Tips to Aid Your Coon Trapping Excursion
Coon trapping is a sport that many people enjoy, particularly those in the central and southern United States where raccoons run rampant. This practice is not strictly a sport, mind you. Many people trap raccoons as a means to protect their property or garden from the wrath of a foraging or nesting raccoon. This species of animal can be extremely destructive and they can also carry diseases that are communicable to pets as well as humans. They are definitely not a desirable creature to have running around on one’s properly!
What equipment is needed for coon trapping?
The most obvious equipment that you will need is a trap. This leads one to beg the question, What kind of trap do I need? There are a number of traps available at outdoor/sportsman stores like Bass Pro shops and similar retailers, and the good news is that you do not have to search for a trap specifically designed to capture a raccoon. All you need is a trap large enough to capture and hold your foe. Traps are great because they are so versatile. The same trap one would use to capture a raccoon could also be used to trap pesky animals of similar size and composition, such as opossums or your neighbor’s terrier. (Just kidding, folks!)
You also have to ask yourself if you’re looking to kill or capture and release the raccoon. If the raccoon is not rabid, then it is recommended that you attempt to capture the raccoon alive with the intention of releasing it. I should point out that you should NEVER attempt to catch or kill a raccoon that is suspected to have rabies. Call your local animal control authority immediately and let them take care of it. Plenty of traps can be used for the purpose of capturing a live raccoon, such as a steel box trap with a single or double door design. Whichever style of trap you decide to go with, you need to make sure that a raccoon can comfortably fit inside and that it is strong enough to withstand biting and scratching. There is a bit more difficulty in finding traps that can “do the job” in terms of killing a raccoon for sport or skins. Death traps, such as a spring or coil trap, are more likely to severely injure the animal leaving them in agony until you stroll out to check on the trap. No matter the sport or intention, letting an animal suffer this way is bad form.
Other equipment you may need includes bait, such as canned fish, sweet corn, honey coated vegetables, marshmallows, or cooked fat trimmings from meat. You will also need heavy duty gloves.
How is coon trapping done?
In order to trap a raccoon, you need to figure out where it is hiding. If you’ve noticed the critter jaunting in and out of your shed, then the shed (or the path that the raccoon takes in and out) will be the best place to set your trap. If you’re hunting out in the wild, then you’re going to have to think of where a wild raccoon would set up his home. The most likely spot will be a hollowed out tree, especially if water is nearby. During the winter raccoons are mostly dormant, however spring and autumn months, as well as warmer periods during the winter are excellent times to hunt. They are active both in daytime and night, but more-so at night, so consider setting your trap in the late afternoon. When setting the trap, try to cover it with leaves or a non-threatening object that will allow the trap to appear more natural. In some cases the raccoon will not go near the trap for several days until it has accepted the trap as being a natural occurrence. Once this happens, the raccoon will eventually muster up the courage to enter the trap and voila! You’ve caught a raccoon! If you intend to release the animal, do so in a wooded area away from neighborhoods or other homes.