Trail cameras banned on state lands

Action comes as complaints from hunters increase
June 1, 2023

Trail cameras are now prohibited on land in state wildlife areas, state parks and state forests. 

The announcement was made June 1 after extensive interagency review and discussion between the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control and the Delaware Department of Agriculture.

The ban is for state lands only and does not apply to use of trail cameras on private properties.

Delaware’s ban on recreational trail cameras is only the latest such action to be taken curtailing their deployment on public land. Both Prime Hook and Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuges have previously prohibited the recreational use of trail cameras. At least five states besides Delaware have now banned recreational-use trail cameras on public land, while several other states are considering a ban.

In a press release from DNREC, officials said trail cameras are used by many hunters for harvesting deer. A survey found about 11.1% of hunters on state wildlife areas use trail cams and deploy an average of 2.3 cameras per hunter.

The action comes as the number of complaints from hunters increases. There are also concerns about illegally cutting and removing vegetation from state land to install cameras, as well as privacy concerns. 


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