Pennsylvania Trappers Association, Inc. March 2009 Report

President — Rod Zullinger, 4886 Raccoon Valley Rd., Millerstown, PA 17062; phone: 717-589-7594; e-mail:

Vice-President East — Joel Whitehead, RR #2 Box 90, Thompson, PA 18465; e-mail:

Vice-President West — Ned Weston, 120 Swope Rd., West Sunbury, PA 16061; phone: 724-894-2239; e-mail:

Secretary — Tereasa Houtz, 300 Flint Ln.,  Landisburg, PA 17040; e-mail:

Treasurer — Ed Price, P.O. Box 327,  Union Dale, PA 18470; phone: 570-679-2318; e-mail:

Editor — Russ Ford, 309 Pine Dale Rd., Carlisle, PA 17013; phone: 717-249-7271; fax: 717-249-8509; e-mail:

FTA Director — Mark Kasten, RR 2 Box 2287, Hallstead, PA 18822; phone: 570-278-2553;

NTA Director — David Shuttleworth, 5452 Tamarack Drive, Sharpesville, PA 16150; phone: 724-962-4260; e-mail:

Public Relations Director — Mike Gontar, 87 West 7th St., Jim Thorpe, PA 18229; phone: 570-325-4974; fax: 570-325-4974; e-mail:

Membership Options:
Individual membership including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $25
Individual membership without subscription — $10
Junior, age 16 and under without subscription — $5
Lifetime membership with subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $300
Lifetime membership without subscription — $100

Complete membership application on first page of
association section and send dues to:
PTA Treasurer
Ed Price
P.O. Box 327, Union Dale, PA 18470


Well, here it is the end of January and no thaw in site. I have been spoiled over the last few winters as to having somewhat warmer temperatures than we are having this year.

My trapping (like many of you) has all but come to an end for this season. And, although I am somewhat glad to end this year’s game, I am certainly looking forward to the coming fall and a new game. With a dismal catch, some might think that it was not a good trapping season. I for one would of liked a few more numbers, but I will not complain too much as to a lousy catch.

As I was glad to be able to be afield and enjoying what nature was dealing or better yet giving to me. More importantly, I was fortunate, in the fact that I was able to learn a few more things that will be of use in my future line.

I guess the old saying that there is a “Light at the End of the Tunnel” holds true in all that we encounter.
On to other ramblings. Are you ready? This coming year like many in the past will be a busy one for the state and many of the districts. I hope you will all try to go to as many events that are being put together for your enjoyment. I imagine that we may have a few of the “Money Chasers” give up and some might drop their membership in the PTA. This is the “norm” in a low fur market so it will not effect you the “Real Trappers.” Even though we might drop a few numbers in our ranks, it might also be possible that we gain new members to replace those that drop out. Over the past years, our numbers have seemed to grow at a steady rate. This growth is slow, but it is steady. And I feel that due to all the hard work that the state and, maybe more importantly, your districts have been doing is paying off. You are reaching out and showing the public and our youth what we are all about. Yes, I know that “High Dollars” bring some wannabes into our group. Some are also joining because they love trapping and want to protect our right to trap and hunt.

I see some new faces joining in and getting involved in their districts. Albeit, these new faces are few, it’s good to see them trying to make things happen. We, in this PTA, are lucky that there are some who will step up and get it done. Doers are doers and they love being doers! They get great satisfaction in seeing their efforts pay off. And, yes, they are proud that they can help better us all.

Until one takes the step to offer his or her hand in making things happen they are not getting the joy as well as the fulfillment that comes with being a doer. Try it. You’ll like it!

Things are improving in our lot. We are growing and most importantly we are doing. I can only foresee great opportunities for our growth and our influence in this field. You and your PTA will be better off due to the efforts put forth in the coming years. It will be exciting to see us advance and to grow.

Election year is here. Maybe you might want to try to run for a position. If not, PLEASE at least take the time to cast a vote. Show that you care where we are heading.

Our Yearly Raffle is ready. The guys up in D9 have once again put it together. PLEASE show your appreciation by selling and buying as many tickets as you can.

Looks like this year’s “Rondy” is coming along fine. The D5 folks are doing a great job at putting it together. You should try to attend this event. You’ll be glad that you did.

