It’s incredibly important to feel safe in your own home and whilst we should always feel at ease behind the front door, it sometimes feels impossible to do so. The fear of being broken into or having somebody near the house can really make some homeowners crumble, so you may feel the need to try and protect it as best as you can with cameras, motion detector devices and covert tracking devices. For those of you who live rurally in large complexes with plenty of land, you know it can be very difficult to monitor the area without having to constantly look outside, making home security a slight problem. Well… something you can use for home security which you may not have thought about is by using a trail camera. This blog will teach you everything you need to know about hiding a trail cam for home security.

Trail camera placed on a tree

What Is A Trail Cam?

A trail camera or game camera is a device used to take images of wildlife from a distance away. They can be placed high up in trees or on awkward angles so that photographers can get good photographic shots and can also take the picture whilst not having to psychically hold the device.

Trail cams/Remote Cameras are most commonly used for hunting or taking pictures of wildlife as animals are usually startled with a human’s presence, meaning that they are unnatural and afraid. When you think about it though, they also make the perfect camera for home security. 

How Does A Trail Camera Work?

Trail cams are also used for camera traps so come fitted with motion detectors. The camera will either use a motion detector in the form of a light beam or infrared light sensor so that you can be alarmed when an animal comes in contact with the beam.

In terms of home security, this would also notify you of a human being coming in contact with the camera as well. 

What Else Can A Trail Cam Be Used For?

Trail cams are now being commonly used to combat rural crime across the world. These distinct devices can quite easily be hidden to catch criminals for a variety of different crimes. They can be used to detect crimes such as fly-tipping, thievery and trespassing with ease. 

Is It Legal To Put Trail Cameras On Public Land?

It is illegal to place cameras on somebody else’s property, but of course, you can place it on your own property. 

According to the Department of Natural Resources of Minnesota, trail cameras tend to be discouraged but you may be granted a permit to use them within a specific area.

Trail Camera Shot

How To Hide A Trail Cam For Home Security

1. Hanging Baskets 

One of the best ways to hide cameras in plain sight, in general, is to hide them within hanging baskets. Hanging baskets have been used in gardens for years to make them look prettier and more inviting. They can be hung pretty much anywhere around a property which makes them perfect for setting-up camera spots which can then subsequently be used to catch trespassers.

For example, if you wanted to monitor your back door, you could hide a trail camera on a hanging basket tucked away in the trees and facing the direction of your property.  

2. In A Bush/Plants

Hiding a trail camera within bushes and plants around the garden is a great idea for home security. The more obvious bulky part of the device can easily be covered with leaves and the actual camera positioned so that it is facing the property. 

3. In A Tree 

You will see most trail cams are positioned high up in trees as they give you a better view and are impossible to reach if a trespasser was to spot it and try and steal the camera.

Realistically, the last thing a robber is going to do is start looking high up in the trees to find a camera, they want to be as quick as they possibly can, and unfortunately for them, you will have caught them on your trail camera. 

4. Birds Nest/House 

Somewhere you may not have thought about hiding your trail cam could be within a bird’s nest or birdhouse. Yes, you may have to invest in a bigger birdhouse to hide the camera within due to its larger size, but it would be hidden very well.

5. Fake Tree Trunk 

You would be surprised to find that artificial landscape is becoming even more popular for homeowners as the years go by for a variety of different reasons. Some people will purchase fake landscapes purely for the aesthetics of them, others have latched on to the idea that they are also great for home security.

An example of this would be using a fake tree trunk to conceal a camera inside. A small hole could be cut out so that the camera has sight of the property and the rest of the camera would be covered by the trunk. 

6. Inside The House 

You don’t have to just hide trail cameras outside for home security you could actually install them inside your property. If you were to hide it inside, be sure to store it in a darker corner, making it harder for trespassers to see when they are weighing up breaking into your property, or on the contrary, make the trail camera obvious to stop them from entering your home. 

