By: Bears Butt


Take the raccoon out of this picture and you can see just about what is waiting for Skinner Man from yesterdays catch!  We had a 37 rat day yesterday!

Today I have a family farm meeting to attend and so the trapping will be delayed until after that is over.  My goal for the day does not include pulling or setting any traps, just checking and a little exploration of the far end of the trellis.  I was told yesterday that a gate at the far end is not locked and hasn’t been locked for many years.  There are a lot of locks on it that makes it look like it’s locked, but a bolt holds the chain and can be removed easily.

I’m planning on going through that gate and investigate some trapping area on the other side.  Again I was told yesterday by one of Petes boys that the area is thawed out and a lot of water is flowing through and there are a lot of rats up there.

I really like the sounds of that, especially since Arrow Head and Fish Springs are out of the question for trapping.

I have been thinking about those areas lately and for several years those two areas and another I call Hidden Seep, have been very good rat producers.  Two years ago, Hidden Seep didn’t produce even one rat and last year it held zero rats and no sign whatsoever.  I didn’t set one trap on there.  I still trapped Arrow Head and caught a few rats, but not like the years before.  Bob trapped Fish Springs and said it was the biggest waste of trapping time and energy he had ever seen.  And now, all three areas are void of rats.  Have we done such a good job of catching rats that we have “caught them all out”?  Maybe.  They are sort of isolated areas and migrating rats would have to be pretty good at getting around the predators to infiltrate those areas when they make their annual “run”.  So, we just might have cleaned them out.  Pete would like to hear that and I just might include a statement to that effect it in our report to him when the trapping comes to a close.

Yesterday I set 21 traps, but in my trapping experience, they were sets that just didn’t have my normal feelings about how good they were.  I don’t expect a 50% catch rate from them.

So, what do I expect to catch today?  Yesterday I thought 20, and caught 18 and now with 21 new traps set in “not so good of sets”…….My old trap sets should kick out 10, the new 21 sets 5……15 rats for today and one raccoon in the 7 live traps.

Bears Butt

February 19, 2014


Sorry folks!  Ran out of time to go trap today, the meeting took us until nearly 1:30….add 45 minute drive time to get out there and 2 1/2 hours to check traps…It’s just not worth it.

Bears Butt

Written on February 19th, 2014 , Daily Trapping Events
By: Bears Butt


This is a picture of yesterday’s catch…45 rats, one raccoon!  What a day!

Today is Tuesday and my goal is to pull 9 or 10 traps off Bull Run and move them over to the Trellis.  Doing so will spread out my line and require three stops to check them.  It’s all part of the way I trap.

Our goal of putting our rats up intending on netting top dollar at the auction requires combing the furs before they get put on the stretcher.  Weasel has taken that task on and is doing a top notch job.


We are well on our way!  Great job Weasel!

Last Saturday I stopped along the road to B.S. with Bob as he was checking a group of traps he has in that place.  In so doing he needed a little help with one of his bait sets and had run out of bait.  So I got my bag of bait out of the truck and took it to him.  As he was baiting up the set, I noticed a run that didn’t have a trap set in and I told him he needed to place a Conibear in that run.  He smiled and then told me to go get a trap…which I did…and I set it.

So, yesterday I stopped to talk with him again in that same place and I mentioned the Conibear set….he said…”I’ll bet you a beer there is nothing in it”!  I said, “It’s a bet”!  Then he went on to say the beer had to be paid tonight in the skinning shed…I was OK with that and told him he would have to stop at the store to buy me a beer….he laughed.  As we approached the set, sure enough there was a big old giant rat caught solidly in that trap!  MMMM, that beer sure did taste good!

OneRatOneBeerA 25 ouncer I might add!

So, that was yesterday!  What about today?

The sky was pretty clear last night and so the moon was shining pretty bright.  I expect one raccoon and with 20 newly set traps they should yield 10 rats by themselves, the rest of the traps should kick out 10 more, so I’m saying 20 rats today and I hope Bob does as well!

Bears Butt

February 18, 2014


A pretty long day afield, but worth it in the long run.

Pete got the fence fixed the the bulls back in where they need to be…I liked that.  Checking the live traps yielded nothing, not even a set off trap.

