date: Dec. 10, 2013
Presidents column...........(new news)
Good morning trappers;
I got some fisher trapping sets and snow pictures on page 2 .
Still cold here: Tuesday: Dec. 10, 27 below at 7am.
Sunday, Dec.8, 7 am, 31 degrees below zero outside.
This morning (7 am) Sat. Dec. 7, it is 28 degrees below zero on my outside thermomter. WOW. And, I have just over 13 inches of snow in the yard.
Fisher/Marten trapping started on Sat. Nov. 30 and ended Thur. Dec. 5 (only 5 nights). The limit per trapper was cut to two, and on top of it all, we have site tags that must be marked at the trap site, when an animal is caught. You cannot use your trapping partners tags, only your own.
I questioned the length of the season and the DNR response to me was that a longer season would make more trappers more successful in catching their limit of 2.
I had to think about that comment for a while. My opinion is that the DNR doesn't want us to be successful. Maybe its just me, but we are being severely restricted in trapping, as well as hunting and especially fishing. It's no wonder there are fewer and fewer licenses being sold.
I set traps on Sat. and Sun. It started snowing heavily on Monday, so I had to drive (on Monday) and pull some traps that were on non-maintained roads. The snow kept on all night, and Tuesday morning, I drove east of my home towards Two Harbors and pulled those traps that I had set on Sat. (we have a three day check on body-gripping traps) The snow was getting deeper. Wed. morning, it was still snowing, so I pulled all the traps I set on Sunday.
Towards Two Harbors, there was over two feet of snow. The side roads were impassable, You would have needed a snowmobile to get your traps, but I got all mine and was done trapping on Wed.
Nature determines the length of the trapping season, but the DNR tries harder.
From what I could determine, the animals quit moving when the snow storm began, and it resulted in a very short season 2-3 days.
I did get an early season wolf hunting permit on the 2nd chance lottery. I shot an adult female wolf on Friday, Nov. 22, 2013. It was cold, so I had to start skinning it right away (at the hunting shack NW of Cook). It was a healthy animal, no mange, and lots of fat on its back. On inspection day, Nov. 25, The Dnr took a tooth sample, meat sample, and the uterus. This animal had a lot of fat inside as well. 'Tongue in cheek' I asked if the wolf got all the fat from eating snowshoe hares. He smiled and said they eat deer and moose. I knew that, and expected that response. I had a taxidermist flesh it out with a fleshing machine, he salted the hide for a couple days, wiped it off, rolled it up and sent it to get tanned. The skull is at the cleaner (dermestid beetles) along with a red fox skull.
I checked the thermometer and it is 17 below zero at 10:15 am yet.
Another important item:
We now have a DVD available that demonstrates how body-gripping traps function and how to release your pet/dog from the trap. It will be available very soon. It was done professionaly and is quite detailed. You can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Our MFZTA Banquet was super. We gave away 14 guns, 3 canoes, and lots of traps and trapping supplies. I have not had time to post pictures yet.
A big thanks to the vendors who contributed something to the raffle table. I will make the list of vendors and post it here. ASAP.
A couple of contributors: USA FOXX, Havalon Knives, Tom Florin Trapping Supply, more to follow.....
* The summer beaver trapping went fast for the counties who hired a private firm to trap beaver. I heard that the money was gone in July for St. Louis county, so they are using regular county employees to trap nuisance beaver. What a waste of tax payer money.
All the county had to do was to call the DNR Commissioner and ask him to extend the season in the spring.
Please read below in "WHY NOT" about joining a trapping organization. There are way to many trappers out there who are on a 'free ride', when it comes to protecting trapping. For the price of two muskrats, or one mink, or one X-large beaver, you can spend the money and join and help us 'fight' to have common sense trapping rules based on sound biological data, not 'personal opinions' like we are subject to now.
The trappers convention went really well. There was a lot of visitors, lots of supplies were obtained. The vendors were happy. The weather was perfect on Sat. The temp was around 70. In the evening, it cooled down to about 48 degrees. Lots of food, and lots of people. On Sunday, we could have had a few more members to come and help put all the tables away. Next year, there will be a list of helpers....
In 2014, The convention may be Aug. 8-9, Friday and Saturday. At most events like this, Sunday is a very slow day. We will discuss this change at a board meeting. The vendors agreed that this change could work for them also. You can reserve a spot for next year by calling Ray S. right now. Don't miss out.
