Game Cameras for Home Security: A Quick Guide

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Many people don’t know that trail cameras, also known as game cameras, can be used to help monitor more than just game trails or the hunting lease. Some people find that they can be a great choice for supplementing dedicated home security cameras. In fact, the same aspects that make a trail camera great for photographing wildlife and scouting deer also make it great as an added layer of home security.

What is a Trail Camera?

A trail camera is a specific type of remote digital camera that captures candid images of wildlife. Originally developed for hunting and wildlife monitoring, these cameras are ideal for these applications, but they also have a variety of other uses like land or farm management, gardening, nature viewing, conservation, and more.

How They Work

When used for hunting scenarios, game cameras are typically mounted to trees and other locations across your property. When a deer or other animal comes into the area you have selected, the camera’s motion sensors signal it to take photo, a burst of multiple photos, or video.

A feature belonging to some models of trail camera are time stamps, so you’ll know when game roams the area. There are many of these that can also be configured to send pictures and videos to your smartphone in real time or save them for you to view whenever works for you.

Trail cameras can also be used to prevent wildlife from entering or damaging remote property extremities. A trail camera can capture what type of animal is bothering plants, grass, or personal belongings so that you can better address the situation. For example, if you suspect an animal is damaging fencing, it is helpful to know if it is a rabbit, racoon, or coyote that is responsible so you know if it is a simple fix, or if you will need to call a professional.

How Trail Cameras Can Supplement Home Security

The features that make trail cameras effective for wildlife monitoring also renders them a suitable option for supplementing an already robust home security plan. They can be used for indoor security, but they are particularly well-suited for viewing an expanse that falls outside of normal range for a surveillance camera.

Trail security cameras can be a valid option for gaining a vantage point beyond where your home’s Wi-Fi can reach or beyond a tree line blocking line-of-sight. Given their outdoor design, trail cameras are specifically built to withstand tough weather conditions, making them a great and durable choice for being mounted in harsher environments.

Features to Consider

When selecting a trail camera for home security, several key features should be taken into account:

No Glow

No glow cameras use infrared flash to capture photos and videos in low light or no light conditions. The infrared flash is designed to be hidden and prevent a flashing light from shining and alerting any subject photographed, animal or otherwise. This covert feature makes them an excellent choice for discreet surveillance.


It is a great idea to opt for a camera with high-definition (HD) capabilities, especially for night vision. A resolution of at least 720p is recommended to ensure clear and detailed images so you can properly identify what you are looking at.

Motion Sensor Range

Different cameras will detect motion at different ranges. The range you need here will depend on your needs based on the area and how many cameras you have. The angle is another consideration: A camera with a 90-degree angle, for example, will be able to detect and record things 90 degrees from it within the given range.

Depending on what you want to use a trail camera for, it is worth considering what is in front, behind, and next to the camera in addition to where you are placing it. Ask yourself where you think the highest traffic will be and consider how that will play into your placement strategy.


Not all trail cameras take videos. Most of the ones that do will take 10 to 90 seconds of video whenever motion is detected. The ones that just take pictures are generally less expensive, but video can be invaluable in identifying something in continuous motion.

You’ll also want to consider whether you would like video and audio. Some trail cameras include video and audio, while some simply include video. For example, if you want to use your trail camera to observe wildlife, you may not feel the need to include sound. If you are considering it for security purposes, you may want to opt for sound so that you can hear identifiable sounds like voices, barks, stomping, bushes rustling, and more.

Cellular Capability

Some trail cameras also have the ability to send photos and videos to your phone. This will often require a separate monthly subscription plan that is specific to that camera. Unless you plan to retrieve the camera physically to offload anything captured manually, you’ll want to choose a camera that can be configured to send photos and videos to your phone.

Brinks Home™ for Outdoor Cameras

While a trail camera can have applications for viewing nature and getting vantage of remote areas, these systems do not integrate with a home security system and are not available from Brinks Home. Contact us to discuss options for using a trail camera as part of your approach to security.

For true peace of mind, consider a professionally monitored system. The outdoor cameras which pair with your home security may be a good solution for monitoring outdoor activities, and when your home is protected by professional monitoring, you know someone is there 24/7 to help dispatch emergency personnel in the event of an alarm event. To learn more about professionally monitored and see if our security system will fit your needs, contact Brinks Home™ today.

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