Concealment can be natural or artificial protection from enemy observation. One’s surroundings may provide natural concealment, which needs no change prior to use, such as bushes, grass and shadows. A sniper can also create artificial concealment from materials such as burlap and camouflage nets. Or he can move natural materials (bushes, leaves, and grass) from their original locations, and create areas that work with his artificial camouflage. The sniper must consider the effects of the change of seasons, weather, and light on the concealment provided by both natural and artificial materials.

Camouflage is used by the sniper to conceal himself and his equipment from enemy observation. As with concealment, camouflage may be artificial or natural. Artificial camouflage is any material or substance that is man made and is used for the purpose of concealing through color, outline change, or texture. Natural camouflage can be made up of vegetation or materials that are native to a given area. The sniper will always augment his appearance by using natural camouflage. The ratio of natural to artificial would be approximately 60-70 percent natural to 30-40 percent artificial. Man-made substances will always appear, under scrutiny, to be man made. The secret to camouflage is to never draw the attention of the enemy and create a reason for the enemy to “inspect with close scrutiny” your position. Once that occurs, you will be observed due to target indicators.

Watch as Marines and sailors with the scout sniper platoon, battalion landing team, 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, share and receive knowledge in constructing and using hides for observation and sniping. Includes soundbites from Cpl. Jeremy Russow, assistant team leader for the scout sniper platoon, Battalion Landing Team 2nd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment, 31st MEU, from Bourbonnais, Ill

Footage courtesy of US Military Videos & Photos

Featured photo by Lance Cpl. Emmanuel Ramos/U.S. Marine Corps