When hunting at night, you have limited vision due to the darkness; hence you may need to use the best light color for hunting. The primary goal is to see where you are going and spotting the animal you are hunting without spooking it. So, what is the best light color for hunting?
The best hunting light for illumination is white light. However, to avoid spooking the animals you are hunting, you will have more success using colored lights. You can choose the best-colored lights for hunting, which include red and green lights.
Light blindsides the animal you are hunting by acting as a cloak. The reason it works effectively is that mammals use both cones and rods to receive light. The rods make the eyes sensitive to low light, but it fails to register colors. The cones, on the other hand, pick up the color. Humans have more cones than most animals; that is why we can distinguish lots of colors quite easily. Also, we have fewer rods, which is why we cannot see well in the dark.
Reasons for Using Lights for Night Hunting
Tactical lights are ones that give you a balance between brightness and intensity. Hunting is about the right amount of light at night. Too bright and the animal spooks and runs or too low, and you may fail to see the animal you are hunting. Some colors are brighter than others, making perfect sense when you want to spot an animal from a distance.
The best color intensity is white lights, but it spooks most animals because it frightens animals quite easily. Most hunters prefer the green and red color lights for stealth.
Frequency is also essential when determining the kind of light that you will use for hunting. It determines where the illumination you are using falls on the electromagnetic spectrum. The best frequency setting is the one that allows you to see in the dark easily but go unnoticed by the animal you are hunting.
Best Light Color for Hunting Various Game
When choosing hunting lights, there are several factors that you should consider before settling for any particular. Most preferably, the game you are hunting determines the kind of light suited for that specific hunt. Different hunting methods also inspire different types of lights. For example, hunting over bait requires a different light than when calling the animal using a caller.
Some technological hunting advancements like night vision and thermal scopes may not require light at all. Different colors of night hunting lights affect the game differently. Whereas red lights are the best suited for all kinds of animal hunting, some situations make green light go to hunting light.
Best Light Color for Hunting Hogs: Green
I have used both green light and red light, and some core benefits come with using the green light. For starters, green light carries less risk of detection by the animal you are hunting. It allows you to get closer as it is also less detectable.
Why Greenlight is Best for Hog Hunting
When hunting in foggy conditions, green lights cut through the fog, giving you a clear view than both red and white lights. It is a more intense hunting color with a wide range beam to make distant images sharper.
Humans have a better perception of the green light when hunting hogs than when using a red light. The advantage lies in seeing objects that are distant and far away. Greenlight helps the hunter see the contrasting black color of hogs at greater distances than red light. Hogs have a poor vision, and as a hunter, you should not worry too much about spooking them with a green light. The green beam picks the hog’s body figure sharply without scaring the animal by casting shadows around nearby objects.
Green color lights are the best for hog hunting because pigs are attracted to bright light that is not unsettling, unlike the white color light. Green color light does not cast shadows, making the hogs more relaxed and carefree while under its beam. Hogs have difficulty in seeing green color light than they do for red color light.
To the hunter, green color lights offer a bright contrast to the hog’s body, making it easy to spot compared to red color light. Hogs do not spook easily compared to animals like deer and coyotes. Because green color light has a broader illumination area, you will have a clear shot most of the time. It allows you to see farther and better in the dark.
Which is the Best Green Light to Use for Hog Hunting?
When you have access to hunting property where you can lay bait for hogs and wait for them to come feed, you should consider a feeder light. A feeder light frees your hands, making it easy for you to operate your bow or rifle. You can execute shots simultaneously as you will have a clear vision of hogs without fear of spooking them.
A green color feeder light makes the hogs adapt fast to the color beam. It makes a high chance of hunting success because you have a better shot placement when the pigs feed under the green beam.
When choosing a feeder, you should consider the kind that is best suited for your hunting environment. There are lots of varieties that have different features. For example, some feeder lights mount on top of the feeder shining down while others can fix horizontally from a tree shining across.
You can choose feeder lights that use disposable or rechargeable batteries while others are solar-powered. The most technologically advanced feeder lights are remote controlled, activated on a motion sensor, or manual mode.
When mounting a feeder light, shining downwards exposes only the lights beam above the feeder. It denies the hogs a clear view of the feeder, which should minimize the chances of spooking it. The feeder light should cover a sufficient area but not so much that you expose yourself to the hog. The perfect beam range falls between at least 25-50 feet.
The primary advantage of green feeder lights is that it allows you to sit far in ambush, waiting quietly for the hogs to take the bait. It is because you can distance yourself and still see the hog clear without fear of being noticed.
Best Light Color for Hunting Deer: Red
Using the red color light for hunting deer is the best above all light colors. Compared to humans who have more cones, most animals have only two cones, hence dichromatic vision. It means most animals can only see two dominant colors.
The predominant colors include yellow-green and blue. Any color light that ranges on the orange and red spectrum becomes less visible. Therefore, using a red color light beam has minimal detection risks, which is an advantage to the hunter. If you are downwind the deer, it will not see that you are there, and you have more time to pick the best shot placement. Lining up humane and ethical shots is still possible even in the darkest of nights when using a red light color for hunting deer.
Best Light Color for Hunting Coyote: Red
The red light color is also the best when hunting coyotes. If stealth is what you want when hunting, the red light color is undetectable to coyotes, which can be sensitive to intensive light beams.