So, off I went checking rat traps and pulled the first 8 I came too working down Bull Run.  I think I’ll leave the remainder there until maybe Friday, there was some activity and I did catch a couple of rats, AND it was my first day without losing any rats to other critters!  YEA!!!

I was also able to set about 21 traps on the trellis and down Arrow Head seep.  I drove out to Fish Springs and it is almost empty of water.  A good 15 feet of mud has to be traversed before you get to the waters edge.  No sign except raccoon down there, so that place is out.

Arrow Head seep has very little water as well and I only set 6 traps in there, where normally I can set over 50.  It’s all about the water and I have no idea why the water is not there.

By the end of the day, I caught 18 rats and Bob 19….He is a happy guy knowing this is the second day he has kicked my butt.  Weasel and Brek report zero rats.

Bears Butt


Written on February 18th, 2014 , Daily Trapping Events
By: Bears Butt


This was the scene Saturday night with Skinner Man in the lead and 51 rats to skin!  That is a pile of rats right there!  And that ended week number one on the trap line!  102 rats for the week!  Not a bad start!

Today begins week number 2, what is in store for this week?  For one, I plan on moving out of Bull Run and the seeps this week and be firmly planted on “The Trellis” and at “Fish Springs”…in order to do that I have to move a lot of steel.

Today, however is its own day.  My goal…Pull the traps from the top of Bull Run and move them to seep number 3.  The live traps will stay where they are at the top of bull run in hopes of taking out a few more critters from that area.  It seems like I’m a skunk trapper and a poor raccoon trapper…4 to 1 so far.  Skunks need controlling too.

With yesterday being a day off from checking the line I expect a lot of damaged rats to be laying in wait, I just hope I don’t lose any traps.  The weather is predicted to be warm with a high near 55 and no chance for rain.  It will be a nice day.

So, what do I expect for a catch?  One raccoon is on my list and 12 rats, my hope is all 12 are in good shape…something that has not happened yet.

By the way, Weasel checked his traps yesterday and had 2 rats!  Great catch for where he is trapping!  Nothing caught in my newly created floating colony trap however.

Gotta Go!

Bears Butt

February 17, 2014


What a day it has been!  As I approached Bull Run I could see 3 bulls had breached the fence and were out in the muddy alfalfa field leaving tracks as they plodded along.  I thought then, Pete aint gonna like that!

I loaded up 7 rat bodies to put in the live traps…fresh bait is always a good thing.  My plan was to pull the first 18 traps, but leave the 7 live traps…I did those things and was surprise to find a big old raccoon in one of them!  YAY!  One shot!  He’s gone!


During my trap checking I lost 4 more rats to critters but I don’t think they are raccoon.  Mink most likely.

Well I got around the bulls OK and finished my checking and ended up with 20 rats and one raccoon!  I  pulled the 18 traps and then set 20 more on the 3rd seep.

When I was driving out, I came across Bob who was checking his traps along the right of way, he had 21 rats and still more traps to check!  He kicked my butt again!  I did make him a beer bet on a trap I set on his run, he bet it would not have a rat, I bet it would and sure enough…big old rat!  He said the beer had to be paid tonight…that will taste mighty fine!

Back at the shed, I see where Weasel caught a rat today!  Nothing was written down from Brek however, so I assume he caught zero.

Bob came in late with 23 rats!  YAHOOOOOOO~

So, a 45 rat day!  Not a bad day at all!

Bears Butt

Written on February 17th, 2014 , Daily Trapping Events
By: Bears Butt


It just wouldn’t be right if I didn’t show you one of my two catches from yesterday…pretty little kittie!  Not so when you are looking at his defense mechanism almost eye to…well, you know.

I have a really nice little 22 pistol that I carry with me on the trap line to take care of little guys like this one, my biggest problem however is getting the bullet to fly where I want it to fly.  Would you say I need more practice shooting it?  The answer is obviously YES!

So, from this distance to the skunk, I made my attempt to “one shot” dispatch him.  After eight failed tries, I finally got number nine to go where it needed to go.  And then I got the heck out of there!  Not a good odor was in the air and for some odd reason, the odor seems to be heavier than air and since I was down in a gully looking up, it found me quickly.

