6 Top Tips to Avoid Trail Camera False Triggers
It is frustrating to check the SD card on your trail camera only to find out that the memory card is filled up with pictures and videos that have nothing in them because your camera had a bunch of false triggers. Nature can be a cruel mistress. It seems at times that there’s nothing she likes more than to frustrate our best-laid plans at every turn.
To make matters worse if your camera has enough of these false triggers it will drain your batteries and waste your time. To fight back we turn to technology, but even then we can still get tripped up when our back is turned.
Luckily, we have a list of some useful tips you can do to help avoid false triggers with your trail camera. If you have any questions be sure to email us at the WildGuarder team here and follow our Facebook page here for all the latest WildGuarder trail camera news and hot deals.
1. Avoid Placing it Direct Sunlight – NORTH AND SOUTH
Placing the trail camera in direct sunlight can result in false triggers as the sun moves across the sky during the day. Most of these false triggers will be associated with sunrise and sunset.
Placing a camera pointed directly East or West, will often result indirect light from either the sun rising or setting. If possible it would be best to position the camera so it can still view your desired area, but facing in a more northerly or southerly direction with north being preferred in most instances.
This comes down to the fact that trail camera motion detection sensors are alerted by the movement of heat-emitting objects, and of course, there’s no greater moving, heat-emitting object than the sun! So it’s vital to point the camera away from the movement of the sun, i.e. North or South, NOT East or West.
2. Mount your Camera to a Sturdy Tree
Sometimes people will mount their trail camera to a tree that is too small. If the tree sways too easily in the wind the camera will probably experience a ton of false triggers any time there is a windy day. As the tree, your trail camera is mounted to sways in the wind the passive infrared sensor (PIR sensor) will interpret this swaying as a movement in front of the sensor even though there is no subject there.
Simply making sure your trail camera is mounted to a sturdy tree will do wonders for helping to eliminate false triggers.
3. Angle towards the path
Sometimes a blank picture is not a false trigger at all, but a result of slower camera response time. The camera’s trigger speed depends on the quality of the camera, ranging from .25 seconds to 1.5 seconds. When shooting fast-moving animals, such as deer, that extra second may be the difference between a fawn trot or a completely empty photo.
In most cases, when setting up a trail camera, people will place the camera directly perpendicular to the animal tracks to get the perfect side photo as the animal passes. However, if that animal is running next to you and your camera is slow to trigger, the animal usually passes through the camera’s field of view before taking a picture.
Taking the time to angle your camera facing up the animal trail at a 45 degree, will allow your camera to detect the animal at its maximum detection distance. This will allow time for your camera to take the picture as the animal is moving toward the camera, keeping the animal in the field of view for a longer period, resulting in fewer missed photographs.
4. Hang higher – Avoid Tall Grass
Often it is more advantageous to place your camera a little higher and slightly tilt the camera down toward your target area. This will ensure that you will keep your camera about the native vegetation, and slightly distance your camera from potential obstacles. Similar to placing your trail camera in front of branches that can sway in the wind placing your camera in front of an area with a lot of tall grass could be troublesome. Depending on how much tall grass there is, how tall it is, and how close it is to the camera wind blowing through the grass can be enough to give you false triggers.
5. Camera Adjustments
Generally, the PIR sensitivity of the camera can be adjusted. By observing the environment around the camera, you can adjust the sensitivity of the camera to avoid the false triggers. Depending on the age and model of your trail camera you might have the ability to adjust the sensitivity of the passive infrared sensor.
Ideally, you want to look at this option after you’ve tried the first for ideas on our list. Reducing the sensitivity of the PIR will increase the risk that your camera might miss something that you want to see.
2) Time-Lapse Mode
Most cameras today come with some sort of time-lapse mode. This means the camera will take a picture at set intervals of time regardless of its detecting motion. Time-lapse is an important feature and something you should be taking advantage of in your trail camera strategy, it can help your camera avoid false triggers.
The drawback to this method would be that you will inevitably still have blank photos, but they will only be during that period of the day, rather than intermittently throughout the entire day. But it will eliminate false triggers more effectively.
6. Avoid hot air
Using your trail camera for security? Then you will most likely install it near some kind of building. In this case, it is necessary to pay attention to any type of hot air discharge port such as a dryer or an air conditioner. There is usually no natural hot air or hot air, especially in the wild. However, air vents typically blow out air at temperatures above ambient. It is the temperature difference between the moving air (or object) and the ambient temperature that triggers the camera’s motion detection sensor. Therefore, keep these ventilation holes at a good distance!
There you go, follow these essential tips and you’ll be able to significantly cut down on trail cam false triggers, which will surely help you from getting triggered yourself.
Thanks for reading and if you’re interested to learn more about a trail camera with night vision and timer features, plus super-fast trigger speed for capturing even the fastest-moving deer, take a look at our latest 4G trail camera Watcher1-4G. For further pieces of information please kindly visit our official website.