Contributors to this thread:
Changes coming to Arizona: Trail cams
Commission voted today 5-0 to proceed with a rule making amendment to ban trail cameras. This starts the clock and will now go through the rule making process. I think it’s a done deal, irregardless of the future public comment period. Probably late 2021 or 2022 effective date. Going to be wild watching this play out!!
you mean people will have to scout the old way and use woodsmanship skills to find animals? MY GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Yup! The travesty huh? Lol
Cool! Bring the element of surprise back into hunting.
Absolutely love the fact that the buck I killed this year had never had eyes or a camera laid on him...
Major change to how the strip and some units are currently done. In my opinion it needs to be 100% banned or left alone.
I know the comments will be sarcastic but this is a big deal.. i do think that this is the initial stages of this movement. Whether you like it or not it’s coming to a state near you..
Surprised it took this long, really...
What is the driving factor behind the change? Number of cameras at any given water hole/tank? Disputes over same? Ethics?
I think it’s a good thing. Ive heard the horror stories of all the trail cams in AZ
Great news....Hope it happens & is enforced
I’m assuming this is for public ground? I can certainly understand that. If this is for private ground too? well, good luck with that.
NV did the same thing a few years ago. Good move as far as I’m concerned.
I remember a thread a while back about the subject of trail cameras and people using them to determine their “inventory” at their spot being the main reason for using them to determine which animals are on their “hit list”. While I can understand that, I think that the technology with cameras today have come to the point where they can now provide instant photos on your phone and are used more now than ever to track exact movements to kill a specific animal. Is that necessarily wrong, I don’t know. I see both sides of the argument. Trail cameras can be a great learning tool with the game you are pursuing that even boots on the ground will never teach someone. It will be like anything else, the ones that use them heavily will be for keeping them legal and the ones who don’t use them will advocate against.
Have to assume this is for public land only like Pat mentioned.
I think they were illegal in Montana for quite awhile
Never used one, never will. In states that care about their wildlife they will possibly be banned. In a state like Wisconsin where they want the deer killed by bow, crossbow, gun, muzzleloader, car, poaching etc.....they probably won`t.
I like cams before season, not so much during. With the new 'cellular' cams some guys are monitoring their 'target bucks' 24/7. This isn't a bleeping video game.
"you mean people will have to scout the old way and use woodsmanship skills to find animals? MY GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
^^^^^Worth repeating. LOL!
Good for Arizona. It was long overdue.
They claim that it was partially a Fair Chase issue.... yet they allow radio/electronic communication on stalks and spotlight scouting. Those two need to go as well... Ed F
All they need to do is make it illegal to place within 150 yards of a man-made or enhanced water source......problem solved.
trail cams don't prevent scouting. you just now scout for the right fencepost to put the camera on instead of scouting for the deer.
they really are a safety benefit these days. with Lymes disease and all the less time guys spend walking in the woods the safer they are.
Good hope that is passes.Like Franklin mentioned in Wisconsin just about anything goes and it's reducing the "hunt" to a joke.
No cameras at all or just not during the season?
Quick story......I was complaining to my bowhunting mentor (older gentleman) this spring after I drove 5 hours to hunt and check my cameras on my bear baits. Get there to find out none of them worked for various reasons....operator error, battery and sd card issues across the board! I was so bummed to be hunting that weekend and not "know" what bears were around. Kinda put me in a bad mood to be honest. Well I come back and I'm bitching about my cameras and my mentor says. " You know what Matt? Used to be a big part of the fun and excitement was "NOT KNOWING" what was out there! Anything could come by! We didn't know and that was exciting. Plus when we would see a good deer or whatever tripped our trigger to kill....we would do it and have a blast. Not worrying about not killing a certain deer or waiting or whatever. It was just about fun and being int he moment. I miss that"
I think he's spot on and we're missing out on some aspects of the hunt with the cameras. For the record I'm still using them:) No cell cams for me but I love going to check them. It's like Christmas morning every time. This should be interesting to see it play out.
Like Pat said, good luck with that on private land.
A few irrelevant thoughts from a 67 year old hard core Canadian bushman.
I was given a trail camera years ago and tried it a wee bit - and I sure didn't need it. Never used it again.
I see what's going on in the young hunting world today and for several reasons, I don't particularly like it.
Living in the north country I wasn't aware that some places were imposing restrictions. I'm somewhat relieved that there is beginning to be some brakes being put on.
However, as we all know, the trail camera business and their seemingly essential use for hunting has gotten too big to be harnessed significantly.
I don't use cameras but have seen them. I hunt public ground in Indiana (also a state that wants deer eradicated). I feel the trail cam user thinks the area is his because of the camera put out. I hunt a looooooooong way from the road but if someone put a camera in a spot I want to hunt and thinks it's theirs they better get there before I do!
I say get rid of them.
If only we could turn back the clock hey. I do think hunting would be a better thing if they never existed in the first place
SBH: It will be a complete ban. In my humble opinion, this is all about The Strip.
A few years ago I read an Article in, I think, Bowhunter Mag. It evolved around a guy who had to borrow several more game cameras from a friend in order to have enough surveillance to "hunt" a particular deer. That was the last straw for me. I never renewed my subscription.
I try not to criticize other bowhunters way of doing things. I’ve looked at trail camera photos and even used the info to hunt a couple bucks. I like the idea of less usage of them especially on public land. And I hate being observed while I’m hunting. I hunted when we didn’t have pictures based on rubs and tracks and still do
I have fun with the trail cameras. Almost as fun as hunting sometimes. The anticipation of what might be on there is always fun. I’ve only seen 1 person on my cameras and it was a cowboy checking his cattle. I’ve only killed 2 animals I had on camera even though I hunt in the same general area I hang them. That being said, it wouldn’t hurt my feelings if they got rid of them in Colorado.
