Florida Hunter Safety Course


Chapter 11: Introduction to Trapping

Trapping, like hunting, is a part of our heritage.Early settlers used animal hides to make clothing and to cover their shelters. They also used the meat to provide food, and the bones were made into tools. Hides or pelts were used like money to trade and barter for supplies.

There are times when there is an absence of natural predators and one species becomes overpopulated, leading animals out of their natural habitat and closer to civilization. For example, beavers take up residence in drainage areas and dam up creeks, causing flooding and damage to property. Trapping is also used to control damage to livestock animals.

Trapping is not always for capturing animals for their fur. To increase wildlife populations in areas, biologists and volunteers will trap a certain species and relocate them to another location with suitable habitat. The wild turkey is one example of a species that was on the decline. Now, after trapping and relocation, the number of turkeys in the wild has increased in recent years, allowing turkey hunting seasons to occur in most areas. The whitetail deer is another success story where trapping and relocation has increased the populations in many areas.

In this chapter we will discuss basic tools and traps used by today's trapper.