The second skunk I caught yesterday was below me when I dispatched him (with one shot I might add) and it  sprayed in the opposite direction and I was glad for that.  The odor around the area still was not pretty and like Skinner Man told us the other day, when you get a direct hit from one of those little guys, the odor starts to smell more like “Starburst Candies” after about 15 minutes.  Another example of “Olfactory Overload”.

Away from the skunks now for awhile, I just have to show you one of my missed rat traps!


I have never liked these traps, they just aren’t “Victor” brand.  They rust terribly, they are stiff springed, the bolt and nut swivel that holds the pan is tacky and they take a lot of adjusting to finally make them work properly.  This one got through our local quality check, where the bottom of the pan connector meets the stop loss spring.  I picked this trap up from its place in the swamp and brought it straight to the toy for this picture.  An untrained trappers eye would have looked at this set and made the decision that the trap was still fine and no rats had visited the site that night.

A good look at the trap up close shows exactly how a lucky rat got away to live another day.


Notice too just how close the “dog” is from being released from the pan trigger.  That was one very lucky rat.  Rest assured this trap pan will never again be hindered from firing because of the stop loss spring under it…I fixed it REAL good!

By the way, these traps are called “Bridger Stop Loss” and as far as I’m concerned are the worst traps of its kind out there.  That is just this trappers opinion and does not reflect the opinion of any of my advertisers nor affiliates.  Just sayin!

Bears Butt

February 16, 2014


Written on February 16th, 2014 , Daily Trapping Events
By: Bears Butt


Way back when, like a million years ago, man had to make a plan in order to survive.  That still holds true today, only the time line is much shorter.  Let me give you some examples from my perspective.

Picture a cave man, leaning against the back wall of his little abode, his woman staring at him, wondering just when he is going to get is lazy butt up and go get them something to eat.  The kids romping around in the rock and dirt floor, not caring one way or another about anything. (Not a lot of changes from then til now, huh?)

Well, his stomach begins to growl and he decides if he is going to eat he has to go out and bash something with his club, so up he gets and goes about doing just that.  Once outside he first has to find something to bash and then make a plan as to how he is going to get close enough for the bashing to begin.  This usually takes quite a long time to accomplish, but before dark he comes back with something and throws it on the dirt and rock floor for his woman to deal with.  He wants to eat!

For her part there is deciding how to process the bashed item and she alone must make the decisions  as to the need to cook it, or just eat is as it is.  However she decides will be just fine with “him and the kids”…let’s eat!

Later in the time line we find “him” busy working, making some money to buy stuff as he comes home from his busy day.  He enters the small house they call home and tosses the bags of things on the table for her to deal with.  She has to sort through it and try to decide what he was thinking when he bought the stuff.  It usually involves cooking and this is where her planning comes into play, fried, baked, boiled or some of each.  It won’t matter too much to him and the kids, they are just hungry and want to eat before too long.  And with one kid on her hip, she gets it ready as quickly as she can.

Still later, we find “him” coming home and upon entering the house gives her a big kiss, the kids come running and find his legs and wrap their little arms around them and yell up all the things that they did that day and tell him how much they love him and appreciate all that he does for them.  He can smell the good food already prepared for them and it’s in the oven keeping warm and awaiting his return from his laborious days work.  She was able to plan this meal way ahead of time because they have a freezer full of good meats and other food she can chose from.  Life is full of blessings and they sit right down and eat.

Today, we still have the freezer, a cold storage unit called a fridge, a microwave, electric or gas stove, ovens, toasters, slow cookers, BBQ cookers outside and of course the quick food place just down the street or the nice restaurant with the big menu to choose from.  We can eat there or take it home to eat OR phone in and have someone bring it to us!  SO very much planning has to take place it’s a wonder we get anything done!

Take me and Winemaker for example, this very morning!  We had drank our 3 cups of coffee each and I asked the every day question, “What would you like for breakfast”?  This time she actually named something besides “I don’t know”…she said “How about steak”?  BINGO!!!!  I can do steak!  In fact I could do steak every day!  The steak we have is mostly elk, and so out to the freezer I went!

