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#175027 - 01/13/02 08:31 AM Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
WNC Gun Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 10/12/01
Posts: 125
Was wondering what the advantages/disadvantages were of the live box-trap and the Conibear type traps? Would like to get into some trapping, but not sure on which to use. Also, is lure/scent required in most all types of these two traps? I'll probably be going for Bobcats mostly and would like to get the best setup to catch a few of these. Any suggestions/recommendations on traps and your experience with them would be greatly appreciated.
GW

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#175028 - 01/13/02 04:42 PM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
Machias Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 12/29/01
Posts: 287
Loc: Worley, Idaho
Well neither is particularly effective on cats. They can be caught in both but are much more likely to get into a snare or leghold trap. I know some guys have good luck using live chickens on the back of a good size boxtrap set approximately 150 feet apart. Roosters call back and forth and bring the cats in. You will have to check on whether conibears big enough for cats are legal on dry ground, 1. I doubt it and 2. I wouldn't use one that big even if it was legal. You will need lures, scents, and visual attractants with cats unless you are using trail sets or setting snares on log crossings which is very effective. Good luck, Fred

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#175029 - 01/13/02 04:49 PM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
Dusty-n-Alaska Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/10/01
Posts: 40
Loc: North Pole Alaska
First, let me clarify something. Cage traps are not the only 'live trap'. Foot traps are certainly 'live traps', and have been used in many of not most relocation efforts. Snares are also 'live traps' if used properly. You can save fur caught in all four types.

The obvious disadvantage of cage traps is ya have to lug them around. Their biggest advantage is you can easily release unwanted critters. They are very effective bobcat traps.

Conibears are NOT something I would recommend for an inexperienced trapper, especially in populated areas. They will kill dogs, especially expensive dogs. I have never trapped cats with conibears, but they could be used much the same as cage traps.

Foot traps are perhaps your best bet. They are versatile-you can use the same trap for coyote and bobcat. You will likely be able to release dogs unharmed, but house cats might be injured in a bobcat-sized trap.

Snares are also quite versatile. I use snares in cubbies for lynx (much like you would use a cage trap or conibear), I assume this set would also work for bobcats. Snares can also be placed in trails or around bait piles.

What you can do with a trap of any type is only limited by imagination. All have advantages and all have disadvantages. I can't offer much on how these might apply specifically to you as I don't know your situation. I also don't know the laws of NC--some of these traps may not be legal or have restrictions. Check before you buy.

Lure/scent would probably be beneficial for most sets, especially with the two traps you are asking about. What type of lure or bait is best depends on what you have and the type of set you are making.

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#175030 - 01/13/02 07:24 PM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
Zackster 2000 Offline
Predator Master

Registered: 05/10/01
Posts: 55
Loc: Kayenta, Arizona
Amen to what Machias and Dusty have already posted. If I had to chose one style of trap for a bobcat, I think I would chose a leghold. You can get a #3 with laminated jaws, swivel the chain at the trap and the drag/stake and have basically zero foot damage. Add rubber jaws and/or offset jaws and you can release unwanted animals with minimal harm, if needed.

My old trapping buddy from Colorado got his "leghold" trapping privileges taken away a few years back and he now makes his own live traps from small rebar and screen that goes around the trap. He's a welder, so has all the tools necessary at his fingertips. He did pretty well last year, caught 7 cats and uncounted grey fox with these cages. The cages are bigger than what is commercially available (I think). His opening is about 18" x 18". He only traps part time and had made only 5 cages last year. Not too bad with 5 cages. Good luck, and if you want more info. on the homemade live traps, I can see if I can pry it out of him

Zack

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#175031 - 01/13/02 07:28 PM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
Zackster 2000 Offline
Predator Master

Registered: 05/10/01
Posts: 55
Loc: Kayenta, Arizona
By the way, I think I would save the conibears for water animals. Nothing worse than catching your neighbors prize poodle in a conibear, or a lion hunter's prize hound

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#175032 - 01/14/02 05:06 AM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
NC Outlaw Offline
New Member

Registered: 12/28/01
Posts: 11
Loc: N.C.
WNC Gun
I have a good friend who raises chickens. He
started out with 80 and got down to 40. He built a wooden box trap with wire in one end and a chicken on the back side of the wire. He caught three bobcats in one week. The last on was huge. I to live in WNC, out past Murphy. Also by the way conibears are illegal to set on dry ground in North Carolina (water
sets only). I am also trying to catch me a bobcat in a live trap. I will let you know how it turns out.
NC Outlaw

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#175033 - 01/14/02 03:48 PM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
WNC Gun Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 10/12/01
Posts: 125
Outlaw.....I have a few in-laws out in Culberson, if you know where that is over toward Murphy. I'm in Cullowhee, up near the College. Let me know if you get back down this way and we'll go one weekend.

GW

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#175034 - 01/14/02 03:50 PM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
WNC Gun Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 10/12/01
Posts: 125
Zack......I'd really appreciate any plans for the trap you could pry out of him. I'm set up as far as welding/cutting. I'd be especially interested in the trigger design he uses on them if you can finnagle that too.

Thanks again
GW

[This message has been edited by WNC Gun (edited 01-14-2002).]

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#175035 - 01/14/02 08:43 PM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
Dusty-n-Alaska Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/10/01
Posts: 40
Loc: North Pole Alaska
WNC: I built several cage traps when I was back in 'America'. For cats, bigger is better. Most of mine were something like 24x24x48. I haven't built one in a while and don't have any pictures, so I will tell ya what I know as best I can-which may be pretty poorly!

