Pennsylvania Trappers Association Inc. June-July 2014 Report


President — Brian Mohn, 138 Farview Road, Hamburg, PA 19526; 610-562-1790;

Vice President East — Joel Whitehead, 845 Snake Hill Road, Thompson, PA 19526; 570-756-2714;

Vice President West — Charlie Sykes, 1265 Airport Road, Stoneboro, PA 16153;

Secretary — Don Klinger, 522 S. Pancoast, Reynoldsville, PA 15851; 814-371-1170;

Treasurer — Donna Spittle, P.O. Box 708, Hummelstown, PA 17036; 717-239-9267;

Editor — Ed Price, 3833 Old Newburg Turnpike, Union Dale, PA 18470; 570-679-2318;

NTA Director — David Shuttleworth, 5452 Tamarack Drive, Sharpsville, PA 16150; 724-962-4260;

FTA Director — Mark Kasten, RR2 Box 2287, Hallstead, PA 18822; 570-278-2553;

Public Relations Director — Barry Warner, P.O. Box 223, Dallas, PA 18612; 570-675-7041;

Website Designer — Barbie Bankston;


Membership Options:

Individual membership including subscription to Trapper & Predator Caller — $30

Individual membership without subscription — $10

Junior, age 16 and under without subscription — $5

Lifetime membership with subscription — $500

Lifetime membership without subscription — $250


Complete membership application on first page of association section and send dues to:

PTA Treasurer

Donna Spittle

P.O. Box 708

Hummelstown, PA 17036



I attended the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s Board of Commissioners meeting on April 7 to express our appreciation to the preliminary approval to return Mink/Muskrat season to the traditional length trapping season. The season and bag limits were passed with the second vote at this board meeting and are now set for November 22, 2014- January 11, 2015.

I gave testimony to the Commissioners that we supported the change in measurement for 330 size body gripping traps to a dimension of 10”x 12”, but we did not support the change of trigger placement to no more than 1 1/2” from the vertical side of the trap. I entertained several questions from the commissioners and had a good dialog with them on why the trigger placement should not be incorporated into the regulation change. The next day Matt Lovallo demonstrated with a 330 conibear, and answered additional questions as they pertained to the proposed regulation change. Thanks goes to Commissioner Martone for amending the regulation change, by removing the trigger placement portion from the new regulation. Please let me clarify a misconception on the new measurement. I received several calls from trappers wanting to know who makes a 10”x 12” body gripping trap. I don’t know! The PGC proposed the measurement change because they measured the outside dimension of several 330 size traps and found them to exceed the 10” jaw spread. Granted it was only by a fraction of an inch, but they proposed the change with some lead way to make all 330 size conibears legal for beaver trapping. I can only say I wished the few people who called me would have called the commissioners prior to the meeting because that would have been a few more than they heard from. Pages of opinions on website forums do little to address the problem if you don’t contact the right people. Before I leave this topic I need to confirm that I was not opposed to the intent of the change. Otter avoidance techniques is up to you when you are setting the traps. Just because it is legal to make the set, does not always make it right.

At this time we are all waiting to hear the final report of the BMP study on Cable Restraint Locks. We will publish the information in our monthly reports and the PTA website as soon as it is available. Speaking of our website,, we have been working hard to refresh the website and present more information. If you have an event make sure to get the information to Charlie so we can include it on the calendar. You never know who might show up.

Our trapping family lost one of our finest. Ned Weston passed away on April 19, 2014. Ned was always fun to be around and a mentor to so many people. He is in a better place swapping stories with other legends in our industry. Please read Barry’s Special Tribute to Ned in this issue.

District 3 and Dave Eckels are busy planning the combined Rendezvous with the PTA and FTA June 19-21 at the Washington County Fairgrounds, Washington, PA. There is a full list of demos and vendors on the websites. For more information on the area’s attractions visit, this webpage. Stop by the State booth and look at our new merchandise. I hope to see all of you in June at the joint FTA/PTA rendezvous in Washington County.




Hello, Trappers,

I hope everyone had a successful season. The weather here in Northeast Pa. has been challenging. We’ve had big swings in temperature and quite a lot of snow. The fur has been of good quality. It’s nice to see all the young trappers with large lots of well-handled fur.

This year is a election year for your State and National offices. Anyone over 18 years of age should register and vote. Vote for your choice, but, please vote. These people represent you in our state government. You can make a difference by voting. Please register and vote!

