Primitive traps.

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TeeDee

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I was thinking about doing some examples ( as much for my own learning as showing ) of Primitive type traps - Figure four , Piaute, Ojibwa bird trap , treadle trap etc etc.

But I also realised even if it was only for entertainment/education I was concerned how others - here , may react to it? It seems most of us in the Bushcrafty world accept the occasional crossover into fishing/hunting and will tolerate ( mostly ) the odd photo of a shot and butchered Pigeon etc but I'm not sure how much that tolerance extends to snaring and deadfalls etc ( even when legal guidelines are followed ) .

So is Trapping something people here in the UK consider to potentially be an acceptable practical skill associated with Bushcraft?
 

JonathanD

Ophiological Genius
Sep 3, 2004
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I agree.

And the construction of the traps exercises your knife and axe skills, and selection of wood for the task at hand. Perhaps some improvisation too, along with cordage and knotwork. And maybe an increase in knowledge of cultures of those peoples that used, and still use, the traps.

All good!
Exactly.
 

Robson Valley

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Nov 24, 2014
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Can fish hooks be a part of this? Made from locally sourced materials. Carved and shaped for the task?

This is the Kwakwaka'wakw (mid coast) version of the traditional; Pacific halibut hook used by First Nations from Alaska south to Oregon. Once baited and anchored to the bottom, it fishes itself. Different wood densities floats the bait fish in a natural posture. The angle and position of the barb selects only medium sized fish. As you hand-line your catch, the hook turns the halibut over on their back so they can't fight as much. Not really primitive with maybe 20,000 years of fishing experience in the North Pacific.

There's a Tlingit carver in Juneau, AK who is sending me 2 kits of parts for me to experience carving and building these hooks.
 

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C_Claycomb

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Acceptable, absolutely. I have demonstrated some simple trap and trap triggers to Y9 students as part of an activity day. Stuart did a great workshop at the first Bushmoots on all kinds of trap triggers. We set up a great monkey trap, and a scissor deadfall with an 8" diameter log and kicking bar.

Practical...well, it teaches knife skills, nature observation, understanding of natural materials and animal behaviour. Practical for catching food in the UK...maybe not so much. Since they are not legal to use, it could be argued they are of less "practical" value, but then, we don't have much practical need for nettle cordage, debris shelters, wooden spoons, bow drill sets...etc...etc...etc.

The thing that gets me personally exercised is when survival enthusiasts start talking about how important traps are for survival, even when they are talking about life in the UK. There is much to be interested in in the design, fabrication, use and history of traps, but imagining that they are important survival aides in the UK is more fantasy than reality.

Go on and make your traps for the shear interest in doing it. Post pictures here...just keep talk about their use as an intellectual exercise ;)
 

Robson Valley

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Nov 24, 2014
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I think it's of vital importance, particularly in the UK, to replicate as much Neolithic artifact as you can. Learn how they did it. To me, it seems so long ago for you with wave after wave of immigration. Don't allow the materials and the skills to be diminished any further.

One thing that I'd like to do, based on your experiences? Make cordage, even different kinds. I think I could indulge my curiosity for a week or more. Clearly, some members here are very, very good at it.

For us, the Neolithic has never left. Spears and stone fish weirs, clam gardens, fur trapping, arts and carvings, those things are all alive and well. Our First Nations came within a single generation of their cultural genocide. To this day, they look to museum collections around the world for evidence of their culture. Repatriation of remains taken by grave robbing foreigners is successful.
 
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Broch

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Jan 18, 2009
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Definitely a subject that's worth exploring and demonstrating though, as Chris has mentioned, many traditional traps are not legal in the UK (dangling for example). So I suggest every non-legal one is clearly labelled as such.

Are you planning on making a 2 ton figure 4 trap? :)
 

TeeDee

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Definitely a subject that's worth exploring and demonstrating though, as Chris has mentioned, many traditional traps are not legal in the UK (dangling for example). So I suggest every non-legal one is clearly labelled as such.

Are you planning on making a 2 ton figure 4 trap? :)

P'ah!!!

2 ton !!! What am I trying to do ?? Tickle it to death????
 

TeeDee

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For us, the Neolithic has never left. Spears and stone fish weirs, clam gardens, fur trapping, arts and carvings, those things are all alive and well. Our First Nations came within a single generation of their cultural genocide. To this day, they look to museum collections around the world for evidence of their culture. Repatriation of remains taken by grave robbing foreigners is successful.


Yep.... Its practically like you are still living in the stone age.

calgary.jpg



When you say " Our First Nations " - are you referring to the indigenous tribal people or are these your people?
 

TeeDee

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Can fish hooks be a part of this? Made from locally sourced materials. Carved and shaped for the task?

This is the Kwakwaka'wakw (mid coast) version of the traditional; Pacific halibut hook used by First Nations from Alaska south to Oregon. Once baited and anchored to the bottom, it fishes itself. Different wood densities floats the bait fish in a natural posture. The angle and position of the barb selects only medium sized fish. As you hand-line your catch, the hook turns the halibut over on their back so they can't fight as much. Not really primitive with maybe 20,000 years of fishing experience in the North Pacific.

There's a Tlingit carver in Juneau, AK who is sending me 2 kits of parts for me to experience carving and building these hooks.


Feel free to post whatever you like , I would however prefer if its items or traps you have made yourself.
 
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Robson Valley

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Indigenous peoples who are my neighbors are often referred to as First Nations.

Based solely on the museum picture in my Post#5, I'll attempt to copy that in addition to the Tlingit kits.
 
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Kadushu

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Jul 29, 2014
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Trapping rabbits in the UK doesn't seem impractical as a steady supply of food, depending on their local prevalence of course. Squirrels would be another candidate but they're a bit more wily, which can work in your favour with the right trap.
 

TeeDee

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Trapping rabbits in the UK doesn't seem impractical as a steady supply of food, depending on their local prevalence of course. Squirrels would be another candidate but they're a bit more wily, which can work in your favour with the right trap.


I'd welcome some other people posting their traps. :)
 

punkrockcaveman

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Jan 28, 2017
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Yes definitely :) I've only ever had a go at the pauite deadfall traps, but it would be great to have a reason to revisit and relearn. I'll hopefully get some time and post some pics soon
 
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C_Claycomb

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Oct 6, 2003
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I plan to make a few demo traps this week, but here is a picture of something I made some years ago. I believe it is a design from the tropics, possibly SE Asia. It was described to me as something used to guard villages from attackers!
P1000925.JPG
P1000928.JPG
 

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