I love trail cameras, it adds another dimension to hunting and makes the off season more bearable. They make scouting for animals
much easier while doing my day job. In this article, I talk about how trail cameras have changed the way I hunt.
About 9 years ago I had the opportunity to hunt a Fallow deer near Koppies in the Free State. I scouted the farm for about six
months, doing one to two trips a month. I would walk the area where the deer was from side to side trying to find them and to
determine some pattern in their movements. It was not very successful and I did not see them once during this time.
A few years later I did the same, but this time I bought a trail camera. I put it out at different location during the months leading
up to the hunt. This was not only more successful for finding the Deer it also saved me the cost driving to the farm every second
I got the opportunity to join two friends on a hunt near Alldays, where we would spend about a week on a cattle farm. Since
this was not a game farm we were not guaranteed to see anything, but migratory game was a possibility.
So for a good price, we might be lucky and hunt something special.
After unpacking and making sure that the rifles where still on target we drove through the area where we would be hunting for
the next few days. We had two trail cameras which we put at locations where we thought we might see some game. Every
morning, whoever walked that portion of the farm, would download the pictures from the previous day and bring them back to
On the third day, we got lucky as the camera took a photo of a nice kudu bull.
We didn’t see him for a couple of days and lost hope as we thought he disappeared. Luckily we caught him on the camera again
1 May 2014. There was only 2 day left, and since Leon picked the location, he was the one that went after it. He left early in
the morning before sunrise and stayed till sundown to ensure he did not miss this opportunity, but unfortunately, he walked back
to camp empty-handed.
It was the last evening of the hunt and around 17:00, Leon saw the Kudu bull coming up the road to the same corner we caught it on camera. He positioned himself and took the shot when the kudu was about 100m from him.
Eland is known for its consistent habits, especially when it comes to feeding. With the trail camera, I could determine that they had ‘n circle route that they walked and that they were back at the hide every third day to feed.
As expected on the morning of the hunt as soon as the sun came up, they were at the blind.
That’s why I love trail-cameras, it doesn’t necessarily make the hunt easier, but it certainly makes an unpredictable animal more predictable. With the new cameras, you can interact with the camera through your phone by sending pictures and it even allows you to change settings remotely. Some of these cameras even allow you to disable it during a specific time, which save battery life and data.
My trail camera is surely one of the best tools I use for scouting before or while hunting, so if you ask me, I would certainly recommend one.