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Seldom and a Goal

3082 Views 51 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  Seldom
Folks, I hate goals! Before I retired my company had us making and achieving sustainable goals in order to get a raise. I absolutely hated it because people would work toward their goal and neglect their job. So, now you know why I dislike goals and probably don’t understand why I’m looking at making a goal this year trapping.

I’ve never made a goal during my entire 68 years of trapping that I can remember but I’m thinking about making one this year. I doubt I’ll even set a coyote trap this year for the first time in 22 years and just trap beaver but there are otter to be caught. So as I’m scouting beaver locations I’m also keeping a keen eye for otter sign.

A couple weeks ago I came upon an active beaver pond and right away I found an otter toilet off the end of it. As I was crossing the dam I saw and heard a commotion in the pond and saw what looked to be a very large beaver swimming across in front of me about 20yds away. Well it wasn’t a beaver it was a dang big otter, looked to be all of 4’ long. I’ve caught and released a couple of otter from footholds set for mink before and this one was huge incomparision to those.

So, I found otter while beaver scouting and I’ve heard how difficult they are to flesh and I’ve skinned a couple for other trappers who didn’t feel comfortable doing it themselves. So my 1st ever trapping goal might be to fill my otter tags this year with forethought and on purpose! Yes, seeing 1 otter isn’t a tagged otter let alone 3 but such is life!

On an otter fleshing side note. Since both of my wrists are broken/frozen and don’t bend, just my fingers and elbows bend. I have a method for fleshing coyote that really works well for a person in my condition that can be seen on my channel. Well, I was searching the Web for otter fleshing tips and low & behold I found a fella who fleshes otter like I flesh coyote!
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If you need a hand fleshing that otter.....don't call me!

Just kidding. I would be more than happy to help but you get to do the tail.
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[/QUOTE]
If you need a hand fleshing that otter.....don't call me!

Just kidding. I would be more than happy to help but you get to do the tail.
Thanks for the offer John but I’ve got it. I will preserver if I catch any, lots of people don’t like fleshing coyote but I’ve come to enjoy it And will miss it. My whole reason to trap beaver this year is to have something to do in the fur shed through the winter months. Sitting in my recliner reading all winter at my age will shorten my life span for sure whereas fleshing and putting-up beaver was a good and enjoyable exercise 10 years ago!!

This low water I have might be a good thing for setting for otter but I’ll find out. I just pulled a camera off a waterway that connected a cattail swamp with several very large ponds in the woods(not in backyards). In fact, it was in the swamp I caught and released my 1st otter. In a few days short of a month I never saw an otter pass in the water or near the waterway. One of those locations that says otter but if there is one using it, it’s cycle is too long for me to set.

I do wish I had trout water(flowing) in my area so I could set open water but my water will be all froze-over. Great for snaring beaver though!
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You have a stretcher for otter?
Yup Depending on the size. I’ve got some older solid coyote boards to make one from if needed. That’s what I did for my cats And it worked great. $255 cat a few years ago So NAFA liked my board.

I went to adjustable coyote boards some years ago so all of my solids are up in the rafters Waiting for a modification.
You have a stretcher for otter?
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Setting those goals for yourself will keep you inspired to push forward. Much different that in a competitive environment because you're only pushing yourself and not others. Best of luck to you Sir!! Enjoyed reading your Post.
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Always a good read. I've always been fascinated with trapping and a fur shed.
Yes, there is something special about a fur shed, at least there is to me. It being a place to skin, flesh, & put-up fur is true but for me it goes beyond the physical labor. For me it’s a place of personal solitude, a place to reflect, a place to plan, and above all, a place to get right with the world. The time in the fur shed weaves me back into the fabric of nature where my heritage comes from.
Always a good read. I've always been fascinated with trapping and a fur shed.
I have something similar. Working with wood and or metal.

Glad you came back. Good luck on your vision quest or goal.
Yes, there is something special about a fur shed, at least there is to me. It being a place to skin, flesh, & put-up fur is true but for me it goes beyond the physical labor. For me it’s a place of personal solitude, a place to reflect, a place to plan, and above all, a place to get right with the world. The time in the fur shed weaves me back into the fabric of nature where my heritage comes from.
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Having that safe/happy place is good for one's soul and sanity.
I got one of those solids down today and made a FHA otter board. Interestingly, I saw that NAFA had two sizes of otter boards but FHA only one, which was nice. Those solid coyote boards came from Larry Hall out of LaGrange IN 20 years ago, laminated basswod. I had made a cat board out of one some years ago to NAFA specs but I had to do a little modification to it today to meet FHA requirements. Easy to trim down in size rather than enlarge!! Give’em what they ask for and plenty of it is how I roll! LOL
You have a stretcher for otter?
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My fur shed is a place where the kids follow me, I drink whisky and plan my next sets! Freezer is waaaaay fuller this year than last, I will have a busy winter skinning and putting up fur. Glad some of us still enjoy the time and effort, I love trapping.

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Yes, there is something special about a fur shed, at least there is to me. It being a place to skin, flesh, & put-up fur is true but for me it goes beyond the physical labor. For me it’s a place of personal solitude, a place to reflect, a place to plan, and above all, a place to get right with the world. The time in the fur shed weaves me back into the fabric of nature where my heritage comes from.
Good luck Mike you will achieve your goal that I have no doubt! Otters aren’t as bad to flesh as people say IMO yes they are tougher but I’ve done plenty over the years and I’ll do em again but rarely set for them these days. $15 is just sad on those unless it’s going up now. Haven’t followed the market reports this year yet as it’s not time to set yet. Have fun
Hiya Kurt, I was hoping you’d show up! This will be the 1st year since the 90’s that I won’t make coyote-specific set. Also, this will be the 1st time that I’ll actually set for otter with purpose & forethought instead of accidental As they are the only furbearer in my local that I’ve never purposely trapped and put-up. I’ve skinned several for others but never put-up One. I’m one of those trappers that believes if I haven’t done or experienced something, I feel I’m lying to talk about it. Walk the walk to talk the talk!

I’m not about to check coyote sets every 24hrs and ditch my catch because I get no thrill out of killing for the sake of killing. As you mentioned the $15, yes, there has to be some honor for the animal we harvest and it’s each individual trapper that does that.

Good luck to you and the family!
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SWEET!
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I would've waited to try this area but it's being sold 1-7-23 so get em while I can
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Did you set on sign or make an educated guess?
Toilet, I've caught 3 or 4 here before.
Looks like 1/3 the way to my goal. Caught her at a crossover. The same with then beaver and it bottomed-out my 50# scales. 1st check on new line.
Wood Line Crocodile Tail Metal
Plant Twig Wood Trunk Natural landscape
Branch Twig Wood Plant Trunk
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