Trail cameras are the ideal way to capture images of wildlife and animals in natural habitats - in fantastic digital quality. Also known as camera traps, these cameras can be left in the outdoors for long periods. They allow photographers to capture candid wildlife images that aren’t possible otherwise.
The best DSLRs and DSLR lenses allow photographers to capture artistic images of wildlife. However, trail cams can do things no other camera can. A live feed trail camera gives an unrivalled view of animals’ natural behaviour. Some can be triggered by movement, or even body heat, meaning you never miss the moment.
The Spypoint CEL-LINK can turn virtually any non-cellular camera into a cellular-capable camera within a matter of a few seconds. Specifically designed to connect via the SD card, by plugging the adapter cable into the card slot on your camera for instant file management to reduce time when in the field. Ideal for identifying animals and objects, allowing for faster viewing and cataloguing.
Trail cameras are digital cameras with a host of features designed for long-term wildlife photography. They’re designed to work in the day and at night time, with sophisticated night vision that lets you see what nocturnal animals get up to in the dark. With a wide viewing angle and high-quality image sensors, they let you see more of the natural world than you might have thought possible.
While they can work indoors, outdoors is where trail cameras come into their own. Many are designed with waterproofing that means they can survive a bout of rainfall. Some can be set to shoot when they detect motion, while others can be set to trigger at regular intervals.
This is great for time-lapse, and you can set the trigger speed to anything from seconds to hours. You can also capture HD or even Full HD video with trail cameras.
Some trail cams run off their own rechargeable lithium battery, while others use common AA batteries. You will need a good SD card to store your footage and images on – though some trail cameras have Wi-Fi, allowing you to make use of cloud storage. Also, while trail cameras are tough, many come with a multi-year warranty, giving you peace of mind in case the unforeseen happens.
Below we run through some of the most popular trail camera brands and their key products.
The best trail camera brands
Bushnell trail cams are some of the most popular camera traps around, and for good reason! Many are equipped with low-glow technology that is designed to improve night vision and illuminate scenes without disturbing wildlife.
The Bushnell Core DS is one of the most popular models. Extensively weatherproof, with a 100-foot night-time range, it’s more than equipped to be left alone for 30 days or even more!
Spypoint trail cams are well regarded in the wildlife-watching community. They’re designed to provide super-fast and responsive wildlife-watching. Some, such as the Spypoint FORCE-DARK Trail Camera, have trigger speeds as fast as 0.07seconds! This means that you’ll never miss even the most fleeting wildlife moments.
Some use AA batteries, while others have lithium batteries that can be charged. You can pick up the Spypoint Solar Panel accessory to charge the camera batteries without even having to remove them. If you want to work remotely, there’s also the Spypoint LINK-MICRO-LTE, which lets you transfer images directly to a smart device for cloud storage.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Can I use a trail camera for home security?
Trail cameras also don’t have to be used as wildlife cameras! Thanks to their low power consumption, they’re also great home security cameras. Set them outside your home and have peace of mind that you’ll see anything that goes on.
- Does a trail camera need Wi-Fi?
It’s not necessary for trail cameras to have Wi-Fi. Many can simply store images on a memory card, which you can then download when you retrieve the camera.
- How often should I check my trail camera?
If you’re leaving a trail camera for a long time, you really don’t need to worry about checking it too often. Once every couple of weeks should be plenty.
- From how far away can a trail camera take pictures?
This will vary by model, but trail cameras tend to have a detection range of around 100-120 feet. Anywhere beyond this and you probably wouldn’t have enough clarity in an image anyway.