The AirGun Guild

General Category => Airgun Hunting => Topic started by: Alan on January 01, 2019, 07:56:07 AM

Title: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Alan on January 01, 2019, 07:56:07 AM
The verbs describing the term camouflage, range from disguise, masking, cloaking, to obscure and shrouding. But it can also mean, odor control!

There are two basic scenarios with respect to visual camouflage—crypsis and mimesis. In the literal sense, these words mean hard to see, and disguise as something else, respectively. We might think we’re really smart about camouflaging, however we do it, but mother nature has made a true art of it as we all know.

Odor control typically boils down to masking, eliminating, and mimicking. All of these use some form of animal or plant excretion, as well as pheromones (chemical messengers). Their effectiveness depends on a lot of factors, some of which we can’t control. For example, some of us just stink worse than others!

There are some other things to consider as well. One major fault is movement. Some folks just can’t keep themselves physically quiet, and at rest. Other can’t stop talking! Even whispering is loud enough for some game to hear, even at extended distances.

What we have to realize is, most other animals (other than primates and humans) have several magnitudes better hearing, sight, and olfactory senses. A pin drop to us, may sound like a firecracker to them. How do you think a fox finds a mouse under the snow? Birds of prey often can see mouse-sized prey at very great distances. And think about this. Most canines have over 300 million olfactory sensors, and humans average about 6 million! The bottom line is, humans are at a disadvantage, when compared to prey animals.

So, the discussion I would like to see, is how each of us use camouflage, of all kinds, to assure success in the field?
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Steelhead on January 01, 2019, 11:07:27 AM
I wear a homemade ghillie suit of sorts. Deer season here in NorCal opens up in August and everything is dry and brown. I like to make a lot of my own outdoor stuff; tying my flies, molding jigging spoons for fishing, and hunting is similar. I bought a piece of burlap from the local craft store along with earth tone yarn. I cut the burlap to fit like a poncho and made all of the edges into strips. I few well placed shots of some camo paint that I had and the yarn pieces and I had an instant ghillie suit (combined with a long sleeve camp shirt and pants)  To accelerate the 'break in' I threw it on the ground on my dirt driveway and blasted it around with pressure washer. Worked great. Washed the mod off and let it hang and dry.

It's easy, cool (can be hot here during hunting seasons), and works great just sitting in the open too. Plus I like the fact that I make it myself and that adds to my experience.

As far as scent goes, I honestly don't worry about it much. It doesn't apply here as much as other places due to open country. I don't bow hunt, use tree stands, etc. so I don't obsess on it like others have to.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Frank in Fairfield on January 02, 2019, 06:42:55 AM
Don’t use it.
Never did.
Here in California there are some that will shoot at anything so I want to stand out.
In Wyoming where I do most of my hunting, you are required to wear orange during big game rifle seasons.
In Vietnam I wore a blue uniform...with shined shoes!
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: ShakySarge on January 02, 2019, 02:24:46 PM
Visual camouflage is not as effective as many think save game birds and waterfowl. Scent is a different story.

Look back at old photos of hunters and you’ll see more red flannel and blue jeans than anything else. Movement is what really catches an animal’s eyes and gets em zoned in on us. Add scent to the movement and most game will head the other way. Keep in mind all that camo is usually topped with a bright orange hat.

I do use scent killer but only for hunting deer and coyotes. I have no problem with wearing blue jeans for hunting any game animal except turkey. In the end, the “coolest” pattern is merely a way to make money.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: sixshootertexan on January 07, 2019, 04:29:58 PM
Wearing camo is more of a fashion statement nowadays. I hunt a lot of different areas and can not afford a camo pattern for all of those areas. So the camo I have usually does not match my surroundings. Besides 95% of the time I'm hunting out of a box blind where I really don't need camo anyways. I just hydro dipped one of my air rifles just to hide the shiny parts not to really camouflage it. Made it look more uniform. Scents I never use. I just make sure I don't have something on like aftershave or gas smell from filling a 4 wheeler or truck. My wife is one those that once she is settled in in her blind will not move or even blink.  Not me I am constantly moving my butt around to stay comfortable, unless I'm taking my nap waiting on the feeders to go off. When she hunts with me she gets all mad because I won't sit still and fart a lot. When deer start moving into the area I'll try and stay still. Now turkey hunting you better be camo'ed good and stay really still. Those suckers can see a piss ant a mile away. In Texas unless you are hunting National Forest no orange is needed.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Frank in Fairfield on January 08, 2019, 06:50:04 AM
Don’t need camo for the turkeys.
I just can’t get them into the backyard.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Steelhead on January 08, 2019, 07:01:37 AM
Frank,

You remind me of Jeff Dunham's character, Walter!   ;D ;D ;D


Just joking with you. Smart, cynical, quick wit
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: steveoh on January 08, 2019, 11:55:55 AM
Don’t need camo for the turkeys.
I just can’t get them into the backyard.

