Pennsylvania Trappers Play Vital Role
December 22, 2011
Pennsylvania outdoor writer Ron Tussel recently authored a great article on trapping in the state.
Trapping has had some bad press in the past, spurred and funded mostly by anti-fur and animal rights groups. Trapping, in fact, is highly regulated and foot-hold traps must not surpass a jaw width of 6.5 inches in Pennsylvania.
Foot-hold traps are designed to restrain an animal. Traps are sized according to the targeted species, so as not to cause undue damage and permit release of unwanted animals. For instance, a trap used to catch coyotes would be larger and stronger than a trap used to catch muskrats.
A trapper often has the option to release an animal of smaller size or non-target species by restraining the animal with a catch pole or similar device and opening the trap. A trapper must know and study each animal they wish to harvest.
ATA Sponsors Fur Handling Clinic
December 22, 2011
The Alaska Trappers Association recently sponsored a fur handling clinic for trappers in the Fairbanks, AK region. The clinic was aimed at providing valuable information trappers need to properly skin, flesh, stretch and dry pelts that they capture during the trapping season.
The all-day clinic was designed to teach trappers how to handle fur from the time it is taken from a trap until it is presented to a buyer. Middelstadt, who has been trapping and skinning animals for 40 years, along with Bill Wivoda, owner of Arctic Raw Fur Co., served as instructors for the seven-hour workshop.
Middelstadt and Wivoda first told the class to treat the animals they trap or hunt with respect and to use as much of an animal as possible.
“If you’re going to kill something, treat it correctly and don’t waste it,” Wivoda said.
From there, Middelstadt and Wivoda went on to teach trappers the finer points of skinning, fleshing, stretching and drying the hides of beaver, marten, fox, lynx and wolves.