“KIFE” (KEYSTONE INSTITUTE for FURBEARER EDUCATION) is the official name of your “New Home.”

On this front, things are moving steadily forward. It will be a slow and timely process, but it will “BE”!
In closing, just a few thoughts on what we probably will be facing. # 1 A very poor economy. # 2 Uncertainty in what lies ahead. # 3 Worry about how we will endure the troubling next few years. And that’s just on a “World Level.” We, as trappers will endure these “Hard Times.”



— Russ Ford


Hello to all. Trapping season is slipping away fast. I plan on taking my daughter out to set some beaver traps before the season is over. We just need the weather to break some.

The NE Regional convention will be here before you know it. With it being on May 8, 9 and 10, it will be one of the first conventions in 2009. Start making your plans to attend; it will be fun for all. The Warren County Fairgrounds, Pittsfield, PA has a great ground layout. The roadways are all paved, the dealer buildings are together, there is plenty of room for tailgaters and the camping area is very nice. I have been working with Dan Skurski NTA Convention Coordinator and Charlie Sykes District #1 Director. Things are shaping up nicely. ’Coon Creek Trapping supplies has agreed to sponsor the worker shirts. Be sure to stop by Dave’s booth and thank him. We are still looking for sponsors for the awards plaques. If you are interested or know of someone that would be interested please let me know.

Dealers can reserve booth space by contacting Dan Skurski at 231-938-4432. Be sure to reserve early booths are first come first serve. I have started putting together the demo list for the convention. Dealers if you are interested in doing a demo please let Dan or I know when you reserve a booth. If you have someone that would like to do a demo let me know. If you would like to help give me a call and let me know. Any amount of time would be a great help. Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

— Dave Shuttleworth


The Pennsylvania Trappers Association will hold an election during the State Rendezvous from June 19 through June 21 to fill the offices of President, Vice President – East, Vice President – West, Secretary, Treasurer, Editor, Public Relations Director, NTA Director and FTA Director.

Anyone interested in having their name on the ballot for this election should forward their resume to Charlie Sykes via e-mail at or via US Mail at: 1265 Airport Road, Stoneboro, PA 16153-1807. Resumes must be received no later than March 1, 2009, in order for your name to be published on the ballot.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Charlie vie e-mail or phone. Phone: (724) 866-4286.


Hello members. My e-mail address has changed to I will no longer be able to receive e-mail at my former address.

Our district meeting will be held on April 18. It will be hosted by Erie County at the Union City Sportsman’s Club, located at 18520 Hungry Run Road in Union City, PA. Directions: Off of Rts. 8 & 6, turn east on Concord Road. It is four miles to Hungry Run Road. The club is about a mile on the right. The meeting starts at 3 p.m.

Feb. 22 is our gun raffle meeting at Kings Family Restaurant in Meadville at 2:30 p.m. Sponsor forms are due at that time.

As most of you know, District 1 is working with the NTA on a Regional Convention to be held in Pittsfield at the Warren County Fairgrounds. If you can help, please contact Dave Shuttleworth, NTA Director, at (724) 962-4260. Things seem to be coming together well for that.

The Gun Raffle will be held on April 4 at the Sparrow Pond Family Campground, located on 11103 Route 19 North in Waterford, PA. Tickets are $10 for 20 prizes. The ticket price includes food and beverage. There will be floor guns, many other prizes and a Chinese auction. If you can help with the event, please contact Jim & Donna Murphy at 814-382-2561.

It’s not too late to take a kid beaver trapping. It provides many rewards. Please make note of the e-mail address change.

God Bless.

— Charlie Sykes


Hello district members,

First off, let me apologize for missing the last issue’s deadline. Things have been hectic here and I remembered about it, just a day too late. Seems time flies by when you’re not paying attention. Our district lost another active member on Nov. 6, with the passing of Lou Kobuchi. Lou had been an active member of D-3 for longer than anyone can remember. At last year’s banquet, he was awarded our district’s lifetime achievement award. He couldn’t make the dinner, so I hand delivered it to him. I figured on dropping it off, but ended up sitting in the kitchen, looking at pictures and talking trapping for a few hours. I’ve said that some of the best people I’ve ever met came from this association, and Lou was one of them. He will surely be missed.