PLEASE READ THIS:
* One member at the convention stated that he didn't want the spring beaver trapping to be extended so that the beavers can recover. BUT, these beavers will be trapped all summer long by nuisance contracts anyway.
One nuisance beaver trapping contract with St. Louis County, allows the nuisance trappers to blow up to 5 dams on a flowage/creek to a maximum of 20 miles upstream. The surrounding counties in northern Minnesota probably have the same wording. These beaver will not get a "rest" . We could have trapped them when they were still worth something, Now they will be trapped all summer. I would rather have regular trappers get them, rather than contract trappers.
* "Wildlife Services" Trapping Company, out of Grand Rapids, Mn., has contracts for nuisance beaver trapping in St. Louis , Itasca, Carlton, and possibly more.. They will be trapping beaver as soon as conditions allow.
Since the weather didn't cooperate, the trappers could not trap and remove beaver that will become 'nuisance' later on in May, June, July, August, etc.....
They will be 'removed' by someone else who gets paid to do it.
Trapping by a private company, hired by the County Commissioners of each county, with the MN DNR knowing about it, is a huge 'blow' to trappers in Minnesota.
A lot of trappers in the state do not belong to a trapping organization.
I ask you "Why Not ?"
Almost all of you working non-members belong to a union that protects your rights while on the job. You join the union to ensure that you recieve the proper rules and regulations while working.
By joining a trapping organization, you are helping to protect your trapping rights, the same as joining a union.
Just by reading above and understanding what I said, should be enough to get a trapper to join.
If you are reading this, you are (probably) a member of a trapping association, but your neighbors or other trappers that you might know, are probably not. Talk to them, get them to join.
THINK ABOUT IT ! Trappers need to JOIN NOW !!
We had a station at MDHA youth day event on Sat. Aug. 3, 2013. at the Hibbing shooting center, just west of Hibbing. I brought small longspring traps for the kids to set. The large majority of them had never set a trap. All of them were successful with a little help.
The trail camera took pictures of a fisher, (3 different days), a skunk, and 98 pictures of a weasel. I moved the camera to a spot that deer and coyotes are traveling. (April 26)
We have our 3 gun raffle tickets ($1 dollar each). and the 3 Canoe raffle tickets, ready to go. You will probably get some in the mail. .
The canoes are a "WE-NO-NAH, a MADRIVER, and a GRUMMAN square stern. Tickets are $10 e
BIG NEWS: The moose herd population estimate has dropped to about 2300 animals (from 4200 estimated last year) Check the DNR website for more moose population data. Wolf and bear predation can be a factor. The research going on right now by the DNR, using new gps collars on adult moose, should help determine the cause of the declining moose population.........
The only change I saw, was that the wolf quota for the 2013 hunting and trapping season, was cut almost in half in the Moose range. How does that help moose ? AND, the bear permits were cut by 25 % statewide. It is hard to understand the reasoning behind these changes. I am beginning to think that the rules and regulations being changed are to control the sporstmen and not the species. That's just me, but, that's what I see. AND, I believe I am correct.
The moose population is continuing to decline. They will be extinct if someone doesn't act soon.
Use this llink to go to the DNR moose research page
current data and reports can be found here. check it out.......,
I know a hunter who went caribou hunting in Dec. 2012, in the James Bay area (east side) of Quebec. Every morning (required), they attended a safety meeting with a Quebec wildlife biologist. He did state that this particular herd that winters in this area, has declined from around 425,000 caribou to well under 100,000. (in just a few years) The reason: wolves and black bears...........
Some Elk herds in the western mountains have been reduced almost 50% by wolves, cougars, and bears. Certain Alaskan moose herds have recovered dramatically when the predators started being controlled.
The state of Maine has updated their moose population from 33,000, 8/9 years ago to over 67,000 in 2012. There are no wolves in Maine; there are bears, and they are hunting strongly........
I did show the trapping heritage at the Finnish sliding festival in Palo. The event, called Laskiainen, is an event offering good food, Finnish museum, entertaignment, arts and crafts, and pony-league basketball games, and, of course, the really fast outdoor (iced) slide. Bring a plastic sled and the kids, dress warm, and have fun.
The MFZTA table was right next to member Karen Spotts. She has her fantastic wildlife woodburning items for display and sale.
I finally got pictures of our MFZTA hats, look at page 2.
