Just a few lines of my experiences: Comrades of the trap line, cast your eyes over this. I would like to ask those interested in protection of game why there is such a howl put up because a few of us set a few traps for catching fur-bearing animals, mink, 'coon, fox, skunk, weasel and wildcat. I have trapped for 10 years on the same ground and I can swear that there is five times the game on my trapping grounds that there was six years ago. Every fox or skunk you catch will save from five to 20 partridges. They will find the mother bird on her nest in hatching time and kill her and eat 10 to 15 eggs. When they do this every night for three weeks, the time it takes them to hatch, what does that mean in the number of birds when you catch the foxes?
Now take the weasel and the mink. The mink does most of his prowling at night, when the fish can't see. They will follow a brook once in every two weeks in the year. They make the same trip and they kill a good many trout in the course of a year, and every rabbit track they will run better than the best dog that ever lived. When the rabbit goes in its hole, they go right after him. When they can find plenty to eat, they only suck the blood and so you see it takes a good many rabbits to feed a family of mink the year round. But when we set a few traps to get some fur and stop this slaughter of game, the sportsmen and a few others I know of set up an awful cry about having us arrested and threaten to swipe every trap we set when they find them. I honestly believe that we trappers do more to protect game and give it a chance to increase than all the game laws that Connecticut has on her books. All winter we are busy catching the game—destroying animals—mink and otter that destroy the trout and rabbits, and wildcat that kill rabbits, partridge and young deer; foxes and weasels that suck the eggs of all the birds that nest on the ground and destroy the young and kill the old ones. It is perfectly safe to say that every fox, mink, skunk or weasel killed means a good many dozen rabbits and birds saved.
We trappers are the only ones who are giving game protection; laws on books are not doing it. Go to other places where there is lots of trapping and you will find game enough. One fall I caught 112 skunks, 11 mink, 13 'coons, 28 foxes, 17 white weasels, one bob cat, weighed 28 pounds. So I think I have done a good deal towards protecting game for the town around here. No trapper should feel that he has done wrong to eat of rabbit or catch of fish as long as he is trapping. Compare the game you kill with what you save and it will show your standing. I think that if we could get a bounty on foxes and. skunks, if it was small, taken with the price of fur, it would encourage us. Then watch our game increase. It is not the two-legged hunter that kills all our game, but the four-legged. It is the dog owner that puts up the hardest kick on trapping; but whoever heard of a trapper around here killing sheep or cattle? We had three sheep and four head of cattle killed by dogs this fall.
Fur, News. Fur News, January 1916.
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