Pennsylvania Trappers Association Inc. October 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


Our next State Officer meeting will be Saturday, October 4, which also is the day we draw the 2014 PTA sweepstakes winners. It is not too late to contact an officer or director for some tickets. If you already purchased tickets thank you for supporting our organization. Someone is going to be riding a new Polaris Sportsman four wheeler this winter.

At this time I have not received the final report on the BMP Cable Restraint Lock testing we were a part of this past trapping season. As soon as we have the report we will schedule a meeting with the PGC. We have been asked to provide the names of a few trappers willing to participate in a BMP study during this upcoming trapping season with previously untested locks. Some thoughts on the Cable Restraint program, before I go on to my next topic are “Trapper Certification”. The classes are taught by volunteers who often travel great distances to instruct a class. The new trapper may have to do likewise if he is committed to becoming a trapper. So the next time someone is telling you their trouble finding a class ask them to understand the sacrifices of the volunteer teacher.

We are very close to announcing where the 2016 Rendezvous will be, and perhaps by the time you read this it may have been posted on the “New” PTA website. There was a motion and vote at the General Membership meeting at this year’s rendezvous to give the authority to the board to decide the location, because the districts were still gathering their information.

Planning ahead into 2015 will find us in an election year for the PTA. There will be a few vacancies that will need to be filled on the board. I bring this up now before trapping season starts so you may consider whom you think would be a great candidate. Mark Kasten informed me that he will not be continuing as FTA Director for the PTA. We all had the first hand opportunity to see the operation of the FTA at this year’s combined rendezvous. How would you like to be the liaison between our organizations? Stay tuned for more information in future articles or by attending your district meeting this Fall. Before we know it we will be receiving our election ballots in the mail.

In closing I am going to remind everyone the importance of spreading the word and supporting our fellow sportsmen in Maine. The Bear Hunting and Trapping Referendum vote in November will be critical for all sportsmen in North America. This HSUS funded challenge would be a foundation for a nationwide campaign if they win this referendum vote. Do you want HSUS guiding our wildlife management? Spread the word to your friends to support the sportsmen through

“UNITED WE STAND” — Brian Mohn



I helped with the Stoneboro Fair this year. Thanks to Walter, Dan G., Dan L. and Don for thier help. If you do not help with your county fair you’re missing a great opportunity .

Our website is still under construction so be patient as we try to get the finishing touches on it and get it up and running.

Archery season is just around the corner, but more importantly that perfect time of the year is almost here: Trapping Season. Hope you’ve got your equipment ready.

The State Association has new T-shirts, hoodies, and sweatshirts. With the purchase of one of these hoodies or sweatshirts not only can you stay warm but you can support your state association.

God bless. — Charlie Sykes




I recently spoke to a farmer who informed me of an incident on his property involving a confrontation he had with an individual who considered himself a trapper. This farmer owns several hundred acres of land and permits hunting and trapping for anyone courteous enough to ask permission.

This farm has a township road running through the property. There is also a small stream running along the road and through the pasture. The incident took place last fall when the farmer observed a vehicle parked along the road near a bridge crossing this stream. The farmer stopped to check on the situation and found an individual setting traps. When asked if he had permission to trap there, the individual (I refuse to call him a trapper) informed the farmer that he was on a right-of-way and therefore did not need permission from any landowner.

We all know that setting bridges is a common practice for making coon or mink sets. However, the so called right-of-way was established for the state, township or municipality to properly maintain safe passage for public travel. This right-of-way does not give any individual the right to access this property for personal use.

Fortunately, the farmer is an intelligent and understanding person. He was obviously upset at the lack of respect toward himself and his property, but fully understands the self-indulgent 10% in any human group. If this had taken place with some other property owner, it could very well have been the media’s leading story. Trapper Disrespects Landowner.

As you enjoy your trapping privilege throughout this trapping season, please respect the landowner and the wildlife we seek. Be safe and respectful. — Barry L. Warner



In July, I traveled to the Upper Peninsula State Fairgrounds in Escanaba, Michigan, for the NTA convention. I’m grateful that the location of the convention afforded me the opportunity to travel to a very beautiful part of our country. The convention was a great success and I would like to thank the Upper Peninsula Trappers Association and the Michigan Trappers Association for all their hard work that went into hosting this great event.

Congratulations to the following individuals on their new positions: John Daniels – Vice President, Scott McAuley – Board Representative to Executive Council, Jeff Dunnier – SW Regional Director, and Rusty Johnson – SE Regional Director. Each of these individuals brings a wealth of talent to NTA and I am looking forward to working with everyone.

