Mississippi Confirms Trail Camera Use OK During Hunting Season

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Hunters have expressed concern about using trail cameras under the new supplemental feeding regulations (W-3796a). Specifically, some hunters believe they cannot use trail cameras without a Wildlife Survey Permit. This is not the case. Cameras can be used at any time as long as the feeding regulations are followed.

As stated in Public Notice W-3796a, a permit is available for wildlife camera surveys at no cost. These permits will be issued to individual properties working with a biologist for legitimate camera surveys used to estimate deer population characteristics. Permits are only required if camera stations will have bait poured, piled, or placed onto the ground.

However, this is not the only way one can use trail cameras. For scouting purposes, cameras can be used legally without a permit by placing them on trails, food plots, scrapes, rubs, salt licks, natural food sources, or legal feeders.

"Trail cameras are a legitimate tool used for scouting and gaining population data," according to Chris McDonald, Regional Deer Program Biologist. "The intention of the supplemental feeding regulations is not to limit the use of trail cameras. Hunters can still use cameras for scouting and deer managers can still conduct pre- or post-season camera surveys. The big difference is that corn and other feeds cannot be poured, piled, or placed on the ground just to take photos. The new regulations will limit feed spoilage and contamination."