There are lots of new regulations and changes in the seasons and bag limits. Please be sure to read the PGC Digest to make sure you stay legal. When you put your traps away, take care of them. Clean them up and make repairs as needed. This will help you be ready for the fall. Get permission early and let the landowner know what you caught.

Remember: October is only 5 months away.

Stay Safe! — Joel Whitehead



I had the pleasure of working with and providing trapping instruction for the recently inducted class of the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s wildlife conservation officers.

During this instructional period I tried to assure these student officers that the unethical and irresponsible situations that take place each year are not conducted by persons worthy of being called trappers. The individuals that commit these atrocities are individuals driven by greed, and with little or no respect for the critters we seek or their fellow man.

Several days after enjoying this day of interaction, I received word that an individual was found to be using an MB 750, a trap that is definitely unlawful for use in Pennsylvania due to its jaw spread, but he additionally compounded the violation by welding teeth to the jaws. Do you think this individual respects you, or any aspect of our privilege? I hope this individual loses his trapping and hunting privileges for life! Unfortunately, this type of individual will continue to commit these violations regardless of a legal license. It will be up to the officers, and us, to scrutinize these individuals to protect our future.

As we approached this past trapping season there were concerns that the projected high fur prices would create problems due to inexperience of new trappers, as well as the individuals that may be out there to grab fur any way they could. Fortunately, the season went well with a limited number of violations. The primary violations involved untagged traps and bait visible from the air. There is no excuse for an untagged trap and no one wants to see a hawk or worse yet an eagle in a trap. Bait does not have to be visible to provide an effective set.

I receive news letters or magazines from the majority of our US trapping organizations. When I see the restrictions placed on our fellow trappers in other states it helps me to appreciate the privileges we have here in PA. However, it also assures me that we could be next!

I am looking forward to our annual rendezvous in Washington PA. I extend a big thank you, and commendation, to Dave Eckels and his crew for the outstanding work they are doing to prepare for this event. — Barry L. Warner



I just wanted to update readers on the progress of the PTA / FTA combined rendezvous June 19-22, at the Washington County Fairgrounds. For any who haven’t been to the fairgrounds before, the actual address is 2151 North Main St. Washington, Pa. 15301, if you wanted to use a gps or map quest directions for it. The fairgrounds are best accessed from I-79 exit 40 or 41, and the roads are well marked for the fairgrounds from either exit. Primitive and RV camping sites are available on site, price on primitive camping is $5 per day, RV hook ups (water and electric) will run $20 per day. Gates will open at 12:00 noon on Wednesday, June 18 for tailgaters, campers and inside vendors.

Wildlife artist Sharon Davis did our artwork for the convention logo, and her artwork will grace the front of the t-shirts, as well as everything else convention this year. Thank you Sharon! The convention commemorative item for 2014 will be an outdoor thermometer, also with this art in the center. Thermometers can be purchased at the district 3 booth during the convention. We will also have a raffle going on throughout the convention for a custom handmade bear trap by Ed Hutzel. There have been pictures of the trap on the websites, but they don’t do it justice. You’ll have to stop in and see it for yourself and buy a few chances. The winner for the trap will be drawn at the start of the FTA’s auction on Saturday evening.

With this being a combined PTA and FTA rendezvous, the scheduling is tight for all of the events planned especially on Friday and Saturday. Thursday will mark the opening of the convention and the FTA will have their flag ceremony to open the convention at 9:00 am. Vendor buildings will be open from 8:00 am until 6:00 pm and demos will run on the hour all day. The building schedule and demos will follow the same timing Friday and Saturday as well.

Friday, June 20 – On Friday, besides the demos, indoor and outdoor vendors, several things are being planned. There will be a cable restraint class on Friday morning from 8:00 – 12:00, there is a $15 charge for the class payable to the Pa. Game Commission. Signups will be online as well as at the convention. Numbers are limited so if you are looking to get your cr certification, sign up early to make sure you get a spot. The Pa. Trolley Museum, located right next to the fairgrounds has agreed to have a pick up at the fairgrounds walk in gate all day Friday. Trolleys will run every hour. The tour will consist of a 4 mile round trip ride, with a stop at the Trolley Museum in the middle of it. Riders will pay at the museum when they arrive. Museum tour and ride price is $9 for adults, children and seniors are discounted. You will need a 2 hour window for this trip, to allow time to get the next trolley back to the fairgrounds. Jim and Nancy Mahoney will be doing a hat making class on Friday, you will need to bring a tanned pelt with you, or maybe you could buy one at the convention somewhere. Hat making class will run from 12 -2 in hall 4. The last event for the evening on Friday is the FTA banquet and awards dinner. There will be a catered meal served, tickets will be $15 for the meal and will be available at the district 3 booth. Dinners will be limited, so get your tickets early if you’re thinking about attending.

