We will now ask our readers to turn their attention to the next illustration, in order to understand what is to follow. This picture shows the method of setting the trap.
After the arch is firmly fixed in its place, a short piece of stick should be cut, of a length corresponding to the height of the arch. To the middle of this stick the bait should be attached, being either tied to it or stuck on a plug driven into the stick, the latter being sharpened on one end. Next proceed to cut another stick, of about six inches in length; let this be flattened on one end. The wire noose should then be fastened to the opposite end. The noose in this case should be large enough to fill the opening of the arch. We will now go back to the sapling again. It should be bent down slightly, and a piece of the strong twine should be tied to its tip. Taking hold of the string, proceed to bend down the end of the sapling, in the direction of the inclosure, until it draws with a force strong enough to lift a rabbit if he were tied to the end of it. Thus holding it down with the string against the front of the inclosure, cut off the twine at the place where it crosses the top of the arch, as this will be the required length. It is now necessary to tie the end of this string to the same piece of wood and at the same place to which the noose was tied. When this is done the trap may be set as shown in the cut. The spring sapling should be bent as seen in the first illustration. The piece of wood holding the noose should be passed beneath the top of the arch, as far as it will go, with its long end pointing inside the inclosure. By now supporting the inside end with the bait stick, and carefully adjusting the noose so as to completely fill the arch, the trap will be set.
[Page 46] In order to reach the bait, the rabbit or bird must necessarily pass its head through the noose, after which, if the bait be scarcely touched, the animal’s doom is sealed, and he is lifted into the air, generally suffering almost instant death. It is well known that in the case of a rabbit the neck is broken by a very slight blow, a strong snap of the finger being often sufficient. It is therefore safe to conclude that when thus suddenly caught and lifted by the noose, death must occur almost instantaneously from the same cause.