I don't particularly care what hunters or anti hunters think are "fair" ways to hunt animals, we're both pretty skewed with our opinions but, I've found those in the middle have a pretty good grasp on it. If you displayed those pictures at the local mall and asked those that are ambivalent to hunting for their thoughts, I don't think the consensus would be favorable.
I use trail cameras to watch my drive way and my house. I know every vehicle that comes in my drive way or any person that comes near my house, day or night. I use black light cams so there is no flash. Have some really nice buck pictures within 10 yards of my house. One was at noon during the rut in November. I also have trail cams near my ground blind so I can see what is in the area. I am not a trophy hunter, I hunt for mature does for the freezer. I would hunt there regardless of a camera since I own the wood and have been hunting the same spots for over 65 years. I like the trail cams.
I agree that they are a lot of fun to use - kind of like running a trap line! Anyway they can obviously be abused - good on AZ for stepping up - it was needed.
Sometimes you get cool photos too!
Sometimes you get cool photos too!
I’m an unapologetic trail cam nut. I run 30 on my NY farm. Guess how many bucks I’ve killed there in 10 years? Two.
IMO trail cams result in fewer deer kills. Let me explain:
My cams go up in July to look for growing bucks and utilization of my food plots. By the opener I have a good idea of every resident buck on my property. Then I hunt for the top 1 or 2 bucks and pass up all others.
Because I am only targeting the most mature bucks I end up letting tons of deer walk that I probably would have shot - had I not known what else was around.
I get just as much satisfaction from learning about the deer on my property as I do about the actual hunting. I love the process of watching individual bucks. For example, I knew when my number 1 buck went into lock down in Ohio. If anything it’s made hunting less successful for me since I’m constantly turning down inferior bucks because I know there’s better ones around. I just passed up a really nice 8 here in Ohio.
If it’s not your cup of tea I can respect that. But there’s lots of assumptions posted above that are simply not realistic. Even with my cell cams it’s not like I can run out to a tree stand and kill a buck that walked by it last night. The only edge I have is in having a pretty accurate inventory of mature bucks throughout the season. I’m particularly interested in what survived the gun season.
Now, this is all about private land, public is entirely different. I actually have no objection to banning public ground cams. I remember seeing guys driving around to waterholes in Arizona checking their trail cams. If I was hunting there I’d be pretty ticked off.
My 2c. I’m sure the purists will disagree. Not looking for a debate, just wanted to share a perspective from someone who utilizes a lot of cams.
I'm wondering why the same forces which stopped the original proposal in 2018 are not expected to prevail once again?
Sorry, but I fail to see why all the rejoicing. I love trail cameras. My kids get so excited about what might be on the SD Card. We’ve seen hawks, eagles, otters, mink, coyotes, bobcats, and dozens of other animals. Yes and Giant bucks.
To suggest people that use cameras don’t scout is just ridiculous. Besides I hunt terrain features, because I know that mature bucks will be visible in those areas. And as to deer hunting without cameras you may never even know a particular buck existed because you may never seem them in daylight. At least you’ll have a picture.
Besides scientists around the globe use trail cameras to further the scientific study of particular species.
And my TrailCam alerted me that this poacher was trespassing on my property. (See attached photo)
Lastly ditto what Pat and Lex said.
I'm all for em. Helped with the arrest and capture of a poacher and thief at our club this year. Now on public l could see be having a short but intense conversation with someone walking around checking cameras while I watched from my stand. ;)
It's not about cameras on private property. It's about an abuse of the use of trail cameras in certain areas. I've seen water holes in Arizona with more cameras on them then I ever thought possible. If you put a stake in the ground other guys would put cameras above & below your camera. If guys would remove them before the 1st season starts regulations wouldn't be talked about. Outfitters running 200-300 cameras!
I wonder what happened to “I don’t give a damn how you hunt” ? That’s been my perspective all of my life, I’m just not into tending other folks’ business, and I’m certainly not into them tending mine. I use cameras, more for entertainment than anything. Just because you catch a nice animal on a camera sure doesn’t mean you’re gonna kill it. As for the inventory part, I put out several mineral blocks each winter and run video on them. I like to see the does and fawns as well as the antler growth. Nothing wrong with that, but I can see where you “purists” (who probably use range finders, releases, hunting apps, wind apps, etc.) can and will find something wrong with anything you don’t agree with. On public the government can mandate whatever they want, but the problem ain’t the cameras, it’s the humans, as always.
drycreek is right about something...."It's the humans, as always." Some guys set up a camera & get a picture of a critter & they think they own the area!
"Some guys set up a camera & get a picture of a critter & they think they own the area!"
That is the issue. I am a bit indifferent, but it is clear that many who are commenting here don't have a sense of the degree of the problem on public land in AZ.
Before this gets too ridiculous, can someone clarify what this proposed ban is? If it's on public land, then let's not make up arguments about how good/useful they are for protecting your private property, or for scientific research, or even your own private "research", in relation to this proposal.
Should be some great deals coming up on ebay!
What Matt said is so true. "it is clear that many who are commenting here don't have a sense of the degree of the problem on public land in AZ."
If everyone knew what is going in AZ I think it might change your mind that something needs to be done in order to regulate the abuse. Spend some time on the strip or unit 9 and you will leave shaking your head.
I live in AZ, run about 15-20 cameras off and on throughout the year and I get a lot of joy out of doing it. However, I still need believe this needs to be controlled on AZ public land. A camera season is a very good Idea IMO. Camera season should run Feb 1st to July 31st.
Ziek: No mention of public land vs private land appears in the two options listed during their commission meeting.
A lot of guys are focusing on the private land use issue. This is really irrelevant here in Arizona. Most of the hunting occurs on public land.(28,000,000 acres). From average forkies to massive 210 inchers! From spikes to 400 inch bulls.....99% occurs on public land. A diy paradise! :)
Like Matt said above: “....... but it is clear that many who are commenting here don't have a sense of the degree of the problem on public land in AZ.”
