Snaring beaver for Control Work
by Clint Locklear, Wolfer Nation
Why snares are great for controlling problem Beaver.
You shake your head as you see your last conibear, it’s sprung just like the other four. Your client is looking over your shoulder and you can feel his confidence in your ability is fading fast. You have a couple of options; you can do what you have been doing and hope the educated beaver makes a mistake. Or you can use one of the three tools that you have left at your disposal, rifle, foothold or the snare. Today we will go over the steel cable snare. If you learn how to properly use this tool you will have an ace in the hole. Sometimes the beaver seem to know more about bodygrips than we do, this is why a control trapper has to know more about trapping than how to set only a #330.
Let’s start this off with why snares are so important to the control operator that deal with educated problem beaver. First off, if you are just getting started with beaver in your business, we have to make something clear right off the bat, beaver do see snares and they will walk through one if it’s not set properly. Second, beaver do get location shy, blocking shy, and square shy. Yes the beaver is an overgrown rat, but he is not dumb when he survives a bad or sloppy trapping experience. If you talk to as many trappers as I do, one thing becomes clear, beaver get most of their education from bodygrips rather than footholds or snares. Why is this? Well most beaver trappers only use bodygrip traps. The conibear is a great trap, no question, but it has some drawbacks. One, it’s very visible if it’s not totally submerged. Two, if something goes wrong at a set the beaver may experience pain, which will scare off future explorations. Three, most trappers block down the set and make almost a visual pen to guide the beaver. Fourth, the triggers are mostly in the face of the beaver and no animal including us, likes this. Now on the other hand, how does the snare deal with these problems? First, the right size cable is not as visible to the beaver as the conibear. Second, if the beaver comes into contact with a snare and you get a miss, the beaver does not feel pain or get rattled. Third, you don’t have to block down a snare very much. This helps prevent bad memories of getting blocked into something. Fourth, the snare does not have a trigger to hit the beaver in the face. One other point is that bodygrips can be a frustrating tool in the warmer months. Turtles seem to have a talent for finding the perfectly placed trap, just before the beaver shows up. I have had plenty of days with a turtle catch way over 20 snappers. As you can guess this is a waste of the control operator’s time. You are getting payed for beaver not turtles.