Trail Camera Placement For Turkeys
Trail cameras are a great aid for scouting your next turkey hunt. Here’s a few ideas for fine tuning your trail camera set up for turkeys. Camera placement for turkeys should focus on a few different locations..
- Strut Zones
- Roosting Areas
- Food Sources
- Fence Crossings
Trail Camera Placement for Turkeys #1- Strut Zone
Strut zones are generally open areas that double as a food source where hens frequent and toms will strut their stuff looking for willing hens or are locked down with a nearby nesting hen. It’s usually a spot toms will hit shortly after roost if a tom isn’t already with a hen. In large open fields, find a pinch point or open trails that turkeys will use entering the field. Using multiple cameras will increase your luck tenfold around strut zones and can help narrow down particular trails that turkeys may or may not be using. There may be times where a group of birds will spend most of their day in a big, open fields. If a tom is henned up and busy corralling his mirage of hens, then he will probably care less about your decoy set up. The only chance at him might be by setting up where he enters or exits the field.
Trail Camera Placement for Turkeys #2- Roosting Areas
I really like putting cell cameras close to roosting areas for a couple different reasons. One of the few things that seem to be consistent in the turkey woods is roosting locations. Not necessarily where birds might roost day after day throughout the season, but a handful of locations where you know there could be turkeys roosted. If you set up multiple trail cameras at each location, then you might be able to pattern a particular bird or group of birds just like you would a mature buck- or at least know they are there in the first place.
Trail Camera Placement for Turkeys #3- Food Sources
Throughout the spring season, turkeys feed on a variety of plants, insects, and seeds. Earlier in the spring, before the green up, turkeys will still be primarily feeding on harvested ag fields such as corn or soybeans. In the timber you’ll find areas of disturbed leaves where the turkeys have been scratching for acorns and other nuts. On Southern facing exposures turkeys will seek out the first green shoots of legumes and grasses. As the season progresses, and the temperatures warm, turkeys will move to hayfields, pastures, and disturbed ag fields where they will be feeding on insects, grass shoots, and other seeds they find along the way. Cattle pastures are another hot spot that can hold turkeys. They will flip over old cow pies feeding on bugs and worms, and even “recycled” grain in the manure.
Clover food plots will attract turkeys basically year-round. Setting up trail cameras around a food source to try and pattern turkeys can be a bit of a challenge if the food source is large- the more cameras you can put up, the better. A lot of guys will put a t-post in the ground or buy a camera holder so they can place a camera in the middle of a plot. Turkeys might be a little timid of a camera in the middle of the field at first, but it doesn’t take them long to get accustomed to it, I just wouldn’t recommend doing that a few days prior to hunting that specific location.
Trail Camera Placement for Turkeys #4- Fence Crossings
How many times have you had a turkey coming in hard to your set up to all the sudden get hung up at a fenceline? For whatever reason, turkeys just do not like to fly over fences. Anywhere there’s a prominent gap, fence crossing, or open gate can be a great location to set up a trail camera as you catch turkeys coming and going to known food sources or prominent roosting area.
Put the odds in your favor this spring and start scouting/ adjusting trail cameras now!
Last Updated: March 30th, 2022