Somewhere there’s a picture of all the Cam’s on a waterhole, think the ‘strip’...It was quite impressive! ;-)
For the record, this has a ways to go and not a done deal just yet. It’s possible after the public meetings and comment period they may change their mind.....highly unlikely however. The fact it was 5-0 speaks volumes.
I remember that pic of a waterhole with 3 cameras on every fence post. There had to have been 30 total. I've seen public land water holes in Colorado that had similar abuse.
What I don't get is, how can anyone get exited over trail cam pics when they know 30 other guys got the same pics?
It would be nice if they would also address how many people can actively hunt with one tag holder. 20 people hunting and tying up spots, blocking, impeding or in any way impacting another tag holder is not fair to the animal or the other tag holders. 1- 2 people helping is plenty.
The only thing this will prevent is using cameras for the purpose of taking Game in AZ; ie hunters, guides, and outfitters. Joe 6 can still run all the cameras he wants as long as he doesn't use the info for taking, or aid in taking, Game.
This is unit 9 AZ elk season. This was one tree of about 3 that were covered with cameras. This issue is very much an AZ thing as water is such an important resource and animals being scared away from these places is a concern. I can see the reasoning to ban there use in AZ. I run 150+ cameras in Iowa on private land and while I can understand the debate of fair chase in Iowa there really is no resource concern.
Is anyone here from AZ and can detail some of the abuses? When I hunted there I was told by my guide that with cell cams and so many guides helping, hunters were immediately after a deer as soon as the pic came up. They were able to kill deer very soon after they hit water? True? Other problems?
I would be all for banning all trail cameras that “link” live data. I’m not concerned about the vast majority of folks who over visit/utilize their Card required cameras. IMO..same as hunting pressure, if a person is out every weekend pulling cards around my neck of the woods. all for it! Please continue to push those deer to my ground where I practice low impact..
Zick, the order doesn’t state Public land only. Try and keep up or do your own research before spouting off.
If thier was enforcement of quads in closed areas, including driving right up to water sources, a lot of the pressure would go away
The majority of all Arizona hunting takes place on public land. There is very little private land hunting available. Cell trail cams have already been outlawed in the past, so we aren't talking about them either. As far as the Commission voting 5-0 to ban them, the same Commission voted 5-0 NOT to ban them two years ago. The difference now, as I understand it, is that ranchers have become involved and THEY want them banned. These are the same ranchers that are leasing OUR public land to run their cattle, since there is very little private land. I don't think they should get a say about what happens on our public land, but they are a powerful lobby here, and many of the Commissioners usually come from ranching backgrounds.
I have a few on my property. I like to see the bears, and cats. One cam also watches my driveway. I do not inventory deer. I'm not a trophy hunter, I like to eat them. I have only once put a cam on public land, and it was one I didn't care about.
Finally a game commission doing something that will make hunting BETTER
Agree with Shedhead 100%. Hunted unit 8 for elk a couple years ago. There is a map that clearly shows the closed and open roads. I killed 3 days walking a fair distance into water only to be passed or find vehicles already there. One guy asked me how I was and I said exhausted from walking in where people drive on supposedly closed roads. He laughed and said locals consider it unfair and that nobody will enforce it anyway so they will go ahead and keep driving them. It was almost enough to keep me out of Arizona again because the enforcement is confusing and I hate fighting against what is custom vs what is law. Enforce that and trail cams are less of an issue. People won’t walk into get them!
I use trail cams, but they really have minimal impact on where I hunt. On my own land there are two suitable places for ground blinds. I hunt them, regardless of trail cam photos. I hope they are allowed on private land. If people don’t want to use them, that’s fine, don’t use them and allow those that prefer to use them to do so, on private land.
Ezbreazy- you should c it in 6a
Cameras are great deterrent to trespassing. No way they can ban security cameras on private land. Security cams however have no place on public lands, and are in fact an invasion of privacy on public property.
This was in my driveway, you can see my garage.
This is also in my driveway but you can't see the garage because the deer is so close to the camera.
My trail cam took a pic of a mountain lion in my back yard in a Minneapolis suburb several years ago. It was 50’ from my back door. Sent a copy of it to fish and game, never got a response from them.
I have put a couple cameras in my yard to get photos of deer, a lion, foxes & raccoons but that's not what this thread is about. It is about guys running 100's of cameras on public land in Arizona year round. Dozens of cameras on a single water hole on public ground. Nobody's taking your security camera from your front porch.
"These are the same ranchers that are leasing OUR public land to run their cattle, since there is very little private land. I don't think they should get a say about what happens on our public land, but they are a powerful lobby here, and many of the Commissioners usually come from ranching backgrounds."
Devil's advocate: why should ranchers who pay to lease the land not have a say in deference to the rest of us who do not?
My understanding, and please correct me if I am wrong, is that in many places in AZ the water sources that game is dependent on were developed by ranchers. In some cases, they truck water into these water sources for their cattle which also benefits wildlife.
I hunt about 200 miles from my house. I Love putting my cameras out in January and seeing what deer made it thru rifle season. Then in the spring I enjoy seeing an estimate of how many fawns are born. Watching the growth of the bucks antlers is hard to beat. I very seldom use a camera to pick a spot to hunt as the deer patterns drastically change when October rolls around. I still scout like crazy but my cameras sure make it exciting for what may pop out during the hunting season. The term hit list is a joke to me.
We will only be able to hunt in this country as long as we have an overall favorable image among the 95% who don't hunt. We must be cognizant of how we conduct ourselves at all times and the single most important factor is "fair chase hunting".
Questionable or indefensible actions that can harm our image should be fair game since our future depends on it. When any practice gets out of hand it is up to us and our governing bodies to curtail those behaviors. Trail camera usage in many area has gotten out of hand. I think this is a normal response to what is going on in Arizona.
They should also address radio communications between the hunter and a spotter and also non hunters, usually friends of someone who actually has a tag, intimidating and harassing licensed hunters in an effort to help their friend who has the tag and keep others from being successful.
