Now by the aid of a gimlet or a red-hot iron, the size of a slate pencil, bore a hole through one end of every piece one inch from the tip, taking care that the ends selected lay on the same side of the net. The other extremities of the four poles should be supplied, each with a large screw eye. Four pegs are next in order—one of which is shown separate at (P). It should be about eight inches in length, and three inches in width, and an inch in thickness, and sharpened to a point at one end. The other end should be supplied with a notch two inches in depth and of such a width as will easily secure the perforated end of one of the poles already described. By the use of the gimlet or a red-hot nail, a hole should now be bored through the side of every peg across the centre of the notch for the reception of a wire pin or smooth nail.
The nets may now be rolled up on the poles, and the trapper may thus easily carry them to his selected trapping ground. This should be smooth and free from stones and irregularities. Unroll the nets and spread them flatly on the ground, as seen in the illustration. Let the perforated ends of the poles be innermost, and allow a space of six feet between the inner edges of the nets. Draw the net flatly on the ground, and drive one of the notched pegs at each of the inside corners, securing the poles into the slots by the aid of the wire pins or nails. Next cut four stakes eight or ten inches long. The places for these may be seen by a look at our engraving. Each one should be inserted five feet distant from the notched peg, and exactly on a line with the inside edge of the net—one for each corner. They should slant from the net in every case. To each one of these stakes a stay-rope should be secured, and the other end passed through the screw eye of the nearest pole, drawing the string tightly, so as to stretch the net perfectly square. Next, take a piece of cord, about twenty feet in length, and fasten it across the ends of the net into the screw eyes in the poles. This is the loop to which the draw-string is attached, and either end of the net may be chosen for this purpose. To this loop and a little one side of the middle, the draw-string should be fastened. If secured exactly in the middle of the loop, the two nets will strike when the draw-rope is pulled, whereas [Page 74] when adjusted a little to one side, the nearest net will move a trifle faster than the other, and they will overlap neatly and without striking—completely covering the ground between them. When the trap is spread the draw-rope should extend to some near shelter where the bird-catcher may secrete himself from view. Spreading the bait on the ground between the nets, and arranging his call birds at the proper distances, he awaits his opportunity of springing his nets. At the proper minute, when the ground is dotted with his game, he pulls the draw-string, and the birds are secured.