Couple years ago a Jake settled in on sitting on my truck in front of my house. He stayed there a good half hour.  I was ever so tempted to open a window and let him have it in the noggin. But that would have been poaching, as it was out of season. But still that temptation was there. Background wasn't very safe either. Dangit. 

And I was so properly camouflaged in my jammies and flippers too. ;D
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Steelhead on January 08, 2019, 05:15:38 PM
Lol. I go through that with both big shooter bucks and turkeys almost every day. As some of you know, I tried to shoot a squirrel in my garden from a bedroom a while back and forgot the window was closed. Oops. The funny part was that I couldn't figure out how I missed. Squirrel runs off, and I'm like, 'What the hell...25' with my break barrel? Really? How could I....AAAAaaahhhh FFFuuu' (edited for the kiddies)  Neat little hole in the glass.

Anyway, that pinhole is now a proper redneck-ified, duct taped, ever-growing crack and a daily reminder that there are times when I feel like I'm barely smart enough to walk upright.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: steveoh on January 08, 2019, 06:00:29 PM
Lol. I go through that with both big shooter bucks and turkeys almost every day. As some of you know, I tried to shoot a squirrel in my garden from a bedroom a while back and forgot the window was closed. Oops. The funny part was that I couldn't figure out how I missed. Squirrel runs off, and I'm like, 'What the hell...25' with my break barrel? Really? How could I....AAAAaaahhhh FFFuuu' (edited for the kiddies)  Neat little hole in the glass.

Anyway, that pinhole is now a proper redneck-ified, duct taped, ever-growing crack and a daily reminder that there are times when I feel like I'm barely smart enough to walk upright.

I was camouflaged one day in my very best grilling clothes, and turning chicken on the grill, when my wife came out to inspect. She was happy with the chicken but not at all happy with the .58 caliber dent in the hood of the grill. I begged ignorance. Honest.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Steelhead on January 08, 2019, 08:34:49 PM
If it ever gets too bad with the better half you can take a big swing at forgiveness with the 'super hero trick'. This is an all-or-nothing move that can only be used once in a lifetime so discretion is a must. When the wife is obviously ready to gut you like a fish for doing something stupid, you come to her with a beach towel in hand. You gently place it around her shoulders like a cape and say, 'I know you're mad, but now you're Super Mad!' If you have long eye lashes bat them rapidly at this point. If not, just look at the ground sheepishly. She'll either laugh and give you a hug or beat you into unconsciousness. Like I said, it's a gamble.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: steveoh on January 08, 2019, 10:26:55 PM
Snort! LMAO
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Bullfrog on January 09, 2019, 08:05:08 PM
High contrast patterns seems to be what fools most game animals that are partially color blind and see in lower resolution than we do. Contrasting patters and broad lines and splotches of light and dark.

I used to shun ghillie suits for normal stand use. I think the burlap that hangs off jiggles with slight movement and catches animal eyes easily. However, I've also taken to wearing a light ghillie when sitting on the ground or in a low stand. In conjunction with my HECS suit, its awesome camo.

Yes, I do believe in the HECS suit, although my theories as to why it actually works keep changing. I do believe there are aspects to game vision that are yet undescribed.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: steveoh on January 09, 2019, 08:37:31 PM
High contrast patterns seems to be what fools most game animals that are partially color blind and see in lower resolution than we do. Contrasting patters and broad lines and splotches of light and dark.

I used to shun ghillie suits for normal stand use. I think the burlap that hangs off jiggles with slight movement and catches animal eyes easily. However, I've also taken to wearing a light ghillie when sitting on the ground or in a low stand. In conjunction with my HECS suit, its awesome camo.

Yes, I do believe in the HECS suit, although my theories as to why it actually works keep changing. I do believe there are aspects to game vision that are yet undescribed.