Dave Roberts, Office Manager, announced his retirement that will be effective at the end of the year. Dave has been a valuable asset to NTA and will be greatly missed.

During the business meeting, the 2015 budget was passed as presented. No changes were made to who the contractors are for the next year. No major changes were made to the contracts and they were extended for the following year.

The 2015 convention will be in Hamburg, NY. The 2016 convention will go back to Michigan pending contract negotiations with the location in Kalamazoo, MI. A change was made for future conventions.

During the meeting, executive council voted to make all demos at the convention open to members only, in order to increase the benefits to our membership and aid in recruiting and retaining members. Since the convention, NTA received feedback from state affiliates and members that while they understand the reasoning behind the change, the majority disagree with this change. After receiving this feedback, executive council voted to have only 4 demos per day as “members only”. This is an increase from previous years were there were 2 members only demos, but it still leaves over half of the demos available to non-members. This change takes into consideration the feedback that was received and increases benefits to members at the same time.

The executive council also voted to allow NTA memberships to be purchased at a reduced rate of $20 if they are purchased in conjunction with a state membership purchase for new members. Each state has the option to participate in this program and will provide information to its residents regarding the opportunity and process to gain membership. If your state is interested in participating, they should contact the NTA office.

There is still some legislative activity going on as has previously been reported. Most recently, the NTA has contacted the Idaho Trappers Association and the Idaho Attorney General to notify them of intent to help respond to the complaint that was filed on June 30th against Idaho. This complaint claims that section 9 of the Endangered Species Act is being violated because they feel Canada lynx is being incidentally trapped during other trapping activities. Footloose Montana failed to get the number of required signatures to move ballot initiative I-169 forward; however, it is believed that they are going to start early in 2015 to use paid signature gatherers to qualify a trap ban. In Maine, there is an initiative that will appear on the November ballot to prohibit bear hunting with bait, hounds and traps.

The following awards were presented during the convention:

NTA Awards:

• The Congressional Merit Award was presented to David Dill of Minnesota for his outstanding dedication and support of trappers and trapping through legislative actions.

• Affiliate of the Year was presented to the Montana Trappers Association for their outstanding dedication and support of the NTA

• A Benefactor Award was presented to Rob & Melissa Smith of the NextGen Foundation for their unselfish aid and assistance to the NTA

• The David Reed Memorial Award was presented to the Wisconsin Trappers Association for the best educational display at the NTA

• The Leadership Award was presented to Toby Lewis Walrath of Montana for outstanding leadership on behalf of trappers and trapping

• Director of the Year was presented to Brian Cogill of Maine in recognition of outstanding accomplishments as a director.

• The Pioneer Award was presented to Russ Voelker of Kansas for innovative efforts to preserve and further trapping.

• Trapper of the Year – East was presented to Ralph Degesie of Michigan for outstanding efforts on behalf of trappers and trapping.

• Trapper of the Year – West was presented to Robert Gilman of Oregon for outstanding efforts on behalf of trappers and trapping.

• Presidents Awards were presented to the following for outstanding service on behalf of trappers and trapping: Robert Sheppard of Montana, Paul C. Fielder of Montana, Tamara & Trent Masterson of Michigan, Rich Faler of Pennsylvania, The North American Fur Auction, Dave Roberts, The Ohio State Trappers Association, Alaska Trappers Association, and Kraig Kaatz of Illinois.

FBU Awards:

• Award for Commitment & Recognition for Outstanding Assistance and Dedication to FBU was presented to Cindy Seff for her unselfish aid and assistance to FBU.

• Award for Commitment & Recognition to Banquets was presented to the Colorado Trappers Association for their unselfish aid and assistance to FBU.

• Award for Commitment & Recognition to Banquets was presented to Kandy Herrman for her unselfish aid and assistance to FBU.

Congratulations to all of the award winners. Your efforts are greatly appreciated and benefit trappers and trapping.

NTA wants to work with organizations to defend and promote the safe and ethical harvest of furbearing mammals and the preservation and enhancement of their habitats. To increase our ability to do this, NTA started the Defense Fund by taking a budget surplus of $75,000 and designating it solely for the use of defending trapping. Going forward, NTA will add ½ of any future budget surpluses to this fund. It is important for the members of local and state organizations to contact NTA as soon as they learn of any legislative activity in their area. If you hear of anything, please contact your organization or feel free to contact me.

