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How often do you check your cameras during the rut?

Bushape

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Joined
Jan 9, 2019
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98
Cellular isn't an option. Do you only pull cards when you hunt the site or do you make it a point to pull all of your cards say after a morning sit and then use the info to go from there??
 

Mr.Bro

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Aug 2, 2009
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3,631
Location
Hendersonville Tn.
Never. I pull my cameras about the last week of October. I know by then whats where and come rut my targets may be miles away but they will return every 6 or 7 days.
 
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MUP

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Aug 1, 2007
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Just North of Chatt-town
I leave mine out year round, but only check them after season, and in late August, changing batteries and cards then as well. I've had one camera last over a year without checking it before.
 

backyardtndeer

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Jul 29, 2015
Messages
1,925
All my cameras are behind our house. About once a week, usually try to check them days I am hunting close to them.
 

BSK

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Joined
Mar 11, 1999
Messages
68,124
Location
Nashville, TN
On a given property, I swap cards weekly. But I go to extreme measures to ensure I'm not leaving human scent around. If I can't drive right up to a camera on my ATV, a camera doesn't go there. Walking to cameras is a really quick way to shut down activity in the area. And when possible, I place cameras in high human traffic areas, like along roads and trails regularly travelled. ATV travel certainly scares deer at the moment. I have plenty of videos/pictures of deer turning towards the direction I'm coming from a minute before I get there, and they're gone when I get there. But the deer are right back in an hour or two. For the life of me, I can't understand why deer DON'T seem to be spooked long-term by the smell of an ATV driving through, but they don't.

When I used to walk to my cameras, I would regularly see declining use of the camera site over time. However, since switching to my ATV checking, I may not see peak usage of that camera site until after the 8th or 10th time I've visited, and that includes by mature bucks.
 

MUP

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BSK, I've thought on the ATV thing as well, and my thought is that, at least where there is some nearby roads and traffic , that deer smell the exhaust regularly, and it just doesn't raise their alarm status that high bc they're kinda used to the smell. Just a thought.
 

BSK

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Joined
Mar 11, 1999
Messages
68,124
Location
Nashville, TN
MUP,

I don't know why vehicle traffic doesn't scare deer long term, but it doesn't, especially if traffic in that area is common. Kind of like how deer become completely accustomed to a farmer working his fields. They see and smell him there all the time and he never does them any harm. I've even noticed deer do not react to my smell as much around the food plots I work in regularly.
 

DoubleRidge

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Nov 24, 2019
Messages
2,575
Location
Middle Tennessee
Along the same lines as ATV and vehicle traffic.....a buddy of mine who guided hunters on private farm land would tell hunters to stay on stand or in the blind until he pulled into the plot to pick them up....he always wanted to bump the deer out of the plot with the farm truck verses hunters climbing down and spooking deer from plot.
 

Bushape

Member
Joined
Jan 9, 2019
Messages
98
MUP,

I don't know why vehicle traffic doesn't scare deer long term, but it doesn't, especially if traffic in that area is common. Kind of like how deer become completely accustomed to a farmer working his fields. They see and smell him there all the time and he never does them any harm. I've even noticed deer do not react to my smell as much around the food plots I work in regularly.
Would be an interesting field experiment to see if a plot of land where the owner walked daily around the property in normally laundered clothes, shoes, etc resulted in less deer anxiety come hunting season. Especially if it was a specific laundry detergent or cologne.
 

JCDEERMAN

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Joined
Jul 19, 2008
Messages
11,823
Location
NASHVILLE, TN
Along the same lines as ATV and vehicle traffic.....a buddy of mine who guided hunters on private farm land would tell hunters to stay on stand or in the blind until he pulled into the plot to pick them up....he always wanted to bump the deer out of the plot with the farm truck verses hunters climbing down and spooking deer from plot.
Expanding from this and a little off topic....I don’t hunt food plots, except during early season, but I bought a coyote howl call for about $12. I started using this if there were deer in the field and shooting light was gone. I’d hit that thing and the deer left the field immediately and I’m able to get down and leave without a worry in the world. That thing has helped tremendously and naturally...just an FYI
 

BSK

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Joined
Mar 11, 1999
Messages
68,124
Location
Nashville, TN
Expanding from this and a little off topic....I don’t hunt food plots, except during early season, but I bought a coyote howl call for about $12. I started using this if there were deer in the field and shooting light was gone. I’d hit that thing and the deer left the field immediately and I’m able to get down and leave without a worry in the world. That thing has helped tremendously and naturally...just an FYI
What a great idea. I need to get one of those.
 

DoubleRidge

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Nov 24, 2019
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2,575
Location
Middle Tennessee
Expanding from this and a little off topic....I don’t hunt food plots, except during early season, but I bought a coyote howl call for about $12. I started using this if there were deer in the field and shooting light was gone. I’d hit that thing and the deer left the field immediately and I’m able to get down and leave without a worry in the world. That thing has helped tremendously and naturally...just an FYI

Great idea....beats the heck out of sitting there in the dark waiting forever.
 

Deer444

Member
Joined
Nov 25, 2012
Messages
49
Location
Anderson
Cellular isn't an option. Do you only pull cards when you hunt the site or do you make it a point to pull all of your cards say after a morning sit and then use the info to go from there??
Quit using cameras 10 years ago they will break your heart .
 

JCDEERMAN

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Joined
Jul 19, 2008
Messages
11,823
Location
NASHVILLE, TN
Quit using cameras 10 years ago they will break your heart .
When using cameras, as long as you aren't using them with the mindset of "this is going to help me kill that buck", you won't get you're heart broken. A lot of hunters have this view, and that's totally fine, but I can tell you that if I had that view, I'd have my heart broken over ten times a year on bucks I'd like to shoot. But I don't use cameras to help me do anything other than to know what caliber of bucks are in the area, determining what phase of the rut we are in by overlooking scrapes and the daylight activity they are showing me (and use that info year after year). The only exception to this would be in the early season when deer are a little more predictable, but that's it. Just use it to have fun and see what's out there, at the least. They can teach us a lot.....but they can't teach us how to hunt. Best of luck!
 

BigDave12

Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2013
Messages
66
Location
Maryville, Tennessee
Great perspective JCDeerman. I also use the same approach. The cameras help me monitor the deer herd, quality and quantity, health, and likely areas of travel (which direction that are moving most of the time). Once I have that info, I try to use it to determine how, when, and where to hunt during the season and phase. One thing I would add is that I use the cameras to really help me monitor the doe herd. The does are extremely important - maybe more so than the bucks. If I have a solid doe herd on my cameras and all look healthy, then I believe my chances of catching a mature buck during the season increase as does tend to have a tighter home range than bucks and that improves my chances. I actually tend to focus on doe travel areas during the season based on what I learned from the cameras.
 

MUP

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Aug 1, 2007
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Just North of Chatt-town
I don't worry about what's on my property for the coming season , just like having pics of a buck that I may end up taking during the season. Like browsing the pics to see what's using my area during the summer, but that's never a guarantee that the same bucks will be there come season opener. Learned that a long time ago.
 

JeepKuntry

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Joined
Jan 20, 2004
Messages
19,094
Location
Clinton, TN
Normally put cameras out early/mid July. Check them the weekend before bow season opens. Then I generally check as I pull them throughout bow season. If sign is present, they stay up. If a spot dies off, then I pull em until after season closes. In the next 2 weeks I will be out placing the 7 I have over areas I marked and should have hunted. I can still see what may be in those areas and decide on what to do next fall.
 

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