Coyotes spook easily, and bright lights that cast shadows may alert them and run away without confirming if there is danger. The best light is one that you can hide behind but still be bright enough for you to see the coyote and line up a better shot placement.
The red color light, however, has its limitations when hunting at night. Some hunters find the beam distance to be too low and cannot see far away animals. But technological advancements have evolved, and the availability of Red color LED lights has captured the interest of most hunters.
There are some red color LED lights that can cast a wide beam range of up to 250 meters. It is more than enough for night hunting. Save for a professional sniper, there is no need to be shooting animals from that further range at night.
Red LED lights emit the lowest heat compared to white light, making them the most efficient of the two. It means that they are energy-saving and you can spend most hours on the hunt at night as they are also reliable. You have some extra hours of stalking time, which might make the difference between having a successful hunt.
To the hunter, the best advantage a red color light offers is the easy adaptation to the human eye. Because it does not have that much effect, you can easily adapt from switching on and off the red color light. The switching time between on and off is not similar compared to both white and green color lights.
Which is the Best Red Color light for Hunting Coyotes and Deer
Your handheld light must be quality if you want to have a better chance of hunting your prey successfully. Despite the method you will use, both the colored and white handheld lights are efficient for hunting.
When you need stealth, the red color handheld light will work fine, not giving away your position. But there are more uses of handheld lights in the woods than stealth. When you find yourself in need of a flashlight with a higher spectrum, you will appreciate having a bright flashlight over the dim colored lights.
Check out our review of the best flashlights for hunting.
White vs Colored Lights: Which is the Best Light Color for Hunting?
There are many reasons why using a colored light is better than white light. The idea that you can see and reach prey animals without spooking them is the best example. However, in the woods and at night, white light has certain advantages over light colors like green and red hunting lights.
White light compromises the ability to be stealthy but offers you more in terms of vision and spotting animals from far away beam ranges. The intensity of white lights helps you stay safe and your way in the woods fast.
Animals can easily detect white lights because of the intensity and sometimes spook when it casts shadows that make them uneasy. The best strategy to use when using white light is spotlighting. Here you flash your light to detect eye-shine, then drop it down and pick your shot after stunning the animal with the shine.
White lights are beneficial in camping sites and walking the trail in and out of the woods after dark. You can also use it for many other outdoor activities when darkness falls.
Which is the Best White Light for Hunting:
Blood Tracking Lights
Even though most hunters hope to get the ethical and humane shot, hunting in the dark does not present such decent opportunities. There may be a need for tracking prey by following the blood to see if it dies. When you do not have a clean kill, you may have to follow the blood trail in the dark, which can be quite challenging if you use light colors like red and green.
It may be possible to follow a blood trail with colored lights in short distances, but the most efficient light is the White light. The intensity needed is bright, which is essential to identify blood droplets from the contrasting ground.
One theory I must dismiss is blood tracking light that makes blood glow in the dark. Even when using Ultra Violet lights, it is still impossible to make blood pop-out like glowing fluorescent paint. In the woods and after dark, UV lights do not help find blood than white light is.
The best light for blood tracking is dependent on many things. For example, hunting in fall presents a challenge spotting blood trails when the ground is covered with red leaves. Differentiating between blood splatters and fallen leaves is challenging and can only happen when the white light intensity shines over the leaves.
Infrared lights are becoming popular by the day as most hunters keep inquiring about them. They are fascinating pieces of hunting equipment that gives the hunter an advantage over the target animal.
Infrared lights are popular for use in rifle scopes and night vision spotting scopes. The primary benefit is that infrared lights cast no visible or detectable light spectrum. There is no risk of spooking hogs, deer, or coyotes as it casts no shadows.
To get quality night vision and infrared lights can be a bit expensive, but like with all new technology, prices will eventually come down. Before buying an infrared riflescope, you should know how to apply its use effectively in the woods. You may sometimes have to back it up with a handheld or headlamp white light.
Infrared Light is Best for Weapon Light Attachments
Weapon attachment lights are useful because it frees your hands as you spot and shoot target animals with one swift motion. There are many benefits when using infrared light as your weapon attachment light. The first is that it offers much more stealth. Because it is undetectable, you can hold a stand and wait for deer to get closer without alerting them to your presence. Hunting at night needs thermal vision, where you can detect animals by their body heat.
However, for scanning the area before switching to thermal vision, you can use a handheld white light to locate prey animals. However, weapon light attachments can also be of light colors red and green. It makes sense not to spook the animal but still has a clear line of sight that is less detectable.
When hunting different animals, you will notice that animals can also learn from experience like us humans. If animals in one area get exposed to one color and associate it with danger, they will spook and always scamper for safety. For instance, when red light starts to scare animals in an area, the best strategy may be to switch to green color lights and see if the results will be any different.
Greenlight is the best for hunting hogs; however, it is not for coyotes as it is more intense than red light. Even though green colored lights do not spook hogs, red light is undeniably the best light for all kinds of hunting situations. It does not cause anxiety to any animal and is less detectable.
When hunting deer, it is not as simple as other animals. Deer have more rods than even humans can see well in the dark. They can see many different colors at night and are inclined to sense most colors at the end of a violet light spectrum. It means deer are sensitive to blue and UV lights and can also see yellow and white light quite well.
Therefore, when hunting deer, you can choose green, red, or orange to blindspot the deer from your presence. Many hunters will opt for red because it is undeniably the ultimate stealth color light.