Minnows, Bottled-What animals can be successfully trapped by the use of minnows bottled, in the summer, and left to decay? Did anyone ever try it?
Evidently you have not been reading the H-T-T very long, for this decoy, known to the trappers as fish oil, is frequently spoken of. It is known to all trappers and nearly all of them have tried it at one time or another. It is attractive to a certain extent to many animals, but it is not as valuable as some trappers would have you believe. Do not get the idea that a powerful scent is the key to successful trapping-the right kind of bait will attract any animal as surely as will this fish oil and is pleasanter to use. A knowledge of how and where to set a trap, learned by actual study of the animals habits, is of far more value than any scent, and will bring you in more furs. Nevertheless, a good scent helps to attract the animal to the trap sometimes, and fish oil will sometimes attract the fox, coon, mink, otter, skunk, coyote, and bear. Animals of the dog family (fox, coyote, and wolf) are more susceptible to scents than others, and perhaps the beaver and muskrat came next, with the cats and certain of the weasel family last. I would not think of doing any extensive trapping of those animals. The principle is that the decoy having a stronger odor than the bait, will be scented farther by the animal, and thus more animals will visit the trap than if bait alone were used, but the trap must be just as well set, as when no decoy other than the bait is used, perhaps more so, although the scent smothers the human odor to some extent and is of value for that also. There are good scents for bear, muskrat, beaver, fox, coyote, and skunk. While I have not tried all of those that are now on the market or all that I have heard of, I have never found any scent attractive enough to lynx, wildcat, raccoon, marten, weasel, and opossum to pay for the trouble of packing it along and placing on the set.
Harding, A.R.. 3001 Questions and Answers. Columbus, Oh: A.R. Harding, 1913.
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