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Workshop introduces animal trapping to beginners

Jim Fornetti shows both beginning and experienced trappers some of the equipment and methods for trapping weasels. He’ll be holding a workshop during the U.P. Trappers’ Beginning Trappers Workshop on Aug. 28 in Hermansville. (Photo courtesy Mike Lewis)

HERMANSVILLE — The south-central district of the Upper Peninsula Trappers Association will hold its annual Beginning Trappers Workshop on Saturday, Aug. 28, at the William Anderson Sportsman’s Club in Hermansville.

Running from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EDT, the event is free and open to the public and put on by the group’s District 3 that includes Menominee, Delta and Dickinson counties.

There will also be trapping demonstrations for children of all ages, free weasel boxes, dog-proof raccoon traps and muskrat colony traps for appropriate-aged youngsters. The muskrat traps will be built on-site by older kids under guidance of District 3 members.

The group’s annual workshop has been held in February for a number of years, organizers said in an email, with this being an additional summertime workshop with trapping seasons coming soon.

“I am sure the kids will be anxious to try out their new traps and ideas they get from this workshop,” said workshop coordinator and U.P. Trappers Secretary Mike Lewis.

“A lot of trapping — particularly muskrat — is done in water, and early fall is a great time to capture the water dwellers, (which include) beaver, muskrat, otter and even raccoon, which frequent the water as well.

“The youngsters won’t have to wait very long to get out and use their new free trapping equipment and knowledge.

“There will be a lot of free stuff for the kids, including free tips and advice from not only the presenters, but from any of the ‘old trappers’ in attendance. These veterans love to help kids — or anyone — with any questions they may have. They also readily share their tips and trapping stories to anyone interested.

“With all that experience, these guys can provide a wealth of knowledge sure to shorten the learning curve for any trapper.”

He added that each youngster will win a prize along with the free traps and magazines that will be handed out. Kids will also have the opportunity to sign up for upcoming trapper education courses.

Food and refreshments will be available with food prepared by the William Anderson Sportsman’s Club.

The day’s schedule — all times EDT — opens with a weasel-trapping demo by Jim Fornetti at 10:30 a.m., “Trapping for Beginners” by John Gunville at 11:30 a.m., colony trap building at 12:30 p.m., lunch at 1:30 p.m., raffle and door prize drawings at 2:30 p.m., weasel box-trap and dog-proof coon traps to be given out at 3:30 p.m. and a coyote trapping demo by Randy Johnsen at 4:30 p.m.

Trevor Barnes of Barnes Hide and Fur Co. will be on hand buying fur, stretched and dried only. He will also have trapping supplies for sale. Potential workshop attendees can call Barnes before the show at 517-741-3595 to let him know how much fur you have to sell or to make sure he brings the supplies you need.

The William Anderson Sportsman’s Club is located near the Hermansville Pond west of Hermansville and can be reached by turning south at the blinking traffic light on U.S. 2, onto County 388 and going about a quarter mile west on Third Street to its end.

Information compiled by Journal Sports Editor Steve Brownlee. His email address is sbrownlee@miningjournal.net.

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