Please post ideas for security features, mounting brackets and stands. Please include photos and designs for everyone to see.
By wpshooter
#361032
My question is regarding IF bears (either grown or cubs) will and/or can climb smallish (4 to 5 inch diameter) trees ?

The reason I am asking is because what I have been doing to keep bears from getting to my cameras is to mount them using (Hunting Made Easy HME) screw-in trail camera brackets on 4 to 5 inch diameter trees preferably with slick bark like poplar, holly, or birch and placing the cameras about 8 to 9 foot high so that the bear can not reach the camera by just standing up and reaching for the camera with its front paws.

I was talking to a guy at one of the trail camera makers and he seems to think that the above procedure would not necessarily keep the bear from getting the camera, i.e. that the bears could still climb up and get to the camera. Is he right ?

Since I have started using the above procedure I have not lost any cameras to bears, however, I have had several instances where the bears have tried to reach for the camera as shown by their claw marks on the small trees below where the high camera was mounted.

And yes, I know about bear boxes for cameras but too expensive and cumbersome and can't use HME mounts with them.

Thanks.
User avatar
By Anthony
#361033
This is a good question and I know there are members here with plenty of bear experience. I am not one of them.

I would like to hear more about scent control to stop bears from getting interested in the first place.
#361039
I don't think human scent on the trail camera is the "primary" problem. Also, even if you put the camera up with bare hands it is not going to take very long before the daytime sun and night time coolish air has dissipated any human scent on the camera, not to even mention possible rainy and windy weather.

If a bear either sees or HEARS (when some cameras come out of inactive mode they make some noise) thus the camera is going to catch the bears attention and like most any creature, they are curious and they say to themselves well let me investigate what this funny looking and/or strange sounding little box is, i.e. not something that they normal run across while ambling thru the forest. More reason to put the camera up high, that is going to decrease the chances of them seeing or hearing it.

Thanks.
User avatar
By Anthony
#361044
ok, then a proximity PIR device that will spray an ammonia mist when something is within 2 feet might be the way to go.

As soon as his super sensitive nose gets close to the camera he gets a dose of ammonia. and learns to leave it alone.
#361045
If you can reach your camera with or without a ladder on a tree, a bear can get it with no problem. No matter what size tree. If a bear wants that camera he will get it. Trust me I know. I have lost 5 cameras over the years to bears even with them in lock boxes . I believe that a bear smells the plastic. I have a couple of cameras that if left in a room for a while locked up, you can smell them when you open the door of the room. Don't forget a bears nose is far far superior than any blood hound and those dog's can find anything.
#361046
talks2elk wrote: Sat Nov 07, 2020 10:47 am If you can reach your camera with or without a ladder on a tree, a bear can get it with no problem. No matter what size tree. If a bear wants that camera he will get it. Trust me I know. I have lost 5 cameras over the years to bears even with them in lock boxes . I believe that a bear smells the plastic. I have a couple of cameras that if left in a room for a while locked up, you can smell them when you open the door of the room. Don't forget a bears nose is far far superior than any blood hound and those dog's can find anything.
You would have to show me video of a full grown bear climbing a small 4 or 5 inch diameter tree for me to believe it. I would guess that perhaps a cub might possibly be able to do it.

Since I have started using a step stool to place my cameras about 8 to 9 foot high on slick barked trees, I have not lost one camera. However, I did have one bear that tried his best to get one, my guess is that he was standing up and trying to reach it, I could see where his claws scratched the tree to within about a foot or two of the camera's HME screw in mount. He apparently activated the camera by his pushing on the tree because even though I could not see him, the video's sound revealed that he was huffing and puffing (out of breath) trying to reach the camera. I believe that IF he could have climbed that approx. 5 inch diameter slick barked holly tree that he would have gotten the camera, but he could not. I think people should try this method to see if it works for them. Of course, the camera makers are not going to suggest this solution because the more cameras that bears destroy, the more cameras they get to sell.

And YES, if you put a camera 3 to 4 foot off the ground, I don't care if you put it in a shark cage, the bear is going to tear it off the tree and destroy it in the process.

Thanks.
#361047
Why not give the bears something else to smell at camera spots that may be more interesting than a camera?
#361048
you asked for an opinion I gave you one. I get about 3000 pics of bears a summer. They are on my porch and property all summer and fall every year. If you every get in trouble with a bear, you climb that 4 or 5 inch tree and see if he can't climb up to you :lol: :lol:
#361049
reaperman wrote: Sat Nov 07, 2020 3:14 pm Why not give the bears something else to smell at camera spots that may be more interesting than a camera?
In our area if a bear becomes to big of a problem we mix up a batch of our bear stuff and they stay way. I like some of the bears around . they are comical to watch and you learn a lot about them.
#361050
talks2elk wrote: Sat Nov 07, 2020 3:22 pm you asked for an opinion I gave you one. I get about 3000 pics of bears a summer. They are on my porch and property all summer and fall every year. If you every get in trouble with a bear, you climb that 4 or 5 inch tree and see if he can't climb up to you :lol: :lol:
If you get 3,000 pics of bears a year, then surely you have a pics of a bear up a 4 or 5 inch tree. Just does not make sense to me that a grown bear could go up a tree that small. Since the tree is so small, he would have to climb it doing one front arm/paw directly in front of the proceeding one (awkward) because unlike on a larger diameter tree where he would have enough room/diameter/surface area to wrap his arms/paws around to the side or even the back side of the tree to get a good grasp in order to climb. Even if he attempts to climb a very small tree, looks like he is going to expend much more energy/effort to get up it than if the tree was say a 15 to 18" diameter. Thus, explaining why he either did not or could not get my camera off of the small tree that he tried recently. Perhaps he could have gotten it if he wanted to expend enough effort but like I said the sound of him on the trail camera gave very good indication that he was huffing and puffing in his effort to get the camera and apparently was smart enough to figured that it was not worth the effort. In any case, what do you have to lose by trying high placement on small tree except having to get a ladder, step stool or wooden box to do the placement ? If it works, would be much better than having to be constantly replacing damaged cameras.

https://youtu.be/WPpZcMRTjnE

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