I like expanded metal for the cage. You don't need a frame and coons don't hurt it. 1x1 inch wire works fine, but coons occasionally tear it up and it gets mangled over the years.

I always used old road signs for the door. The county can't give em away, but they can sell them. I paid a buck each for about a dozen. The door slides vertically. I mounted it in a track made of thin pipe (1/2" conduit) with a slit in it. Saw the slit with a metal blade and a table saw. Make sure there is something at the top and bottom (a piece of angle iron works well) so they can't bow the door out--the door must be supported from all sides.

I always made the 'pan' out of wood-I think they will step on wood more readily than metal. Make an angle iron frame and put a piece of plywood in it. Coons eat the wooden pan, but scrap plywood was never a problem to get. The pan is hinged along the front. The hinge, which turns with the pan, makes a 90 degree bend just outside the trap and heads towards the back. This arm is about 6" long. Attached to it with a swivel (oversize hole with a bolt through both) is another rod going straight up to the top of the trap and supported by (running through) a couple large (1") washers welded to the side of the trap. On top of the trap there is a long rod going from BARELY under the door to the end of this vertical rod. This rod is pushed (or pulled) towards the rear of the trap by a spring. The door is lifted, the horizontal rod is put just under the edge and the vertical rod is put behind the horizontal rod (pulling the pan up). When the pan goes down, the vertical rod drops (from behind the hotizontal rod), the horizontal rod is pushed towards the back of the trap and from under the door by the spring, and the door drops.

Nothing should fit too well--leave lots of slop to compensate for rust, mud, and dents. I never bothered to paint them (cats don't seem to mind "BRIDGE OUT" or "SLOW CHILDREN AT PLAY" signs-maybe they can't read). I do always kick a little dirt and grass inside. Piling brush and such around the outside is optional--keeps people from shooting/stealing cats, doesn't seem to help with catching cats much.

Damn, that sounds like something Wile E. Coyote would write! I could build one faster than I can type that--it isn't quite as complex as it sounds. It is a bit more work than you could get by with, but these big heavy traps will last forever. I still have a few on the farm that Dad and I built twenty-some odd years ago. Mom occasionally uses them to get rid of assorted vermin (they are great skunk traps--set em beside the pond, then push trap, skunk, and all in the water for a week or so).

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#175036 - 01/15/02 02:13 PM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
WNC Gun Offline
Seasoned Member

Registered: 10/12/01
Posts: 125
Dusty, thanks for the info. I have a 40"x40"x8' wild hog trap I built a few months back and it works along the same principle. I used some old bed-rails to frame it up and give it some support, then made a trigger system using a couple pieces of 3/4" rebar with a notch cut in each end. About like an old rabbit box, but heavy. I made it from Catch-pen panels (4'x8') They work really well and weld up good too. That sucker is heavy though.
I have some metal mesh like you're talking about, but I figured it'd be too heavy. I may just use it though as I really don't want to make one from wood and have it fall apart in a couple of years.
Thanks for the info and I'll let you know how the new project welds up. :-)
GW

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#175037 - 01/15/02 08:34 PM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
Zackster 2000 Offline
Predator Master

Registered: 05/10/01
Posts: 55
Loc: Kayenta, Arizona
Dusty & WNC - I agree with the bigger is better on the cages. My buddy tried smaller cages and caught a few grey fox, but had to go bigger with the cats. I guessed at the size of the opening at 18" x 18", but it may be more like 22"~24" square. He then started catching cats. But he does disguise the cages in brush piles or tree branches to break up the outline.

Dusty did a great job of describing the design in a post. I would have to write 8 pages to tell you what my buddy told me over the phone and then I would probably screw something up. His design is basically an oversized version of the comercially available live traps. He began with expanded metal, but had to pack them too far from the "tree hugger" trails, so he went to some type of smaller wire mesh. Uses some 1/8" rebar for a frame. Trigger system is a rod that runs back from the hinged door (similar to a small comercial live trap)and he uses a trigger plate made of same material but covers it with some lightweight ceder bark. Again, I agree with Dusty, cats would rather step on wood than metal.

Man, this live trapping is difficult just relaying messages and techniques. Thank God I can still use leg holds here

WNC - Bottom line, get some good scent with some fresh cat urine mixed in, and you should get a cat or two if the trigger system works and the opening doesn't make them feel too confined. Some will argue that a cat will go into a 6" hole after a rabbit, but that is because the cat saw the rabbit run in there.

Good luck with the cages, and if Jeff gives me more info. I will post it.

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#175038 - 01/15/02 08:37 PM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
Zackster 2000 Offline
Predator Master

Registered: 05/10/01
Posts: 55
Loc: Kayenta, Arizona
WNC - By the way, have a pic he gave me from last year that shows the cat and some of the cage. Can email it to you since I can't seem to figure out how to post pics on this web site. Let me know.

Zack

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#175039 - 01/20/02 10:11 AM Re: Trap advantages/disadvantages.......
NCndeed Offline
New Member

Registered: 01/18/02
Posts: 12
Loc: S-Central, NC
Check the state AND county laws (some laws are county specific). As mentioned, conibears must be 50% submerged. Snares are legal for beaver only (ok for dry land). Footholds on land are subject to specific regs concerning offset, chain length depending on shock-absorbing device and so on.
I tried a live, cage type, trap for cats and/or coyotes and caught 'coons, possums, a buzzard, deer and coon dogs and one of my dogs but no coyotes or bobcats.

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