ASSOCIATION CONTACT — Arkansas Fur Trappers Association, P.O. Box 1681, Greenwood, AR 72936; 479-651-3597; firstname.lastname@example.org
President — Brad McDaniel; 479-651-3597
Vice President — Greg Griffith; 479-774-1434
Secretary/Treasurer — Mark Alexander; 479-310-0692; email@example.com
General Organizer — Donald Wilcox; 479-997-8559
• Individual membership without subscription to Trapper & Predator Caller — $10
• Individual membership with subscription to Trapper & Predator Caller — $22
• Family membership without subscription to Trapper & Predator Caller — $13
• Family membership with subscription to Trapper & Predator Caller — $25
• Lifetime membership with plaque (without subscription to Trapper & Predator Caller) — $100
• Commercial membership/sponsorship — Please contact an AFTA officer for pricing and information.
Complete membership application on first page of association section and send dues to:
Arkansas Fur Trappers Association
P.O. Box 1681
Greenwood, AR 72936
Things are slowing down a little at the AFTA fur shed. Seasons are closed, furs all put up and sent to auction, shed needs to be cleaned, equipment needs to be repaired and hot weather is just around the corner. This spring’s rainfall seems to have pulled us out of the winter drought conditions. I hope the farmers and gardeners weren’t affected too much by the late spring cold snaps.
AFTA had a booth at Kibler Baptist Church on March 9 for an Outdoorsman Expo hosted by the church. Crawford County Cooperative Extension Service, U of A Division of Agricultural Research and Crawford County 4-H had seminars covering topics such as food plots, feral hog management, wildlife management, gun safety and snake awareness. AFTA had a seminar that covered beginning trapping. Several hundred people showed up and enjoyed our table of furs and traps. Besides the expo and seminars, AGFC had their aquarium tank on site and the church provided a dinner at the end of the day.
We’ve purchased a 32-inch monitor to be used at events that AFTA attends. With the monitor and a DVD player that was donated by a member, we can run videos like NTA Destroying the Myth and AGFC Trapping Education at our booth. With tanned fur, old and new traps, videos playing and odds and ends to hand out to kids, we make a pretty good presence at outdoors events. If anyone knows of an event that we can attend and help educate the public about trapping, let us know and we’ll try to arrange to be there.
Last month, AGFC sent out a trapper survey to everyone who registered for a 2012 Trapper Permit. Results of the survey are published in the AGFC Annual Furbearer Reports, and the information is used to better manage furbearers. Questions #8 and #9 about how many raccoons and foxes were harvested are new on this years survey. We’ll try to find out how this data will be used by next month’s report.
AGFC doesn’t have any major regulation changes planned for the 2013-14 furbearer season. The three main changes are clarification that a trapper permit is not needed for furbearer hunting, restoring the requirement that non-resident trappers must report their harvest and Camp Robinson WMA will be open to trapping.
General Trapping season start date is Nov. 9, 2013, and extends through Feb. 28, 2014. Fur is not quite prime in early November, and it’s definitely not prime in September when furbearer hunting season starts. Trappers wanting the most value from fully prime pelts might want to hold off until later in November.
Final approved regulations should be published soon, so check them closely to make sure you’re legal. If you’re just getting back into hunting and trapping or just starting out, all hunting licenses run from July 1-June 30, and a free trappers permit is required for trapping.
Might want to check your ammo stock early this year to make sure you’ve got dispatch rounds on hand. 22lr is scarce to unavailable in some stores. Factories are working 24/7 to catch up with demand by new gun owners and shooters looking to save money by running 22lr conversion kits on AR-15 style rifles and semi-auto handguns. Since the anti-gun bills were soundly defeated in the US Senate last month and several pro-gun bills were recently passed by Arkansas legislature, maybe some of this ammo panic will subside.
Drop us a line by phone, email or Facebook if you have any questions or comments. Have a great summer! — Mark Alexander