Saturday, June 21 – On Saturday, along with the demos and vendors, there will also be a cable restraint class from 8-12 in hall 4. Sign up and all info will be same as on Friday and numbers are limited. The PTA’s mountain man race will be held at 9:30. There will be a Dutch oven cooking demo from9 -11 am, by the Mahoney’s, check your program for the location of this event. The PTA general membership meeting will take place at 1:00 in the show tent area in the center of the grounds. The FTA’s trap setting contests, including the bare foot bear trap setting and skillet throw, will begin at 2:45. After the close of the buildings at 6:00, you are invited to a free pig roast co-sponsored by district 3 and NAFA’s wild fur shipper’s council. After dinner, we will draw the winner of the bear trap raffle and begin the FTA’s white elephant auction which you won’t want to miss.

Any questions on the convention, feel free to call. — Dave Eckels, 724-348-6721



Hello Trappers,

I am sad to report the passing of our former Vice President West, Ned Weston. He was 75 years old. Ned went to be with the Lord on April 19th. I didn’t know Ned as long as most people. Last spring I was given the opportunity to ride with Ned to the officers and directors meeting. One thing I can say is Ned was a wealth of information. He had so much knowledge of our furbearers and their habitat.

We had our spring meeting at the Venango County Fairgrounds on April 12th at which time we agreed to have banners made up for each of the counties.

Walter Greathouse will be heading up the trapping school. It will be held at the Lewis farm in Grove City. Our fall meeting will be hosted by Warren County. It will be held at the Spring Creek Sportsmen’s Club on September 20th.. If any member knows of a community event where we can educate the public, please let me know. Also I am still looking for input from the members on having a trappers’ family picnic.

Keep in mind the PTA/FTA Rendezvous is being held at the Washington County Fairgrounds June 19th -21st

If any member has any questions or concerns, I can be contacted at 814-823-5429

Our Image Is Our Future. — John W. Chase



Hello All,

Looks like spring has finally made a showing here, seemed like winter wasn’t going to leave, but now you can almost see the grass growing. Convention planning has been taking shape and before you know it, the event will be upon us. From the phone calls and e-mails I’ve been getting since March, it looks to be a busy rendezvous. Between the PTA and FTA’s events, there will be something going on almost all the time. Read through the convention report also in this issue for a listing of some events. Our next convention meeting will be held on Sunday, June 1 at 2:00, at the Washington Fairgrounds. Meeting will be held at the show tent in the middle of the grounds. For those who can’t make the meeting and want to help at the convention, just give me a call so I can keep you updated. We are planning for a work day at the fairgrounds on Sunday, June 15 to work on the demo area, placing tables in the vendor areas, and working on lining up tailgate spots outside. Scheduled start is for 9:00 am, hope you can make it.

Our district’s 10th annual banquet was held on April 19, at the Youngwood Fire Hall. 253 people attended the banquet, and if you missed it, you missed a good one. Hard to believe this was our 10th banquet, the years sure went by quickly. Lots of prizes, outstanding food, and a great bunch of people made it happen. I have to thank all of our sponsors and guests there, for their support, as well as the volunteers who worked the night at the banquet, to everyone Thank You! I also have to congratulate our district 3 “Trapper of the Year” Ron Shriver. Thanks Ron for all you’ve done over the years for D-3.

‘Til next time. — Dave Eckels



Summer’s not even here and I seem to be a month behind. A stack of fur sale tally sheets are hidden under zoning and building permits, trapping/hunting magazines and who knows what else. June brings the State Convention and this year the F.T.A. teamed together with what sounds like a gathering to beat the band. Hope to see you there. The district has a few things in the works with youth field days, tanned fur donation, sponsoring a teenager to Penn State’s Conservation School along with the Black Forest Sportsmen Outdoor School. A little discussion about a summer’s end picnic, but some of these meetings and a picnic will finalized around a Tom’s Campfire Convention Weekend. Stop by and say Hi. — Jeff



I think spring has finally arrived although the cold weather continues to hang on with tenacity. I’m hoping to prolong the first lawn mowing until after Memorial Day but my wife seems to disagree. I’ll let you know how it works out. I encourage all of you to put the PTA state convention on your calendars for this year. It’s a great place to attend demos, purchase supplies, socialize with other trappers, and keep up with what’s going on in the trapping world.

