Please Also Note To Check Your State/Provincial Trapping Laws BEFORE Using Any Of These Sets!
In the Below Column's will be different trap sets for assorted critters! Also included below it will be information on what bait or lure to use etc.
This set above is a Dive Set. It is commonly used for catching beaver or otter in they're travel ways. No Bait is needed for this particular set. If you were how ever to modify it though to be an under ice set be ing hung by the dive set above the ice you would use Poplar or Aspen wood. You dont need a very big piece just about 2 inches thick and about 5 inches long. Either Wire it to the trigger or drill holes in it to go through the trigger wires. Cut little notches of the green poplar/aspen to release that smell beavers love!
These are 2 different beaver sets. The one on the left is a pole set with a #5 longspring but a #3 coilspring can also be set. The set on the right is a 330 conibear (bodygrip) trap. It is commonly set lower on the pole and put in front of the entrance to the beavers lodge.
These are 3 different basic methods to catching beaver with 330 conibears. The bottom "Dam Set" Can be set with a #3 coilspring or a #4 or #5 longspring at the entrance.
I am not a beaver trapper, but came across these #330 rigs when I was putting my muskrat float thread together. This is a cumulative collection of many to save in one place. Those known are from members on Trapperman.com.
T-Man: Vinke - "V" Float
Those were 'V' Shaped Beaver Floats.
This is a channel set for beaver. It is best used if the trap is half submerged.
Diagram of Full Submerge Channel Set.
This is a more complicated version of a Beaver Snare Pole but still works good.
the easy way of a snare pole is to take a dry pole and wire the snares with the bait to one pole. Then put another pole on top of the ice connected to the pole and the beaver wont take the pole down with it. This doesnt happen often but I have caught Big Beavers that the top pole aswell as the snare are ready to snap because of so much fighting with the main pole.
It seems a lot of newbie beaver trappers have a hard time with footholds. This is the way I do it. I know some will disagree with some things I'll post, that's fine, but this has worked very well for me. Although the below set is a castor mound, I use the same trap placement and strategy at most foothold sets.
I like to find a hump or point that is easily seen by passing beaver. The nice thing about beaver is you can usually make the set where you want to catch them. In other words, you can make the set and lure the beaver to where it best fits what you want/need to do. I like to make the set where there is brown grass so my mud shows up well. Although it's the lure that's most important and your main attractor, I think eye appeal can also be important, especially if the wind is blowing the wrong way. Another thing I look for when setting footholds is the right slope on the bank and water deep enough to drown.
This is the same spot as the above picture with the finished set. The trap is PAINTED WHITE FOR PICTURE REASONS ONLY. If possible, I like to set my footholds (except TS85's) in 1" of water with shallow water in front of the trap as well. By doing this, I know the beaver will have it's feet down and walking when it hits my trap. This is especially important when using smaller traps (like #3's and #4's) because it gives me the best chance of getting a front foot which I prefer. With the drowning methods I use, any beaver that put's it's front foot in my trap is done. Another reason I set my footholds shallow is because when I used to set deep I was missing the occasional beaver, they would just step over the trap. Especially in the spring when trapping travelers, I only have one chance to catch the beaver or it's gone. Beaver would occasionally step over my trap on approach to my set, and swim over the trap when leaving. I knew this was happening because my bait would be gone or the mound ripped up and the trap would still be set. It didn't happen much, but it would occasionally happen. By setting shallow, I have chances at both front and back feet on approach, and both front and back feet when leaving. 100% chance of it stepping in my trap. Traps set deeper also have a better chance of being sprung by the chest, especially if the beaver is gathering mud to carry to the mound. If a foothold set is such that I can't find a shallow spot to set or can't make one, I'll set a 750 or TS 85 in at least 5" of water an elbows length away (about 18-20") from where I expect the beaver to hit it's chest on the bottom when it approaches the bank. I use guide sticks just like when setting shallow (explained in next paragraph), just farther out.
