Choosing Camera Trap Makes and Models

Choosing a camera make and model for your study is a big decision. The recent increase in available options has largely been driven by demand from recreational hunters, not researchers, such that some options may not necessarily be suitable for your research objectives. With that in mind, we have compiled a list of resources to use when selecting the camera trap model that will best suit the needs of your study. For most research objectives, we have found Reconyx to be the most reliable brand, but we highly recommend that you inform yourself to identify which model is best for your research needs.

Resources for Choosing a Camera Trap Model


Trailcampro uses standardized tests to produce up-to-date reviews of camera trap models that include model's stats to help choose the camera best suited for your study. 

Mammal Web's Guide to pros and cons of camera trap models.

Rovero et al.'s 2013 paper provides an introduction to camera trap features that are necessary to keep in mind when choosing a model. It also recommends what to look for for specific study designs. Other papers that touch on important specifications for camera trap models are Trolliet et al.'s 2014 paper and Wearn and Glover-Kapfer's 2017 camera trapping review document.

The Zoological Society of London performed an empirical test of a variety of the most common models in their 2017 buyer's guide to camera traps for researchers.

Apps and McNutt's 2018 paper outlines their reproducible test for camera trap specifications and offers insight into what is important when considering if a particular model is fit for a particular research purpose.


Some of these resources may not be open access. If an article is not open access, we recommend contacting the corresponding author to request a copy or checking common repositories such as Research Gate for now. We are working to make the resources within the library more broadly available in the future.