woods where it has no purpose being.

If you’re now considering buying a solid trail camera for yourself, check out our list of the best trail cameras.