Not too many years ago a decision to have steak for breakfast would have had to of been made “yesterday” or “last night”, but with the advent of the microwave we have the option to wait until we are ready to cook to thaw out the frozen goodies we have at hand!  A far cry from the guy with the club!

I often wonder how long those guys with the clubs lived, I’ll just bet if they lived to be 15 they were considered old.

Bears Butt

February 16, 2014


Written on February 16th, 2014 , Uncategorized
By: Bears Butt

Well today is Saturday and sort of a relaxed day on the line.  No traps will be set today because I take Sundays off.  A guy can go hard and strong for six days, but needs a day off once in awhile.  My body is so sore right now, I need a day to catch up.

The weather is looking mild today with only a slight chance of rain.  A glance out toward the trapping zone shows high clouds and it should be close to 60 degrees today.  The problem with that temperature and light to no winds means the hawks will be hovering over the swamps looking for morsels to eat.

Hawks mostly eat mice, but when they see a “big old mouse”  (muskrat) in a trap they will sit there and eat the whole thing, scattering the part I like most (the hide) all about the area.  You can’t blame them, they are hungry too.

So because of them hovering over head, I try my best to hide the traps under an overhang of toolies but they have pretty sharp eyes and can almost smell the rat laying there.  Between you and I, I would rather feed a hawk than a raccoon!

Yesterday, on the way out, I spotted another seep that Bob is not trapping and has no plans on trapping, heck he may not even know it exists.  So Monday I will check it out and probably be able to set 10 or so traps on it.  Those traps will come from the top end of Bull Run…time to move on!

After I get back from checking my line, I’ve promised Weasel I’ll show him how to set a couple of snares.  He has two very well defined raccoon trails spotted and those are the best for sharing snare setting knowledge and the highest percentage of a catch, which is what a new snare trapper needs.  Weasel has never caught a raccoon and maybe tomorrow he will break that virginity.

I can’t remember if I mentioned it in last nights report, but one of the live traps was baited with marshmallows.  Sort of an experiment to test someones statement that they work to draw in raccoons.  When I checked that trap yesterday the mud around the trap was filled with the tracks of a curious raccoon, but he didn’t go into the trap nor did he eat any of the broken up marshmallows I had placed here and there around the entrance of the trap….I say…”Marshmallows will only work on a starving raccoon”….So, I loaded the trap with a rat body and hope to find a raccoon waiting for me this morning.

Expected catch for the day?

1 raccoon,  16 rats.

Bears Butt

February 15, 2014


My rear end is KICKED!  I guess I’m just getting old.

The weather was perfect today, not too hot, not too cold and for sure not wet!  Just right.

The trapping didn’t go like I thought it would; First off, I caught 2 skunks!  YUK!  And no raccoons.  Secondly, there must have been a mini rat run last night as I had a bunch of traps set off with nothing in them and I managed to catch 19 good rats, 1 that we might be able to save, and lost 2 others to mink or weasels or something besides raccoons.  So, I’m counting my catch at 20 today.

I also had a moment to go look over the 3rd seep and could quickly see where I might be able to set a dozen traps…that will be Mondays chore.

Back at home I went with Weasel, Conner and Cody down to check his traps and show him how to set a snare.  We set two snares in places that can either catch raccoons and/or foxes, there was sign of both on the trails.  Unfortunately for Weasel he only had one trap set off and no rats caught.

He did set out a colony trap and my new invention, a floating colony trap.  It will be very interesting to see if that thing works at all.

Bob had a great day trapping and came to the fur shed with 10 nice rats!

Brek is still unknown and if he catches any today I will post up his catch.  If nothing more is mentioned on here, then he didn’t catch any today.

Bears Butt

Written on February 15th, 2014 , Daily Trapping Events
By: Bears Butt

We all, (well, I’m assuming something here about my readers) have our favorite guns, whether they are rifles, shotguns or pistols and we also know that they need to be cleaned every once in awhile!  I’m probably the worst one for not cleaning my weapons on a regular basis and one day it will cost me…maybe it already has…I missed a deer and an elk this year…hmmmm.

Anyway, I received an email the other day from my friends at Smith and Edwards and they asked if I wouldn’t mind posting up a story about how to properly clean a rifle, by Eric Halter, one of the gunsmiths at Smith and Edwards.

