Fur Takers of America Trapper’s College
The Fur Takers of America is an association of trappers dedicated to protecting the sport of fur harvesting through education, training, and grass roots lobbying. I had the pleasure of attending the Fur Takers Trapping College LaGrange, Indiana in 2010. It was an incredible learning experience, but very tiring as breakfast opens at 6:30 AM and the last class ends at 9:00 PM. If you attend the optional class then the day ends at 10:00 PM. Despite the physical rigors of the program, the training it provides is without peer. Attendees learn from some of the best trappers in the United States.
I, however, am doubly blessed, because I was offered the opportunity to attend the 2013 Trapper’s College September 8-14. I can tell you that the second time is more meaningful than the first. The reason is simply that you more background which allows you to grasp the volume of information more readily. This is particularly true if you have some trapping experience before attending.
So is the College worth the $1,200 price tag? Absolutely. Where else can you get fed, housed, and trained by industry experts for 7 days for only $1,200? The Trapper’s College is no death by PowerPoint Program. You will be setting traps in the morning, watching demonstrations in the afternoon, and listening to talks in the evening. If that isn’t enough, you can eat with the instructors and continue to talk trapping.
Students are placed into one of five groups to ensure that your training is geared toward your experience level. The first time I attended, I was placed in the beginner’s class. I already had some water trapping experience, so I was most interested in learning about setting footholds, body-grips, and snares on land. During my second visit, I was placed in the advanced class where I focused on learning how to read the landscape and set snares. I was proud of the fact that I snared my first animal on a cross over at a dam.
Bottom Line: If you want to improve your trapping skills, meet some of the legends of American Trapping, or just looking for the experience of a lifetime, then you should make plans to attend.
Disclosure: I am a book/video reviewer for Fur Taker Magazine (The official magazine of the Fur Takers of America) and a member of the Fur Takers of America.
About the Author
Stephen M. Vantassel is a certified wildlife control operator who helps individuals, businesses, and agencies resolve wildlife damage issues through training, writing, expert witness, and research. His latest books are the Wildlife Damage Inspection Handbook, 3rd edition and The Practical Guide to the Control of Feral Cats. He can be contacted at wildlifecontrolconsultant at gmail dot com.
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