Another very important thing I do, especially with the smaller traps, are the two pink colored guide sticks in the front. At 14" apart, these guide the beaver's feet right in line with where you want them which is right between the jaws so the trap "suitcases" the feet. I'm convinced one of the main reasons for sprung, empty traps is because the beaver has it's rear foot on a jaw when the trap fires. It's very hard to get a good hold when this happens. Especially with smaller traps, the closer you can get the rear foot to right between the jaws and the center of your trap, the better off you will be. Set your trap so the outside jaw is right against one of the guide sticks, off-setting the pan 4" - 4 1/2". Traps set closer to center will only ask for marginal holds. If you measure a large beaver's width between the legs, you will see they are wide animals.
I prefer the 7 1/2" jawspread traps, like MB 750's. They are a lot more forgiving of bad trap placement than the 6 1/2" (#3 or #4) jawspread traps. 750's aren't legal everywhere though. #3 and #4 sized traps should ALWAYS be 4 coiled. You can't get them too strong for beaver.
Pan tension should be at 4-5 pounds to get a better hold and avoid muskrats.
The trap dog should be at 3:00 or 9:00, depending on what side you have your trap set on, with the dog to the outside. Stabilize your trap, so it's not rocking, with small sticks or rocks under the jaws and levers.
When not in current, I like to dig the traps down so the pan is level with the bottom. If you do it in current, sand can wash underneath the pan.
I like to use lot's of the blackest mud I can find on my mounds for eye appeal. If there are some freshly peeled sticks in the area, I throw those up there too. I know eye appeal is important and useful, because often I'll catch beaver on both sides of a river or creek in the same night even when the wind is blowing hard from a certain direction. One of these years I'm going to try not using any lure on some sets just to prove this point. I also use a stick of popple at most sets. At least here, popple is candy, and can help in attracting up to the bank. It's optional though.
Notice the blocking around the set in the above picture. Blocking can be very important. Sometimes beaver will try to go directly into the wind to your lure or just try to go around for some reason. Make the way over your trap the easiest route to the mound. Dead tree tops and brush tops laid sideways work well for blocking. If you have beaver that have been trapped hard before, a lot of blocking may put them on alert, although I have rarely seen this be the case. If I know I'm after possible smart beaver though, I'll make a small trench at the base of the mound with my boot and use a little grass to try to block off the sides best I can, without making it look too obvious and hope for the best.
IMO quick drowning is very important, especially with smaller traps. I know there are good trappers that don't drown their beaver and I admit it's not always necessary with 7 1/2" jawspread traps and in some situations. But with #3 and #4 sized traps it's necessary. I've always said a dead beaver on the end of a drowner isn't going anywhere, a live beaver still has a chance. The end of the drowner preferably should be in 4' of water or more. It's 4' from the nose to the drowner on a large beaver. With hind foot catches with the smaller traps, you want that beaver under water as soon as possible. Beaver can live a long time with just their nose sticking out of the water. You can get by with less water with larger traps, but I personally seldom set a foothold with less than 3 feet of water to drown.
Drowning rods make life much easier for a beaver trapper. I like 1/2" rebar or stock rod, 10' long on average. Some are 12' and a few are 8', but 10' get's me into deep enough water to drown in most of my set locations. Just stick the rod into the mud as far as you can push it, stake with a 24"-36", 1/2" rebar stake and you're through. I've never had one pulled out. The only problem with rods is they can be hard to get into a rocky or hard bottom. They're not for every situation. MTP sells a kit called the "Bauer no-weld" system if you don't want to make your own locks or have access to a welder. All you need is the rebar and the kit.
I use weights with cable or #11 soft wire where theft might be a problem or I can't get a drowning rod into the bottom. I consider 50 pounds about right. You can get by with less on softer bottoms. Any less weight and you run the risk of the beaver getting slack in your cable or wire and not having the drowning lock slide properly or at all. The above weights were made from concrete test cylinders filled with concrete and rebar for a handle. 50 pounds carries easily this way. 6" plastic pipe, 12" high, would also work instead of the test cylinders. The blunt edges on the top dig into the bottom nicely. Others use feed sacks filled with rocks or sand at the trap site. For those far back places though, I just use 3"-4" saplings for stakes cut at the site. The must be the kind that beaver won't eat though.
I like my homemade "L" drowning locks. Swivels work too, but the holes are too small to suit me. The bigger holes I have in my "L" locks are big enough that they will slide easily past any twists or kinks I may get in my cable or wire.