I'm all for being able to use trail cameras for scouting purposes but it has to be done in an ethical manner. What is happening in AZ in certain areas is no longer ethical. It harms all of us.
David, you said “ It is about guys running 100's of cameras on public land in Arizona year round. ” and yet the proposed bill that was posted here says nothing of the sort nor does it stipulate public land only. The wording is pretty straightforward. Now what was posted might not be the actual bill, but for now that’s all anyone has to go by.
I guess the beauty of never having used one is that this thought doesn’t trouble me at all.
Kind of a shame, though… Since we won’t be getting any more of those crystal clear shots of Bigfoot....
I don't see this coming to the whitetail world. The issue in the West, specifically the more arid areas of the West are just a world away from the whitetail world when you factor in scarce water and public vs private land - two completely different conversations.
.......and that is a shame
Why are so many of you upset by this almost everyone who has commented are not even Arizona residents. So you don’t understand that its definitely for the best.
I’m a resident, and yes on the Strip and certain drier elk units, it’s a problem. Having said that, the commission seems to want to throw the baby out with the bath water. As I’ve previously posted, they need to address the issue. Cameras at water holes! Simply make it illegal to have a camera within 150 yards (or what ever distance) of a man-made water source (guzzler, dirt tank, enhanced spring, etc). Problem solved.......and those who run a camera on a ridge, a saddle, or canyon can still use them ethically.
Away from water sources and from Feb-July
No reason to have a season if you eliminate the water hole issue. There are ZERO conflicts or issues away from that.
"Why are so many of you upset by this almost everyone who has commented are not even Arizona residents. So you don’t understand that its definitely for the best."
...says a person who does not appear to be an Arizona resident either...
Matt, you make some very good points regarding the ranchers having built many of the water sources. Perhaps there should be a difference between those built by ranchers (normally dirt tanks) versus those built with our hunting license or donated funds, trick tanks. As far as ranchers paying to lease the land having a say, and those of us that don't shouldn't (implied) be allowed to have a say, we do pay hunting license and tag fees. We are paying for the use of those lands, just like the ranchers that lease them to run cattle. We are just paying a different entity.
In favor of!! As usual though it’s not the cameras, it’s most of the people with the cameras.
Down where I live in the south, all I see is the unreal pressure applied to the deer but “camera checkers”
Every hunting club around here has unimaginable “hunters” doing nothing but traveling all over through the woods damn near daily just to check their cameras.
They no doubt spend double the time looking and tormenting the woods to check cameras then they ever do going to hunt!
It’s no surprise where cameras have been limited on club all of a sudden the deer sightings go up!
It’s just like the mud motors and the impact to the ducks down here.
Every half ass wanna be “Hunter” riding around on their atv or mud boat tormenting wildlife just to check their spots.
It’s a shame that the people they use these things responsibly have to suffer though for the bad apples. Some people should just play golf and stop wanting to be Instagram hunters
I hunt Az every year and have since 96’. I’ve watched as this became a problem. So while I may not be a resident I’ve hunted Az as much if not more than some residents.
I'm not necessarily against some controlling of trail cams, possibly the use of them during the actual hunting seasons. But the driving irritation to many of those making negative comments regarding trail cam use seems to be the appearance of a dozen or more trail cameras on a single tank. While that may seem shocking to those that hunt private land in other states, where that is not going to happen, it doesn't seem that crazy when you consider that a particular hunt may have hundreds of permitted hunters and dozens of licensed guides. Shouldn't each hunter (or guide) be allowed to put a camera on any particular tank, where legal? If there are hundreds of hunters with permits, and dozens of guide services that hunt that unit, it's actually kind of shocking that there are ONLY a dozen or so cameras on any given tank! There is no rational reason that 12 or 15 cameras should be more or less offensive than one on a tank. It's purely a knee jerk emotional reaction. Isn't that what we argue against when looking at the emotional irrational comments of anti-hunters? The existence of a number of cameras on one tank should not be the reason to ban cameras, as many seem to suggest. Some hunters are also offended by the fact that certain large guide services place a camera on many or most of the tanks in their hunting areas. One camera from each guide service quickly adds up to a dozen or more cameras on a tank, but doesn't each of them deserve the opportunity to place a camera on that water if legal? Why then should the appearance of 12 cameras on a tank be somehow much more offensive than one camera? The large number of cameras owned by each guide service could be addressed by a law limiting them (or an individual hunter) from placing more than a certain number of cameras (required registration) in a hunt unit, if desired. However, in my opinion, any action taken should be based on the manner in which hunters and guides treat each other on these hunts, "checking" their cameras during peak prime times etc. in order to prevent the hunter currently sitting the tank from taking the animal the camera checker wants to take, etc. The placement of multiple cameras is not causing the problem, and the removal of them won't resolve the real problems. Many guides post junior guides at each tank they want to "reserve" in the early morning hours each day, even though they have no intent to bring a hunter to that tank until late that day or maybe even another day. They pose like they are there to hunt it, but the hunter is not present. Often, they will sit in a blind at the tank for 12-15 hours and the hunter will show-up just a couple of hours before dark, after the guide has kept other hunters away for the entire day. Although the regulations say that the "hunter must be present", they do nothing to enforce that. There are not penalties against their doing it, so it continues. I don't see game and fish dealing with those type of issues, which to me are much more out of control than the fact that 300 hunters happen to post 12 cameras at the same tank!
^...good post Stick!
Never hunted AZ. Is it realistic to build more water holes, tanks, or guzzlers to spread out the competition?
I enjoy using them, my problem with them is on public land. Too often I see them being left year round, "holding" spots. People putting lots of cams out saving several spots. Its getting out of hand on these public areas! There needs to be some public land limits. I have an area in Nebraska where a few guys put out 10 plus cams all year on one parcel! I dont bother walking around them while walking in and out anymore! Again I put a few out, but it IS getting out of controle! And don't get me started on the Treestands being left out every year, all year on public. And that's not limited to deer. I'm seeing more and more elk hunting in colorado, where they are definately being left out multiple years!
