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The Garrote


There is another variety of trap, somewhat resembling the dead-fall,

but which seizes its prey in a little different manner.

This trap, which we will call the Garrote, is truly represented

by our illustration. A pen is first constructed, similar to that of

the dead-fall. At the opening of the pen, two arches are fastened

in the ground. They should be about an inch apart. A stout forked

stick should then be cut,
nd firmly fixed in the earth at the

side of the arches, and about three feet distant.

Our main illustration gives the general appearance of the trap,

but we also subjoin an additional cut, showing the setting or

arrangement of the pieces. They are three in number, and consist:

First, of a notched peg, which is driven into the ground at the back

part of the pen, and a little to one side. Second, of a forked twig,

the branch of which should point downward with the bait attached to

its end. The third stick being the little hooked piece catching

beneath the arches. The first of these is too simple to need

description. The second should be about eight inches long; a notch

should be cut in each end. The upper one being on the side from

which the branch projects, and the other on the opposite side

of the stick, and at the other end, as is made plain by our

illustration. The third stick may consist merely of a hooked crotch

of some twig, as this is always to be found. Indeed, nearly all

the parts of this trap may be found in any woods; and, with the

exception of a jack-knife, bait, and string, the trapper need not

trouble himself to carry any materials whatever. When the three

pieces are thus made the trap only awaits the Garrote. This should

be made from a stiff pole, about six feet in length, having a heavy

stone tied to its large end, and a loop of the shape of the letter

U, or a slipping noose, made of stout cord or wire, fastened

at the smaller end. To arrange the pieces for their destructive

work, the pole should be bent down so that the loop shall fall

between the arches. The crotch stick should then be hooked beneath

the front of the arch, letting its arm point inward. After this

the bait stick should be placed in its position, with the bait

pointing downward, letting one end catch beneath the notch in the

ground-peg, and the other over the tip of the crotch stick. This

done, and the trap is set.

Like the dead-fall, the bait stick should point toward the side

of the pen, as the turning involved in pulling it toward the front

is positively sure to slip it loose from its catches. Be careful

to see that the loop is nicely arranged between the arches, and that

the top of the pen is covered with a few twigs. If these directions

are carefully followed, and if the young trapper has selected a

good trapping ground, it will not be a matter of many days before

he will discover the upper portion of the arches occupied by some

rabbit, muskrat, or other unlucky creature, either standing on its

hind legs, or lifted clean off the ground. Coons are frequently

secured by this trap, although, as a general thing, they don't

show much enthusiasm over traps of any kind, and seem to prefer

to get their food elsewhere, rather than take it off the end of

a bait stick.