By now, most of you will have successfully mastered the art of setting up a trail camera, but no matter how often you may have done so, some crucial basic guidelines may have been overlooked.
For example, you may have been trying to track your local deer or badger population with a view to documenting their behaviour patterns and total numbers, thus perhaps necessitating the relocation of your trail camera or cameras to different areas. It is easy to overlook simple set up procedures such as, making sure the camera will not be triggered by nearby tree or bush branches. This will unnecessarily trigger the camera and subsequently fill up the memory card with useless footage. Another is remembering to set the camera up in relation to the rising and setting of the sun. Failure to do so will result in more false triggers due to instant temperature and light fluctuations (dependent on which trail camera you use). This will also cause over or under exposure of the image. Another more common (most annoying!) procedure fault is... forgetting to turn the camera on in the first place (no joke!).
Another important point to remember when you have set up your camera(s), is to resist the temptation to check for footage too frequently. You risk disturbing the area with noise and as a result you will also be leaving a consistently strong scent behind which may drive the likes of deer or other animals away from the intended viewing area. However, when you do come to check your camera(s), then it is advisable to do so around midday when animals such as deer are usually bedded down.
Lastly, remember to regularly test the operation of your camera(s). In general, these devices are very durable and reliable, but after all is said and done, nothing is infallible. You may have come to the conclusion that judging by the lack of footage from a particular camera that some wild animal tracking patterns have changed at a certain location. It is only when you then discover that the sensors on the camera are not triggering properly, that you realise your assessments are completely inaccurate .
Trail cameras are a powerful tool for both recreational and professional users and careful consideration to these points mentioned, will help to ensure that you continue to get consistently accurate results!