“ move them 150 yards from a water source and problem solved“
I would disagree with that. Still have the same number of people coming to that water hole. 150 yards is nothing. Make it a half mile and you may be you have something
But even then that could be a problem. Now you have people who were putting one camera put three cameras to cover the major trails. So I doubt you could make a law like that that really solves the problem
"As far as ranchers paying to lease the land having a say, and those of us that don't shouldn't (implied) be allowed to have a say,..."
My implication is not that people who are not leasing federal land to run cattle shouldn't have a say. I was questioning your opinion that the people who do and are among the most vested in that public land should have no say. How do you justify that?
"We are paying for the use of those lands, just like the ranchers that lease them to run cattle. We are just paying a different entity."
That isn't really true in so far as hunting license and tags fees are concerned, as those are paid to the state of AZ to allow you to hunt the game that resides on federal land. The ranchers are paying lease fees to the federal government for a specific use of that property. I do not think it is reasonable to believe that buying a hunting license in AZ should put you on equal footing as someone who leases federal property and whose living is tied to that property.
JL: "Is it realistic to build more water holes, tanks, or guzzlers to spread out the competition?"
It's always possible to build more, but that takes money and manpower. G&F has been building more, and replacing old broken down metal storage tanks, but it takes time. This year, in one of the very top elk units that I was in, virtually every single dirt tank in the unit was dry. It's not efficient to pour water into a dry dirt tank without most of it just soaking into the ground. Volunteers and non-profit wildlife agencies were hauling water around the clock every day, to refill the metal G&F trick tanks, but the elk (and sometimes cattle) were draining them as quickly as they were filled. They told me that some tanks were going through 1,200 gallons per day. The relatively few available tanks (due to all the dirt tanks being dry) caused worse problems than normal this year for hunter conflicts.
I’d be happy with a ban on cameras on all public land nationwide!
Private land. Knock yourself out but public is a different story.
Trust me, if they can’t put it on water, they won’t bother putting them on all the trails.
In regards to Arizona specific.....BOHNTR has the most simplistic and easiest fix to this issue! Unfortunately, gov’t agencies tend to take the most difficult path to a solution. Water is EVERYTHING in Arizona.
Trust me, if they can’t put it on water, they won’t bother putting them on all the trails.
Sounds like a bit of A rodeo
can people still hire people to scout for them ? guides/outfitters etc ?
how's that much different than having a camera doing the scouting for you ?
“ Trail cameras can be a great learning tool with the game you are pursuing that even boots on the ground will never teach someone. ”
If that were to be true… Then I guess I would have to ask myself whether we are still talking about Fair Chase. If it ONLY works when we are dependent on modern technology, then how are the animals expected to be able to adapt to that? They can’t. Sounds like a pretty straightforward case of an unfair advantage to me.
I really enjoyed SBH is post about the older gentleman; for me, being surprised by whatever comes along is part of the enjoyment of the whole thing. And in states where the dear managers are on a mission to reduce numbers? Then in those cases, the cameras are clearly going to work at cross purposes with management objectives, because you will have people passing on animals that they would cheerfully take without a moment’s hesitation if they did not know that there was something bigger frequenting the area.
You get right down to it, and trail cameras have absolutely NOTHING to do with Hunting, and EVERYTHING to do with killing “trophy” animals.
And most of us have seen and know all too well just how ugly and possessive people can get once large amounts of bone are involved.
Honestly, I’m beginning to think that P & Y and B & C are probably the worst things that ever happened to Sport Hunting.
^....GF sez........."Honestly, I’m beginning to think that P & Y and B & C are probably the worst things that ever happened to Sport Hunting."
Interesting thought to consider. Under that context you presented....I would add QDMA to that list too.
Wish it was illegal in Utah. They are everywhere including deep into the wilderness areas. Every InstaFaceTuber need their “hit list” after all. Heck now they are even packing bait way back there to get pics. It’s ridiculous. Nothing will change it because the outfitters and SFW/BGF have the state by the balls.
Heck of a ‘used’ camera sale coming soon...Maybe! :-)
Everyone entitled to there opinion, here's mine. Utah is the Poster Boy for bad behavior. No states system should be set up for people to put out hundreds of cameras. There system of selling tags to the highest bidder in the premium units. With anyone that wants having the option to be a guide. Leads to everybody and there dog putting cameras out for finical gain!!!!! It spilled over to Nevada & Arizona. They tried to implement there systems in New Mexico, Idaho & Montana but there plan failed, Thank God! Nevada has put in restrictions to slow it somewhat, looks like Arizona has had enough also! Just think how many more Trophy Class animals would be be out there if this nonsense wasn't going on! Guess everyone's take on fair chase is a little different. Mark
Interesting perspective Mark. I drew the strip tag a few years ago and asked an outfitter how he could afford to run 300+ cameras (cost of cameras, boxes, locks, cards, batteries, fuel...). He told me that the auction hunters pay for it all... and then some. Blew my mind.... Ed F
Horns are a fun part of hunting and one of the worst things about hunting at the same time.
Maybe we can start banning the dump truck sized loads of corn guys are “hunting” over next.
I drew a elk tag in Nevada this year. I was told that 2 or 3 of the outfitters give people hundreds of cameras to put out at there own expense. They then send pictures of the animals to the outfitters. If one of the animals they send pictures of is killed they get 10,000 dollars. I think it was for Silver state & auction tags. That's just what the locals told me?
""Horns are a fun part of hunting and one of the worst things about hunting at the same time.""
^...yup. IMO....when they go from "fun" to "obsession" it hurts hunting and it's traditions. Social regs start popping up that only fuel the obsession. Shame on us for letting that happen.