I’m pleased as punch to share this with my readers and hopefully your rifle won’t fail you the next time you take it out hunting or to the range!  Copy and past this in a new tab on your computer and read the great article!  This guy knows his stuff!

Eric has been in the gunsmithing business for MANY years and if you need some service done to any of your weapons, he is your man!  He even does that coating to guns called “Cerakote”…do you want to be invisible to the predators?  Have your weapons coated with that stuff, and remember, don’t lay the gun down, you won’t be able to find it in the grass if you do!

Eric can be contacted at:

Keep those guns cleaned!

Bears Butt

February 14, 2014

Written on February 14th, 2014 , Uncategorized
By: Bears Butt


A wet day ahead!  Some prayed.  Some fasted.  Some crossed their fingers.  And every fisherman I know said a silent prayer and hoped we would get some moisture….Well, it’s happening folks!  Thanks for everything you did to make this moisture come to Northern Utah!

Yesterday I noticed that where I had been walking on ice I was now walking in mud!  Things are breaking up quickly out on the trap line!  The thick ice is not so thick anymore and with these 50 plus degree days and rain, it won’t be long before all the ice is gone completely!  YAY!  Spring!

I didn’t have a chance to give you a P.M. report yesterday, the day was just too full of trapping and other events!  But the day went as f0llows:

I got a pretty good start, leaving town about 8:30 or so and the trip out went without any incidents.  I pulled the 5 traps at Pete’s pond and to my surprise I did finally catch a rat in one of the Conibear traps.  That makes six total rats caught from the pond, a pretty usual amount for that small pond.  I usually catch from 5 to 10 rats.

Out at Bull Run I was pretty excited to check the live traps in hopes of getting rid of some of those lousy raccoons.  My first live trap held a big old skunk!  I don’t like skunks and so I stayed a ways back from the trap as I leveled my 22 pistol in its direction.  One shot was all it took and the skunk died quickly.  However, it did spray and made for a nasty removal!  Having been sprayed directly in my past, the odor makes me sick to my stomach every time I smell it, this was no exception.

Live trap number two held a very BIG raccoon!  One of the largest I have caught to date, and he had been eating well!  Is he the culprit that has cost me 9 rats?  I’ll never know, but for certain, his days are over and he will eat no more rats.

The remainder of the live traps were empty and remained set.

The rat traps produced pretty much as I usually expect,  I caught 5 rats from them, for a six rat total for the day.

Now some might think that the catch rate is too low, but the way I trap is this:  I saturate an area with an over kill of traps.  My thoughts are to get in, catch what is there and move out to other areas.  I set a lot of traps in an area in just a few days and then am on to bigger and better areas with those traps.  I move a lot of steel in just a few weeks time.

So, in this case, I have about 24 traps set, I caught two days of 11 and then one day of 5.  And if you factor in the 9 rats the raccoons ate, I actually caught 16 rats on day one, 15 rats on day two and then 5 rats on day 3.  Day two was actually higher than usual and should have been about an 8 rat day.  The catch rate percentages are usually, 50% of the total traps out on day one, 25% on day two and then a scattering of rats on days 3 and 4 and then I’m out of there and on to better trapping grounds!

After checking Bull Run, I still had an hour or so to investigate an area I have been driving past for years.  I was curious to look at it and see if any rat sign existed.  The area consists of three “seeps” and from the highway you can tell there is some water, but not much.  As I drove the toy into where the fist seep was, I noticed quite a bit of water bubbling up from a spring and immediately saw where a rat had been visiting quite a bit…a substantial pile of rat poop.  The water is not very deep in this spot and the trails the rats have made are all exposed making them very vulnerable to night time predators like owls and foxes, but there was a lot of sign.  Between the two seeps I had time to look at, I quickly set 13 traps, including the two colony traps I took from Pete’s pond.  A remarkable number of traps for such a small amount of water!  I’m hoping to set more in there today, as well as see what seep number 3 holds!

My plan looks like I’ll pull the traps from Bull Run on Monday and move over to the “Trellis”.  The live traps will remain where they are for a couple of weeks.  I’ll pull them when I move out to Big Spring.

So, what will today produce?

