With the cold, snowy weather fast approaching, my interest in coyote hunting and snaring is growing at an alarming rate. I’ve always enjoyed predator hunting but in the past few years, I have taken a vacation from the sport. You see, when I bought a dog in the summer of 2008, I grew a soft spot for canines and stopped hunting coyotes. It seems my dog Booner, made me soft and I was having a hard time separating their existence. However, as of late, I have drawn a fine line between Booner and the ruthless killers known as coyotes. As a very aware deer manager, I see the need for the eradication of these predators. Though I’m not sure how many fawns fall to predation each spring, I know if I can save just one buck fawn, it’s worth the effort. The added benefits of immensely enjoying setting traps and being outside in cold, snowy, winter months gives me more reason to come immersed in hunting predators.
In all honesty, my absence from coyote hunting ended last week, in the midst of a small snow flurry, I set the only 3 snares I had in my possession. I placed the snares on 3 trails that dissect a fence row. This fence row borders a food plot where I have caught several coyotes perusing in the late night hours. I’m not sure if this area is a common travel route for the local coyotes or if they are possibly frequenting the food plot looking for an easy meal. I do know they are unwanted guest and if they return, they are sure to find my “loaded” snares.
I’m certainly no expert trapper, but can offer a few snaring tips. I typically set snares in fence gaps or on obvious pinch point trails. I use branches and twigs to help further funnel the coyotes into the snare. As a final measure, I always place a rock near under the snare to facilitate a nose first approach and avoid the foot from first contact.
As I gear up for more the season, I ordered a dozen #402 Coyote Catcher snares from www.thesnareshop.com last week. These snares come ready to use and are compliant with Ohio trapping regulations. They arrived today and I plan to expand my snaring sets to several farms in the next few days. Hopefully I make 2012 my best predator hunting and trapping season on record.