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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
With Conibears, for example, only a few small sizes are legal in the state. They should also be set in buckets — and underwater — or at least away from paths, he added.

The above statement came from:
Game Protector Shawn Harshaw, who investigated the incident.

So he is saying that 160s are legal on land?
 

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THey are only legal inside the waterway. Be very careful with these traps. I think the improper use of bodygrips threatens trapping in this state as much as the antis.
 

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Why would you even take a chance liike that? you can bed a 1.5 in front of a bucket and catch the coon just as easy. No 8.00 coon is worth catching a pet over.
 

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No, they are not legal on land. Thay must be set in a waterway or water course, marsh pond or dam. It is unlawful to:


(11) Use or set a body-gripping trap of any description outside any established watercourse, waterway, marsh, pond or dam.

Definition of the above: Waterway or watercourse—A riverine system that contains water which includes the semi-permanent flooded area. Marsh, pond or dam: a standing body of water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
So 160s are allowed to be set on frozen lakes and snow then?
Ice and snow is technically frozen water.
So in the the winter when the ground is frozen or covered with snow.160s are allowed to be set on these semi permanent bodies of water.


Forms of Water

Water can be a solid, a liquid, or a gas. No other substance appears in these three forms within the earth's normal range of temperature. The molecules that make up water are always moving, and the form water takes depends on how fast they move. The molecules in solid water, ice, are far apart and almost motionless. The molecules in liquid water are close together and move about freely. The molecules in water vapour, a gas, move about violently and bump into one another
 

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I am done playing lets find a loophole with you. The law is clear they have to be in water, not on ice. You do not want to know what is legal, you just want to play games. This game is over.
 

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You cannot set them on snow just because it is technically
"frozen water". As far as ice on a waterway such as a pond,
lake, river/creek, dam or marsh/swamp you may set it there
as long as it is on or in the waterway. There is no need to
look for loopholes just set them where you know it is legal
and don't worry about it.
 

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if the law was clear there would not be so many discussions on it!! go see your distric magistrate and see what he says.also see what the hunter/trapper instructors are teaching.loopholes,wah!!
 

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If hunter education instructors are teaching loopholes they wont be instructors for long.
 

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Cooncrazy is right.The reg.is not clear. An established watercourse does not necessarily have water in it at any given time.For example, road clverts, seasonal springs, and ditches are "watercourses" protected by PA law.It should not be left to a W.C.O. to make this determination as to whether a violation exists.The law should be clear.After all, the law may restrict the use of the bodygrip but it also guarantees my right to use that steel if I so choose.I, for one, get tired of being told what the law says by people who put their own twist to it.If the PA Legislature wanted bodygrips set only in water, the law would state "It is unlawful to set boddygripping traps out of water." Some of us still know when we're getting smoke blown up our bums.I'll let the J.P. tell me I'm wrong.
 

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Ironbelly said:
Cooncrazy is right.The reg.is not clear. An established watercourse does not necessarily have water in it at any given time.For example, road clverts, seasonal springs, and ditches are "watercourses" protected by PA law.It should not be left to a W.C.O. to make this determination as to whether a violation exists.The law should be clear.After all, the law may restrict the use of the bodygrip but it also guarantees my right to use that steel if I so choose.I, for one, get tired of being told what the law says by people who put their own twist to it.If the PA Legislature wanted bodygrips set only in water, the law would state "It is unlawful to set boddygripping traps out of water." Some of us still know when we're getting smoke blown up our bums.I'll let the J.P. tell me I'm wrong.
That law used to be written so it was clear. It said that, “all body gripping traps had to be underwater sets.”

The problem was that trappers would go out and set traps during a period of high water, but then as the level dropped to a more normal level his trap was out of the water. Trappers were then getting fined for having their traps set in a manner that they were not really under water, as the law required.

The current wording that states, “set in a waterway” was simply enacted to correct that problem of water level fluctuations on traps that had been set under or in the water. If trappers want to see it become more restrictive then it presently is all they have to do is set their body gripping traps on the land, ice or snow where none target species get caught.

The intent of the law, when it changed from under water sets, was simply to allow for a trap that was still in the water, though not under water, to be a legal set. If trappers can’t or will not work within that intent, and start catching none target species, then they are only shooting themselves and all other trappers in the foot because the law will change if that happens. It could even change to prevent all body gripping traps and that would not be good for a lot of reasons.

Dick Bodenhorn
 

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Thanks for that post,Dick.Truthfully,I agree with your explanation of the intent and I don't push my set locations very far.Eliminating non-target catches in both killer sets and footholds should be a priority for every trapper.That said,the law should be written and the digest should state what the Legislature intended --BELOW THE HIGH WATER MARK!Isn't that about as clear and simple and understandable as it could be?That makes me believe the law was written and changed due to some pressure from sportsmen trappers that want to see use of a great tool expanded as in other states.Here in PA we are left with the end result of politics mixed with wildlife management.
 

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The law is very unclear and this topic has been discussed many times on here and in the trappers forum. When I went to PTA trappers school a PGC offer told the call that the coni must be within the banks of a a watercourse,not directly in the water (example bucket sets) are usually on the bank not in the water. He also said that the final decision is upto the the WCO that finds the set and he is the one to determine the defintion of watercourse. To me that is really unfair and very confussing.
 
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