The district 5 spring meeting will be held at the Gander Mountain in Johnstown on May 18, 2014 at 1:00 PM. The meeting will be held in the Gander Mountain meeting room and will include the election of officers. Please plan to attend and support our district.

Our district officers are as follows: Don Sager – Director, Jim Griffith – Assistant Director, Pat Wess – Treasurer, and Deborah Sedlmeyer – Secretary.

Please feel free to contact Pat Wess @ (814) 262-9455, Don Sager @ (814) 443-3185 or me with any information you would like to see in this report or any questions you might have. I can be reached at (814) 686-0497 or e-mail me at Thanks for reading. — Brian Stern, Tipton, PA



2014 events: July 12 – Cable restraint class at the Watsontown Lions Club Youth Center, White Deer Pike. Register on the PGC website.

July 19 – Family picnic at the Booneville Campground. Starts at noon.

August 23 – Trapper training day and also a cable restraint class at the same location – Watsontown Lions Club Youth Center.

September 6 is our mini-convention at the Booneville Campground. I will be sending postcards out to all D-7 members

On March 8 District 7 hosted the PTA State Banquet and I would like to thank everyone who helped out and all the donors. A lot of the donors’ names did not get added to the program: Scot Painter, Alan Probst, Bob Mccormick Ford ,Bittner Trap Supplies ,Millers Gun Shop, Albrights Feed Mill, Walkers Hardware, Uncle Joe’s Woodshed, Bill Kalinauskis and the Army National Guard, Wellsboro, PA. There are others who were missed and I would like to thank everyone who donated. There is also a cable restraint class at the Arnot Sportsmen’s Club in Tioga County on July 26 – register on the PGC website. — Pete Rake



Hello, All!

Thank you’s are coming in from the various conservation districts for our donations to the County Envirothons. This is a donation we have made for the last few years and is a very worthy cause as the Envirothon teaches high school age kids about conservation.

We have a number of events coming up for the year: July 21 – 26 – Troy Fair in Bradford County. August 18 – 23 – Harford Fair in Susquehanna County. Sept 6 & 7 – Trapper Training School at Camp Lackawanna – Wyoming County. January 31, 2015 – Fur Sale at Triton Hose Co. in Wyoming County. February 6 – 8, 2015 – Northeast Regional Coyote Hunt.

If anyone is interested in attending the trapper training school, I have applications available. The cost is $25 for the 2-day event. Contact me at 570-679-2318, or e-mail

Everyone should be gearing up for the joint PTA – FTA Convention in Washington, Pa., on June 19 – 22. See the convention report included in this issue. Hope to see you there. — Ed Price



Hello to all,

I hope that Everyone is enjoying the spring weather after the long, cold, and snowy winter we had.

The Lehigh Valley Sportsman Show that was held in March at the agri-plex at the Allentown Fairgrounds was well attended. Special thanks to Steve Wentzel , Bob Counterman, and those who volunteered some hours in the booth. There were lots of good questions coming from the attendees. Hopefully we dispelled some myths, and provided some quality facts and education to those that stopped by the booth.

Youth Field Days are coming up. Information is listed below. If you have a chance to volunteer for one of them call Steve Wentzel at 610-797-7944. It’s never too early to introduce a young person to our trapping heritage, after all OUR IMAGE IS OUR FUTURE.

The Northampton County Junior Conservation School and the Monroe County Conservation Camp are coming up (see dates below). If you know any young people ages 15-17 years old who may be interested in either camp please contact us for a sponsorship. Each camper must be able to stay the entire week. More information can be found on the websites for each camp listed below.

We are still looking for a location to host our August 17th picnic/meeting. We are looking for a sportsman’s club with an outdoor pavilion so that we can grill and enjoy some nice weather together.

We would like this to be a family and friends event, so feel free to come and invite your friends. There is also the possibility of putting on some demos to make a day of it. If anyone within the district has an idea of a good location to hold something like this please let us know. We would love to have a good turn out!

