Wardens and Trail Cameras Question

mattperry

Spike
can a warden check a trail cam on private land? if they were on camera can they delete their pictures? what are the rules with that?

a friend of a friend had a couple cameras go missing during deer season, only to show back up later with cleared card.(private land, all things legal) Now i'm sure this was just trespassers, but as a group of us were speculating, this subject was brought up. I'm sure someone here knows the answer or has had this experience. Just more of a settle this debate ... thanks
 

Thomas270

Ten Pointer
Come to think of it I have never seen or heard of anybody getting a pic of a GW on a trail cam...interested to hear the responses.
 

bigten

Twelve Pointer
Contributor
I would assume they have no more rights than anyone else when it comes to private property, unless there may be suspicion of breaking wildlife laws. Not sure how it would relate to properties that have been marked with purple, as that does give them legal rights to go there.... Interested to actually know if they can/could trespass and do as you may be speculating.
 
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wncdeerhunter

Old Mossy Horns
 

Buxndiverdux

Old Mossy Horns
I'm fairly sure Mr. Green Jeans has the ability to trespass on any property, by foot, vehicle, boat etc. I'm fairly certain he has to obtain a warrant and have probable cause to enter a residence or building just like any other LEO.

Not sure if trail cam tampering is something they can do. I wouldn't think so. But if you are worried about it, put a pad lock on the cam. I doubt very seriously Mr. Greenjeans is going to partake in the trail cam tampering on private property. I wouldn't put it past them to set up their own cameras on private property though. ;)

Mr. Greenjeans does have wide authority. He can write you a speeding ticket, or write you for parking in a handicap space at the boat ramp. Seen that before.
 

lasttombstone

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
That is a really strange question. I could care less if the warden is on my place. He usually stops by whenever he is in the area anyway. If he were to come across a camera in the woods I would more expect him to stand in front of it and wave.
 

JD1107

Eight Pointer
Come to think of it I have never seen or heard of anybody getting a pic of a GW on a trail cam...interested to hear the responses.
I have. Three years ago right before dove season. Warden road in on a bike. Went past the camera twice.
 

DBCooper

Old Mossy Horns
Contributor
That is a really strange question. I could care less if the warden is on my place. He usually stops by whenever he is in the area anyway. If he were to come across a camera in the woods I would more expect him to stand in front of it and wave.
This is how I see it, too.

Why would he erase?
 

DRS

Old Mossy Horns
I would just happy my cameras came back, perplexed but happy. I would think a GW would need a warrant to open a camera and look at pics. The GW would definitely need a warrant to be able to use this info(pic) in court. Could I see a GW deleting his/her picture on a trail cam, absolutely. Legal, probably not, but who would know. Why would they erase the pic? A GW would not be wasting time on property that he/she thought everything was legal. Might be trying to catch a trespasser/poacher, wouldn't know if the camera was yours or the person being sought after. Delete the pic, to keep from tipping person off that the land is being watched. I have not had pics of a GW, but did have one tell me I had comfortable stands and have seen his truck parked at the gate.
 
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Mr.Gadget

Old Mossy Horns
Makes me wonder why even worry about it?
Is he sure they are the same cards, is he worried about something he did or should not have done?

My first thought would be someone local to the place or someone they carried there and and they went back on their own, maybe someone on a property close by does not want you to see a deer they tracked, shot, hope to shoot....

Anytime a game warden has been around I have seen work hard to know you have no clue they were there if they are after you, or leave a card or phone number to call.

My guess if it was a game warden they would have left the camera and copied the card.
Most carry a computer or card reader.
 

double

Twelve Pointer
I'm fairly sure Mr. Green Jeans has the ability to trespass on any property, by foot, vehicle, boat etc. I'm fairly certain he has to obtain a warrant and have probable cause to enter a residence or building just like any other LEO.

Not sure if trail cam tampering is something they can do. I wouldn't think so. But if you are worried about it, put a pad lock on the cam. I doubt very seriously Mr. Greenjeans is going to partake in the trail cam tampering on private property. I wouldn't put it past them to set up their own cameras on private property though. ;)

Mr. Greenjeans does have wide authority. He can write you a speeding ticket, or write you for parking in a handicap space at the boat ramp. Seen that before.
I just saw a FB post this week of one doing just that. He stuck his hat over the camera to try and be unnoticed but 5 other cameras caught him doing it basically


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

25contender

Twelve Pointer
You can still get the pictures off formatted cards if they put the same card back in the camera. Send me the cards I have a program that can download/restore the pictures that were on the card.
 

GSOHunter

Twelve Pointer
Contributor
They have fairly broad powers. A federal game warden has even more. I have no idea about the cameras. I could see them wiping a photo of themselves if they thought something suspicious was going on and didn't want the landowner to know. Doubt that could use any data they found in court.
 

Buxndiverdux

Old Mossy Horns
I just saw a FB post this week of one doing just that. He stuck his hat over the camera to try and be unnoticed but 5 other cameras caught him doing it basically


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I wouldn't have a problem with them avoiding cameras, or holding a hat over one when walking by. The element of surprise is key in law enforcement. (y)
 

TheCloudX

Eight Pointer
Contributor
I'm not sure how it is here, but back in TX they could access private property anytime they like - even picking locks to do so. We had one warden come up to us in our trailer well off the road on thanksgiving. I was a kid back then but remember it well. He knew our entire property and asked to see our license, even though we weren't hunting at the time. This was probably about 20 years ago, so we didn't have cams running. My folks had no issue with it at the time, and I can understand why. Nothing like having a good relationship with a warden, especially if they know your land and you're not there 24/7. He never took us up on the offer, but we made it clear he was welcome anytime at our camp.
 

koszman

Eight Pointer
Contributor
They have the right to check your land but they can’t check your camera. They can put up their own camera to get pics. Why take your camera they just have to take your card to the truck and use the computer inside.
 

Part-time hunter

Eight Pointer
There are so few GWs out there and so much land that it is surprising that anyone ever sees one. I have been checked a few times while hunting public land and I'm always glad to see them doing their job. Except that one time there were two of them waiting for my buddy and I at the truck in the dark, in the pouring rain, and they wouldn't even let us put our guns and gear in the truck before checking our licenses. That was just rude.
 

Rescue44

Twelve Pointer
I've known the last couple of wleos who were in my county and they knew they were welcome on our place anytime. But...if I was in a deer stand, I wouldn't want them to come wondering through when my "known" vehicle was in view. Same respect that they would want to have if they were in a stand. And I certainly don't want them to mess with anything, cameras included. But, really don't think that would happen cause they knew we were ethical and respect and obey the laws.
 
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mattperry

Spike
just to clarify, we don't think this was wleos at all. 99% sure it was a local on an atv (i guess you can't be 100% unless you catch them in the act). we where just talking about this particular incident, then got sidetracked in conversation and this topic (hypothetical situation/legality) was somehow brought up. that is all

contender : thanks for the offer, i will mention it to him but I don't think he is to worried about it
 

hunter

Six Pointer
Contributor
Might be just ego that would cause a GW to erase a pic. Some take a lot of pride in sneaking in and out of places without being detected. I once had a GW that I knew well sneak in on me while I was bow hunting to make sure i was on the right side of a game land safety zone boundary. He spooked some deer away from my stand and backed out when he saw I was on the right side of the boundary. I glassed him good enough to identify and thanked him for spooking the deer the next time I saw him. He has always denied sneaking in. Note to folks that like to sneak around in the woods, most sunglasses really stand out no matter how much camo you have on! :)
 
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