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Thread: Making Snares, part 2

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    Member martentrapper's Avatar
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    Default Making Snares, part 2

    In the previous post I showed how to make the actual snare. Here, I'll show how I make and attach the support wire and how the snare is used.
    My support wires are made of 14 gauge trappers wire. Cut an 8 ft. piece, fold it in half. Put the 2 ends in a vice, grab the other end, the loop, with vice grips and twist. You end up with a 4 ft long, 2 strand, twisted wire with a loop on one end. Here's a pic showing the roll of wire, aircraft safety wire pliers, a folded over wire, and the finished, twisted wire:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails snare making part2-1.jpg  
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    Default Attach snare and wire.

    Withe twisted wire finished, we next want to attach the snare to the wire. Hopefully my pic can do the talking. On the left is a snare with it's loop end passed thru the loop of the wire, then thread the other end of the wire thru the loop of the snare. On the right is the finished product, with the snare loop pulled all the way down the wire and interlocked with the loop on the wire.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails snare making part2-2.jpg  
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    Default Finished Snare

    We now have a finished snare that we can actually use to catch a fox. You should boil it in soda water first tho, to dull the shine. The twisted wire is the anchor line, and the support wire. You can twist or wrap the wire around whatever stout object you want, such as a tree, willow, a stake you pound into the ground, a fence post, etc. Where I live there are no trees, but alot of willows, so i generally attach the wire to a willow next to the trail I'm snaring. I've successfully used willows as small as my thumb, but I attach the wire right down next to the ground.
    The twisted wire is also the support for the snare. You can bend it to position the snare in the trail, at the height you want. With this snare all the way open, and positioned in the trail for a fox, you get an 8 in. dia. loop with the bottom of the loop 8 in. above the ground/snow.
    Here's a pic of the final assembly which I have clamped in my vise. The twisted 14 gauge wire is stiff enough to support the snare as far 18 in. or so from your attach point.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails snare making part2-3.jpg  
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    Default Killing

    This type of snare is a lethal snare. It's designed to kill the animal that gets in it. However, the animal has to do it's part. Most wild animals, when restrained, pull and fight whatever is restraining them. If the restraint is a snare, they will hopefully pull and fight the snare until it tightenes enough to kill them. Snares don't kill by choking. The principle behind a snare loop, in a lethal set, is to cut off blood flow to the brain. If that works, death comes quickly. Generally, most animals have to entangle the snare to get it to tighten enough to kill. Here's a pic of a fox that did just that:
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails snarefox2.jpg  
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    Default Not always

    If the fox doesn't entangle properly, or at all, it usually won't expire. Some fox just don't seem to get it...........and won't wrap and tangle in the brush.
    Snares are a good tool near human habitation. Since you have to set a specific size loop and a specific height, you can taylor the set for a specific species, to some extent. At 8 in. off the ground, these snares are usually too low to catch a domestic dog. Also, most dogs are used to a restraint, so they don't fight the snare. I have caught dogs in these snares, and they are always waiting patiently with little sign of struggle.
    Here's a pic of a fox that didn't tangle. You can see the willow I wrapped the wire around, and in the background is my snogo trail where the snare was set.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails live fox.jpg  
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    Default Last pic

    I also make these same snares for lynx, except I use 1/16th, 1x19 snare cable and cut a slightly longer piece. I use a 9 in. dia. loop for lynx, placed 11 in. above the ground/snow. Lynx die easily in a snare. Sometimes they look as if they just layed down and died without a struggle.
    Here's a pic of one I caught, tho this one actually got in a wolverine snare. If you look closely, the animal didn't even pull the cable tight. It must have tightened the loop enough to cut off blood flow, but layed back as it expired. The shape of a cats neck and head lend it to a quick death in a snare.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails feb26lynx.jpg  
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    Default Lastly

    I use these snares right inside town here. Lots of fox, and I think they move into town in winter to look for food. I think a guy in Anch or Fbks could get away with using snares there. The town, or city, dump is often a good place to find fox. Take a look around where you live. Maybe the fox are just waiting for you.
    I heard there's alot of fox in Strahans neighborhood. <grin>
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    Default Lastly...and then you go too far

    Mike, really excellent pics and descriptions on snare making.

    But...I don't encourage anyone to set snares within city limits. Check the regs and find out what is legal first, then determine if you're going to be catching people's pets.
    No snare, in my book, should be used near human habitations in cities where there is a likelihood of catching pets. When trappers do that, it makes all of us look bad. Dogs don't always just sit there when caught, and depending on how long before checking sets, they can easily die once the snare is tightened, or lose a leg or foot to frostbite if they get caught by a leg.

    Snares are NOT a good tool near human habitations. By suggesting this to others in Anchorage and Fbks, you pretty much go against what the ATA teaches and against all trapper ethics.

