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Duke Number 3 too big?
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Author:  haas [ 19 Jan 2016, 13:23 ]
Post subject:  Duke Number 3 too big?

My question for those who are more seasoned is. I have a duke #3 that has produced a couple of bad catches to the foot or leg area which has caused damage. I keep encountering sets where a coon, fox, possibly possum have been caught by the toes and have pulled out. Some times leaving a toe. My question is the #3 too big for this application and what size do you recommend to prevent this behavior. The traps are checked every day. I did notice on one coon I caught the rear leg catch that the bone was broken. Leading me to believe the trap is too big. I traded it for 2.5 but moved the #3 over to a dirt hole set coyote set hoping to avoid non target but then it happened again on another coon. Is there better median trap size small enough for coon large enough for Cats and the biggest Coyotes. That wont produce these kinds of injuries. Or can I modify a number #3 to inhibit those kinds of injuries.

Author:  trappintime [ 19 Jan 2016, 20:15 ]
Post subject:  Re: Duke Number 3 too big?

Now that was quite the intro. :shock: No idea about a duke or coon, but welcome to WAT.. :D

Author:  wolf1199 [ 19 Jan 2016, 20:40 ]
Post subject:  Re: Duke Number 3 too big?

Yes welcome to wat. Sure you will have an answer shortly to your question.

Author:  NonPCfed [ 20 Jan 2016, 08:08 ]
Post subject:  Re: Duke Number 3 too big?

Welcome to WAT haas!!

Let me start out that everyone's situation is different and geography can play a part as well (didn't see any info on your general location such as state). All of us want to avoid things such as broken legs or lost animals. In my particular situation, a #3 coil spring leghold is my standard trap for my upland sets because I can run into yote and badgers as well as coon and fox. Most of mine are unmodified Victors that I bought back in the late 1980s. Victors at that time were considered a pretty decent trap, probably rated better quality than Duke legholds. I don't own any such Dukes although my son did got a 1.5 CS Duke last summer at the state trapping convention and I did notice a burr or two on the jaws. Any sharp edge like that will cause foot damage if not removed.

I have not noticed any foot damage from my Victor #3s on critters except that they will cause a coon's foot to fall asleep and then the coon will cause damage on themselves. Because no critter except a few house cats and a dog this year leave my traps alive, I'm not overly concerned with the size maybe being too big. On the domestics just mentioned, I haven't seen any leg damage with a #3 but perhaps I've been lucky.

I probably should get my old #3s laminated (maybe this summer) and if I bought new, I would buy off-set jaws. Because your Dukes are a more economical trap, perhaps you can get them laminated and have some other tweaks done and they wouldn't have the problems you mentioned anymore. I'm sure there are guys on here you modify their traps that could tell you how to make your Dukes a better fur getting device. Good luck and remember we like good pictures!!

Author:  WCS [ 20 Jan 2016, 14:15 ]
Post subject:  Re: Duke Number 3 too big?

Number 3 will be too big for most critters besides yotes. Dukes are notorious for having sharp edges as well. Take a file to them to minimize damage. Getting coons in any foot hold bigger than a 1 1/2 is asking for trouble imo

Author:  Amak [ 20 Jan 2016, 18:39 ]
Post subject:  Re: Duke Number 3 too big?

The bigger the trap (down to size #1), the harder it is to hold a coon. They are just too strong both in mind and muscle. Ive held some in larger traps, but far and wide, the outcome is less then desirable. No trap is good for a wide range of animals of different sizes, there is good reason there are a range of trap sizes, and its because no trap is a catch all. There are ways to deal with it though. I like to use dog proof traps set all around and nearby my bobcat and coyote sets that use #3 size traps. That way, the predators cant get pinched by a small trap, and get away....and the smaller animals are caught in the dp's to keep them from getting into the large ones and causing issues less then desireable. Nothing is fool proof but it will eliminate 90% of your problems. For a foothold trap, you wont beat a #11 longspring for coon, possum, and skunk. Easy to bed to, if ever you want to target those animals particularly.

There is nothing wrong with the duke trap. Some animals fight so hard that without a drag, bad things like broken bones can happen. I use MB #3 traps that are extremely strong, and rarely will a bone be broken, but i do my best to take measures to keep small animals out of them.. Once in a while, a coon steps too far into a trap making a high hit up on the leg, then when they fight, they do so with such vigor, they can break a leg. Thats why on coon, its so important to get them by the pad of the foot instead of the leg, which will require a smaller jawed trap. Those dukes are fine, for the intended animal for the size, which would be coyote, bobcat, badger, beaver, and otter. Its not the trap though, its just doing what its made to do. Its up to us to try our best to use it for appropriate sized animals.

Author:  conibearcat [ 20 Jan 2016, 21:09 ]
Post subject:  Re: Duke Number 3 too big?

like everyone said, proper trap tuning is important and our duty as trappers is to do this, file thoes edges, laminating and add extra swivels, offsetjaws work fine to. I have lots of vic#3 I use for yote and never had any leg damage to any animals. by increasing your pan tention you will cut back on nontarget catches. ,1 1/2 s are perfect size for coon&fox #3s I use late season for yotes

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