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Rough stretch
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Author:  jermbonoutdoors [ 14 Dec 2015, 19:36 ]
Post subject:  Rough stretch

I don't want to sound like a whiny b**** but I've had a rough couple weeks dealing with educated animals and i need advice. I cleaned up one pond and started trapping muskrats at a new pond and after I caught ONE muskrat the others are seemingly impossible to catch. Every day my 110's are snapped or knocked over. Doesn't matter how much blocking I use or how well they're stabilized the little turds always mess it up. I don't want to use the floating sets because of possible trap thieves. Any ideas? I've also been trying to catch my first beaver but after one night I have 2 of my 3 220s snapped and empty. Yeah i know a 220 Isnt a beaver trap but I thought I could get away with it because I don't have any 330s. Would a 5/64 dispatch coyote snare work for educated beaver? 8 inch loop and set have it on the very bottom of the run? Sound good?And to top it off I had a my first coon pullout of the year. I check this particular pocket set from a distance but apparently he hid himself well enough that I didn't see him and he was in the trap (1 1/2 foothold) for god only knows how long (probably a day or 2) and finally pulled out. He hid in the culvert and each morning I saw no evidence of any set activity so I walked on. That was my fault.

Author:  wolf1199 [ 14 Dec 2015, 21:28 ]
Post subject:  Re: Rough stretch

Your right about the 220.s. They are not beaver traps and should not be used as such. Although I have caught some beaver in them , the set was for otter. A 280 or 330 are for beaver. Now you are dealing with wised up beaver. In your case wanting to use snares for beaver I would not unless you have a place where the beaver will drown. Snared beaver on land will only damage the pelt because of thrashing around. Now using power snares with the kill spring will work fine. Fur prices are at an all time low this year and any damaged fur will have a hard time to sell. Some times its better to just wait till you have the proper gear before you target certain animals.

Author:  Amak [ 15 Dec 2015, 07:55 ]
Post subject:  Re: Rough stretch

Good points wolf.

Jermbon, its not normal for rat traps to be getting sprung wide spread. Obviously you have reason to believe that theft is a possibility, have you considered that maybe someone is taking your rats out of the traps? As stated, rats are not ones to go around firing traps, so something is weird.

Author:  Westside [ 15 Dec 2015, 09:35 ]
Post subject:  Re: Rough stretch

I have never heard of a smart muskrat. They seem to walk through or on just about anything. I'm not sure what state you live or if the muskrats are using bank dens or houses. Are there spots where you can use a simple #1 longspring and drown them? Use them on the edge of houses just below the water line or on feed beds. I doubt the muskrats are onto you and are skirting your traps...........they just aren't that smart. :--)

Author:  longhairboy [ 15 Dec 2015, 13:52 ]
Post subject:  Re: Rough stretch

Could it be a mink? Or like amak someone taking the rats out of the trap and not resetting them? Had that happen to me before

Author:  remrogers [ 15 Dec 2015, 20:15 ]
Post subject:  Re: Rough stretch

Sounds like you have someone messing with your traps. They appear to be doing everything to discourage you with out stealing the traps. Had a similar issue once on a beaver complaint. Figured out it was the neighbor's boy didn't want the beaver hurt and kept dropping rocks onto the traps. Found a set of tracks and backtracked him.

Author:  jermbonoutdoors [ 19 Dec 2015, 19:19 ]
Post subject:  Re: Rough stretch

Surprisingly enough it is actually the rats just outsmarting me. One particular tree stump had one run coming out from underneath when I started. After I caught the first rat they started making new runs and each time I set the new run they made another. They are up to 5 runs coming out of 1 tree stump and all 5 are set with a 110. I can almost guarantee tomorrow I will find run #6. I cant seem to find any feed beds anywhere and the bank is very steep so they don't really get out of the water that much. Kinda frustrating but on a brighter note I managed to snare two 45# beaver out of that lodge I found. I could possibly catch #3. Still signs of activity around the lodge. And even better, I found otter scat beside the lodge and I believe I found his den too. Indiana finally has an otter season so I'm going to set a few 220's out and see if I can't get one. How many beaver normally live in a lodge together? Will they abandon the lodge if I catch too many? And what could I use for otter bait?

Author:  Amak [ 20 Dec 2015, 21:29 ]
Post subject:  Re: Rough stretch

Its weird to hear they are digging new runs like that. I've seen them avoid a certain run if i made hits on it near a den site, but they often have another route or two they use for the same den and they go to using them instead. In those cases, i set on them and bust them there.

Are you setting the trap up tight at the den entrance hole? That works great the first time when they are unsuspecting, and anytime I can do that, I do. However, if you are placing the trap up tight at the entrances, they may well know its danger and feel its plugging the way up. Sometimes They are in a position to study the situation over at that point to determine if its safe or not to take a plunge. If thats the case and you can do so, when you see they are using a different route, set the trap back away from the hole, but in the depression of the run, some 2 to 4 ft away from the hole. When the rats commit to leaving and do not see the trap at entrance, they do not do so with caution, as they might do when trap is set in the throat of the dens entrance. Once they decide to go, they will dive in and take off like a shot following the runs depression for a distance. If the trap is in the way, they will go through it with no time to react. Try to conceal the trap if possible by using the lay of the bottom such as placing it under a branch they go under, or along a steep little clump, or whatever you find. If not, just place it in their way of the runs depression. Hopefully you can see the muddy water that tells the route they take. Dont worry about them going over the trap, as long as you are in the depression they will hug the bottom and stick to it, so long as it exists. So key is, back off a bit. Do not over use blocking, just the trap alone is best

Author:  NonPCfed [ 20 Dec 2015, 21:31 ]
Post subject:  Re: Rough stretch

jerm....- How did your multi trail rat check go?? If all those runs are starting in the general same spot, why not cover that area with a couple of traps and get the buggers?? Some pictures posted might help some us get a better understanding of your situation.

Author:  jermbonoutdoors [ 21 Dec 2015, 21:13 ]
Post subject:  Re: Rough stretch

If i could figure out how to post pictures I would. I let the area sit for a few days and I can see there is one defined run they are using so I set it tonight. All the other runs are covered in silt and look inactive so we will see. I have my otter traps out now but I have some questions. How often do otters travel through an area? Is a 220 set in a trail or a slide a good set? My traps are well camouflaged.

Author:  wolf1199 [ 21 Dec 2015, 23:41 ]
Post subject:  Re: Rough stretch

jermbonoutdoors wrote:
If i could figure out how to post pictures I would. I let the area sit for a few days and I can see there is one defined run they are using so I set it tonight. All the other runs are covered in silt and look inactive so we will see. I have my otter traps out now but I have some questions. How often do otters travel through an area? Is a 220 set in a trail or a slide a good set? My traps are well camouflaged.


Varies, if the food is good they will hang around a few days and work the area then move on. Otter have a circuit they seem to follow. Patience is the game for otter. They will return. Might be a week maybe 2 even a month. Keep your traps in working condition so that when they do return your ready for them.

Amak how did your otter turn out?.

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