Travis, I like your camo paint job and I suspect camo can make a big difference in fooling the critter you are hunting. Especially true with those sharp eyed turkeys. I wonder if dressing as turkey would work!  I have to admit a ghillie suit looks mighty tempting.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Bullfrog on January 09, 2019, 08:46:30 PM
Turkey can definitely see the difference between an artificial decoy that looks real to our eyes and a stuffed hen. Its been established that most or all birds see in the UV spectrum. I suspect UV makes feathers sheen in a way we can't see and that helps them spot a decoy in the sun and tell its not quite a turkey. When I switched to a stuffed hen, the level of interaction I got out of turkeys with the decoy was night and day.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Alan on January 10, 2019, 04:35:31 AM
I don't consider myself an expert on camo or what animals see and hear. But in the last few years, there has been a surge in animal senses research. The data is readily available on line for all to read. If you're interested, here is a bit of info on deer: https://www.grandviewoutdoors.com/big-game-hunting/whitetail-deer/scientific-facts-about-how-deer-see-and-hear

With respect to the linked data... Travis is certainly correct about movement (i.e. his comments on Ghillie suits). But I have doubts about his comments on turkeys. I've seen turkeys hump a decoy that looks more like a ferruginous hawk, than a turkey! Maybe its raging hormones, but you'd still think they're as blind as bats (which aren't by the way). We also tend to think, that all birds have excellent eyesight. Birds of prey certainly do, but pigeons have poor eyesight past about 75 yards. What gives pigeons an advantage, is their ability to learn specific threats, and even the ability to recognize faces!

What I'm saying here is, every animal we hunt, possesses a unique set of safeguards, even regional ones. Recognizing those safeguards, is what gives us an edge, no matter how we accomplish that goal.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: steveoh on January 10, 2019, 09:24:54 AM
If deer and other critters have heightened UV vision, then I'd certainly want to know if the camo I'm wearing is Fluorescent. Some fabric detergents add a brightening component that causes Fluorescence of your camo clothing.  I reckon an ultra violet light shining on your camo gear could indicate the Turkey's are busting you in all your camo loveliness.

Then there is the fragrance that a lot of detergents have.

So, is your:
1. Clothing Fluorescent?
2. Does your detergent have whiteners and brighteners that cause Fluorescence?
3. Does your detergent ad perfumes that give you away way before you see a critter to hunt?
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: steveoh on January 10, 2019, 12:04:05 PM
Some light reading:

https://www.fieldandstream.com/articles/hunting/2003/06/what-deer-see

https://www.outdoorlife.com/blogs/big-buck-zone/2014/07/video-new-study-sheds-light-what-deer-see

https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/tom-turkeys-terrific-vision/

Funny, it's really hard to find true facts on the subject. Most of these articles appear to be written for search engines, or rely on anecdotal evidence.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Steelhead on January 10, 2019, 02:49:08 PM
I can't help but hear my old hunting mentors spinning in their graves. Their choice of scent of blockers was usually Canadian whiskey, vodka, pot, bacon, and cigarettes.

Funny how technology, gadgets, and modern convenience has taken outdoor sports to another level.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: steveoh on January 10, 2019, 03:06:00 PM
I did my very first hunting when I was in the 6th grade in South Carolina. I was there for a year while Dad was in Vietnam. I became friends with two brothers David and Mark. The three of us would spend hours and hours in the woods shooting critters with bbguns and my Diana .177 springer. Both brothers were accomplished hunters and actually depended on the meat they brought home. (very poor family). They showed me how to sit absolutely still under the Mulberry tree and wait for the Mocking Birds to come feed. Mocking Bird tasted pretty fine cooked up in the bacon grease coated iron skillet they borrowed from their Mom.  Squirrel, Bull Frogs, Pigeon, Dove, Crow and Sparrow all found their way into that frying pan.

Neither boy wore Camo, but they sure kept themselves fed. I often think of those two. Unfortunately I waited too long to re-connect with them, as both have passed on to the great hunting grounds. I regret not finding them and thanking them.
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: bnowlin on January 10, 2019, 05:36:25 PM
In the fall when I want to hide from mama I put my red long johns on and hide in the apple tree,  Forget it now tho.
Bobn
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Alan on January 11, 2019, 04:25:25 AM
The old cliche about a man showing his colors, sure fits here!
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: bnowlin on January 12, 2019, 01:48:00 PM
The old cliche about a man showing his colors, sure fits here!

Alan,
If she would have paid more attention she could have seen me.  My true colors were more red than the apples.
Bobn
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: Alan on January 12, 2019, 02:23:45 PM
Careful now Bob. I used to have really red hair (mostly gray now), and my last name is Applegate. And my nickname??? Apples
Title: Re: Open discussion on camouflage
Post by: bnowlin on January 12, 2019, 08:13:00 PM
Careful now Bob. I used to have really red hair (mostly gray now), and my last name is Applegate. And my nickname??? Apples

OOPS :-X