    Great to teach newbies how to make snares and set them and all that. I applaud your efforts. But c'mon, don't teach them or imply that it's okay to set snares around other peoples houses.

    Oh, and in case you thought the bit about Strahan and implying that people should set snares near his home was funny...well it isn't even close. It's immature and totally unnecessary.

    Mark

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    Default ADFG Regs

    http://www.wildlife.alaska.gov/regul...s/trapping.pdf

    "Act responsibly as a trapper and conservationist by trapping in ways to minimize conflict between trapping and other users, e.g., avoid high recreational use areas. Avoid situations where you might catch a domestic dog or cat, such as near homes or trails frequently used by hikers, skijorers, dog mushers, or other people."

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    Default Great post Martin

    You do a nice job with your sets.
    I think that Bushrat is right that if you catch someones pet, it never goes well when or if the owner finds out, but I will tell you that the Fish and Game have made it fully aware that if you have a dog running loose, and you have moose around and your do goes after the moose, then you can shoot the dog, and they want you to do it.
    I have a dog, and he is never running loose, not ever. We have moose in my property almost everyday, and my neighbors dogs run loose. I think it is very irresponsible and you deserve to loose your dog if you live where moose roam.
    Now days .. pets should not run loose, and if they do, they may not come home at night due to Cars, Moose, bears, or people just having enough of ill mannered people that let their pets roam..
    You are a bad neighbor if your pet comes into my yard without permission.
    I don't in any way advocate killing or harming someones pet. I am just saying that those of you that let your pets run loose and they come in to other peoples property are not very considerate.
    I would not have a problem snaring legal fur bearers in any location if people would take care of the pets they sometimes keep.
    Max
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    Default good post, Max

    Max,

    I appreciate your thoughts. This has become a problem. So much so that the Alaska Trappers Assn. made a video to show pet-owners how to release their pets from traps and snares. I think Pete Buist, who narrates the video, sums up what you are trying to say, and what I was trying to say:

    "If you're of a mind that trapping is just a nasty business and has no place in modern society, we are not here to try to change your mind. Because no matter what laws and ordinances our government passes, there will always be irresponsible pet owners and irresponsible trappers and where these two low-life forms clash, we unfortunately end up with dogs in traps or snares."

    Pets should not be allowed to run loose in neigborhoods with leash laws etc. However, dogs do sometimes get out of yards. Every time a pet is caught by a trapper near a residential neighborhood, it's bad. I could list countless occurrences of this happening of late as Alaska grows, and then people demand trapping be banned, limits imposed etc. My main point is that we can't advocate here, or imply that setting snares near homes and in neighborhoods is an acceptable practice. It isn't. What MT is suggesting is the "irresponsible trapper" aspect of what Buist brings up.

    Best, Mark

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    Default

    So, Bushrat, you are saying that trapping doesn't belong within city limits??? Hmmm, why don't you come out to BET and ask the 4 or 5 of us who trap within our city limits. We all use snares and very few of us have ever caught a dog. I know one guy who as trapped over 600 fox in the last 6 years and has never killed or hurt a dog in his snares. If you are a responsible trapper and trap in town, it is you duty to check your snares everyday if possible. This will help ensure your non-target catch is very limited.

    We have a serious problem with fox in and around our town. Last year alone, over 200 foxes were trapped within city limits. I think it is "irresponsible" to not trap when situations like this arise.

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    Default snares

    So are you implying that snares should be used nowhere in the lower 48? Because there are people and pets everywhere down there. I personally would rather see a dog waiting for me in a snare ( I have seen this) than I would waiting with a foot hold trap around it.

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    Default

    I think the big difference between you and me, Mark, is you feel that every time an issue comes up, or a complaint, whatever, we, as responsible hunterts and trappers should step back.............to do the right thing. To LOOK responsible. To LOOK ethical.
    In my view.........
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    Default

    Kusko, Jon,

    I'm not implying anything other than what I said.

    Each area is different. The urban sprawl of Fbks/Anch/Mat-Su is really getting to be a problem with user conflicts. I hope not to read yet another "...trapper caught my dog...and we need to ban trapping here" articles in the newspapers. So all I'm saying is let's be careful in telling guys they can get away with setting snares in Fbks or Anch. That can create irresponsible trappers who make us all look bad.

    Don't you agree? I'd have thought that Buist's comments from the video would illustrate the point. He doesn't put the blame solely on the pet owner when a pet is caught. He puts some on the trapper too. Society tends to put all the blame on the trapper.

    Mark



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    Default

    Mike, I'm saying we need to be careful with words and how they come across and the effects they may have on those new wannabe trappers who may read this forum. Agree or disagree, that's fine by me. The internet is a big place. Ideas are bandied about. Guys in the city suddenly want to play Mr. Trapper and think this kinda thing is okay, to set snares around the neighborhood...it just comes back to bite us in the rear. Looking responsible and being responsible are too different things entirely. When you are are responsible, you also look responsible. I don't see any problem with that.

