MT Regs - Game cameras during seasons?

Sytes

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 25, 2009
Messages
8,691
Location
Montana
I understand during general season I believe we are unable to use game cameras...

I purchased 3 game cameras (and cable locks) and plan to work this spring / summer in hopes to better target where elk may be come archery season.
I was going to start soon as the weather is in my favor for tromping around the outdoors though a friend brought up a point which is either moot or will be a real pisser...

Am I able to have my game cameras for elk running during the wolf and Spring Bear season or is the "no game camera" deal only during general season?

Thanks
 

tjones

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 9, 2009
Messages
3,829
The way I understand it they cannot be out during any commission adopted season.
 
Last edited:

SixPoint

Member
Joined
Nov 16, 2013
Messages
150
Location
Southwest Montana
As long as you aren't using them to hunt bears or wolves I think you'll be fine. I spoke to a local warden in region 3 about this issue and his response was that as long as you aren't using the units to hunt /pattern the specific species in season you are free to use them. Ethics time however, would come when you catch a critter on cam you were not expecting, and if it's currently in season it would be quite the conundrum.

Have fun with your cams, I have a blast using them just as a hobby and it's really cool to see all the critters that are out there that we don't get to see in person.
 

Sytes

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 25, 2009
Messages
8,691
Location
Montana
http://fwp.mt.gov/fwpDoc.html?id=67010

Basically we are ONLY able to use game cameras from June 16th - August 14th???

And we wonder why some break the law??? Ridiculous! I have no desire to hunt Antelope nor bison... Moose nor Mountain lion. I am interested in Elk and that is all... with a helpful dose of deer I suppose though that is my intent...

Motion-Tracking Devices and/or
Camera Devices
It is illegal for a person to possess or use in the field
any electronic or camera device whose purpose
is to scout the location of game animals or relay
the information on a game animal’s location or
movement during any Commission-adopted
hunting season.
 
Last edited:

Gerald Martin

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 3, 2009
Messages
5,590
Sytes, I'd get in touch with your local warden and see how he enforces the law. I've had this conversation with our previous warden and he was quite clear that he would not ticket someone in region one who had a camera out during the early archery antelope season, because there were no antelope in our area. It's a grey area and the language is not written very well, so I'd check with your warden to see how he enforces it.
 

shoots-straight

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 6, 2005
Messages
6,222
Location
Bitterroot Valley
I've talked with several of our wardens here in the Root. If your in most areas of Western Montana in August, where there's no Antelope, then there's no way to pattern them from a camera running here. You will be fine. That's the most obvious one that they told me. There are other exceptions. I agree it's dumb to ban cameras that you have to physically go to the camera and pull the card. It's the trail cams that send real time pictures that are the problem. How do we make those illegal, and keep the others for use as tools?
 

havgunwilltravel

Active member
Joined
Aug 9, 2012
Messages
1,111
Location
Australia
I've talked with several of our wardens here in the Root. If your in most areas of Western Montana in August, where there's no Antelope, then there's no way to pattern them from a camera running here. You will be fine. That's the most obvious one that they told me. There are other exceptions. I agree it's dumb to ban cameras that you have to physically go to the camera and pull the card. It's the trail cams that send real time pictures that are the problem. How do we make those illegal, and keep the others for use as tools?

I think this is a ridiculous law, but you do make a good point in regards to the mms trail cameras. I would hate to think 'hunters' are sitting at home with a few mms tc's on funnels or fence jumps or corridors or water during season and only heading out when an animal they are targeting has appeared. Probably not likely to happen with distances and working hours etc, but if somebody is already in the field and hunting it could definitely give them an advantage getting an picture from a tc in another area.

they are used a lot over here, sometimes its handy to know what animals are in the area you are hunting, but i personally prefer to keep getting pics of the same deer year after year and learning from them, rather then using cameras for the sole purpose of locating deer and killing it as soon as possible.
 

cowboy

Active member
Joined
Jul 26, 2009
Messages
709
Location
Mt/Id/SD
Motion-Tracking Devices and/or
Camera Devices
It is illegal for a person to possess or use in the field
any electronic or camera device whose purpose
is to scout the location of game animals or relay
the information on a game animal’s location or
movement during any Commission-adopted
hunting season.

The above is the law - end of story. I totally agree that this law is susceptible to interpretation and can be as vaque as "tag immediately upon kill" but it is black and white and irregardless what a warden may or may not do, his job is to enforce the law.

I'll be hypothetical here: I find a game camera in the mountains of western Mt. during the archery antelope season in an area I frequent for elk, I report it to the game warden, he says there are no antelope in that area, I then take it to his supervisor- you see where this is a mess.

I think a persons main concern is other hunters and what they might want the wardens to enforce.

Nothing like having our legislature writing our game laws.
 

shoots-straight

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 6, 2005
Messages
6,222
Location
Bitterroot Valley
Motion-Tracking Devices and/or
Camera Devices
It is illegal for a person to possess or use in the field
any electronic or camera device whose purpose
is to scout the location of game animals or relay
the information on a game animal’s location or
movement during any Commission-adopted
hunting season.

The above is the law - end of story. I totally agree that this law is susceptible to interpretation and can be as vaque as "tag immediately upon kill" but it is black and white and irregardless what a warden may or may not do, his job is to enforce the law.

