Protecting your fruit from squirrel's and other critters


#481

About the gas, I never got around to order them right away. Then I read an article saying you have to do it before they go to the hibernation chambers for winter. So I’m going to do it in the spring. Glad to hear you’ve used it successfully enough to reorder.
About squirrels I took out about 10 of them (tube trap) last spring before they start breeding. I will do the same this spring. Hopefully that together with a net will give me few fruit.


#482

Anne,

How did you eliminate them? I probably have terminated about fifty of them last growing season but they continue to come from neighboring yards. Without continuous trapping and termination, the most that I kept my yard squirrel-free was ~two weeks. I think the worst ones are those who tried your ripe fruit, as they come back directly to their favorite tree and ignore all traps.


#483

I bought 2 tube traps earlier this year and have terminated around 100 squirrels. I had no squirrel damage that I could see and had the best harvest this year. Squirrels are territorial so they will continue to show up when the scent from the terminated ones goes away. continuous trapping is the only way. I will be getting 2 more tube traps this winter and will also set snares for the bunnies.


#484

What’s your success rate with snares? I never tried them before, any tips?

Also, what makes a rabbit go through the snare? Do you need to bait on one side of it?


#485

@Ahmad, I’ve never used snares but the rabbits don’t show their faces much until after sun goes down so I think it is my only option at this point.


#486

Snares are vey finicky to set and they don’t always kill the animal. I wouldn’t recommend using them.

I also trapped a ton of squirrels this last year. Usually they move to nuts in the fall and I can declare a truce, but this year there were so many that they kept going after the fruit. So I had to trap more.

This winter I am going to do periodic trapping all winter so I can hopefully start from a lower baseline next spring.

For this kind of squirrel, set up a plank with a tube trap on it leading up to the tree with the fruit in it. Keep freshening the bait on it and at some point Mr. Squirrel will want a side of peanut butter with those peaches :grinning: I have caught many squirrels this way.


#487

@scottfsmith, not really concerned about it killing them I can do that part. I’m open to any suggestions for trapping them though.


#488

I learned an important lesson from @rayrose, and others, and that is, trap year 'round. It is getting easier and easier for me. Initially it was VERY hard. Now I look at it as my civic duty. I use the squirrelinator b/c I don’t have strength for setting spring-type traps for anything larger than a rat.


#489

I was thinking that trapping in winter is not of much added value, as new squirrels will come in the spring and summer anyways, so I might just save my efforts to the cropping season… maybe I’ll try what you do and see how effective it is…


#490

In my area, I see squirrels through the winter…and caught several.


#491

By trapping in winter you can take the population in your general area back by another notch. I usually don’t trap in the winter, but have a few years when things were out of control the previous summer.

Hey while we are on the topic of trapping I noticed this fall that greasing the catches on my Kania and tube traps seemed to help. I put chap-stik (handy grease that was in my pocket) on the firing pins to lube things and they seemed to go off a little easier and bag more kills.


#492

I have this fantasy of taking aim at their dreys in the winter and firing off a shotgun round. This is probably impractical


#493

Hello, I got 2 tube traps from Molnar Outdoor, one set fine, the other was “bend” out of the box and would not set. I have tried contacting them to no avail. My real question is kill vs catch, we have gotten 6 squirrels so far, 5 had to be drowned as they were still kicking. Is this normal?


#494

In my experience, with the tube trap, they are always dead.


#495

I’ve had a few birds trapped that were not dead; all squirrels were very dead. Maybe that trap was also messed up…


#496

We’ve been using the tube trap outside our living room (60’ from the cherry rows which got devastated this summer) so we see when it pops so if they take some time to die we don’t know, we drown them. What kind of trap do you have? We have the Molar outdoor ones. This summer we had a terrible problem with the sweet cherries due to squirrels and chipmunks who got 60% or more of the crop from our 60 trees (all the big juicy ones), some entirely stripped before ripe. Put instant mashed potatoes and some bait out, helped a lot (fewer in the trees, but still enough to eat the fruit).

There were chipmunk holes under almost every tree in the orchard this summer, so I was worried that my pre-winter vole program would get over whelmed, and my late summer mowing caused hawks to fly over my shoulders to catch the mice running away from the mower (scary when you are not expecting them). So when I went out to put the vole bait under the boards between the trees, I only saw a few mice, and all the chipmunk holes were old and empty and none to be seen.

My wife saw several coyotes in the orchard and put the game camera up near the chicken house and what did we see? a Fisher looking into the camera. Looked fat after eating all the voles and chipmunks but he is not eating the squirrels (yet), Hope he doesn’t get the chickens, but I thank him (or her).

Eric


#497

Hello, I finally got tired of waiting for Molar Out Doors to respond an took the advice of the column and straightened the striker bar I saw in this column, but would still not set, so I cut a groove in the metal of the bracket so it would be lower and it now sets we will see if it kills squirrels. I left a bad review and they said "we are sorry you had a bad experience’ . Buy from someone else.


#498

Trapped 1 raccoon and 2 squirrels in the last 2 days. That raccoon was tricky. Took 3 tries. Had to use the game camera to see what he was doing, made adjustments, and was able to get him. Fire and adjust. :blush:


#499

Wondering if anyone else has these kinds of problems with trapping raccoons. The last raccoon loaded up the cage with so much dirt/mud from around the cage that I could hardly lift it. I’d estimate about 1.5" of mud covering the entire bottom. With the one I caught today, I noticed a piece of the cage sitting beside it (raccoon inside). Turns out the raccoon chewed the handle loose !!! (found inside the cage) and the protective plate around the handle (found outside the cage) was chewed loose (Shown on left of photo) so I couldn’t safely grab the cage w/o sticking my fingers inside. So I made a set of handles to transport the cage (shown on right).
IMG_1823
The game camera shows these captures occur shortly after dark so they are in the cage a long time - more time to do damage, I guess.


#500

I had almost identical experience to yours when I got a raccoon in my squirrel trap last year, a ton of mud inside the cage and I lost the handle…