Tag Archives: cable restraints

Promising Fox Tracks

For a week or so the weather seemed to have been keeping the fox holed up. But now after the snow storms have retreated leaving behind a foot and then some of snow the fox have ventured out again.

Today when checking my traps I saw tracks of probably two maybe a few more fox. One set of tracks actually walked on the path a cable restraint was on, but it missed being caught in it. Another set of tracks started up a field road towards another cable restraint only to turn back to the woods.

It was very encouraging to see tracks again, but even more so that my cable restraints seem to be in the right area.

I am considering increasing my number of cable restraints from 6 to 18, another catch would probably help me decided in favor of expanding.

Update On My Trapping — More Duke Traps — Fox and Coyote Tracks

So far this season I have caught the fox, I previously posted about, and a possum I caught just last Wednesday. There have been a lot of fox tracks around though so the fox are there. In preparation for deer season I will be pulling most if not all of my traps that way I will not needlessly stir the deer up during the season. Also its not as much fun checking traps in the middle of the night when you are tired from hunting all day. After deer season I want to put out more hay sets for fox and expand my water trapping.

A couple weeks back I added to my collection of traps 1 160 and 6 110 body gripping traps in hopes getting started in water trapping, which I have never done before. I also bought 6 #1 1/2 duke coil spring traps to help make lots of hay sets for fox.

Currently, I have the 160 trap at the end of a slide on a creek bank where I saw raccoon tracks in the snow the other day. The 110s, however, I am having trouble finding muskrat sign to set on. Whether the stream or just the part of the stream I am trapping does not have them, or I just am not seeing their sign I do not know. After deer season I plan on trapping more of the stream, hopefully I will find muskrat sign to set on then.

On a path going through a field I have been noticing mixed among the fox tracks a few larger canine tracks. While, I have never really seen any coyote tracks, in the area where I trap, before I think I might have a coyote to trap judging from the tracks. Either I will have to wait until cable restraint season or buy some bigger traps though, since I have nothing big enough to hold anything, but a small coyote.

Frozen Traps

Last Friday night was a good night for trapping foxes. There were fox prints by four of my sets, one set of foot prints right on the top of my trap at a dirt hole set. Unfortunately I caught no fox, why? Because my trap was frozen into the ground. Two of the fox prints had been by some of my cable restraints (which thankfully do not freeze up!) But I did not get anything in those either. Judging from the prints the fox had started to go on the trail the cable restraint was on, but went the other direction instead. Then in the other cable restraint set I think the fox went through a small gap I had left next to the cable restraint instead of through the cable restraint (I fixed the gap after seeing that.)

Well, I am pretty sure I have my traps set in good locations so all I can do is keep checking my traps, and wait for the next night when the fox come out. Maybe I’ll get one then!

A Grey Fox with a Cable Restraint

I have caught another fox, this time with a cable restraint. While it was still alive as it should be with cable restraints. The fox had tangled some grass in the swivel of the cable restraint so it had the cable all twisted up – almost choking it. If I ever make my own cable restraints I will have to put two swivels in them to keep this from happening.

Looking at the cable restraints and seeing what they do, and seeing what steel traps do to animals when they get caught; I think I would rather my dog to get caught in a properly set cable restraint opposed to a steel trap. I hope that game laws in PA are passed to expand the use of cable restraints for other animals (currently they can only be used for fox and coyotes) and for more of the trapping season (currently cable restraint season start the 1st of January).

Finally A Fox

After many days of walking my trap line (1.14 miles + every day) I have finally caught a fox. I caught him in the same hay set I mentioned in one of my earlier posts. The set has been there since before deer season, untouched except for once a couple weeks ago when I found it set off, but with no animal.

Since January 1st has come and gone and cable restraints have come in season, I have set three of my seven cable restraints. While we still had snow on the ground I found a spot by a small creek where canine tracks abounded, so I have set the restraints along the trails that the canines seemed to be using.

Cable Restraint Course

I took my cable restraint course yesterday.

They gave me one cable restrain (we used them to make some sets out in the field for the instructors to look at to see how well we set them up), a manual on cable restraints, the pa hunting trapping digest (like I did not get one when I got my license), and a temporary card saying I completed the course that is good for 90 days (it might have been 60 I forget). The game commission is supposed to issue a replacement card for my temporary card. It cost $15 to take the course (the course is mandatory if I want to use cable restraints). It went from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm, while four hours my seem like a long time, the time passed rather quickly.

I missed four questions on my test (but I still passed), but I think would have done better if I had enough time to read the manual they gave me. I guess maybe if I have showed up before 9:00 am instead of 9:01 am I would have had time to look it over.

After the course a guy demonstrated trapping with steel traps (this has nothing to do with the course). One of the sets he showed was a hay/straw bale put out in a field by itself. Then you put your trap next to the bale, spread some straw from the bale over the dirt spot, where your trap is, so that is looks like it just kind of fell out of the bale. Next you dig a hole (like a dirt hole set up) under the bale in front of your trap. Put some bait/scent or some thing down the hole, and dribble some fox or coyote urine on the bale above the hole.