For all of our members that came out to our fur sale, thank you for your support for District 3. It was a pretty good turnout, with 91 lots of fur sold. Prices were not as bad as some predictions, and most people seemed happy with the sale. The building worked out fine, food was good and the buyers looked at a lot of fur. Thanks goes out to all of the buyers that made it possible. This year, for the first time, we heard a request to turn the heat down! If any of you remember the sales in Greene County, we would have given anything just to feel our fingers. I’ve included a price breakdown from the sale below (listed by species, # sold, high, low and average).

Raccoon — 1521, $12.20, $1, $8.21
Green ’coon — 259, $7, $2, $5.12
Red fox — 213, $16, $5, $11.84
Gray fox — 49, $30, $20, $27.43
Beaver — 30, $40, $6, $19.93
Coyote — 52, $15.60, $2, $13
Muskrat — 810, $3.70, $2, $3.36
Opossum — 169, $3, $0.25, $2.13
Skunk — 10, $5, $1.50, $3.70
Weasel — 1, $1
Deer Hides — 22, $2, $1, $1.55

91 lots of fur sold

$23,355 total

The fur put up contest was broken down into three categories: raccoon, canine and a junior division for anyone 16 and younger, with the fur buyers doing the judging. The junior division was won by Hunter Homa, the Canine winner was Doug Bergman and sorry about this, the raccoon winner was myself. Didn’t intend for that to happen. The winners were presented with Joe Pegher memorial award trophies. Also thank you to Steve Lecht for sponsoring gas cards for the winners.

The spring newsletter will be sent out sometime during the first week of March. It will include the dates for our spring meeting. This meeting will also serve as our district elections. If you would like to step up and help our district, now is the time to offer. This will also be the first meeting to try to get committees set for the 2010 convention. If you can’t make the meeting, but would like to help out, give me a call at 724-348-6721 and I’ll get you set up. We will be needing plenty of help for this event, so even if you think you can spare a couple hours, jump right in.

Our 5th annual banquet will be held April 18, at the Youngwood Fire Hall. Ticket prices will once again remain the same as last year. Our banquet has been steadily growing, so if you haven’t made one yet, try to attend and see what you’ve been missing. Ticket applications will be sent out with the spring newsletter.

Till next time.

— Dave Eckels


I’m writing this column at the end of January and the trapping season is over for me unless I make a trip or two for beavers. I’m nearly done with my fur and almost ready to pull the plug on the freezer. I ended the season with 19 raccoons, one mink, 20 muskrats, several opossums, two 40+ lb. beavers and …. one BOBCAT. Maybe you can tell I’m a little excited about the cat, a 23 lb. female caught on Jan. 7. I’ll be glad to give you the details so if you see me just ask. It was a good season for me and I hope you can all say the same thing. By the time you read this, my fur will be sold (not the bobcat, of course) and I’ll have details of the fur auction in a later column.

District 5 will be hosting the 2009 state convention at the Cambria County Fair Grounds in Ebensburg, Penn. This will be the 72nd Annual Pennsylvania Trappers Association Rendezvous and it is being held on June 18 to 21, 2009. I encourage everyone to get involved and help out if you can. Gates will open Wednesday June 17, 2009, at noon to allow dealers and tailgaters to set-up displays. Dealer Contact Information: Art Crossman: 471-7565. Advertising contact: Pat Wess 347 Elbert Street Johnstown, PA 15904, 814-262-9455. Informational updates will be posted on the Pennsylvania Trappers Association Web site at

Convention planning meetings are underway and the next scheduled meetings are March 19, April 17 and May 22 at 6 p.m. at Gander Mountain. The annual spring meeting will be May 3 at 1 p.m. at Gander Mountain and the final convention meeting will be June 13 at 1 p.m. at the Cambria County Fair Grounds.

Please feel free to contact Pat Wess @ 814-262-9455, Todd Harteis @ 814-547-0076 or myself with any information you would like to see in this report or any questions you might have.

Thanks for reading.