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    Default

    I think the big difference between you and me, Mark, is you feel that every time an issue comes up, or a complaint, whatever, we, as responsible hunterts and trappers should step back.............to do the right thing. To LOOK responsible. To LOOK ethical.
    In my view.........WE ARE RESPONSIBLE..........WE ARE ETHICAL...........WE ARE EDUCATED, KNOWLEDGEABLE trappers and hunters who don't need to cringe everytime someone dislikes what we do.
    Perhaps my post needs some clarification. I didn't mean we should be setting snares next to folks houses. I would not advocate setting snares by the dumpsters outside Fred Meyers. I don't want guys setting snares on ski trails, well used snogo trails, bike trails, etc. What I do see as possible is snaring in vacant lots, brushy draws, forested areas on the edge of town. With a little logic, a person can find places, even in city limits, where domestic/human use is non existant or minimal. These places can be safely snared. Make your own trails or find some that only animals are using.
    If all trappers limit themselves to staying away from domestics/human use areas, we are gonna be pretty limited in where we can trap. In some parts of Alaska, a guy can't even cut his own trail without some snogoer, or skier, or pet owner coming along to claim it for their own. We can't always back down. I don't see illegally loose dogs and cats as something a trapper should always avoid. We have to stand up for ourselves and point out the illegal pet owners.
    Perhaps I should have qualified my words with advising trappers to check local regs. Some cities do have ordinances prohibiting trapping. We obviously should not be trapping inside city limits there. However, most cities have suburbs, semi rural areas on their edges. These areas hold potential for trappers looking to make some catches. Additionally, cities often have wildlife problems. Without any human harvest of some species, their numbers can get very high. The fox in Bethel are an example. This can lead to animal diseases, like rabies, that pose a danger to humans. Trappers MUST take the forefront in educating the public of the services they can provide. We can't, and shouldn't, RUN every time we might LOOK bad. We are not bad and we are an essential part of any ecosystem. Even the ones in a city.
    Each of us must asess what we are doing, where we are doing it, how we are doing it, and if it's legal. I am perfectly comfortable allowing other trappers to make their own choices within the law.
    By the way, Mark, how does your operation LOOK? Are you an ETHICAL trapper? Does the fact that you operate out of the public eye mean you aren't subject to the same "rules" some of us are? I've asked you before for some pics of your life. Your quick to point out what you see is wrong with what others do. How about some insight into how you do things, "right"?
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    Default

    Hey Mark, it's Nov. 1. Opening day of trapping season. Your home on the computer?
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    Default Rabies

    Speaking of the rabies MT, a month ago they found a rabid fox in the city limits of Bethel. Last year I know of more than 175 fox snared out of the city limits, and still the population is too high.

    I have never heard of a dog that fought a snare to his death, at least not a dog that has ever had a leash around its neck.

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    Default

    Mike,

    Thanks for clarifying things for newbies on snaring in and around suburban neighborhoods. I really felt that was needed.

    Yes, I have to follow the same rules/regs as all trappers for whatever area they trap. Beyond that, I try to limit my take so I can have sustained yields over time.

    Problem with pics is that I could post a ton of them, but I get the sense you've always wanted to see them in order for me to "prove" my lifestyle in some way. I'm not real big on taking pics of my catch, dead animals caught in traps and snares etc. Just a personal thing and not implying it's wrong for others to do so. Most of my winter shots are the hind end of the dog team, when it isn't too cold to take pics. Or scenery. I'll post one below, of conditions here two days ago.

    About opening day...my son and I went out across the river this morn, checked out possibilities. Normally I'd have already made trail and had the dogs in some reasonable shape, and be out setting marten line today, as you said, but this is the latest freezeup ever here, and haven't been able to get out much. It's all that climate change dontcha know. I wasn't really sure if the fur would be prime either, with all the warm temps we've had this fall. Today was the first we could cross the river, which is still mostly open in the main channel, and was tricky to get across where we did. So trapping is on hold for at least another week, or until it gets colder. And can't do much overland travel with dogs until we get more snow. Low on dogs too, so will be lots of walking this winter, camping, etc. All part of the drill.

    Inre: dogs and them getting caught in snares, I've heard of a lots of dogs losing feet/legs to snares. Seen them afterwards. They get caught, freak out, pull it tight and then it cuts off circulation, and only takes one night in the deep cold for a foot or leg to freeze up. I've also heard and read of dogs fighting a snare around the neck and dying. C'mon, it happens; I wouldn't in any way downplay it or try imply it doesn't. Those are usually the incidents we read about in the papers that anger everyone and cause them to come after trappers.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Late freezeup first mush.jpg  

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