camera flash

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vipermann7
 
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camera flash

Postby vipermann7 » Wed Aug 20, 2008 7:28 pm

Something got me thinking the other day about the advantages that the no-flash cameras really have. I've heard the touting about the flash scaring game, and so go with a no flash so you don't scare game away. No one can prove it does scare the deer, but no one can say it doesn't. I have many pictures of deer standing in front of my camera for multiple night time shots with a flash, as I'm sure most people do. Then occasionally you get one picture of a deer, and then you never get another picture of that deer again. That hardly happens to me, so I never thought about it much.
But I'm reconsidering that. By this season, a mature 5 or 6 year old deer will most likely have had hundreds of encounters with trail cameras. He crosses your land and takes a couple pictures, then goes to your neighbors and takes a couple pictures, and then to the next neighbor, and so on, and has been doing this for several years. Maybe you do an excellent job spraying down the camera and sneaking in and out, but I bet most of the other people over the last 6 years haven't. By now, that nice mature buck has figured out that a camera flash isn't an immediate threat to flee from, but is now associating that flash with humans, and there's a solid chance he might know where NOT to walk now because he saw your camera go off. Maybe he still doesn't mind at night, but as time progresses, I bet we all have more experiences of hunting where we got several pictures of bucks in hunting hours, but when we hunt there, we never see that buck. It's kind of like Pavlov and his dog, when the dog heard a bell, he got ready to eat. When a deer sees a flash, he's going to get ready to stop using that trail. Get it? I kind of thought the no-flash fad was just that, a passing fad. But after more careful thinking, I think no-flash is the way to go, and not because you'll "scare" the deer with a flash, but because you will "educate" him with a flash. No-flash can be expensive, but as time goes on they will get cheaper, I'm definately going to go that route in the future.

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ranwin33
 
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RE: camera flash

Postby ranwin33 » Thu Aug 21, 2008 11:18 am

It's interesting you mention the theory of Pavlov's dog and camera flash.  What I have found is that I can get deer to come to a camera flash.  We place cameras near a feeder and mineral licks after season and into spring and summer so we can see what made it through the season and watch antler development.  I think deer become conditioned to associating the flash with food.  Three times I've been in a stand and have seen deer walking; I've flashed the digital camera I carry at them and on all occassions the deer have changed directions and headed my way.  I've only done it three times so it's not a scientific study or anything, but I do find it interesting. 

Just FYI - I didn't shoot any of these deer, but I did get their pictures. [;)]

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adirondackhunter
 
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RE: camera flash

Postby adirondackhunter » Thu Aug 21, 2008 11:27 am

I have a picture of me sitting in a stand with a buck walking in between me and my trail camera.The flash goes off and the buck never got spooked. 
Hunt to live , Live to hunt

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vipermann7
 
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RE: camera flash

Postby vipermann7 » Thu Aug 21, 2008 12:25 pm

That is a good point brough up about cameras being near food, they definately would be conditioned the same way, and in that case, to your benefit. And many people do that, have their cameras up around their feeders, bait piles, mineral licks, or what have you. i guess it could also vary by area. if one guy has a camera near a feeder or mineral lick and the next guy has his by his tree stand and there is no food there, the deer could be attracted to the flash in the area where food is often found and then be shy of the flash in an area where there is no food, particularly if they have had a human encounter at that spot. I'm not entirely sure what to think about the whole situation. Flashes dont seem to "spook" deer, but if deer will learn to associate a camera flash with people and change their travel habits is something I wonder. Then again, as was said, when deer encounter cameras near food, it actually seems to attract them. Flashes definately have some effect on deer who have encountered them before, I guess we just gotta always hope they were good experiences.

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FFKEVIN
 
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RE: camera flash

Postby FFKEVIN » Thu Aug 21, 2008 12:49 pm

[font=tahoma]I think the only advantage to the infrared, no-flash cameras is battery life.  The no-flash cameras use LED lights for the flash and a LED uses very little juice.  But, I have 2 flash cameras with plenty of big bucks on them, the same guys again and again.  In my opinion, a flash does not spook them. [/font]
�Vegetarians are cool. All I eat are vegetarians - except for the occasional mountain lion steak.� - Ted Nugent

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DeerCamp
 
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RE: camera flash

Postby DeerCamp » Thu Aug 21, 2008 1:36 pm

I dont think that it scares deer either. I have had 2 cameras that flash and one that doesnt. I get the same amount of deer and see the same deer while hunting. I agree with kevin that it just saves battery power. I even did a test in a deer pen my buddy owns. We put the two cameras out in two different locations. All of the deer that had there pics taken  with the flash that night came back the next day in the day light, and again at night.  The same obviously went for the no flash as well. I really have a hard time believe it scares deer away. The only bad side to the flash is on state land if some one happens to be tracking a deer at night and comes across the flash, they know your spot and might take your camera as well.
"If I pull the hammer and shoot this young buck, he's dead. But if I pass on him, the next hunter might not shoot so straight."

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HiddenHornsRanch
 
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RE: camera flash

Postby HiddenHornsRanch » Thu Aug 21, 2008 3:42 pm

I had older flash cameras previously, and the first night they kind of caught the deer by suprise but the next night it was nothing for them to stand in front of the camera and present great pics. I have now bought an infrared by Moultrie, and its great. They notice the small light flash but contrary to what some say that it spooks the deer also, I find hard to believe because I have never had a deer run from this camera yet.
KINGSVILLE A&M JAVELINA

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ranwin33
 
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RE: camera flash

Postby ranwin33 » Thu Aug 21, 2008 4:08 pm

ORIGINAL: adirondackhunter

I have a picture of me sitting in a stand with a buck walking in between me and my trail camera.The flash goes off and the buck never got spooked. 

That would be a great picture, 1 in a million.

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ranwin33
 
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RE: camera flash

Postby ranwin33 » Thu Aug 21, 2008 4:11 pm

ORIGINAL: vipermann7

That is a good point brough up about cameras being near food, they definately would be conditioned the same way, and in that case, to your benefit. And many people do that, have their cameras up around their feeders, bait piles, mineral licks, or what have you. i guess it could also vary by area. if one guy has a camera near a feeder or mineral lick and the next guy has his by his tree stand and there is no food there, the deer could be attracted to the flash in the area where food is often found and then be shy of the flash in an area where there is no food, particularly if they have had a human encounter at that spot. I'm not entirely sure what to think about the whole situation. Flashes dont seem to "spook" deer, but if deer will learn to associate a camera flash with people and change their travel habits is something I wonder. Then again, as was said, when deer encounter cameras near food, it actually seems to attract them. Flashes definately have some effect on deer who have encountered them before, I guess we just gotta always hope they were good experiences.

You most likely are correct - some type of bad association with a flash would most likely cause deer to shy from them.
 
Especially if the flash comes from the end of a muzzle. [:D]

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fasteddie
 
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RE: camera flash

Postby fasteddie » Fri Aug 22, 2008 2:12 am

I would have thought deer would think of the flash as nothing more than a lightening flash ..........

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