NTA has made other efforts this year as well. The trifold has been redesigned to increase its usefulness. NTA has also enhanced their website to offer alerts to be sent out via e-mail. You can be signed up for this important communication tool by visiting the website and clicking on the link to receive NTA alerts. NTA has done a pretty good job of making it simple so it only takes a few minutes to sign up for this increased communication. Dave and Karen Linkhart continue to go to work in the DC area as the Director of National and International Affairs.

Best Regards. — Dave Shuttleworth



As many of you may already know, the PTA is planning to reprint and update the “History of the Pa. Trapper’s” book originally compiled by the late Frank Ceresini from 1998-2002, when the original book was printed. Unfortunately, since we are the oldest active trapper’s association in the country, much of our history may have disappeared with some of our members who have passed away. I must start by saying that Frank did a great job on compiling what information we have, digging up old photos and events from 1937- 2002, and I believe we have a great starting point. The book is mostly out of stock, some districts may have a few copies lying around, but with our re-print and update, we would like to make it as accurate as we possibly can. I’m sure many members still have their copy of the book, and I’m asking for your help to find any errors or omissions that were possibly made in the first printing. Some of our lifelong members surely remember some PTA history that may have been missed or wrongly related to Frank the first time around. If you know of any errors, either dates, people or otherwise, or missed information that we need to be aware of, I’m asking you to contact me either at home 724-348-6721, or through e-mail at Looking forward to talking with you. — Dave Eckels 



This past month Andrew Hyde, Dave Shuttleworth and myself were given an opportunity to tour the Crawford County Fairgrounds, as a potential location for a future NTA convention. Crawford County has a very fairground, and there would be a lot of potential for a future convention.

Fall meeting- September 20th at the Spring Creek Sportsman’s Club. The address is 611 Turner Hill Road Spring Creek, PA. 16436. The demos begin at 9:00am and the meeting is scheduled for noon.

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

Our image Is Our Future. — John W. Chase



Hello everyone:

I would like to start by apologizing for missing last month’s issue. Being my very first attempt at District notes, there was a minor communication glitch, which has since been remedied. District 2 had about 25 students participate in the Trappers School on August 9th. We would like to thank the Enon Valley Rod & Gun Club for hosting this event. Also, a big thank you to everyone who helped with the school, made a donation, worked at the Youth Field Days, Fairs, Expo, & Cable Restraint classes. Congratulations to Dave and all the crew in District 3 for a great convention! During the state meeting Leo Olcus from our district, who passed away in February, received a much deserved Lifetime Achievement Award. Leo’s sons accepted the award on his behalf. Also, congratulations to Cody Best on being the recipient for the 2014 District 2 scholarship. Our next meeting is scheduled for October 12, 2014 at the Happy Hunters Club, Fenelton, PA. The doors will open at noon and the meeting will begin at 1:00 pm. On a sad note, we lost member, John Durnell, 17, to a drowning accident. His father, Greg Durnell, is also a district member & we would like to send along to Greg & his family our deepest sympathies. To contact District 2 our current officers are: Greg Bell, Director (724-895-3731) & Joe Fennell, Assistant Director (724-445-7976). Best of luck in the upcoming season. — Brenda



Hello All,

Hard to believe summer went by so quickly, all my equipment is still in a pile where I left it last March after beaver trapping. I’m going to have to get on that pretty soon. All of the county fairs are over now, and I’ll have to report on the gun raffle winners in the next issue. Thanks to all who helped at either the Fayette, Greene, Washington, or Westmoreland fairs. This year we supported the 4H kids at the county fairs at their livestock sales, and we were able to buy some animals at the sales, and donate them back to the 4H scholarship fund. It’s a great program, and great PR for the association.

For those who made our picnic /pig roast at Cedar Creek Park on August 23, thanks for attending, for those who didn’t, you missed out on what was once again a pile of good food, thanks to all who brought the delicious sides and goodies to the picnic. Special thanks to Barbie and John for fixing us up on the propane tank in short order so we didn’t all eat cold corn on the cob! After the meal, we had an informal meeting on the recent PTA/FTA convention last June and figured out how to help support the Boy Scout troop, who worked the parking lot for us during the convention, and the Gun Club who shut down for the week so we didn’t have shotgun pellets raining down on the campers.

