Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 13

Beaver trapping used to be a limited opportunity
in Penn's Woods. But things have changed!

T

HROUGHOUT my career with
the Pennsylvania Game Commission, I have met numerous
people who have asked me questions
about trapping beavers. The questions
range from where to look for beavers,
and what kinds of traps to use, to what
to do with the beavers after they're
caught. This article hopefully will
provide some insight into my experiences over the past 15 years of trying
to match wits with North America's
largest rodent.
The most interesting thing that I
have found about trapping any critter
is that you can always learn something
new. The minute you think you have
the animal all figured out, it will change
the rules and do something completely
different.
I enjoy reading magazine articles
written by trappers from all over the
country and learning about their
techniques and strategies to hone my
skills and try to become a better trapper. Large catches are nice, but most
trappers that I know, including me, are
part-timers who trap on weekends and
over vacation.
Many first-time trappers don't realize just how much work is involved in
acquiring suitable locations, preparing
equipment, running the trapline and
then if successful, cleaning, skinning,
fleshing and drying the pelts. I am very
satisfied with 10 to 15 beavers a year as
opposed to some full-time trappers trying to handle more than 100 annually.
One thing about trapping is certain;

you can't catch what isn't there. That
being said, finding suitable beaver
habitat and then getting landowner
permission is the first step. If you are
looking for beaver habitat, water is
critical to your search. Beavers can be
found in lakes, ponds, large rivers and
small creeks. Any water surrounded by
trees and lots of aquatic vegetation is
a great start.
Beavers can be found in all 67 counties, so almost anywhere in the state
could produce flat-tails. Sometimes,
beavers become a nuisance to a landowner and he or she will contact you,
instead of you doing the prospecting.
Once you have found some properties with potential, scout for signs of
fresh beaver activity. One sign is bright,
white sticks floating along the shore
of the creek or pond. These sticks are
commonly called "peelers," branches
from which beavers had recently
chewed off the bark. There is nothing better than seeing peelers floating
in the water, or possibly piled up on
a small sand bank, letting you know
beavers recently have been using the
area to feed.
A fresh "castor mound" is another
strong indicator of beaver presence.
It's a spot where beavers have gathered
some mud and debris from the stream
bottom, carried it in their front paws
onto the bank and deposited it there.
Then they squirt musk on it to mark
their territory. I have watched beavers
do this, and it is a very interesting
thing to see.

Opposite Page: Author Dan Lynch and trapping partner Cheryl Trewella show off a couple
of flat-tails they took in southeastern Pennsylvania.

FEBRUARY 2015

13



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015

Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - Intro
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - Cover1
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - Cover2
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - Contents
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 2
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 3
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 4
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 5
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 6
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 7
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 8
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 9
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 10
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 11
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 12
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 13
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 14
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 15
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 16
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 17
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 18
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 19
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 20
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 21
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 22
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 23
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 24
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 25
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 26
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 27
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 28
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 29
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 30
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 31
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 32
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 33
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 34
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 35
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 36
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 37
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 38
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 39
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 40
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 41
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 42
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 43
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 44
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 45
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 46
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 47
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 48
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 49
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 50
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Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 53
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 54
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 55
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 56
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 57
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 58
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 59
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 60
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 61
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 62
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 63
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 64
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 68
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - 69
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - Cover3
Pennsylvania Game News - February 2015 - Cover4
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