This is a variation from the above, the noose being attached to
a barrel hoop and the latter being fastened to two stout posts,
which are firmly driven into the ground. By their scattering the
bait inside the hoop, and adjusting the loops, the contrivance
This is a very old and approved method.
In the initial (T) at the head of this section we give also
r suggestion for a noose trap. The cross pieces are tacked to
the top of the upright, and a noose suspended from each end,--the
bait adjusted as there seen.
We have mentioned horse-hair nooses as being desirable, and they
are commonly used; but, as it takes considerable time to make them,
and the wire answering the purpose fully as well, we rather recommend
the wire in preference. We will give a few simple directions, however,
for the making of the horse-hair nooses, in case our readers might
desire to use them instead.
Select long, stout hairs from the tail of any horse, (we would
recommend that it be a good tempered horse), take one of the hairs
and double it in the middle, hold the double between the thumb
and fore-finger of the left hand, letting the two ends hang from
the under side of the thumb, and keeping the hairs between the
thumb and finger, about a third of an inch apart. Now proceed to
twist the two hairs toward the end of the finger, letting them
twist together as the loop emerges on the upper side of the thumb.
A little practice will overcome what at first seems very difficult.
To keep the two hairs between the fingers at the right distance
of separation, and at the same time to twist them and draw the
loop from between the fingers as they are twisted, seems quite a
complicated operation; and so it will be found at first. But when
once mastered by practice, the twisting of five nooses a minute will
be an easy matter. When the entire length of the hairs are twisted,
the ends should be cut off even and then passed through the small
loop at the folded end. The noose is then ready to be fastened
to the main string of support. Horse-hair nooses are commonly used
in nearly all snares as they are always to be had, and possess
considerable strength. The fine brass wire is also extensively
used, and the writer rather prefers it. It is very strong and slips
easily, besides doing away with the trouble of twisting the loops,
which to some might be a very difficult and tedious operation. We
recommend the wire, and shall allude to it chiefly in the future,
although the horse-hair may be substituted whenever desired.
There is another modification of the foregoing quail-traps very
commonly utilized by professional trappers of many countries. A
low hedge is constructed, often hundreds of feet in length small
openings are left here and there, in which the nooses are placed,
as in the accompanying engraving. The bait is strewn around on both
sides of the hedge, and the grouse or other game, on its discovery,
are almost sure to become entangled
sooner or later. It is a well-known fact about these birds, that
they will always seek to pass under an object which comes in their
way rather than fly over it; and although the hedge of this trap is
only a foot or more in height, the birds will almost invariably run
about until they find an opening, in preference to flying over it.
It is owing to this peculiarity of habit that they are so easily
taken by this method. Our illustration gives only a very short
section of hedge; it may be extended to any length. The writer's
experience with the hedge nooses has been very satisfactory, although
never using a length greater than ten feet. It is well to set the
hedge in the locality where quails or partridges are known to
run. And in setting, it is always desirable to build the hedge
so that it will stretch over some open ground, and connect with
two trees or bushes. Cedar boughs are excellent for the purpose,
but any close brushwood will answer very well. Strew the ground
with corn, oats and the like. A small quantity only is necessary.
There is another noose trap commonly used abroad, and very little
known here. It is a tree trap, and goes by the name of the triangle
snare. It is not designed for the capture of any particular kind
of bird, although it often will secure fine and rare specimens.
It consists of a sapling of wood, bent and tied in the form of a
triangle, as shown in our illustration. This may be of any size,
depending altogether on the bird the young trapper fancies to secure.
A noose should be suspended in the triangle from its longest point.
This noose should hang as indicated in our illustration, falling
low enough to leave a space of an inch or so below it at the bottom
of the triangle. The bait, consisting of a piece of an apple, a
berry, insect, or piece of
meat, according to the wish of the trapper, should then be suspended
in the centre of the noose, after which the contrivance should be
hung in some tree to await events. As they are so easily made and
can be carried with so little trouble, it is an excellent plan to
set out with a dozen or so, hanging them all in different parts of
the woods; as, under circumstances of so many being set, scarcely
a day will pass in which the trapper will not be rewarded by some
one of the snares. The writer once knew of a case where a hawk
was captured by one of these simple devices. In this case it had
been set expressly, and the wire was extra strong. This trap, we
believe, is quite common in parts of Germany, but, as far as we
know, has not been utilized to any great extent in our country.
We recommend it with great confidence.
For the capture of woodchucks, muskrats and house-rats, the wire
noose may also be adapted to good purpose. Many a woodchuck has been
secured by the aid of this simple invention. It is only necessary
to arrange the loop in the opening of the burrow, securing the wire
to a stout stick, firmly driven into the ground. If properly set
the animal, on emerging from the burrow, will become entangled, and
by his efforts to disengage himself will only tighten the loop
and thus render escape impossible. For rats, the noose should be
attached to a nail, and the wire similarly arranged over the hole.
The slipping-noose thus simply adapted becomes a most effective
trap, and is always sure to hold its victim when once within its
grasp, as every struggle only tends to draw the noose tighter. They
are quick in their action, and produce death without much pain,
and for this reason are to be commended.