I imagine most people reading this use trail cameras if they hunt whitetail deer, turkeys, and other big game animals.  A lot has changed in recent years.  The big, bulky cameras have been replaced by smaller, more sophisticated models that are user friendly.

I have trail cameras scattered across my hunting grounds all season long.  I use them as a scouting tool to learn the patterns of the deer in the area I am hunting throughout the summer and the season.  There is nothing like putting leather to the ground and doing some old-fashioned scouting, but cameras allow the hunter to leave the area undisturbed while still being able to pattern deer, and other critters.  The key is to go in and check the camera once a week so the deer do not feel pressured.

Even though cameras are great for scouting, and seeing what deer survived the season, but I get more enjoyment out of their use during the spring time of year over any other time.

Bucks are beginning to grow their antlers back, it is the time of year that does will be having fawns, and the deer are often in family groups.

It is fun to watch the progression of a buck’s antler growth from spring, and on throughout the summer.  I will have to admit that I get a little excited when I see the first signs of antler growth on a trail camera photo.

I am still a softy at heart, and I love catching photos of young fawns.  An added feature on most cameras is a video mode.  This is a great time of year to use that mode to catch some neat videos of young fawns interacting with their mother.

If you have not invested in a trail camera yet, or you do not have yours out let because you think it is too early, think again.  You will more than likely get some really neat photos, and it in never too

  1. Spray your camera with scent-elimination spray and use rubber gloves when handling and installing the device. Your scent may spook game, and the salt from hand perspiration is a magnet to bears. Otherwise, you may get one great image of bruin tonsils, but that’s all.
  2. Test the camera once in place. Even better, practice at home on a bird feeder or bird bath to make sure you know where the camera shoots and how it operates. You may want stills or video and you must know how to adjust for each. Such projects are great for keeping youngsters entertained in summer months.
  3. Finally, invest in quality batteries. I love the dollar stores as much as the next guy, but you want batteries that will last a long time. The gas from one trip will easily pay for the difference in battery cost.

Motion-activated and time-lapse trail cameras have revolutionized deer hunting, but if you only use these cool devices a few months of the year, you’re missing an exciting hobby and could lose out on a wealth of great outdoor information.

Below is a video of the new trail camera Wildgame Innovations has out for 2018.  Check it out.


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Jason Houser
Jason Houser is an avid traditional bowhunter from Central Illinois who killed his first deer when he was nine years old. A full-time freelance writer since 2008, he has written for numerous national hunting magazines. Jason has hunted big game in 12 states with his bow, but his love will always be white-tailed deer and turkeys. He considers himself lucky to have a job he loves and a family who shares his passion for the outdoors. Jason writes full time and is on the pro staff of two archery companies; in his free time, he fishes and traps as much as possible.