Camp Life in the Woods and the Tricks of Trapping and Trap Making eBook

William Hamilton Gibson
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 313 pages of information about Camp Life in the Woods and the Tricks of Trapping and Trap Making.
they continue through the night.  During the dark hours they love to resort to the water side in quest of aquatic plants, and are here often taken by hunters, many of which consider “night hunting” the favorite and most exciting sport.  It is pursued in the following manner:  The hunter requires a boat or canoe, page 261, a good rifle, and a lamp.  The lamp, with a screen or reflector behind it, is placed at the bow of the boat.  One hunter takes the oar, and, with noiseless paddle, propels or sculls the boat from the stem.  The armed hunter crouches behind the light, with the muzzle of his rifle projecting beyond the screen sufficiently to easily show the forward sight on the tip of the barrel.  A dark lantern is sometimes used as a light.  The eyes of the deer shine very perceptibly at night, and his presence on the banks is thus easily detected.  If he is noiselessly approached, he will remain transfixed by the effect of the light from the boat, and he may be neared even to a very close range, when he is easily despatched.  Hundreds of deer [Page 218] are thus taken during the summer and autumn.  Deer are also chased by dogs until they are forced to take refuge in the nearest rivers or lakes, when the hunter in his canoe overtakes and shoots them.  Another method is frequently employed in the hunting of the deer.  These animals are very fond of salt, and with it they are often decoyed to a spot where the hunter lies in wait for them.  These places are called “deer licks,” or salting places, and can be made as follows:  Select a locality where deer are known to frequent, and place a handful of salt either on a smooth spot of ground or in the hollow of a log.  A section of a log is sometimes slightly dug out at one end and the other inserted in the earth, the salt being placed in the hollow.  The hunter secretes himself in a neighboring tree, sometimes erecting a bench or scaffolding for comfort, and, provided with gun and ammunition, he awaits the coming of the deer.  Hunters say that a deer seldom looks higher than his head, and that a sportsman on one of these scaffoldings, even though he is clumsy in his movements, is seldom noticed by the animal.

The salt lick is also utilized for night hunting.  A head-lantern is generally required.  This can be made in the following manner:  Construct a cylinder of birch bark or paste-board or any like substance, ten inches in height, and of sufficient size to fit closely on the head.  A circular partition should next be firmly inserted at about the middle of the cylinder, and the centre of the partition should be provided with a socket for the reception of a candle.  On this end of the cylinder a piece should now be cut to admit of the passage of light from the candle on that side.  Having this fire-hat at hand wait patiently for the game.  When a significant noise is heard light the candle and place the cylinder on the head, with the open cut in front, thus directing the light toward the ground.  As the deer approaches,

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Camp Life in the Woods and the Tricks of Trapping and Trap Making from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.