I enjoy using trail cameras. I watch coyotes, bears and, of course, deer. Over the years I have noticed that coyotes and buck deer seem to shy away from the camera in Video mode. I suspect they can see the no glow and low glow cameras enough to become unsettled. This has me thinking. I don't plan to set my cameras up exactly where I plan to hunt because I suspect if I do the animals will be extra cautious in these areas. Please let me know if you have noticed the same thing and how you respond. Bob
I don't put cameras up where I hunt. I am fortunate enough to live in the country and be able to watch deer regularly. I have a camera up at the edge of the yard. There are deer that never get their picture taken. They avoid and skirt around it, while others seem pose for it.
This one seldom gets his pic taken but is around a lot. The only reason I have this pic is because he happened to be in the background scent checking when another deer triggered the camera. I had to zoom in quite a bit just to see him back there.
Isn't a black out camera a no-glow? I have vids of deer looking at the cam but I think it's because it's an odd shape hanging on a tree. I get vids triggered because the deer was sniffing the cam and not because of any lights or noise. Now that said, these deer see the cam alot and get use to it. A deer that doesn't see a cam much would probably be wary at first.
This one came up from behind the cam and was sniffing it even though the lights were on.
This buck see's the camera here, but ignores it two days later. Folks overthink this stuff in my opinion, I have lots of videos of deer(bucks & does) walking right up to the camera at all times of day & night. Coyotes, on the other hand, definitely don't like the "glow" or infrared lights.
This guys see's the camera/glow as well but it doesn't change what he came to do...
I can think of two bucks that seemed to walk into frame, look at the camera, get visibly unnerved and then reverse their course after seeing it. Both were mid-sized bucks that looked perhaps 3 or 4yrs old. I’ve had other mature 160”+ bucks that looked directly at the camera and didn’t seem to care. I would guess it comes down to the individual deer and if they have somehow come to associate the cameras with humans (I.e. perhaps they came across a camera right after it was hung and caught the scent?). Most the big names in the industry that are dropping booners seem to rely on trail cams pretty heavily so I would think all in its a net benefit and we should use them. That said, if you have a classic rut funnel that produces year after year maybe it’s best leave a camera out of it if you know you’re going to sit it regardless. Interesting question...
Yeah, I had the brilliant idea a few years ago to get some vids of coyote behavior around my traps, I thought maybe it would make me a better trapper if I could watch how they acted. I put up one at a three way crossing on my place, a sure fire set, caught several yotes there in years past. What I got on the camera was coyotes, sometimes multiple, passing by and looking at the camera like a moonshiner eyeing the revenuer. Not only did I not catch any, none even investigated the trap, and no coyotes were caught there all winter, even after I took down the camera.
I also used to put cams up on scrapes, generally I would get one wide-eyed pic of a mature buck and then the scrape would go cold except for yearlings or two year olds. I finally learned that if I backed my Ranger or golf cart up to a tree, got in the back, reached up as high as possible and set the camera looking down, the scrape would still produce good pics of different bucks. They wouldn’t pay attention to it any longer because it was below their line of sight I guess. In the spring though, I keep cams on my mineral blocks and it doesn’t seem to effect the older bucks nearly as much. Coyotes also frequent those blocks, (deer smell I’d guess), and they show no fear of the camera. Those are my experiences.
Cameras don’t seem to bother the deer by me, I shot one on camera last year. He triggered pic when he walked in. Didn’t get shot on camera due to the delay I had it set on. Woulda been a cool video tho!
Most bucks & does apparently couldn't care less about cameras and red flash. But after doing this for a lot of years, I find there are always a few super-wary bucks who somehow manage to shun cameras nearly 100% of the time. Couldn't tell you if it's the flash, the appearance of the box itself, the smell, or something else. I do know that I've had better success by mounting the cam up high and somewhat disguised. What I've also found is that many bucks spend their entire spring and summer in areas not occupied by does. We might think we know where a buck lives based on what we see during fall hunting season, but what we actually know is the doe home areas, that bucks merely come to visit during fall.
I hunted on some land in southern Colorado occupied by an outfitter friend. I saw some bigger bucks that he didn’t have pictures of. His cameras were in feed spots. Nothing scientific but am happy to not mess with cameras. I will look at the pictures and use the info