In my opinion, there is nothing better for scouting for whitetail deer hunting season than a game camera. I have used them for years now and have been impressed with how effective they are for identifying animals in the field prior to hunting season. Although we may not see all of the bucks the cameras capture, we know a lot about the buck we are looking at in the field the instant it walks out. Photos allow us age deer on the hoof and classify them based on age and antler quality whether they are going to be shooters or not.
This past Saturday I put out a brand new Cuddeback capture camera and a new Reconyx 500 series camera. In fact, I placed them out side by side on my feeder pen fence. I feed protein out of a gravity feeder here so I knew there would be plenty of opportunity for photos. I did this to examine the difference between these two trail cameras as I have had a few problems with my Cuddeback game cameras.
The protein feeder is going through about 300 pounds of protein every seven to 10 days, so there is a lot of activity at this feeder. The next morning I went out and retrieved both flash cards to see what the game cameras had seen. I have to admit that I was not surprised by the results. I have been told that the Cuddeback has a narrow motion sensing cone as compared to other camera manufacturers. The purpose of this is to cut down on all the pictures of moving grass, tree limbs, and what not, but I also thought it could mean missed animals.
The Cuddeback had six pictures on it and the Reconyx had 40 photos! The Cuddeback took photos of one doe and one raccoon, but the Reconyx had pictures of six total deer, three bucks and three does, as well as the raccoon. More than a bit discouraging considering the Cuddeback missed five other deer that were in the feeder pen during the course of the night with out capturing any of them.
After this test, I tend to believe that the Cuddeback is all hype and a lot of high-dollar advertising. In addition to having had a lot of functional problems with the Cuddebacks, it also lost the head-to-head contest to Reconyx. I don’t know how it would compare to other game cameras used in scouting for whitetail hunting. The Reconyx does cost more, but it sure seems worth it after comparing the photos.