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.
to build up the sides until the opening at the top is reduced to only four or five inches across.  The square board will now come into play.  Pass the ends of the cords through the hole in its centre and rest the edge of the board on the top pair of sticks, taking care that it is the tip of the grain of the wood instead of its side, as otherwise it would be likely to crack from the pressure that is about to be brought upon it.  Have ready a stout peg of hard wood, and laying it over the hole in the board, and between the strings, proceed to tie the latter as tightly as possible over it.  By now turning the peg, the cords will be twisted and tightened and the various pieces of the coops will be drawn together with great firmness, in which state they may be secured by the aid of a tack driven in the top board against the end of the peg as shown at (b).  Thus we have a neat and serviceable coop, which will last for many seasons.  To set the affair it is necessary to cut three sticks of the shapes shown in our illustration.  The prop piece is a slender forked twig about ten inches in length from the tip to the base of the crotch.  The spindle is another hooked twig of the same length:  the bait piece is quite similar to the latter, only an inch shorter and supplied with a square notch at the tip.  It is also slightly whittled off on the upper side to receive the square of pasteboard or tin, which is to hold the bait and which may be easily fastened in place by a tack.  All of these twigs may be easily found in any thicket by a little practice in searching.  In setting the trap, it is only necessary to raise up one side of the coop to the height of the prop stick, insert the [Page 70] short arm of the spindle through the fork and beneath the edge of the coop.  While holding it thus in position, hook the crotch of the bait stick around the lower piece at the back of the coop, and pushing the end of the spindle inside the coop, catch it in the notch of the bait stick where it will hold, and the trap is ready to be baited.  The bait may consist of oats, wheat, “nannie berries” or the like, and should be strewn both on the platform and over the ground directly beneath and around it.  If properly set, a mere peck at the corn will be sufficient to dislodge the pieces and the coop will fall over its captive.  It is not an uncommon thing to find two or even three quail encaged in a trap of this kind at one fall, and after the first momentary fright is over, they seem to resign themselves to their fate and take to their confinement as naturally as if they had been brought up to it.

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