Hunting with a Night Vision Device: Your Questions, Answered

February 27, 2023
Hunting with a Night Vision Device: Your Questions, Answered, Steele Industries Inc

Within the United States, those hunting at night can legally use night vision and thermal optics. Night hunters often prefer thermal imaging because these devices don’t need visible light to provide an image. In contrast, other devices require some amount of ambient light to be effective. 

Thermal imaging technology can also easily transition between day and nighttime hunting without manipulating the optics. Here are some other must-know facts about hunting with night vision.

What’s It Like to Hunt With Night Vision?

The experience of hunting in the dark depends on what kind of device you use. Night vision goggles pick up on the faintest light sources, whether from starlight, the moon, or distant sources. 

This increased detection of light and infrared light moves through an image intensifier tube, producing extreme clarity when sighting game. You can see body parts, watch behaviors and stalk the animal just like you would during the day. It helps you remain hidden until you have the proper angle to make the shot.

There are a few drawbacks when using night vision devices. It can be hard to narrow in on your game whenever you are working in dense foliage or heavy brush. Another concern is that you need a little bit of light to produce an image, so it becomes challenging when you are night hunting when it’s foggy or in dusty conditions.

How Far Can I See With Night Vision?

A night vision scope is typically capable of capturing an image up to 1,000 yards away, though this depends on the quality of the scope or device. With digital night vision, many have an LCD screen that displays an enhanced and magnified version of the sighted image. 

These devices can usually record video and save still images, which can often be transferred and stored digitally on external devices. Higher-end night vision optics display pictures in full color rather than the neon green images of older equipment.

How Do I Hunt With Night Vision?

Hunting with night vision devices may take some getting used to, whether you choose night vision binoculars, monoculars, or a mounted scope. Because there are different generations with devices, there are different night vision capabilities to understand. With night vision goggles, you can operate hands-free and have more maneuverability. 

However, you improve your accuracy when you have an infrared laser designator to create a spot of red color on the target.

In some situations, you may need to get closer to a target because of the obstructions of brush, limbs, or other objects. You must also have some light available, whether you allow for moonlight or distant light from other sources.

What Are the Differences Between Night Vision Devices?

The main comparison made with night vision optics is thermal imaging devices. This equipment picks up on the most subtle variations in heat signatures and converts those variations into digital images. The images are colored according to the strength of its infrared radiation, but even the slightest heat source shows up well when hunting on a cool night. 

Since the thermal imager makes identifying a target easy in bright or low light conditions, many hunters prefer a thermal scope.

However, there are drawbacks to this equipment as well. It can be challenging to secure absolute zero when trying to calibrate the scope. You may also experience a challenge with target identification. Sometimes, the images from the scan are unclear and blocky. Although a quality image, it doesn’t always make it easy to determine what you are shooting.

Which Night Vision Technology Is the Most Reliable?

There are many brands of night vision equipment, whether you are looking for thermal optics or standard goggles. Rather than selecting a particular brand, be sure to evaluate the following elements across devices:

  • Resolution
  • Magnification
  • Sensitivity
  • Eye relief
  • Angle or field of view
  • Battery life
  • Detection and recognition distance
  • Power of the Infrared Illuminator

Evaluating the performance by reviews and features will help you determine which night vision is right for you, but Generation 3 is considered the best on the market.

Order Your Night Hunting Gear

When you want to upgrade your hunting experience, turn to Steele Industries for a wide selection of night vision equipment and accessories. Order your ready-to-ship items today.