Rain and wet for sure!  My hopes are high for at least one more raccoon and NO skunks…I didn’t tell you but I moved the skunk(ed) set over closer to the waters edge where I should have had it to begin with…dummie me!

Bull Run should kick out 4 rats and the new 13 sets should produce 8…so count my hopes at 12 rats and one raccoon.


Ain’t that purdy?

Bears Butt

February 14, 2014 “Happy Valentines Day”


Boy was it wet today!!!!  Everything I own is soaked!  AND my butt is kicked!

As I approached Bull Run, I could not help but see there were no bulls in view, at least not close like they have been.  My thoughts raced to my dream that they had all gone into the area behind a gate I could close!  As I loaded up the toy and headed through the gate by the road, I drove straight to that other gate and sure enough all the bulls were behind it..AND the gate was closed and wired good and shut!!!!  Was I a happy guy?!!!  YES!!!!

THANK YOU PETE AND THE REST OF THE RANCH HANDS FOR MOVING THOSE BULLS, JUST IN TIME!  I was really dreading “going in among them” to set more traps and today was going to be that day!

I headed back to the beginning of my trap line and began checking like usual.  The live trap I had moved yesterday…the one that had the skunk…was harboring another skunk!  One pop from the pistol and he was done for, but the smell was overwhelming!  I gagged and choked my way away and continued to check muskrat traps.  When I got to the last live trap I could see the door was closed and something was in it, but I could not see exactly what it was until I got close…a hawk!  What on earth would a hawk go into one of those traps for?  I was able to open the door and coax him out with a stick.  He was happy to be able to fly off.  Me too.

At the end of the line I had 5 rats but lost 3 others to some kind of critters, not raccoons.  I think two of them were eaten by mink and one by a hawk, I say this because of how they were eaten.  Mink like to eat from both ends toward the middle and those two rats had their heads eaten and their tail end as well and everything in between.  The hides were like wet socks, but damaged beyond use.  I figured 5 good rats was not to bad for those traps and I still had the 13 I set yesterday to check.

Well, I had lots of time and no bulls to contend with and so I set out to set some more traps down Bull Run.  Before the day was over I had set 21 more traps in there and 2 more at the seeps for a total of 23 traps set.  That means I have 75 (if I count correctly) traps out, plus the 7 live traps.

The seeps kicked out six more rats for a total of 11!!!!  I’ll take that!  11 rats, 1 skunk and 1 hawk.

Brek chose not to check his traps today and so his catch today was “0”.

Bob caught 7 rats!

Weasel caught 3 rats!

Updated by yours truely!


Written on February 14th, 2014 , Daily Trapping Events
By: Bears Butt


Bears Butt uses shoulder length rubber gloves to trap muskrats.  They keep me dry and they act as a guard against the cold, especially while driving my toy from trapset to trapset.  But as you can see, this pair has a piece of tape between the thumb and index finger.  The tape is covering a hole the size of a dime that is caused by the glove getting caught between the trap jaws and the springs while setting the traps.  I wish someone in the glove making world would make a glove that could handle that situation…GLOVE MAKING COMPANIES TAKE HEED!!!!  WATER TRAPPERS NEED REINFORCED GLOVES!!!!!

Another wet day is in store for the trappers, with increasing chances of rain as the day progresses.  My stuff appears to be all dried out from yesterday and it will be nice once I’m in the field to have dry clothes on.

Goals for the day include pulling the traps from Pete’s pond.  I don’t expect to catch any rats there today.

Then on to Bull Run where the seven live traps await my return!  I’m really hoping to see 7 raccoons caught and waiting for their last day on earth!  Watch…I’ll catch skunks!  That’s my luck.  As for rats in this area, my expectancy is 8 today and like yesterday, I hope 3 of them are “whole”.

If everything goes as planned, I should be able to set a few more traps, 5 is acceptable as I have to come home early to go with Weasel to see about his trapping area and maybe even give him a hint or two about how to catch the cagey little rats.  There have to be a few on his line, but after two days of a zero catch, he needs just a little bit of instruction on trap placement.  Heck, we might find there aren’t any rats in the area he is trapping!  It won’t take long to find that out.

