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The Upright Net Trap


The following is another novelty in the way of a bird-trap, somewhat

similar to the one we have just described, in its manner of working.

Procure two pieces of board about a foot square. Nail one to the

edge of the other, as represented in our engraving. A stout wire

is the next requisite. It should be about thirty inches long, and

bent either into a curve or into two corners, making three equal

sides. Ea
h end of the wire should then be bent into a very small

loop for the hinge. On to this wire the netting should then be

secured as in the two previous examples, after which the ends of

the wire may be tied with string or hinged on wire staples into

the angle of the two boards, as seen in our illustration. Allow

the wire now to lie flat on the bottom board, and then proceed

to tack the netting around the edges of the upright board. Two

elastics should next be fastened to the wire on each side, securing

their loose ends to the bottom of the trap. They should be tightly

drawn so as to bring the wire down with a snap. The spindle of

this trap should be about eight or nine inches long, square and

slender,--the lower end being flattened, and the upper end secured

to the top edge of the upright board by a hinge of leather or string.

An excellent hinge may be made with a piece of leather an inch

and a half long, by half an inch in width, one half of the length

being tied around the end of the spindle, and the other tacked

on to the upper edge of the board.

The platform is given by itself at (a) in the same picture. It

may be made of very thin wood--cigar box wood, for instance, or

even thick pasteboard. It consists of three pieces. The piece which

is hinged into the angle of the boards should be about three inches

in length; the platform piece ought not to be more than four inches

square, and the upright piece only long enough to reach the tip of

the spindle when the platform is raised, as shown in our engraving.

The hinge piece should be cut to an edge on that end where the

leather is fastened, the opposite end being bevelled off in order

that the platform may rest and be tacked or glued firmly upon it.

The diagram (a) will make this all very clear.

When the platform is all made and fastened in its place, the

trap may be set. Draw the hoop back as far as possible, and lower

the spindle over its edge, catching it behind the upright stick on

the platform. If the trap is properly constructed, the pressure

of the spindle on the platform will suffice to hold it up as seen

in our illustration. The upright stick on the back of the platform

should never be more than an inch and a half from the back of the

trap. If need be, a slight notch may be made in the end of the

spindle and a small tack driven into the back of the upright stick

to correspond to it. By thus fitting the notch under the head of the

tack, it will be sure to hold the platform in the right position.

But it should be carefully tested before setting, to see that it

springs easily.

When thus set sprinkle the bait on the platform, scattering a little

also on the bottom of the trap and on the ground directly around it.

The little birds will soon spy the tempting morsels, and alighting

on the trap are misled, and the slightest peck or pressure on the

platform where the bait is most bounteously spread brings down the

wire and net with a snap, and the little creature is secured

without harm.

Our next illustration shows another method of constructing the platform.

It should be about three or four inches square,

and on the middle of one of its edges the upright catch piece should

be fastened. This piece, as will be seen in our engraving, should

be cut spreading at the bottom so as to admit of being secured to

the platform by two brads, the tip being cut to a point. The total

length of this piece should not be over two and a half inches. When

tacked in place, a third brad should be inserted between the other

two and exactly in the centre of the side of the platform. This

latter brad is to act as the pivot, or hinge, and should project

about a quarter of an inch, as seen at (a). On the opposite edge

of the platform another larger brad should be driven, having its

end filed to a blunt point, as in (b). If the filing would be

too tedious, a plug of hard wood of the required shape would answer

every purpose. The upright props which support the platform should

be cut of thin wood. Let one be an inch and a half long and half

an inch wide, the other being an inch in length. Each should have

one end whittled to a point, which will admit of its being inserted

in a gimlet hole in the bottom of the trap. These gimlet holes

should be made at least half an inch in depth. Make the first at

about an inch or so from the back of the trap. Into this insert

the shorter pieces, broadside front. Lay the pivot brad of the

platform on the top of this piece and insert over it a small wire

staple, as seen at (a). Elevate the platform evenly and determine

the spot for the other gimlet hole, which should be directly beneath

the point of the filed brad. Be sure that it is in the middle of

the board, so that the platform may set squarely, and be perfectly

parallel with the sides. Insert the remaining prop in its place,

and the platform is complete. The overhanging spindle now requires a

little attention. This should be whittled off on each side, bringing

it to a point at the tip. On each side of the spindle a long plug

should then be driven into the back piece, as our illustration

shows. These should be far enough apart to allow the spindle to

pass easily between them. The setting of the trap is plainly shown

in our engraving. The spindle being lowered between the plugs is caught

finely on the tip of the catch-piece. The blunt point at the opposite

end of the platform should have a slight hollow made for it in the

prop against which it presses. If the platform be now strewn with

bait, the little machine is ready. It is certainly very simple and

will be found very effective.