I'll be hypothetical here: I find a game camera in the mountains of western Mt. during the archery antelope season in an area I frequent for elk, I report it to the game warden, he says there are no antelope in that area, I then take it to his supervisor- you see where this is a mess.

I think a persons main concern is other hunters and what they might want the wardens to enforce.

Nothing like having our legislature writing our game laws.

Read that statute again, and ask yourself if it's as cut and dried as your claim in the last post. Wardens have some leeway. Ask your closest warden what he would do? Some things aren't as important to them, and after this legislative session ends, I think most brainless technicalities will not be a ticketing offense. Their playing defense right now, unless you act like an azzhole that is.
 

Mthuntr

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 9, 2009
Messages
4,665
Location
In the Sagebrush of SW Montana
Read that statute again, and ask yourself if it's as cut and dried as your claim in the last post. Wardens have some leeway. Ask your closest warden what he would do? Some things aren't as important to them, and after this legislative session ends, I think most brainless technicalities will not be a ticketing offense. Their playing defense right now, unless you act like an azzhole that is.

I guess I read the regs and don't see much room for interpretation. Can you help shed some light?
 

cowboy

Active member
Joined
Jul 26, 2009
Messages
709
Location
Mt/Id/SD
Shoots - Irrelevant how well you know and trust your game warden is not the point here. Hell, I used to hunt with a game warden and I know he had good days and bad - I just wouldn't want to be in a sticky bind on one of his bad days.

You have the law and then you have the situation how each individual warden looks at how and when he wants to enforce that law is all I'm saying.

I'm not against game cameras - put one on every tree and water hole as far as I'm concerned and I won't bother them.
 

Gr8bawana

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 14, 2013
Messages
4,321
Location
Nevada
Shoots
I'm not against game cameras - put one on every tree and water hole as far as I'm concerned and I won't bother them.

Pretty soon you won't even be able to take a dump out in the hills without wondering how many cameras are watching you. :mad:
 

LopeHunter

Well-known member
Joined
May 31, 2007
Messages
2,841
Location
MO-->CA-->NW-->AZ&NW
How can someone support use of a game camera left unattended but not a drone with a camera that has to be attended?

The game camera allows you to gather information with less time spent away from the comfort of home. There is some skill in where to place the cameras. Most of the work is done by the camera.

What is a drone but a game camera that is mobile? Some skill involved in where to fly the drone. You actually have to get out of the comfort of home. I would argue using a drone requires a more active involvement by the hunter. You are in the area physically as the pictures and videos are created.

Don't forget, in a few years you will be able to place your drone in the wild and fly it remote from the comfort of your home. You can place some solar-powered charging stations around and fly the drone from station to station so can cover hundreds or thousands of acres. That is our future.

So, again, what is the logical justification of game cameras that does not also support use of drones?
 

Sytes

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 25, 2009
Messages
8,691
Location
Montana
media.riemurasia.net_albumit_mmedia_xi_e5m_4kiq_47219_839050823.gif


Don't tell me we are going to argue the use of google earth next...
 

havgunwilltravel

Active member
Joined
Aug 9, 2012
Messages
1,111
Location
Australia
So what if somebody was a hunter and genuinely just wanted to get live animals pictures, in an area they didn't have a tag for, or in a season they had already tagged out?

I have taken trail cameras to a few different overseas countries i hunt in when i go in an effort to get images of the local wildlife and animals i am hunting, purely because i enjoy it and think it adds another aspect to the experience, not because i am trying to get the edge to kill something.
 

cowboy

Active member
Joined
Jul 26, 2009
Messages
709
Location
Mt/Id/SD
So what if somebody was a hunter and genuinely just wanted to get live animals pictures, in an area they didn't have a tag for, or in a season they had already tagged out?.

My interpretation would be it would be illegal if there was a hunting season going on in the area.
 

shoots-straight

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 6, 2005
Messages
6,222
Location
Bitterroot Valley
How can someone support use of a game camera left unattended but not a drone with a camera that has to be attended?

The game camera allows you to gather information with less time spent away from the comfort of home. There is some skill in where to place the cameras. Most of the work is done by the camera.

What is a drone but a game camera that is mobile? Some skill involved in where to fly the drone. You actually have to get out of the comfort of home. I would argue using a drone requires a more active involvement by the hunter. You are in the area physically as the pictures and videos are created.

Don't forget, in a few years you will be able to place your drone in the wild and fly it remote from the comfort of your home. You can place some solar-powered charging stations around and fly the drone from station to station so can cover hundreds or thousands of acres. That is our future.

So, again, what is the logical justification of game cameras that does not also support use of drones?


A drone, can hunt down the game, find where they are bedded, feeding, or traveling at that particular time, and the person operating the drone can go right to where the animal is, or figure a good ambush spot. Just like our army does.

You can sit on one side of a mountain, and send the drone over the other side and hunt the whole thing. If game is spotted you just wonder over and kill your game.

A trail camera is stationary, and does nothing to help you kill the animal. It does help you to know what might be living in the area you've chosen.

Ease of use means nothing. I really don't see how a drone is tougher to use. You just sit and steer it around until you find what you want to kill.
 
SITKA Gear

Forum statistics

Threads
94,509
Messages
1,408,408
Members
29,645
Latest member
Markleathers
Top