Contributors to this thread:
Trail cam quandary
Has anyone ever had a trail camera not take a picture when a large animal was in front of it? I'm completely perplexed by a situation that occurred two days ago. My covert camera had been set up on a bear bait for roughly 3 weeks and taking pictures of red squirrels, coons, bluejays, owls, rabbits, and numerous bears. I went in to hunt the stand and walked past the camera to get to my tree and got set up for a 5 hour sit. A nice boar bear showed up in good light and circled around in front of the bait right in the cameras point of aim and started eating. I looked him over for a couple minutes and got my composure , picked my bow from it's hanger , put my release on the d loop and prepared for the shot. The bear was settled in nicely so I drew , picked a spot an cut a shaft loose. The arrow was true and the bear jumped and rolled then bailed out directly away from me to crash and die about 50 yards from the scene. I proceeded to climb down from my stand to find my arrow and passed in front of the camera , stood where the bear was laying when I shot him then went off in the direction I thought I heard him crash. I didn't find him where I thought I had last heard him so I went back to the bait and found blood and took up the trail. Good blood and torn up pine Duff led me to a very dead bear. I pulled the camera and when I got home to check out the pictures. I was dismayed to find no pictures of the bear I shot. The camera took pictures of me each time I was at the bait. Pictures when I walked in , looking for my arrow and coming back to get the blood trail ! No pictures of the bear or any other critter that came to the bait for about a 4 hour period of time. I can't figure out what happened. Has anybody ever had something similar happen?
It could have had something to do with time lapse between photos,I haven't used a covert but my brownings work 1 week and not the next thats why they are being replaced by moultries
Yes I've had that issue but no idea why cams sometimes fail to trigger.
All the time. I setup 2 cameras at the same spot last year and each one caught deer the other didnt. Setup a 3rd camera 10 yds away and got totally different deer.
Bears are the WORST. I think there must be something to do with the black fur sucking up whatever it is that senses movement. That coupled with the fact that they move slowly. I think the black fur does it because if you ever notice rangefinders also have a hard time picking up bears because the laser doesn't bounce off their fur easily. I don't have any idea how the movement detection works on trail cams but I do know they have issues with bears. As you say it worked on you every time you walked past so I wouldn't sweat it. That's just bears.
What was the temp that day. Not sure if this is the case here. TC need both movement AND heat variances (body heat). Hard to say but maybe with all the fat and fur there wasn’t enough heat from the bear to trigger the camera??
Did it have weak batteries? Low battery power can also cause weird reactions from a TC. Remember it is electronics, things just happen sometimes for no logical reason.
I have to agree with APauls and Hunt98. I did a search on Covert cameras and this is on one of their webpages--
Covert Cameras are motion and heat activated
That big mass of hair etc is not going to give you much of a heat signature.
Check trigger speed and time between pics.
I think they all do it. I've had Bushnells that I know should have picked up a deer pic and didn't. I had six bucks chasing a young doe once a few years ago and three bucks and the doe ran directly in front of the camera. Nada !
What is your PIR sensitivity set at?
No sensitivity setting on my cameras. Pretty basic units. I'm just starting to use trail cams so it's all new to me. I figured a bait site would be a great place to learn how they work. I'm learning! At a different bait the camera missed another bear for sure because in one frame a heavy log was moved from where it was in the previous picture. Both pictures showed no animal but the log was clearly moved. Ghost bears... Or Bigfoot. Thanks for the replies .
Does the cam have an aim function? If so...do some testing with the angles you have the cam attached to the tree. Do you have the cam too high on the tree? Is it facing the sun?
Facing north. Thigh high on the tree. Got lots of bear pics , just not of the one I shot. Aim point had the bears center frame. ??? The bear I shot was on the bait for 3 to 5 minutes before I shot him.
Great question. With trail cameras we're dealing with technology that typically cost less than $250 per camera. The components are cheap. They fail, especially when the battery power, using alkaline batteries, reaches 74%. I gave up on alkaline batteries years ago and now use Energizer Ultimate Lithiums for all of my cameras. In the long run they are cheaper. When I've had similar trouble it is usually because of the battery levels. Your camera, being thigh high, was set correctly. Most of the trail cam instructional videos on YouTube have some guy setting the camera up at eye level. That results in horrible detection and camera angle every time. But that's not your situation. Cheap electronics and low battery levels would be where I'd point to first.
I always set up multiple cameras at each site so I know how the cameras are performing. One other thing to consider is the distance to the bait. I'd suggest 15 yards max from the camera to the bait. Once I get more than 20 yards out the PIR sensor does not work as well.
I hope this helps.
Camera was sabotaged by an anti... hope this helps. :) JK