Blaming pope and young club for what has become of hunting due to the pursuit of trophies it’s like blaming the scale for the fat ass standing on it
IMO, running trail cams is a bit of a hobby and really helps me to get out more during the off season, and it's about the only thing that kept me sane during this pandemic, since I'm working from home full time and will be indefinitely, because our office will be closing.
For public land I can understand, which they are on federally owned land here in WI - can't leave out overnight, so not a complete ban, but who's going to set one up for 12 hours? To say they're a replacement for scouting is a mute point. Most people who hunt private and/or public land, know the land already and stand locations are already determined. Honestly, how often do you trail cam naysayers 'scout' their land - how many hours/days a season? What gets people out more, who run multiple trail cams, especially in various areas, is the checking of the cards and relocating them. It's hard for me to go more than two weeks in the summer without downloading/swapping cards. If I don't check them, those new growth weeds growing up in front of the cam could've filled up my card in several days. If I couldn't use trail cams, I'd rarely go out, and every weekend I run cams, I'm walking a few miles. I don't want to go out and just wander around to 'scout', I don't care where they are at that time, but I know where they'll be at various times in the fall.
Since the land I hunt really doesn't change, except crop rotation, the biggest thing I've come away with over the years of running trail cams is specific days in the fall, give or take a day or two, is when the mature bucks are on their feet during daylight. I see this year after year, as well as seeing it on cams that are spread out several miles, regardless of moon, and in most cases, the weather.
In all honesty, in my senior years, I could see myself giving up hunting, but still run trail cams. And to those of you who think 'cell cams' solves the problem of not having to visit cams as frequent, not really, they can be a bit 'buggy' at times and you have to go troubleshoot them.
Blaming pope and young club for what has become of hunting due to the pursuit of trophies is like blaming the scale for the fat ass standing on it
Coueswhitetail.com is conducting a camera ban pole if you want to take it
If it weren't for B&C there wouldn't be any big game to hunt. If it weren't for P&Y you wouldn't have half the archery only seasons that you have today. We would all do well to learn a little bit more about wildlife conservation over the pass 150 years.
I love the scale and fat guy analogy. Spot on.
I live in AZ and yes I have seen the stupidity... But I just signed a petition against this! Stop taking My rights away! and I only own two trail cams and they are set up at my house!
The funniest thing about this whole thread is that no one has even laid out the problem with the trail cameras in Arizona?! Other than there are lots of them at a water hole and people check them lots?!
I’m late to this party but am really astounded at the number of folks saying this is a great idea! This proposal will meet some hefty resistance, whether it does any good or not. Bottom line is lots of AZ hunters (myself included) don’t believe Game and Fish should be enacting legislation with zero concrete evidence of any type of a problem that effects wildlife. There is just no science at all backing this up and it’s based on a group of people who don’t “feel” like using game cams are appropriate. Many of us use cameras as just one of the tools we have for hunting. They’re far from a sure thing. As Stickflicker already pointed out, live feed cameras have already been made illegal. Some of us enjoy the recreation of running cameras and viewing pictures with our kids and families each year. It can be a really great way to get your kids involved in the outdoors and to learn a little something about animal habits and behavior. This is a potential regulation that is aimed at a few and will effect all. To me it’s not much different than the banning of “assault weapons “ due to the acts of a few people.
As hunters, we owe it to ourselves to resist unnecessary legislation that effects other hunters. If there were scientific evidence of trailcams causing problems to wildlife it would be a different story. I’ll be standing with other AZ residents who see this as an abuse of power. Don’t punish the masses for the actions of a few.
As unsightly as it may be to see dozens of cams at a waterhole, I agree with AZBUGLER. There are a LOT more pressing issues to be focused on IMO.
I've never used a trail cam, or even own one. Live too far to responsibly run cameras in the places I hunt. That said For the Record I am against this action by the Commission for the reasons AZBugler stated and a few other reasons. This is BS!
I understand banning on public ground... maybe. But not on private ground. One more freedom gone. I suspect that there will be more freedoms lost in the coming few years. My 2 cents.
Private land is more or less irrelevant with regard to hunting in AZ.
I'll preface this with I have 3 cameras and enjoy playing with them. The anticipation of what might on the card is exciting to me. As to Mike U. question above regarding what's the problem, I'm gonna take a guess and you guys can flame away on me if I'm off base here. I'm guessing this has ALOT to do with the 13A,13B archery deer hunts. With numerous cameras on many waterholes, all of the guides generally know where the largest bucks are located. I think the problem arises when several of the tag holders are located in a very small portion of the unit targeting a buck or two they got on trail cam in the prior weeks. This in turn causes frustration on all parties involved because most have waited at least 10-15 years to draw this coveted tag and now you're finally on the hunt only to have god knows how many other hunters and guides around you because y'all know what is in the area.
My question is, what is G&F trying to accomplish with this rule? Are they trying to disperse the hunters and force them to get out and cover more ground? Are they trying to stick it to the guides? Are they trying to slow down the number of whoppers taken every year to improve the quality?
Again, I have 3 cameras and consider myself a mild user of them. I've never had all three out at the same time. I look forward to other suggestions as to what is motivating the dept to do this.
I only hunted AZ once, back in '99. Had a cow tag. Didn't see any trail cams up where I hunted, about 40 miles west of Show Low. I did see a bunch of powered hang gliders and small aircraft cruising the skies over the open areas up that way while I was hiking and scouting.
I think there was some sort of regulation concerning that activity, but it didn't seem to have been enforced effectively. Not sure how the proposed one would be, either. Looks like it would be a very labor-intensive one to enforce effectively. Probably would end up reducing the numbers close to the waterholes for a few months, and then be another rarely enforced rule that only limits the actions of those of us who voluntarily obey the rules, similar to the baiting ban here in Indiana. Might cause an uptick in drone sales.
Now if someone proposes a ban on effectively unenforceable regulations, I'd sign on.
