Yes, I have been playing with snares. I do know that it is far easier to set up fixed snares than spring snares but the spring snare has some advantages. The problem with the fixed snare is that if the noose is too big, the animal will walk through it and if it is too small, it just gets pushed aside. If the fixed snare noose is on the ground, an animal will just walk over it unless the noose is propped up slightly above the ground with twigs so the animal will get snagged on it. When an animal is on a fixed snare on the ground, it can be an easy meal for other animals so fixed snare need to be checked more often. It is easier for an animal in a fixed snare on the ground to chew through the snare or chew an appendage off to escape.
The spring snare takes more work and time to set up but can suspend an animal off the ground making it more difficult for other animals to get at it. It is harder for a suspended animal to chew through the snare. The spring snare automatically snares the animal and depending on the trigger set and noose set, will work every time. Other factors such as strong wind, nearby disturbances, and trigger problems will set off the spring prematurely so these too must be checked often.
Both must be checked regularly to make sure they are set and for any trapped animals.
Primitively, cord must be made. Lots of it and this takes the most time. More fixed snares can be set up faster. Less cord for each fixed snare. Spring snares take more cord for each snare and take longer to set up as more parts are needed taking more time. So more fixed snares can be set up than spring snares for the same amount of time.
It is better to make a long cord than a short one when setting up a spring snare or you will have to keep cording (extending) until you get the longer length needed. Make sure you have a strong anchor or it will get pulled out of the ground under cord tension or off a tree or other fixed point. I haven't done snares in a while so I ran into these two problems right away. Look for fresh animal sign first before doing any of this. I spotted numerous runs. I picked a fresh run that had rabbit sign (what I was after), raccoon sign (Oh, no
), and Deer sign on it. So I "could" conceivably trap any of those animals rather than what I was after. Then I set up. The spring snare I set was a Paiute trigger pressure snare using seasoned Scrub Hickory and Yucca cord. This particular spring snare has wood sticks used as a pressure plate and the noose on top so the animal will step on the plate inside the noose releasing the trigger. At first I tried using lashing (both Palmetto stem strips and Yucca leaf strips) rather than cord to save time. None of the lashing was strong enough to take the tension so I had to cord. I could have corded the Palmetto stem strips but it would have taken longer by hand twisting as those strips are too stiff to leg roll so I corded the Yucca leaf strips. I could have baited it with Palmetto cabbage to lure in the rabbit and the deer might also have been lured in. I doubt the raccoon would have found the cabbage appealing. Anyway, the snare worked great but I did not leave it set to catch anything this time. I left parts in place but not set with the cord. I also added debris on either side to make the run a funnel. I probably disturbed the run more than I should have but if I leave it a while, the animals will again get used to seeing the "new" debris and parts, altered run. So I could go back later and set it with little disturbance if I wanted. But it was time well spent even with all the mosquitoes and gnats in that area.
- Robert M.
"I can do all things through Christ, who strengtheneth me." - Paul, c. A.D. 60 (Philippians 4:13)