The Fall Mini Convention and Sportsman Show is our next big event. It will be held at the West End Fairgrounds, in Gilbert, PA on September 26th from 12-6pm & 27th from 8am-5pm. There will be Dealers, Tailgaters, Trapping Demonstrations, Trapper Training, and a Cable Restraint Certification Class. Set up Friday Morning Call Scott Mucha, 610-863-9759 or Bob Counterman 610-759-9203. Please call us if you have time to volunteer or put on a demonstration. Clean up and meeting will be on Sunday, September 28th. Again, please let us know if you can help with anything.

The Trapper Training Day will be held on Saturday, September 27th at the convention and will begin at 9am. The training is open to all ages and experience levels. Pick up some new techniques and get the supplies you need all in one day! To register FREE of charge call Bob Counterman 610-759-9203. We will go over Game Laws, Trap Tuning, Land Trapping, and Water Trapping. Meet at the main stage at 9am.

The Cable Restraint Certification Class will also be held on Saturday the 27th during the convention, and will begin at 9am. If you are interested in taking this class you must register on the Pennsylvania Game Commission Website.

Some dates for your calendar:

June 7- Northampton County Youth Field Day @ Stockertown Rod & Gun Club (

June 19-21- PTA/FTA 77th State Rendezvous @ Washington County Fairgrounds

July 13-20- Northampton County Junior Conservation School. (

July 19-26- Monroe County Conservation Camp (

August 17- District 10 meeting & picnic, location TBD

August 22-24- The Lehigh Valley Hunting and Fishing Extravaganza, Kempton, PA (

September 6- Monroe County Youth Field Day @ Camp Trexler.(

September 26,27- District 10 Fall Mini Convention & Sportsman Show, Gilbert, PA

September 27- Trapper Training @ Fall Convention, Gilbert, PA. Meet @ stage 9am

September 27- Cable Restraint Certification Class @ Fall Convention. Register on

September 28- Fall Mini Convention & Sportsman Show Clean up and Meeting @ West End Fairgrounds

January 11, 2015 – Fur auction planning meeting. 1:00 pm at Belfast-Edelman Sportsman Club.

January 16, 2015 – Set up for fur auction 6:00pm at Belfast-Edelman Sportsman Club.

January 17, 2015 – Live Bid Fur Auction – Doors open 8:00 am. Sale starts at 9:00 am. Belfast-Edelman Sportsman Club, Belfast, PA. Call Scott or Bob.

That’s it for now. If you would like to receive District 10 information electronically, via email, please send an email to Nate Roberts at — Scot 610-863-9759,



We had a real nice day for our meeting at Schuylkill County in April and we were able to catch up on a lot of business. We reviewed the fur sale results and took care of some business associated with that. Jeff Leaking found a letter in some of his keepsakes that had info from our first D-11 fur sale held in 1968. That means that 2018 will be our 50th year for having a fur sale. We are all to think of ideas to make that a special event.

We decided to do the FTA College give-away for our district meetings again this year. For each meeting you attend in 2014, you get a ticket to win a paid tuition to the FTA College. At our October meeting we will draw the winner to attend the college in 2015.

We held a Rendezvous planning meeting on April 27th at the Conewago Gun Club and many of us got on board to do some of the planning and contacting for the 2015 Rendezvous. Neil Geisel came up with a design for the T-shirt that we all liked and decided to go with. Many volunteered to be in charge of various jobs to be done. There is one area that none of us were willing to tackle and this is what we are still in need of – we are looking for someone to do activities for the kids. It can be 1 or 2 times a day, a craft activity or a game or whatever you would like. If you are interested in this let Ralph know.

I have several dates of upcoming events to pass along to you so you can mark your calendars and participate in if you’d like.

The Lebanon Co. and Schuylkill Co fairs both run from July 26-Aug.3rd.

York County Trapping School – August 16th – contact Brett Spangler 717-659-7265

Lancaster County Trapping School – August 23rd – contact Terry Suter 717-393-4738

Schuylkill County Trapping School – Sept. 13th – contact Brian Mohn 610-562-1790

Dauphin County Trapping School – Sept. 20th – contact Mike Spittle 717-367-2637

Youth Field Days – Lebanon Co June 7th; Dauphin Co June 14th; York Co May 31st

There will be a Successful Furtaker Course offered Sept. 13th at the Kittatinney Hunting & Fishing Club in Lebanon County. Register for this through the PGC website.

We will again have a display booth at the Ned Smith Center’s Nature and Arts Festival on July 26th from 9AM-4PM in Millersburg.

Last, but not least, the joint PTA & FTA Rendezvous June 19-22 at the Washington County fairgrounds.

Till next month. — Mike Spittle, (717)367-2637,


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