Survival Skills: Trap With The Right Bait

When it comes to trapping, you’ve got to have the right bait. Herbivores and carnivores will obviously go for different things, and even omnivores can be tricky. There are enough things that can go wrong in trapping, don’t take extra chances with the wrong baits.

Bait For Herbivores

There are plenty of vegetarian baits to choose from. Groundhogs go for sweet apples cut into pieces so their fragrance is released. Squirrels are very fond of whole peanuts, and they have a hard time resisting crushed sweet pecans and hickories. Just don’t try using them under a tree full of those nuts. The animals won’t go for the human-tainted bait when there is plenty of the same food lying around.

Bait For Omnivores

Omnivores, by definition, will eat anything. This can make them either easier or harder to bait. For raccoons, you can use canned tuna or sardines. The fouler and cheaper the fish are, the better. You can often trap raccoons alongside creeks and streams, pouring the tuna juice into the creek so they’ll follow the creek to get their fishy treat. Possums love lunchmeat, hot dogs, and other processed-meat foods. Raisins are also handy as bait for omnivores, and raisins tend to screen out dogs and cats.

Bait For Carnivores

Meat eaters do have their preferences. Coyotes love beaver meat. Foxes love rotten, hard-boiled eggs. Mink, ermine, and fishers love fish. Bobcats love fresh organ meat such as liver and lung. You can also use various scent baits—it doesn’t have to be food. Coyote and beaver scent can be used for coyotes. And coon urine can be a useful cover scent against other animals as well as for attracting raccoons.

This tip, and 337 more survival tips, are in MacWelch’s new book Prepare For Anything. This latest Outdoor Life survival manual is available at Amazon.

Follow him on Twitter @timmacwelch  And check out more of MacWelch’s outdoor skills and survival articles in Outdoor Life Magazine.

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