If you receive this report in time, don’t forget about the trapper’s school on September 20, at the East Monongahela Sportsmen Club. I’ll report on the school next month. You should receive this in time to remind your college aged children, friends, etc. about the district scholarship deadline on September 30. We will judge the 1st and 2nd place essay writers after the fall rondy. Speaking on the fall rendezvous, the date is October 5, at the Washington County Fairgrounds, in the 4H building. It’s a great place to pick up your last minute items, and share some time with your fellow trappers before the season starts.

Our fur sale is scheduled for January 25, also at the Washington Fairgrounds.

‘till next time. — Dave Eckels



My aunt, Ruth Stern, passed away in August at the age of 59 and I’m once again reminded of how fragile life can seem. She had a good life with 4 children, 7 grandchildren, and many personal successes. She was special to me and I’ll miss her. This also reminds me of how I/we shouldn’t procrastinate about doing things that are important. We should get started soon because we never know how long we will have to finish or accomplish our goal. That’s Brian Stern’s thought for the month and I thank you for allowing me to share.

Good luck as you start your trapping season in the coming months and I hope you have many satisfying days afield.

The fall meeting will be held on September 20, 2014 at the Indiana Fox & Coon Hunters Association.

Our district officers are as follows: Bob Custer – Director, Mike Ridilla – Assistant Director, Deborah Sedlmeyer – Treasurer, and Harry Wade – Secretary.

Please feel free to contact 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



District 7 events: January 18 – Fur Auction at Montour Delong Fairgrounds at Washingtonville, starts at 9 am, 4% commission and you must be a PTA member to sell

March 29 – fur sale at Hillsgrove Fire hall starts at 9 am, 4% commission and you must be a member of the PTA to sell. — Pete Rake,



By the time you read this, our trapper training school and mini-convention will be history. Hope everyone had a good time, and welcome to our new members. I’m sure the thought of trapping season is weighing heavily on everyone’s minds.

We are hosting a Successful Furtaking class at my house on October 11th from 8:00 AM to 4:00 PM. To register, go to the Game Commission website. Taking this course does qualify you for cable restraint certification.

Our October meeting will be held in Wayne County at a site as yet to be specified. Watch your mail for the postcard announcement.

The Northeast Regional Coyote Hunt will be held on February 6, 7 & 8, 2015. This is a week later than previous years (this is NOT Super Bowl weekend).

That’s all for now. Remember: Our Image is Our Future! — Ed Price, Treasurer, District 9



Hello to all,

Another season is upon us. I hope that you are all excited and looking forward to spending a little more time in the field. There is not much you can do while the fur market is trying to stabilize itself.

The Lehigh Valley Hunting and Fishing Extravaganza was held at the Kempton Fairgrounds on August 23 & 24. The show was well attended, and there were many events going on throughout the entire show. Thanks to all who came out to support the Pennsylvania Trappers at the booth.

Lehigh County Youth Field Day was held in August as well, and Monroe County Youth Field Day was held in early September. I do not have to tell you how important the youth days are to young people. It is vital to expose our youth to all of the outdoor traditions of Pennsylvania. If we don’t, someone else will expose them to something else, which may not be supportive of our outdoor community. A special thanks to people like Steve Wentzel, and everyone else who volunteers consistently in support of the county youth field days, for taking the time to ensure our heritage carries on to future generations.

The District 10 Trappers Fall Mini Convention and Sportsman Show is coming up on September 26th from 12-6pm & Sept. 27th from 8am-5pm at the West End Fairgrounds in Gilbert, PA. There will be Dealers, Tailgaters, Trapping Demonstrations, and Trapper Training. Trapper Training will meet at the main stage area at 9am on Saturday the 27th. Deer Dave will be in attendance, as well as many other vendors. There are still openings for Demos if anyone would be interested in doing one. Set up is Friday morning at 8am. Call Scot Mucha, 610-863-9759 or Bob Counterman 610-759-9203 to help out. Please call us if you have time to volunteer or put on a demonstration. Clean up and a 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 then visit the vendors to get the supplies you need, all in one day! To register FREE of charge, call Bob Counterman at 610-759-9203. The class will go over Game Laws, Trap Tuning, Land Trapping, and Water Trapping. Meet at the main stage area at 9am. Lunch will be provided, and it should be a fun hands on experience for all involved. Remember to register in advance so we have enough food. Also, be sure to bring your boots for the water trapping session, and any equipment you may want to practice with. There will be some seasoned trappers offering lots of advice on what to do and how to do it.

Another item in the works right now is the consideration of putting on a Successful Fur Taking Course in October or November. This is the advanced trapping course offered by the Game Commission. The cost would be $15, and registration will be on the Game Commission website. You can go to the PGC website and watch for when it is posted there. We will provide more information here as it gets off the ground.