Hello, hello anyone out there? Any Arizonites who can say why the trail cameras are a problem in Arizona that needs to be banned? So far we have that there is an equal opportunity to put another one at a waterhole with lots of them already there and everyone is getting pics of the same deer and people check the cameras a lot?? Sounds horrible?!
Arizona game and fish is a business first and foremost. They view the game camera as a tool that has allowed the tag holder to become more successful for almost all big game hunts. They in turn have to manage the carrying capacity of the land in each unit. the higher the hunter success the less tags they can issue. Its simple they want more hunters in the field which generates more tag sales and hunter opportunity. Think of it all you ever here in Arizona is most guys complain of i never get a tag. I guess the only complaint i have with AZ is 80 percent of our tags go to a free for all and 20 percent to the bonus point pool. how about 50/50 and keep that point creep down.
Bingo Mike U. Not a "problem" unless you are the kind of person who gets all butthurt when you realize your little slice of hunting heaven is neither secret or private, even though you only walked about 39 yards from your 1000cc Razor to put up a camera at your honeyhole, only to realize someone else got there first.
I am not an AZ resident but spend some time hunting and/or helping guide friends every year. My guess is a lot of the rancher complaints are about there livestock constantly being pushed off water sources by people checking cameras. One of the largest land owners in AZ that allow public hunting The Babbit Ranch have banned cameras on there land for this reason. The constant driving in to the wildlife water sources keeps all animals from drinking in the daylight. Last year there was one water tank contaminated with diesel fuel to keep the elk from going to it because one other group had claimed that spot. Also hundreds of cameras are stolen each year and I think AZ fish and game is tired of that. If someone has never hunted in that environment it is hard to imagine how important water is.
Some guys are "Sugar Coating" the trail camera problem in Arizona as a none issue. The competition for killing the biggest mule deer on the strip & elk in a couple units is reducing the quality of the hunts for lots of hunters. If people can't live without using trail cameras make everyone remove them before the earliest season in each unit. After that that should be considered trash & taken out just like discarded beer or soda cans!
Mike, back in the day I was sitting at a waterhole in AZ while elk hunting. We had a guy drive up and park his side by side 100 yards from the water and climb into "his" tree stand over "his" waterhole. We pointed out to him that we were there first, but he stated it was public land and he had every right to be there. Ethics be damned.
This guy did the same thing to my hunting partner at a different water hole a few days later.
In those cases, there wasn't even a trail camera involved. When cameras are involved, these sorts start to think beyond "my" waterhole and in terms of "my" elk. Some will go to great lengths to intimidate other hunters to keep them away from "their" area, blocking roads with signs or vehicles, having friends without tags sit waters when they cannot, etc. Not to mention the deleting of memory cards, vandalism, and theft that occurs with the cameras themselves.
This sort of behavior tends to result in altercations of various degrees, and I know of one case where it got to the point where a hunter poured the contents of his pee bottle onto the tree steps of another hunter. Crazy
As with most things you have a few A holes messing it up for everybody. For almost every other area besides 13s and maybe 9 this isn't really an issue for most hunters. There are a lot of wildlife water catchments out there that exclude cattle by design, guess what, those will be off limits for cams too.
All that is really beside the point. We just went through this 2 years ago. Apparently some people were not happy with the results so they got in touch with their California transplant State Rep who ran two bills, one banning cams, the other banning hunting at water. Rep pulled his bills when someone with Game and Fish promised they would handle it through their process. You are seeing that play out now. This Article is outside their normal cycle so the most recent Commission meeting they were voting to open it. Their 5 year review did not cover this issue. This stinks bad if you ask me and has politics written all over it, not science or wildlife management. BS!
Similar to the Chute Plane problems a few years back. Guys abused the use of them & they got regulated. Just have all cameras out of the woods before the 1st season starts in that unit. They are supposed to be scouting cameras not hold a spot cameras.
Amazing all of you posting wanting to ban.... Absolutely Incredible you are in favor of more lost hunting rights of hunters? Since it is an emotional personal opinion for camera's. Where is the factual data, studies, research and or documentation that cameras are causing all the hearsay of concerns? A state law should not be changed based on how people feel.... What we know all across our lands is each year we loose more and more hunting tools, opportunities. I am sure each of you can tell a story of a hunting measure, that we will never have again. Sure seems like Bowsite (us united bowhunters) are as divided as our country is through politics.. ugggg
I’m not for an all out ban....but honestly, your statement that trail cameras are a hunting right couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s a piece of equipment. Big difference, IMO.
BOHNTR So the public who are not hunting can place them without any fear or regulations. They have the freedom and rights without any concerns. But if a hunter (a valid license holder) does he a criminal under this measure. That my friend is lost hunting rights- A hunter will never be able to place a camera on public land again if passed.
You need to learn the difference between a right and a priviledge.
+1 Matt. People have forgotten that, I’m afraid.
I know of people abusing them (IMO) especially with the instant email, they use it as a "he's there, lets go" type of thing. That said, it's just a scouting tool, no more or less.
I use them for fun (wife LOVES seeing the pictures) but also to scout to figure out morning/evening stands or spots. Also great for new areas/animals that you aren't used to sorting out habits.
Heck we've used them to see what was pulling a have-a-heart trap off our deck every night, turns out a fat racoon was stealing the food, then getting stuck in there! Pretty funny pictures.
I do make sure to pull them all before hunting starts, just don't want that temptation for hunters who wander by.
So a guy will still be able to get a non hunting friend to put the camera out? That law “won’t hunt”
Yeah, don't think for a second that hunters will still find a creative way to use them... especially guides and posse hunters. Ed F
Guys will continue to set them on ridges trails and in draws and continue to kill trophy mule deer every year and trophy bulls caught on cam
It’s now official: Commission just voted 5-0 to a full ban on trail cam use in Arizona. Will go into effect January 2022.
I think its a good thing for the animals. But when money is involved people always seem to find a way. Hope it helps.