Please Also Note To Check Your State/Provincial Trapping Laws BEFORE Using Any Of These Sets!
These are 3 different types of Muskrat sets. The Top Left 2 with leg hold traps are drowning sets which dont have to be offset or padded but can only be used as drowning sets. And the top right set which is a different "Shelf Set" It can't be used everywhere so check your state/provincial trapping guide. The Shelf Set is made with a Leg Trap Usually (Read More Below).
This is a "Rat Run" Set. You place a 110 conibear on a muskrats trail through the weeds and swamp grass. This set also worksgreat for mink just put some covering over the top of the trap. And prop the trap UP more. The mink will thinks its a tunnel and walk through it.
The Picture below is proof that the "Rat Run" Set really works!
Look Closly at the AFTER picture! It holds a nice rat in the 110.
This is one type of raccoon set. It is made wit ha #2 coilspring or a #1 3/4 coilspring. Remember these sets should me offset or padded because the raccoon doesnt always drown. Some times they sit up close to the bank.
This is a shef set and is made by laying a foot hold trap down on the animals trail and putting a block mud or some small sticks. It provides fencing so the animal will step where you want it to. You can even add a little bit of bait. For Raccoon use a marshmallow and for mink use a sardine or a piece of beaver.
A Better Picture of a Shelf Set with a Muskrat in it.
Muskrat Float Set
Hi Guys. You sure have a great site. Initially I didn't think I would share my "secret" muskrat technique, but after reading all of your articles etc. I am going to. You may know this one, but I learned it more than thirty years ago trapping 'rats in Saskatchewan. I made all of my spending money this way and it held me over for the year. I checked my line twice a day, and normally all the traps were filled both times.
I like to use #1 or #1-1/2 long springs for this setup. What you need for each setup is a large can - (You can get industrial food cans for free from most restaurants) or anything else that is about the size of a half gallon of milk.
Then you need to make a raft. I cut up used pallets for mine, again these were free. Make your raft out of four strips of wood about 20 to 24 inches long, with two shorter pieces nailed across at the bottom.
On the top, in the middle of the raft, put in a couple of finish nails that stick out about 1/8" that are just the size of the traps frame. This keeps the trap from getting knocked off, but lets a snapped rat jump off easily. Put in a fence staple at the front of the raft and another at the back. You can staple your trap ring on directly or wire it to the shore line so you won't lose it.
Hook up your shore line to the front staple and trap ring and stake it out. I like about seven feet of wire. Hook up your anchor wire to the back staple and then the can. Where I trapped five to six feet was plenty but you will have to adjust based on your water level.
Here is the great part of this set- set your trap and put it into position held by the nails. Put your can (filled with rocks) on it. It should float, more or less. Now push it out to the end of the shore wire and push the anchor can off with your trapping stick that is about nine to ten feet long. You are now in business. You can check these in a flash, when you see no trap on the board you have a catch. Obviously, we didn't have trap thieves where I lived!!!
To reset- just pull in the anchor wire and do it all again.
I don't know why, but every rat that cruises by will get on the board. No bait, scent etc. I have watched and seen it happen many times. I was also surprised to see that the average rat caught this way was drowned in under 30 seconds.
I hope you can use this technique and can benefit as much from it as I do. Good luck trapping!
Different Muskrat Float Sets
Nothing brightens my day more, then finding a Weasel in a trap on a crisp Winter morning. This is the set that MN tapping Legend, Arnie Peterson the Jack Pine Savage used to harvest 207 Weasels in 3 weeks. It is not only an effective Weasel set but it has a lot of incidental catches to it's credit. Bobcat, Fisher, Marten, Mink and Raccoon have also found there way to the stretcher when investigating this set !
Notice the use of flagging so the set could still be found after a night of heavy snow. The Milk Jug protects both the set from the weather as well as serving as a cubby !
The chain as well as the long spring are run out a small slit in the back. Chain must be fastened well in the event of an incidental catch. The trap of choice is most often the 1-1/2 long spring as it acts as a sort of body-grip when trapping the Weasel.
