Increasing The Catch

1.Try to set conibears where they are not exposed  when possible, especially in warm weather conditions.

2. Use 660’s when needed, but they work best year around in northern states with cooler water temperature. In the “deep” south the size of the bars and the larger horizontal trigger will get refusals in warm weather.

3. When first coming to a location that has not been trapped, setting live sets to distract and throw off guard the trap smarter beaver should always be considered. When doing this it is important to only use  an attractant at the live set and use other sets nearby on runs as blind sets. The live caught beaver will cause the other beaver to be less cautious and go into your sets when they wouldn’t otherwise.

4. Use as large of an opening killer trap, as the law will allow, and that is safe for the area that you are trapping.

5. After catching your first beaver when a scent is needed, use the scent from the beaver you just caught. It will be less likely to alarm the beaver and will serve as a curiosity lure.

6. When trying to avoid otters with conibears, make your sets deep ( 2’) when possible, placing dive poles spaced apart . In most cases, with limited debris, the beaver will dive deep into the trap and the otter will bob under the limited debris avoiding the conibear.

7. When targeting otter with conibears on a run, the use of multiple sets 10’ or more apart is extremely important.

8. Targeting otter with live sets to attract other otters in the group to investigate and get into other close sets is very effective due to the group nature of their travels.

9. After making catches and the activity ceases, move the set up or down the run, even if it is only 10’ or so. Animals witnessing a catch lying there aren’t necessarily trap shy, but are location shy.

10. Replace worn triggers and dogs religiously.

11. When tying snares make sure they are tied to a large enough tree and tied below the water level.

12. Check you snares early. Depending on set the beaver could break free or be the meal of a predator.

13. When trying to catch the smarter educated ones it is sometimes better to make blind sets with no scent when possible.

14. After each catch make a mental note or keep notes as to the size and age of the beaver. This will give you an idea as to what is left.

15. When setting partially exposed conibears such as in a stream set, it is best to lay a stick on either side of the trap at the level that would break up the outline of the trap.

16. When opening up a dam, to make a dam set, it is best to place a foot hold as a  blind set at the break, if that is not possible use scent on the side  away from the beaver house. The scent will make him less likely to repair the dam and swim through your conibear, snare, or double door beaver trap set in the opening.

17. If you are limited as to time when you can trap beaver and otter, to be the  most productive, it is best to make sets the day before or the day of a cold wet front coming through. They seem to move best the days of and a few days after the inclement weather has started.

18. When using lure, try to use a lure that uses ingredients native to your area. Not every one has poplar trees at their sets.

19. When using footholds at previously trapped areas, you might want to lay a leaf or a colored sheet of paper over the pan to hide your foot holds.

20. When making a set, eye appeal is crucial in some cases. You might just scrape bark off of a near by tree, mud up the bank, or cover your live cage to where it looks like a large castor mound from a distance.

21. Using snares on trap shy beaver is sometimes a must, so have some camouflaged ”painted” snares handy and don’t be afraid to use them under water on runs. Set them 15’ or closer using multiple snares on runs when an area is first trapped.

22. Sometimes short snares on a drowner are the safest set when trying to catch beaver in a more public area.

23. Pay attention to weather reports especially to wind direction over time. Make scent set locations with wind direction so as to blow out into the water not away from it. Even sets with no scent used should be made to where the beaver can approach from the down wind side in most cases. An animal wants to smell what’s there in most cases first.

24.If you are trapping areas off of a river during travel times, it might pay to go back a month or two later.

25. Keep fully functional traps, when the springs get week replace them or get new traps.

26. Try not to catch more than 40% of what is there when fur trapping in a confined pond. If you are off of a major river more usually just move in by next season.

27. If you know otter are in the drainage, be patient, sometimes it takes two weeks for them to make the rounds.

Thank you for your participation in this 52nd annual NTA.

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