CATCHING MINK FOR THE MINKERY
CATCHING MINK FOR THE MINKERY
One day the first part of November I started out for a three days trip to catch some live mink to increase my stock in the minkery.
I took a young man with me for company and to help me along with my outfit, which consisted of a small motor-boat, a house-boat, and several fur farmer's live animal traps.
The motor-boat is sixteen feet long, with a two horse-power engine, and has a speed of about seven miles per hour. The house-boat is a scow, sixteen feet long, eight feet wide, and is decked over, three feet at each end; the house is ten feet long and eight feet wide, with a door in each end.
My furniture consists of a cot bed, small cooking stove, table, chairs and a box fastened up in one corner for a cupboard.
I use the fur farmers' live animal traps; they are made collapsible, and I can wrap several together, and make them up when I get to the trapping ground, and they are very light to carry.
Mink in this section of the country are very scared but there seems to be a stray one in some of the brooks yet.
The route we took was across the Washademook Lake and then up the Cannan river about twenty-five miles. The first night we stopped at Long Creek. This creek is very narrow and runs inland about four miles. At the mouth of the creek there was an old bridge crossing it and here I thought would be a likely place for a mink, so I set a trap, and covered it all up with stones, as a mink will take a bait better if it is covered up, arid these traps are made of netting, one-half inch mesh, and the mink can see the stones all around them; therefore, they have very little fear of it being a trap, also the trap is hid from boys.
The next morning when we took our traps up, I had a very fine female mink at the old bridge.
On our way up the Cannan river we set some traps, and shot a few ducks. We found a sheltered' place in a cove, and here we decided to spend the second night. The weather was fine and our trip up river was delightful. Next morning we started for home and in one trap which we set in a stone fill, along the river bank, there was a medium sized mink, and in another which we set under an old wharf, I had one of the largest mink I ever caught.
With regard to bait I find the best for mink is a fresh eel, cut in pieces about two inches long, and string several pieces on the wire, which makes a good big bait.
The way I get the eels is, in the last of August or September, I set some eel traps, and bait them with suckers; two or three suckers will probably catch twenty pounds of eels. Then I have a box four feet wide, ten feet long and three feet deep, made of four-inch boards, and leave the cracks open about three-eighth of an inch, so the water can circulate through easily. Stake this box out in the water, and have a cover for it so they will not jump out. Here I dump all the eels. A box of this size will hold a half-ton all right. I use them for bait when trapping and they are among the best meat diets for the mink in the minkery, and the cost is very little.
If the box is staked some place where the ice does not freeze too thick, they can be used fresh all winter.
G. E. White,
Queens Co., N. B., Can
Fur, News. Fur News, January 1916.
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