Additionally, there are a couple of other distractions from trapping taking place late this afternoon and into the evening.  It’s part of life to have distractions and I can only think of a couple more throughout the rest of the trapping season, but then, distractions pop up every now and again.

So, let’s see if my prediction of 8 rats happens…oh and as for raccoons….I’m saying two!

Bears Butt

February 13, 2014

Written on February 13th, 2014 , Daily Trapping Events
By: Bears Butt


I arrived at the trapping scene just before 10 a.m., a light rain was falling, but it looked like it might clear up.  I noticed the cowboys out on their horses going to round up the cattle that were scattered all over South of the Trellis (if you don’t know where the Trellis is from past years stories, you’ll have to catch up on here this year), they were all decked out in their “slickers” and ready for a wet day.

At Pete’s pond I put on my rain gear as well, but of course mine isn’t nearly as good as the gear the cowboys had.  Mine is good until I get wet and then I call it a day, they can’t do that.

As I suspected I had one rat in a colony trap at the pond.  I’m sure I have caught them all out of there and plan to move those traps tomorrow.  I’m sure I can find some places for those colony traps down on bull run.

The bulls at the run were scattered all over the place and munching whatever there is out there that they eat, I can’t see anything that they are eating, but they all had their heads down eating something.  My first order of business was to get the two live traps I took out, set and ready for Mr. Raccoon.  Brek (Skinner Man), skinned the rats and raccoons we caught yesterday after he got home from work last night.  He must have been up quite late as I know how long it takes to skin, flesh and stretch a raccoon and he did two of them.  He did an outstanding job on them too!  The rats were all turned fur out and laid in a pile on the floor.  Now it’s our job to flesh and stretch them…later today.

Anyway, back out to the trap line.

I loaded up the toy with the two live traps and took them out to where I knew I wanted to set them.  I loaded them with fresh skinned muskrat bodies….way too tempting for a raccoon to pass up.  And then I went to checking traps.

The trap I caught the raccoon in yesterday was not set off, nor was the carrot bait disturbed, but there were parts of a muskrat scattered around on top of the toolie pile where the raccoon destroyed things yesterday.  Further investigation showed where the muskrat came from…trap set number 2!  Dang it!  He bit off the muskrats leg and carried the body over to where he could sit and munch without getting too wet.  One of the live traps is right between sets 1 and 2…I’ll get that little critter!

I continued down the line checking traps, the rats didn’t move too much last night, maybe it was windy or maybe I caught them all.  As I moved down the line I saw evidence of a second rat having been the fine dining of a raccoon!  OOOOOOO!  All in all I lost 4 more rats to raccoons and with the one rat from the pond I brought home 11.

In two nights of trapping the raccoons have cost us 9 rats!  That is between $90 and $110!

Bob showed up with the other 5 live traps just as I finished checking the traps I have out.  By that time the rain had gotten worse and worse, my rain coat was soaked completely through and so were my shirt(s), my butt is still very wet right now and I’ve been home for two hours.

Bob left me with my task of setting those 5 live traps in the drizzling rain.  I used rat carcases in all but one of them and I used marshmallows and smelly carrots in that one.  We will see tomorrow how the raccoons handle those traps.

Part of the reason I had to be home early today was to make sure the trapping shed was ready for this season of skinning and stretching.  There was a lot of straightening up to do, and the pile of skinned rats needed to be spread out to dry.  I also turned on the heater to expedite that part of the process.

The weather forecast is calling for a good chance of rain for the rest of today and tonight and then chances of rain on and off through Sunday.  This is perfect rat trapping weather, but it calls for waterproof outer clothing.  I have it, I just need to put it on!

Bob caught 6 rats today.  I don’t know how many Skinner Man and Weasel have caught but I’ll post up here the results when I know them!  As for now!  Get back to whatever it was you were doing!

UPDATE:  Bob 6, Me 11, Skinner Man 2, Weasel goose egg!

Bears Butt

February 12, 2014


Written on February 12th, 2014 , Daily Trapping Events | Stories, Ramblings & Random Stuff From an Old Mountain Man is proudly powered by WordPress and the Theme Adventure by Eric Schwarz
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Just some of my old stories, new stories, and in general what is going on in my life.