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Random Thoughts on Live Market Trapping

I've done a lot of live market trapping for the pens over the years. My first trip was solely to test the MB- 550-RC as a live market trap. I got addicted to live market trapping immediately. There are a lot of chores involved and most of them are after a 15 hour day running the line. For myself, for the buyers, and for the animal itself I want the very best feet possible. I have spent hundreds or perhaps thousands of hours trying to find the perfect set up. There are so many things to consider. The trap itself, how many swivels and where, whether to use a shock spring, chain length, and on and on. There are also the weather and soil type variables to contend with. Sand is the toughest, it is just plain hard to have perfect feet trapping in sand. Animals caught in black dirt, clay, peat, etc. will have better feet then those caught in sand regardless of the equipment that you use. Temperature, grey fox feet won't take much of anything below 30 degrees where as coyotes will often be fine down to about 26 degrees. The shorter the chain the better and while shock springs are not a must, they are an advantage. Now the traps themselves: I use the MB-550-RC or MB-550-CL 2-coiled on my post sets where I can't control the foot placement as well. On dirt hole sets I use the MB-450-FH for live market trapping. I don't care if I'm in a 100% coyote area, for dirt hole sets this is my trap. Contrary to what I often hear I will take every toe catch that I can get, that is my preference with this trap for the live market. Two or three toes is just what I want. I get plenty of full pad catches but if I had my choice, every coyote catch would be by 2 or 3 toes for the live market. I have complete faith that a toe caught coyote is going to be waiting for me in a MB-450-FH.

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