On page 4, I have started to list companies that have begun to send donations. Please visit their sites and check out what they offer..........
Page 5 is the "links" page. I am starting to put websites of the company's that have their logo on our wild life display trailer.
MORE IMPORTANT NEWS:
The MFZTA & the MTA presented a trapping compromise at the MOHA trapping summit. (February, 2013) This compromise was presented to all attendees at this meeting. The dog-lovers for safe trapping group had no compromise; they want all conibears bigger than a 120 to be set completely submerged in water or set 5 feet above the ground.
This group (dog lovers for safe trapping) got support ($$$) from the Minnesota trail hound hunters group. The Trail hound group is a sporting organization. The 'dog lovers for safe trapping' is just a group of people who want to end trapping. I cannot understand why the trail hound would support the anti-trapping agenda of this group.
Two months later, dog lovers for safe trapping came with their compromise; they want all snares with kill springs to be set underwater or 5 feet off the ground, in addition to conibears. Obviously these new restrictions came from the trail hound group. We were all shocked to see this display of anti trapping sentiment from the Minn. Trail Hound Association.
If you are not a member of a trapping organization, now is the time to join one. There is a growing push to restrict trapping in Minnesota, to the point of almost making it impossible to trap anything. Arizona and California have restricted trappers. This is MINNESOTA. We need members who want to keep on trapping. JOIN NOW !! Call your friends, neighbors, relatives and join us at the Hibbing VFW on Wed. Sept. 18, 2013 at our annual members banquet.
Our new website address is now
www.mfzta.com The site hasn't changed much yet, I will work on it in the next few weeks/months. You can email me at email@example.com if you have suggestions on what to include in the site. We have a bigger site with more 'pages' available. Let me know what changes may be needed. Try www.mnforesttrappers.com ane let us know what you think.
Ray and Wayne attended a 'trapping summit' in Blaine on Sat. Jan. 19, 2013. It was sponsored by MOHA. The MTA was represented, us (MFZTA), a hound group that chases bobcats with dogs, and a couple of concerned citizens. More information on this meeting will be at the MFZTA members only winter meeting. You can become a member at the door. Applications can be filled out that night and you can order the "Trappers Post" magazine for only $12/year. (regularly $22/year)
I have two websites for you to check out. They are both from Maine. The IFW in Maine has determined that their moose population is around 76,000 animals. WOW. Maine is the same latitude as Minnesota. It has similar forests and logging as MN. NE MN. and Maine are close to the same size.
The MFZTA has been to Mpls/St. Paul (for meetings) in January. We have one more scheduled for early Feb. The details of these meetings will be discussed at the winter meeting. (Wed. Feb. 20 in Hibbing).
Our new website address is now
The site hasn't changed much yet, I will work on it in the next few weeks/months. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
if you have suggestions on what to include in the site. We have a bigger site with more 'pages' available. Let me know what changes may be needed.
We acquired a new animal for the fur-bearer display. Roger Toews, in Manitoba, (a Fur Harvesters Agent), found us one; Roger did all the paper work, and the Wolverine is at our taxidermist in Keewatin. Roger said it was a good one, very large. It should be a great addition to our display.
The 5 night fisher/marten trapping season curtailed the catch. The DNR said 6 days, but it was actually 5 nights. Marten and fisher might not move for 5 to 6 days after a good meal.
Trappers have reported that they are not seeing much fox sign in some areas, others have seen tracks. I saw very few tracks myself, and then with snares and traps set, nothing returned.
Two of us brought our 'rough skun" beaver to Groenewolds fur buyer in Superior, WI., last week. Blankets were $40, x-large were $30, I got $8 for a small one. Muskrats were from $7 to $11 dollars depending on size and condition. One large otter (rough-skun) fetched $90.
I sent my marten and fisher and some ermine and muskrats to NAFA. I mail them to Stoughton, WI., by USPS
They will be in the Feb. 16-22, 2013 auction.
We now have MFZTA hats for members. I will post a picture asap. Two colors, all camo and then blaze orange and camo. $20 each. I can mail them to you for a few dollars more. (probably $5.00)
We gained a lot of members at the Banquet, If your neighbor or trapping partner has not joined us, get him to call me or Ray and we will get an application to him or her right away.......
If you have a trapping picture, email it to me email@example.com
, I will check it out and post it on the website.