Tricks of the Trapping Trade By: Cody Weiser
There are as many different working designs of hog traps as there are different makes and models of vehicles on the roadway. Many details come down to personal preference, but there are a few key options and accessories that can make your trap easier to use and more effective in catching and holding hogs.
I outfit all the traps that I build with a walk-thru door opposite the end of the trap door. I do this on both my portable and permanent traps. A walk-thru door is great to have opened when pre-baiting a trap. Being able to leave open both the trap door and walk-thru door is a huge asset in getting the hogs comfortable walking through the enclosure. Doing this for a week or two prior to setting the trap frequently results in a full trap of hogs because the hogs know that the inside of the trap offers food and, as far as they are aware, no danger.
Cross Ties on Open Top Pen Traps
Large stationary pen traps are favorites among serious hog trappers and personally my first pick. Due to their increased size and openness, they can catch and hold a greater number of hogs and generally catch larger sized hogs that are uneasy about walking into a small box trap. The downside of pen traps is they can be breached by big boars standing up and leaning on the panels causing both pen and posts to bend. A monster boar can easily bend over both panel and t-posts to the ground! This destroys the trap and educates the boar to the point where you can pretty much bet that he will never enter another trap. By cross-tying together the tops of the t-posts, you force the opposing posts and panels to work together creating a trap wall that will flex but not bend. This will ensure the structural integrity of your trap and keep your hard-earned boars captured until you get there.
I attach a simple homemade drip bag made of a grass sack or large sock over my traps and fill them with "Black Gold" wild boar attractant. This releases the attractant slowly and adds to the attraction aspect of the trap. It also keeps the trap baited once the corn is gone and hogs have already been caught. I use doors that hogs can continuously enter but not exit once set. With the addition of a slow but steady drip of attractant, it is possible to catch hogs throughout your set period and not just before the initial bait has been consumed. Sow-in-heat scent is also a good product to use in a drip bag or PVC dripper.
These three tricks of the trade are just a few innovations that have increased my success ratio at trapping hogs. They definitely have their benefits and can easily save a lot of headaches and stress. Give them a try and watch what results unfold. WARNING!...You may have to buy an extra deep freeze.