That’s all for now. Remember that even in an uncertain fur market, prime fur always sells. So make sure to get out there when the fur is the best. Good luck to the archery hunters, and we hope to see many of you at the District 10 Trappers Fall Mini Convention & Sportsman Show.

Some dates for your calendar:

September 26- Set up for Fall Mini Convention, West End Fairgrounds, 8am

September 26 (12-6pm), 27 (8am-5pm)- District 10 Fall Mini Convention & Sportsman Show, West End Fairgrounds, Gilbert, PA

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

September 28- Fall Mini Convention 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 District 10 live bid fur auction 6:00pm at Belfast-Edelman Sportsman Club.

January 17, 2015 – District 10 Live Bid Fur Auction – Doors open 8:00 am. Sale starts at 9:00 am. Belfast-Edelman Sportsman Club, Belfast, PA. Call Scot or Bob.

If you would like to receive District 10 information electronically, via email, please send an email to Nate Roberts at He will be happy to put you on our mailing list. — Scot, 610-863-9759,



We had a real nice day at Millcreek Sportsmen’s Association in August and a pretty good attendance. Thank you to Terry, Brock & Millcreek for hosting us for the day. The cable restraint class went well and all who attended are now certified and ready to go.

At our business meeting we had reports from Schuylkill and Lebanon County fairs. Both events went well, attendance at Schuylkill seemed to be slightly less, probably due to weather. Thank you to those that help man the booth at these events. A lot of good PR gets done at these types of things. Front page of the Lebanon Newspaper shows Gov. Corbett at the D-11 booth talking with Butch Herr and touching the display fur!

We had reports from the various YFD’s throughout the district and again thanks to those who represent trapping at these events for sharing your time & talent to educate the non-trapping public.

We had a request from the US Sportsmen’s Alliance for money to help fight the anti’s in Maine over the bear issue. After a good bit of discussion about the importance of this fight D-11 voted to donate $1000 to this cause.

We talked some about this past rendezvous with the FTA and if you weren’t able to attend this year you really missed a good one. D-3 really did a great job. Now that task falls to us. We spent the rest of the meeting going over items for the 2015 Rendezvous. Because we did this only 4 years ago, it does make it somewhat easier in planning. There is a lot to do prior to the day we actually open the gate. If you are interested in helping out in any way for any amount of time, please let Ralph or me know and we’ll have something for you to do!

We did make a motion to buy a good sound system to use in the demo area and to have on hand for the fur sale or any other future events we might have. Brian was given a green light to go get us a good one!

Another thing we decided to do was rent a tent to cover the area at the grand stand. That is where we hold the general membership meeting and have the auction. If anyone has any connections with a tent rental organization please let me know.

There are a couple of events this fall that D-11 is involved in and we do have our meeting at Middlecreek on Oct. 5 at 2 PM. This is the meeting where we will draw the winner to attend the Fur Trappers College in 2016. If you didn’t attend any meetings this year this is your last chance. Hopefully we will see you there. — Mike Spittle 717-367-2637



Well, Labor Day has come and gone, so I guess the summer of 2014 has officially passed. However, as I write this, the weather would disagree. It’s been a rather mild summer but as I’m sure most of you have heard, we may be in store for another rough winter. With less than desirable fur prices and more potential foul weather on the horizon, we’ll most likely be in for a challenging season. Some trappers may run much smaller lines and others may not trap at all. Regardless, make an effort to do something that you might not normally do, like run a partner line with a good friend or family member, or take someone along with you that has yet to be introduced to trapping. Even better yet, bring a kid along with you and pass on the tradition.

However much or little you decide to trap this season, do it because you love it. Let the fur check be the icing on the cake. Take advantage of the opportunities that we still have as trappers and never take them for granted. Stay motivated, be respectful of everything nature has to offer, and most importantly be safe. Best of luck this season and I look forward to seeing everyone at our fall meeting.

The fall meeting will be held on Sunday, October 19th at the Lower Perkiomen Sportsman’s Association located at 11 Pechin Mill Road, Collegeville. Doors will open at 10 AM, and at 10:30 there will be an auction on traps and equipment donated by District #12 member Phil Nichols. The meeting will take place at 12:30 after the auction wraps up. There will be refreshments on hand, a fox and coon demo after the meeting, and Dave Rodgers will be there selling supplies for anyone that may need some last minute items. I hope to see you all there. — Joel DiLorenzo


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