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Mondays mornings check I had a red fox waiting for me on some state land I made sets on for first time this season. I new there would be a lot of flint lock hunters out so I got my sets checked before sun came up. When I caught the fox I didn't have my re-make equipment with me so I just finished checking my traps and came back after was all done checking to remake the set. When I pulled in the spot to remake the set there was 2 trucks there and they both had already walked up trail I caught the fox on and looked at my son and said ---- there going to see the catch circle. So we walked up the trail and re-made the set and put everything back together best I could. All the sets I make on state land are either flat sets or microdirtholes so I can be discrete and no one even nows there's a trap there. Usually I'll only use drags on state land to eliminate the catch circle but all my traps with drags were already out. Sometimes I even have to take a double take to find my set there so well blended. So next mornings check we get to spot were I caught fox yesterday and my set looks like it was messed with. I'm staring at it trying to figure out what went on and realized what went on. A sticky fingered person stole my trap and tried to blend everything back in so I didn't notice!! I just dont understand how another outdoorsman or person does that to another. We work so hard for our equipment and put so much time in. Even this morning I still have a pit in my stomach about it and I pulled almost all my sets out of that area in fear of more theft!!

Last year I pulled up to a spot in dark early am to archery hunt during overlap of senior rifle season. When I get out of truck there is a rifle leaning against the fence post. I put rifle in my truck cause dont want someone else to find it and steal it! So I stuck a note on fence post with my phone # saying if you lost something give me a call. Later that afternoon a gentlemen called me and told me he had accidentally left his gun. I met him and he was a kind 84 year old man that his dad left him that gun and was so upset when he lost it. He tried to hand me some money and I said no thank you and would just hope someone would do the same for me!!
 

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People are real stupid taking a trap worth 5 bucks or so. So many guys at work lost good jobs for taking a ream of paper, case of water, cheap stuff. I've lost traps and stands and couldn't understand the slugs thinking. I always felt pretty good about guys returning things they've found. Good job PA.
 

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Had a climber go missing last week from next to house and only Neighbors walk trail. I even hid it by wrapping it into pine boughs. Left them out all season since moving in 2.5 years ago and no issues. Neighbor lost some traps too same area. He mentioned some new folks moved in below us in a few houses. Surprised they found his traps honestly. It’s all laurel and cliffs. Must have known what to look for. Hoping it was a tourist hiking and not Neighbors. Woke up this am and realized in my fatigue last night I left two doors on garage open. Not that it matters, not even sure I have keys for this house.

Saddest part, our area is small and if asked most neighbors would give shirt of their back. I have hunted all over east coast and this is first theft ever. I definitely feel for you. My 7 y/o won me over and we started trapping last week for first time. I’d hate to have to explain to him where his traps went if they got stolen.
 

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Trap thievery from fellow trappers is rare today. The riff raff dropped out when fur prices tanked. I believe most stolen traps today involve someone’s dog getting caught, or folks riding ATVs ( often illegally). Few of the dog related thefts involve hunters, most are folks who aren’t hunters or trappers. I haven’t heard of any anti hunters lifting any traps, but I’m sure it does happen.

I lost 6 fully modified #2 Bridgers last season.....I wish they had only cost $5. More like $15 each.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Trap thievery from fellow trappers is rare today. The riff raff dropped out when fur prices tanked. I believe most stolen traps today involve someone’s dog getting caught, or folks riding ATVs ( often illegally). Few of the dog related thefts involve hunters, most are folks who aren’t hunters or trappers. I haven’t heard of any anti hunters lifting any traps, but I’m sure it happens.

I lost 6 fully modified #2 Bridgers last season.....I wish they had only cost $5. More like $15 each.
Thankful it wasn't one of my MB's but was a $13 bridge #2. Regardless of price still a low life move. I can't honestly say it was a hunter, dog walker, hiker etc. But almost positive it was one of the occupants of the two vehicles that were parked there in the morning. Before I had the catch the trap was 100% blended and you never would have knew it was there unless you stepped on it. Both of them definitely saw the catch circle walking up the trail and trap was double staked with 18 inch rebar in hard rocky soil. So there was no chance they just pulled the trap out with their hands, even if 2 guys were pulling. They either had tools with them or went home and got tools and came back.
 

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I believe most stolen traps today involve someone’s dog getting caught
I think this is pretty accurate. On more than one occasion I've run into small game hunters coming out of the field somewhere when I pulled in and they were complaining about their dogs getting caught in traps. One guy was a NR grouse hunter up at my camp who had a pretty expensive dog. Someone had hay sets for fox set at quite a few of the pullouts along a particular road. I pulled into a spot where I was going to hunt. This guy was going nuts rooting through all the hay. There were 4 traps set at that spot. His dog got caught in the one and he fished around until he set off the rest. He told me he was going to yank them out and "get rid of" them all so it doesn't happen anymore. I informed him that they were legal sets and fox was in season. I don't think he liked that, but he left without removing them.
 

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I’d say you’re right on about your suspects. Had to be someone who saw sign of a catch there. As much as I have had decent success at catching on remakes, I started pulling and moving a couple traps this year when the catch circle was hard to blend in. The frequent rains cam make for some pretty tore up looking catch circles in an open field.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I’d say you’re right on about your suspects. Had to be someone who saw sign of a catch there. As much as I have had decent success at catching on remakes, I started pulling and moving a couple traps this year when the catch circle was hard to blend in. The frequent rains cam make for some pretty tore up looking catch circles in an open field.
I know I thought about pulling it and in hindsite I should of. But as you said I've had such good success on re-makes especially after you catch a red. When I was re-making the set that foxy smell was just exploding out of the catch area. I even looked up at my son and said we'll have another fox or yote waiting for us in next couple days.
 

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I haven’t trapped in 4 years because of people like that. My son saved up his own money and bought 6 dog proffs and put them out in an area that had great coin sign. I put out 4 cat sets in that area. I had my traps out for 3 days before he put out his coon sets. The first morning of his sets they all had been stolen, it was a guy on a 4 wheeler. He had spent some time in there looking for them.if we would have started checking them at that location first we might have caught but we didn’t. I also had two smashed in a different area the same night, the two areas are about 12 miles apart. It boils down to people suck. I was really mad that someone stole my sons traps and his first 2 coons. Looking at the tracks in the catch cycles they looked big. That took the wind out of my sails on trapping. I’ll get back at it one day but it still stings and I didn’t like the way I felt about the whole thing and the thought that I probably would have hurt that guy bad if I would have caught him.
 
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