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Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center

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An Integrated Mechanical Trapping Program for Reducing
Populations of Nest Predators


Rocky Mountain Wildlife Enterprises, La Porte, CO 80535

Trapline strategies were tested in Washington County, Colorado from 1978 to 1983 in an effort to develop an efficient predator trapping process. By developing effective records, efficiency standards for lures, criteria for choosing effective set locations, and identifying many other efficiency improvements on trapline variables, catches of target species were maximized. Costs per coyote caught were reduced from $65 to $26 over the study period. Observations of ring-necked pheasants, greater prairie chickens, pronghorn antelope, mule deer, and black-tailed jack rabbits increased during the study period.

The trapping methodologies developed offer an efficient nest predator removal strategy, using mechanical traps on large duck production areas. The complete report includes 25 pages of specific recommendations on trapline design, trap-set locations, equipment alternatives, selective trapping techniques, lure and bait recommendations, and helpful strategies to provide efficiency to the process.

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