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Mid-January Fighting Bucks Caught on Trailcamera

by Mike Willand 18. January 2012 13:28
Mike Willand

I am relatively a newbie when it comes to utilizing trailcameras for whitetail scouting or inventory purposes. In years past I just didn’t understand their appeal. I understood that photos of big bucks were cool and often couldn’t wait to view some of the snapshots my good friend and hunting partner, Justin Zarr, was able to capture on his. In fact, he’s probably the single greatest influence to why I use them today. I just couldn’t understand why someone would waste their time giving away their position long before the season started.  The problem for me was that extra human scent we are certain to leave behind and how it influences deer movement.

Since I’ve started using cameras over the past two years, I’ve been fortunate to have captured some pretty unique whitetail behaviors, something I attribute to my never ending bout to control my human odor. For me, it’s a relatively simple endeavor. Living in the farm country that I do I utilize the terrain to the best of my ability and simply don’t push too far into the woods. I use rubber boots, rubber gloves, and approach my cameras the same as I would approach a treestand. I try my best to eliminate human pressure even while not hunting.

Whether or not this is the reason for some of the unique photos I’ve gotten is certainly debatable. It could be nothing more than luck. However, if the old saying holds true and luck really is where preparation meets opportunity, then perhaps it’s something more. Perhaps those extra little steps do give me more luck in the photos I capture.

This past weekend while checking my cameras looking for the first signs of bucks that have dropped antlers, I was surprised at what I had captured.  Nearly mid-January and to my surprise a fight for dominance between two bucks! In fact, just days earlier while enjoying my last sunset of the year from a nearby treestand – I witnessed the same two bucks harmlessly feeding alongside each other acting as if they were the best of buds. My stealthcam said otherwise.

The battle took place between a busted former seven-point buck that Justin and I have captured at least fifty pictures of since the start of deer season. This two-year old is an absolute terror, a warrior who’s had a mostly battered rack since before Veteran’s Day. His opponent was a more timid three-year old eight-point with a wide spread, another buck Justin and I knew well, but had far less photos of.

The two-year old broken seven-pointer gloats in front of my trailcamera following the fight.

The reclusive three-year old eight-pointer in early October.

When the two bucks first enter the field they appear as equals, casually strolling out to feed just like I had observed days before. A doe group enters from the camera’s right side and suddenly tempers flare. The bucks’ ears go back, full body posturing while walking in a circle around each other for several frames. The battle grows more intense while the females look on. Eleven minutes later the battle ends, only the mangled snow-covered field still shows the signs of the struggle that took place.

While it’s not clear who won, the two-year old ends up sticking around another twenty minutes and posing in front of the camera. The reclusive eight-pointer casually strolls off behind the doe group like nothing happened.

The fight doesn't begin to shape until does enter the field.

The eleven-minute battle would end and begin at least three times, while my camera snapped over 150 images of the scene.

Notice the snow between the first and last frame - showing the battle that once took place. The only sign that still existed the day I went to check this camera.

Like I said, I’ve been fortunate to capture some pretty amazing whitetail behaviors with my trailcameras in my short time utilizing them. These new photos are among my favorites. 

Moultrie I40 Trail Camera Review

by John Mueller 29. September 2008 12:52
John Mueller

I put 2 Moultrie I40's into use almost a year ago and have been very impressed with the results. That is after I updated the software. It seems there was some type of glitch in the cameras originally. They would produce a whiteout image when in the IR mode on some pictures. After downloading the update from the Moultrie website onto the SD card and then loading it in the cameras my units have performed very well for me.

The Moultrie I40.

 

The daytime pictures are some of the clearest I have seen from a trail camera. The 4 megapixel camera produces very sharp images.

2 turkeys in my food plot.

A doe in the plot.

 

The one feature I have mixed reviews on is the IR Mode of the camera. It was one of the reasons I had originally bought the camera. To get away from the flash going off in the woods and possibly scareing the deer. This model uses Infrared Illumination to capture lowlight and nighttime photos. A band of 72 IR bulbs glows red to take the lowlight pictures. These photos are black and white images.

 

 This is not supposed to spook deer. I do catch some of them stareing at the camera while it is taking their picture. The bad part about this is it takes a lot of daylight to get the camera off of the IR mode. When my camera is in the woods 90% of the pictures are IR mode even in daylight. The only way I get color daylight pictures is to have my camera on a food plot or open field. The black and white images are great for just cataloging your deer and seeing what is out there. But if you want to frame some of the photos or show them off on your favorite website, the color pictures work much better.

Some of the neat features of this camera are:

1. 3 different still picture settings for picture quility.

2. 2 different video settings. (which I have to figure out so I can put my camera on some scrapes this fall)

3. Uses SD Cards, which most digital cameras use now. I use my camera to view them in the field.

4. A laser aim pointer to adjust where the unit is pointed.

5. Time, Date, Temperature, and Moon Phase stamped on the picture.

6. Uses 6 D-cell batteries that last a reported 150 days. I have had mine in operation for almost 1 year and am on my second set of batteries( still have 65% charge)     Truely extended battery life.

7. Easy to set up and reset after checking.

Nice and simple to operate, not a lot of switches or buttons.

8. Does the scouting when you're not there.

Some things I would like to see changed:

1. The SD Card is in a very awkward place to get to. Unless you have very long skinny fingers. There are many other places this could have been put.

Here you can see the SD Card just to the left of the white label.

2. The unit is a big black box. A grey or softer color would not stand out nearly as much. Harder for the deer and would be thieves to see.

3. No real way to lock it to the tree.

4. It does make a bit of a click when the shutter opens.

All in all I have to say the pluses far outweigh the minuses on this camera. I am very happy with the service my 2 units have given me in the year I have had them. No problems at all after doing the original upgrade to the software. And I have not heard of another unit with the battery life of the I40. If you would like to try one of these out for yourself. They can be purchased right here on Bowhunting.com by following the link below.

Huge Success - Reconyx Trail Cameras

by Todd Graf 15. September 2008 13:54
Todd Graf

Most of you know that I have been testing all the different trail cameras out this fall. With the recent launch of trailcam.com our goal was to test all units and we have been doing just that! On 8/17/2008 I put out a Reconyx with a 2 gig card and 6 Duracell batteries. I had the cameras setting on the 3 shot burst mode. This unit was a piece of cake to set-up, I never even used the manual once. I decided to check on the reconyx this last past weekend to see what the results were going to be and was I impressed!

3109 PHOTOS!!!! and I am not exaggerating.

The unit had about 5% battery life left, I could not believe it. I honestly thought for sure that the unit was being triggered by a limb, weed or the sun but when I got home all the photos were on the card. After reviewing all of the photos I feel like you get a lot of value out of this camera but the IR needs to reach out a little further.

Here are some of the images.

Small 2 1/2 Year old buck. Let him go and he will grow! I did not always say that - just for the record.

 

My only complaint - This unit needs more IR power.

 

Of course what would owning property be without trespassers. I need to put some tire spikes out.

 

Nice buck - any buck that makes it through the WI gun season deserves a medal.

 

IR filter must have switched over early and took this photo during the day.

 

I guess even a few more trespassers will keep you deer nocturnal.

 

I am not even going to make any comments, although I really want to.

Nice Beards!

Good day time photo example.

Now, here is how you know a camera is easy to program - My pops decides to open it and tries to see if he can view the photos. On this unit you can't. Do you think he told me that he did this - Of course not. But I did capture it and I did bust his chops. Thankfully the unit self arms itself and I never missed any shots.

If your intrested in trying this unit out we have them in stock here.

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