7. Garage

Using the garage as a base for a trail camera is a brilliant idea for home security. Garages are usually spaced far away enough from the house to provide a wide area of vision, meaning that you may have to invest in fewer cameras whilst receiving better vision regardless. 

8. Ask A Neighbor

If a trespasser was to weigh up breaking in, they may have already scouted out cameras defending your home. Why not ask your neighbor to see if you can install a camera on their property which will then cover your home. 

9. On A Light Post

Using a light post as a spot for a trail cam is a brilliant idea if you are wanting to cover a wide range. This is because the camera will be located fairly high up and the higher up the camera is, the more range covered. 

What To Consider When Hiding Your Trail Cam

Consider these areas when hiding a trail cam for home security.

CCTV Security Camera

Range Of The Device

As I mentioned previously, it is incredibly important to make sure that your camera is placed in a way that covers a specific area. You should keep a good range set so that the camera is well-hidden whilst also covering a wider area if positioned further away.

The only issue that suffers because of the range is the fact that quality then isn’t as crystal, so always weigh this up when hiding your trail cam.

Ideal Placement

Touching on the point above, you must make sure that your camera is ideally placed in a way that is hidden in plain sight and also offers the perfect view for home security.

Be sure to hide the camera in the ways that I mentioned above whilst also having a spot that compliments the images taken. 

You should also think about setting up multiple trail cameras so that you have a variety of different perspectives/views to work with and all areas monitored and secure. Yes, it may be expensive, but for sure it betters your home security. 

What To Consider When Purchasing A Trail Cam

Here are some of the key features you should consider when buying a trail cam:

1. Flash

You should always consider the flash range of the trail camera when purchasing one as it has a couple of benefits. When an IR camera flashes, it may have already scared the thief away; they will be less inclined to carry on breaking in if they think that they have already been caught.

A second benefit of the flash will be that it will create the opportunity for clearer images, which will, therefore, be advantageous in terms of evidence. 

2. Waterproof

Rain is very common and unpredictable and could cause damage to the device. If your camera is not waterproof, be sure to invest in a waterproof case. 

3. Viewer Software

Having good viewer software is essential as it is the platform you will be monitoring your images/video from. Making sure that it is simple and clear to use whilst offering all of the things you need is very important.

Some viewer software offers a timelapse feature meaning that you can playback large files of still images in a slideshow, which would almost be like having a video and pausing it continuously. 

4. Cellular Trail Cameras

What I mean by cellular cameras are devices that incorporate 3G or 4G and use a network to transmit data, meaning that you will receive notifications upon movement and detection.

Be sure to invest in a camera that uses data if you want to be notified of movement around your property.

5. No Glow Cameras

If you are looking to invest a little more for increased security then opt for a no glow/invisible flash trail camera. They differ from other trail cameras in that they do not have a flash, so tend to be used by hunters so that they can catch the animal easier.

They will not be beneficial if you simply just want to warn people that they are too close to your property, however, they are being used more for home security due to the fact that they are undetectable by humans. 

6. Battery Length/Charging Time

Always consider the length of time in which the camera stays charged to avoid not having surveillance. Some cameras may work with batteries and others through charging so be sure to choose a camera that best suits your needs. 

7. Camera Quality 

Having a good camera quality goes without saying really. Making sure that images are in higher definition will prove to be advantageous if you need to catch the person breaking into your property.

These images will aid the police in catching the criminal, and if they are of higher quality, the person will be easier to identify.

8. Size 

Like I have previously mentioned, you need to assess the size of the camera you are purchasing, as the way in which you can use it for home security will be dependent upon its hiding place.

It will not matter if you are attaching it to a tree as long as it isn’t blatantly obvious, but if you are hiding the trail cam amongst things, make sure that it can be hidden well. 

Trail cams tend to be of a much larger size than normal cameras, so can’t be hidden in smaller concealable objects like secret diversion safes.

9. Trigger Speed

Tripper speed is the amount of time between when a trail cam first detects movement and then subsequently captures the image. You need to make sure that if you are investing in a camera with flash, it has a quick and efficient trigger speed.