Thursday, November 4, 2010

The amazing game camera

I read an article in the Star Tribune yesterday on trail cameras and "the don't count on them to help you land a deer". Up on Reefer Creek we don't count on them to do anything except let us know what kinds of animals are hanging out in the woods and also to let us know if we have our stands in a good place or if we are just wasting our time. Plus, its just plain fun.

One of the manufacturers of these cameras is Predator Trailcams in suburban Saxon, WI. Perry got the business going a few years back and it took off quite nicely. As luck would have it, he is also a neighbor of Pod and GurneyGranny and a good guy to boot. The cameras don't use a flash or have any blinking or beeping that could startle an animal. Night photos are invariably black and white. They won't startle a person either, and a number have been used by cabin and seasonal homeowners to see who might be lurking around their property when they are not there.
I never cease to be amazed by what shows up on the cameras. After a day of sitting in a stand and seeing only red squirrels, chickadees, does, and fawns, its a bit humbling to come back the next day and see what wandered by the night before. The fact is that most animals are a lot smarter than we are and can avoid us very easily. Its kinda like Christmas morning when I head out and check the camera. Its always a surprise, especially when I see a really big buck or we have a virtual herd of black bears in the area.

This weekend will be another one spent in the blind. Friends are coming out to the camp and the kayak will stay in the garage this weekend. It will be broken out for the 6th Annual Gales of November paddle on Wednesday, a hookey friendly event that commemorates the 35th anniversary of the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald. This weekend will be spent in contemplation and observation, fifteen feet off the ground. The real asset of the trail camera is to affirm visually what we can see from scat, tracks, and kill sites. Its reassuring to know that there really is some wild nature left and gratifying to know that we are right in the middle of it.

PS One of the comments on the post asked if that was a wolf in the upper canine image. It is indeed and I added this coyote and his buddy so readers can compare the difference.


rocksandfeathers said...

How fun!
Is that a wolf?

DaveO said...

Yep, it's a timber wolf. I added a coyote image so you can compare. The wolf probably goes about 100#'s, large squarish head, and very long legs. Coyote is just smaller all over and more compact. When you see them in the woods there is absolutely no doubt about which species you are looking at.

Silbs said...

Really cool.

Nan said...

I have got to get one of those cameras for our place in the U.P.

bonnie said...


Katie said...

WOW! How neat is that? We used to do a lot of night hikes while I was living in Alaska, and a friend and I enjoyed using a pair of night vision much more to see!