The ribbon will serve as the bait for the sake of pictures. Beaver meat is the bait of choice. Bait can be pre-wired to speed in making the set. In cold weather the bait can be soaked in Anise oil for added attraction. All in the Weasel family are very attracted to Anise as are Raccoons ! Bait is then suspended above pan by pushing the wire up through the holes in the jug lid and wire bent to suspend bait at desired height.
The Weasel needs to stand on the pan to get the prize ! The flap serves as a canopy and aids in keeping the set free from snow. Air current helps to draw some of the bait smell out the holes in the lid aiding the calling ability of the set.
Weasel trapping can be a great way to get youngsters interested in trapping. Weasels will most often be found where they can hunt under cover. Culverts that have cattails or tall grass on both sides are excellent choices for sets. The Weasel will often use the culvert vs crossing the road and becoming lunch for a hungry hawk or owl. Woodpiles, heavy fence rows , stump piles and rock piles also make dynamite set locations!
*If you want to use this set in the Canadian Province of Manitoba then just switch the leg hold trap with one of those W I D E panned rat traps.
Dog Proof Raccoon Sets
Can't afford the Griz Getters and such traps, but this works for me.
You Put a Hole in a board and make it so its just the size maybe a bit bigger then the trap jaws, then just place the hole over the pan, throw some leaves over the board and a couple on the pan.
May I take this opportunity to share my ink with you in regard to "dog proof" traps?
The only reason that I bring this up, is that I know many states have banned the #220 trap for raccoon, or for use on land in blind trail sets. Mine did that! I have 5 dozen of the them that I can no longer use, unless, as I can make out, they are submerged underwater, or in a "box" of some configuration so high off the ground. Too much regulation and fuss for my 66 year old bones and being. What next to interfere with my 58 year old trapping traditions?
The use and applicability of dog proof traps has surfaced here more than frequently in the question mark fold, with divergent opinions in recent posts - one of which I left some ink on.
In the wake of that, I thought I would introduce trappers at large, especially new ones who do not know much, or anything about them to the availability of "dog proof" traps that I found in my research to compliment the demise of the use of the #220 in my corridor.
I am most intimately familiar with member Yancy's DP and the Lil' Grizz, both unequivocal sound investments from my experience.
Here they are, along with some of the other options in that category that I am not the least bit familiar with - never saw, touched, or tried to set one.
If there are others than these, kindly let me know.
Duffer's Raccoon Trap
New Duke DP Trap
Hutzel DP Trap
Black Hole Adapted To #1-1/2 Coil Spring
This is a dirt hole set. It can be made on trails for coyote,raccoon,fox,bobcat or lynx.
The next pic show that the trap should be dirt sifted and blended in with the surrounding area.
Then in the next pic i show my trap placement this placement should be so the incoming animal will cross between the jaws of the trap.
The next pic show that i added visual attractors to the set. The bait and lure should be placed at the hole set at this time.
The final pic shows what the finished set should look like when complete and blended in with the visual attractors in place along with bait and lure.
TIP:You should be able to press your dirt sifter over the trap pan, if it doesn't fire it is flat and properlly set.
The leaning pole set is a great set for catching marten and fisher.
The "Elevated Box Pole" Set is an awesome set to use for Marten and Fisher. You out a:
120 conibear for Marten and a
220 conibear for fisher in a cubby box and nail or stake to pole. Put bait of your choice in the back of cubbie and it should work. The best bait is fresh beaver!!
Bobcat Cubby Set
The first thing is just like realty location, location, location. We have here on the first pic a bluff line and where it comes into a bottom. It is even pinched down further by the fense at the end of bluff. I chose this location for its funneling effect. This location should pull them by the cubbie.
The second pic shows the location i chose for the cubbies construction. I start by finding 2 forked sticks about 2 ft long and setting them for my base of construction.
The following pic shows the upper beam that is put between your forked sticks. Then upon that you run your main ceiling beams off that beam. Now we have the basic set up for your cubbie.
The next pic shows how to set the top and sides of cubbie using what is at hand limbs and other brush busted up at the proper length to fill in the gaps.
The next pic shows the final step in the construction. Cover all the exposed shell with green and dry leafy material or dirt which ever you prefer. Now the cubbie has taken its shape and you have the dark opening into which they will investigate.
