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After hunting for the past 25 years....I've decided i would like to try out trapping. Its been a passive interest to me over the years, and now I would like to get active. I guess i need to know where to start. Im located in Pennsylvania and have interest in trapping coyotes and fox primarily, but honestly I dont even know where to start. Are there any good books that go over basics to trapping to outline techniques, equipment, and fur handling? ( especially how to skin the critters as not to ruin the hide!!) Im not a stranger to handling dead animals, but I never have skinned anything with the idea of preserving the hide or fur. Any tips or good books would be appreaciated. Thanks in advance. :grin:
 

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Looking to start trapping this year....ques

Pa has a great trappers assc. get in touch with them
is tons of good videos on the market for trapping and fur handling.
this forum and other trapper forums are great places to learn too
welcome to trapping
 

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first time trapper

go and DO, thats the best way to learn! read all you can and practice setmakeing in your backyard. get all the necessary tools and equipment and just git after it. yu wont be the best trapper yur first or second year but by paying attention to what works and where it works yu will do nothing but get better. water trapping is a easier way to start if it is accesible to yu but if not fox and yotes will definitely keep yu busy learning. biggest tip on skinning i can give is always skin a canine while it is still warm, preferably within a few minutes if possible. it is sooooo much easier than when they are ice cold. good luk :D
 

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Looking to start trapping this year....ques

Try and get to a trappers convention before the season starts and watch demo's and ask questions. YOu missed the PA Trappers Convention but there are a couple more coming up that should be fairly close to you up here in NY. The NY Trappers Summer Fur Rondy is this coming weekend, the NYSTA is Sep 1-3 and the Oswego County Convention is the third weekend in September. Great places to meet people that have been trapping for many years and are willing to share their knowledge with you!
 

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Looking to start trapping this year....ques

Sorry about being a little slow on the response. Thanks for the input so far...it is greatly appreaciated. Ive ordered a book on fur trapping and plan on doing alot of reading till the season starts. Ive found some basic information on dirt hole sets and think I will focus on this. I really want to get into all aspects of trapping including water sets....but thought I need to stay focused on one thing at a time. We have alot of coyotes around here ( live right next door to a state game land and in laws farm is only 3 miles away). Im thinking of starting out small....maybe traps for 6 set ups and learning from those.

Another question I have....

What do you fellas prefer as a firearm (.22 cal)

Rifle or Pistol?

or none at all??

And just one more....
Knives??? what do you recomend?
 

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trapping

i always preferred a single shot stevens 22 pistol on the trapline but those are getting hard to find. any revolver or semi auto will work. normally yu wont want to shoot anything and harm your set with any blood but once in awhile yull get a yote thats only hung by a toenail or perhaps a skunk or particularily nasty cat. even in water trapping ive had mink get way up under some roots where you couldnt get at them to drown or club them. so a gun does come in handy once in awhile. as far as knives go for skinning i like any good quality high carbon knife with a smaller pointed blade. old timer stockman or trappers were always my favorite but ive heard they are out of biz. the small 4or 6 inch rapala fish knife works well also.whatever you use, learn to sharpen it till its like a razor. a sharp knife makes your work go much faster.
 

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Looking to start trapping this year....ques

Asking for the best way and tool to do about anything will get you a ton of different responses. For a general duty pelting knife I like one with a big easy to hold handle and a small blade. Blade needs to to be about 2 1/2 long and 3/4 wide at the base. Razor sharp is best. I make mine. I make the handle from oak. Shape the blade with a dremell tool.

I like coyote trapping best. Here in Kansas we have a lot of them. Any 22 you can carry easy makes a good trapping gun. My personal favorite is a single action revolver. After you pelt or skin your coyote, toss the hide in a washing machine. Some loose hair will come out but it wont matter. Use cold water and no soap. Put fabric softener in the rinse cycle. Woolite is real good. Makes the hair poofy along with being nice and clean. Appearence is everything when you sell fur. Toss your Skins in a dryer next with the heat turned off or down low. 60 minutes is long enough. Hang it by the nose awhile to finish drying. You can sell your pelt just like this or stretch and dry it for best money. You will need to freeze the skin till you sell it if you don't flesh and stretch it. Buy a book on fur handling.

Some women (all women????) won't let you use their washing mashine for coyotes. Freeze them till you get a load, about 4 coyotes, thaw and go to the coin operated laundry mat. Bring a roll of paper towels to wipe out the mashines till you get your own at auction, yard sale etc. Its best not to get noticed. Or you get a five gall bucket. Put in a pelt. Fill with water and using a plumbers helper just swoosh up and down down awhile. Empty the bucket wring out the pelt. Repeat with fabric softener in the water.

Dont fool with coyotes. Just shoot them. Blood won't hurt your remake or your pelt as washing like I described above will make you extra money. It should be done even with a, dead from a snare, yote. If your worried about the blood on the ground move your trap 10 feet.
 

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Looking to start trapping this year....ques

Thanks again on the pointers.....this is a great forum! I do admit that the thought of sneaking into the laundry mat with a basket full of coyote sounds like a hoot! :-D Im sure my wife would think that this is something I would try to pull off!
 
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