Wow. Just public or private as well?
Is this banned for hunting or for any use? Because if it's only hunting, there will be a lot of cameras deployed for "bird watching" and "monitoring illegals"...
Anyone who uses a trail cam for hunting needs either to be cured of the obsession of antlers or needs to learn true hunting skills, woodsmanship, and how to EARN their success.
Trail cams and baiting should be banned on all public land, nationwide.
Prior to the recent vote, The proposed trail camera language reads:
“A person shall not use a trail camera, or images from a trail camera, for the purpose of taking or aiding in the take of wildlife, or locating wildlife for the purpose of taking or aiding in the take of wildlife.”
If approved, trail cameras used for research, general photography, cattle operations or any other reason other than the take of wildlife would remain legal.
“Take” means pursuing, shooting, hunting, fishing, trapping, killing, capturing, snaring or netting wildlife or placing or using any net or other device or trap in a manner that may result in capturing or killing wildlife.
“Trail camera” means an unmanned device used to capture images, video, or location data of wildlife.
Good for Arizona. I hope Colorado follows their lead.
As an AZ resident with 19-20 cameras, I am not disappointed by this ruling. Something needed to be done and in a couple of years we will have hopefully forgotten about them. Time to move on.
I predict you will see many other western states or states with lots of public land doing the same thing.
All for it. And twice on Baiting.
Sounds like AZG&F needs to get a handle on their public hunting rules, regs, and enforcement, before they blame the previously foreseeable and inevitable evolution of the trail cam.
I'm fairly certain that it IS NOT limited to public land as was said previously. It is a Game and Fish law regarding the taking of animals. If you cannot take an animal using a camera, it really doesn't matter if your camera is on public or private ground.
I don’t have land in Arizona but if I did I’d be damned if someone would keep me from putting a camera on it. Of course it would be pretty easy to justify general photography or checking on livestock on private ground. I have cellular cameras set up on stock tanks as it is. Saves a lot of gas to be able to check water from the house.
As much as I enjoy using trail cameras because they are fun, I think hunting as a whole would be a much better situation if they never existed.
LINK, cellular cameras were already made illegal a couple of years ago in AZ.
A3 and Mossback are going to have to increase their staff.
Hopefully next on the agenda is stiffer penalties and more patrolling of atv/utv use on closed roads. I swear doesn’t anyone use thier damn feet anymore for anything?!?
"Spotters" and finder's fees are no different incentives than trail cameras are...
Agreed on the hired "spotters" and finder's fees.
That Jimmy John elk hunt last year epitomized many things that are screwed up with Arizona's big game hunting, and hunting in general across the US, IMO. I was actually surprised and dissappointed there were so many Bowsiters who defended that whole debacle of a so-called "hunt".
I don’t think Trail cams have never aided me in hunting Personally. I have a few and set them out once in awhile for fun. It is fun to set them out and get a pic of a lion going by, or a bear, Or a big bull on a wallow. I don’t really Use them for hunting as the animals I hunt in Colorado (mule deer, elk,) never seem to do the same thing twice but it’s still fun to be able to use them. Unlike some people I hope they don’t ban them in other states
Good for you Justin. Entirely too much tunnel vision out there regarding trail cameras IMO. If you ask me, the closed minded tossing all trail cam use by hunters under one big negative umbrella isn't much different than anti-gun folks saying all gun owners are potential threats to society. Both are examples of perception versus reality.
BOHNTR s solution is a logical happy medium.
I am not an AZ resident so I will roll with what they choose to do. BUT I can tell you guys that if they leave the door open for " Birdwatchers" and " Amateur Wildlife Biologists" you will have the same number of cameras at every tank. The boys will roll in their ranger wearing homemade PETA shirts and swear up and down that they don't work for XYZ outfitter. It will be nearly impossible to enforce and so it will be another law that does nothing to address the problem.
Trail camera use, sort of like that can be used as "bait" for deer, as follows.
Posted October 8, 2013 All of this can be quite confusing, and there are numerous regulations that cover these topics depending on which critter you may be hunting.
There are federal regulations that are rather broad regarding baiting waterfowl or migratory birds. Don't even think about it. You can hunt around normal agricultural practices or food plots.
Bears have had a prohibition on baiting for quite a while. Again, don't even think about it. These are state regulations, but again preclude virtually any baiting of bears.
During the last year, additional state rules were promulgated that regulate the placement of bait for other big game. There are 4 things that are exempted. Those things are: (1) water (so you can place water out to bait in deer), (2) salt (you can use water softener salt or white salt blocks, or even organic sea salt if you wish), or (3) salt-based products manufactured for the livestock industry (so you can use a trace mineral salt block). Finally, you can hunt over a nutritional supplement that has been placed by a livestock producer for his livestock (so you can hunt over a molasses wheel, but you can't place the molasses wheel yourself).
Cervid urine is another recent change (prohibition). The recent rules were intended to address potential CWD issues in part, and the cervid urine is that entirely. You can use a synthetic, but not the real stuff. If you use the real stuff, you are spreading urine from captive game farm cervids. Urine carries prions, which are involved in CWD transmission. Consequently, you are spreading captive cervid urine, which is where the most likely source of CWD may come from, around Arizona where no CWD currently occurs. Synthetics won't spread the prions or CWD.
Hopefully this clears up some of this confusion.
Game Branch Chief, Arizona
Stick flicker my cellular cameras are in OK. My only point is it is ridiculous to dictate that a landowner couldn’t put a camera on his property.
I doubt many folks will stop using them if they become illegal......................
When will Game and Fish start the buyback program for our trail cameras that they have made unusable? Isn't that the Democrat thing to do? They have gun buybacks so that the guns don't go out and commit crimes (assumably on their own since they are inherently evil). Shouldn't they also buy back the evil trail cameras that go out and do unspeakable things?
Are they going to enforce it like they do offroading, road closures etc? Maybe shoplifting in CA? Should be fun....