The next step is to place your set up in the front entrance to the cubbie. For this one i chose a sterling MJ600 with kinkless chain set on a drag. Why the drag you ask. Hopefully he will drag the trap and himself away from cubbie. This way the cubbie will stay intact and be used again.
The next pic shows my trap bed and trap placement. Along with the drag attached by one prong to the tree next to cubbie. This may hold him there but he should be able to be held long enough for trap to get a good hold.
The next pic shows the trap set and drag covered. Now the set only needs to be baited and lured. These peseason set ups are best as they do take time to set them up. Setting them now makes opening day easier. And gives the animal a chance to get used to seeing them and have no fear of them. This equals a faster catch. And more catches.
Now the next pic shows me next to the finished set to give you some perspective as to the size of the cubbie. I hope this has been useful for all the new trappers that would like to catch there first cat.
Bobcat Rub Set with Flagging
Me and little T went out this afternoon and set up a bobcat rub set with flagging. The first picture in the series is the location pic. This location has a faint trail leading along side of this small hickory tree. We decided to set this location with the rub set.
The next pic is my son scraping away the bark off the side of the hickory tree to expose the inner white core. This acts as a visual attractor all its own. But when the bark is removed we will make a smear bait from beaver castor and rub it on the exposed white area further adding to the appeal of the set up.
The next pic shows the trap and t stake that we used for the set. The trap is a KB 5.5 wich we staked with a Metal T stake. Notice the short chain lenght. And the T stake placement. The trap is placed about 8 to 10 inches from tree. And the trap is set were the cat should come off trail and come between the jaws of trap. Then the trap bed is cut out and a little trench inside of bed will accomadate the spring mechanism under the KB 5.5.
The next pic shows the finished set blended in to the surrounding cover. This set up can also be set with the top of pan exposed. Which has worked for me. But i still prefer to camo trap.
The next pic shows where we took and put the tape from and old VCR tape around the trunk of the tree above the rub. This also adds to the effectiveness of the set up, as the tape is very flimsy and reflective. This will definately get the attention from the cats. Then everything else puts him/her in the trap.
The next pic shows my son at the fineshed set. Now he say iam ready for my first cat. Then i tell him come season we will come back and set it again. He is very excited. I showed him the cat tracks leading down the trail.
Once again i hope the young trappers can use this as a guide for there cat sets. And i wish them all the luck on there season
|All we can use in Calif. for fur Trapping and selling the fur, is cage traps, and I was asked to post a tip I use with cage trapping. Yancy|
When I'm cage trapping I find a trail then the spot where a cage will go in good and not be right on the trail, I like to put the cage where the target can see it from an angle and a couple feet off the trail, a cat toilet, is in my opinion the best place to put the cage about 10-30 feet away from the toilet.
OK we have the location.....
Next clear out and level a place for the cage, place the cage in the spot making sure everything is as it should be. Next remove the cage and dig a dirt hole about where the pan will be, with some of the dirt hole between the pan and back of the cage, then place your [with skunk essence] lure in the hole under the cage [this way you won't get the lure all in the fur when you catch your target]. Next I like to put a piece of legal fur almost to the back of the cage, on a piece of 14 GA wire just hooked to the third square from the back hanging down from the top and down about 5-6 inches, [I use one fake glass eye on the fur]. I like the fur strip to move at the least bit of wind, then I place the cage carefully back in place being careful not to cover the lure and the dirt hole with dirt etc. then I start to cover the cage with brush etc use what ever is there, and I cover the top both sides and back I don't want the target getting to the side, back, or on top. Next cover the bottom of the cage wire with sifted dirt etc, Cats don't like walking on 14 GA 1x1 wire.
OK so now the cage is in place. now take a look making sure everything is as it should be.
next find a suitable place within 3-10 feet of the cage, and about 6 feet high and tie a flag. [I like to use surveyors tape tied in a bow with about a foot of tail hanging down] so the target can see it from a distance. Make one last visible check and the cage is ready.
[But if you are on public land, the thieves will also see your flagging and you might come up with a missing cage. ]
I use cage sizes are 8x18x36, 10x18x36 and 12x18x36. I have caught about the same amount of cats in each as the other. Tip provided by Yancy