— Brian Stern


District 7 spring meeting is March 8 at the Green township building near Loganton. Meeting starts at 1 p.m. Dist. 7 had a fur auction on Jan. 18. We had five buyers and 54 lots of fur. I would like to thank everyone who helped. Todd Strohecker and Dan Scheib did an excellent job of keeping everything running smoothly. Also thanks to Joe and Laurie Mast, Randy and Therese Henry, Brian and Melody Walker, Art Hoffman, Randy Mark, Leo Klinefelter, Steve and Hunter Karchner and Melissa and Megan Rake. Sorry if I forgot anybody’s name. Randy Henry received the 2008 Dist. 7 Trapper of the Year award. District 7 had a stand at the Early Bird Sports Show Jan. 22 through Jan. 25 at Bloomsburg. We signed up seven new Dist. 7 members and several renewals. I would like to thank the following members for helping: Dan Zimmerman, Chris Young, Craig Kling, Brian and Melody Walker, Joe Mast, Randy Henry and Steve Karchner. A special thank you goes to Jim Baumer for repairing the district trailer free of charge. If you have any questions or concerns, call me at 570-437-2679 or e-mail me at

— Pete

PA Trapper’s Association, District #7 Fur Auction

Washingtonville, PA — 1/18/2009
Listed by species, quantity sold, high, low and average
Red Fox — 54, $15.50, $2, $8.53, $12
Gray Fox — 89, $30, $3.50, $22.91
Coyote — 14, $14, $3, $9.36, 1
Raccoon — 669, $17.50, $1, $10.69, 6
Muskrat (br) — 1,357, $4.75, $1.20, $4.34
M. Mink — 52, $13, $5, $11.41
F. Mink — 32, $8.50, $4, $7.30
Beaver — 15, $31, $15, $24.13
Skunk — 15, $5, $2.75, $4.33
Opossum — 175, $4, $0.10, $2.48
Muskrat (bk) — 7, $3.40, $3.40, $3.40
Cinnamon raccoon — 1, $18, $18, $18

Total Trapper Lots: 54

Fur Buyers Present: 5


Well, here it is just about spring time, trapping season gone by again. I hope you all had a good season. The good thing was the price of gas came down, but, so did the fur prices. The economy has had some effect on some of you in different ways. For some, it gave you more time to trap and others may have a rough time of it this year. We all hope the future will be brighter.

District 8 held the winter break meeting on Jan. 18, 2009, at Ickesburg Sportsmen`s Club Ickesburg, Pa. We discussed the upcoming events. Marysville Sportsmen Show Sept. 12, 2009, Trapping School (date not set yet) and the new Sportsmen Show at Blain, Pa. Oct. 16,17 and 18, 2009.

Nominations for District 8 Officers are open. District 8 Director, Treasurer and Secretary. If you know of anyone interested let me know. Next District 8 Meeting April 26, 2009 at Susquehanna Valley Sportsmen Club Liverpool, Pa. (Perry County) we will take a vote.

Directions: to Susquehanna Valley Sportsmen Club take Rts.11 & 15 from the North or South to Liverpool, Pa., take Rt. 17 West to first street, turn left on South Front Street, go ½ mile to Perry Valley Road and turn right, go 1.7 miles, Club is on the right.

For more info, call me at 717-486-7573 or ony my cell phone at 717-226-9623 or e-mail or by mail Allen Eppleman 4232 Carlisle Road, Gardners, Pa. 17324.

— Allen Eppleman


For the first time in pretty many years, there was no article published for District 11 last month and if I was to blame I’d be man enough to admit it. Somewhere between this magazine and me, my article for February got lost in a fax forest or in some computer space. Hopefully you will have received a newsletter from Brian Mohn so you would have known about our Feb. 19 meeting at the Conewago Twp. Bldg.

Our fur sale held on Jan. 10 was again a success because of all of you that gave of their time and talent to do all the work that goes into it. Thank you to all who helped with the sale, all who baked and cooked and set up and cleaned up. Special thanks to Keith Witman for doing the auctioneering and to all the buyers that came and bought fur. The results are posted on District 11’s Web site and at the end of this article.

Our next scheduled meeting will be Sunday, April 19 at the Northern York Co. Game & Fish at 2 p.m. If you need directions to get there call Brian or me.

Also looking ahead, the Kutztown Gathering will be held Sunday, May 17 this year at the Kutztown Rod & Gun Club.

The PTA Rendezvous will be June 18-21 at the Cambria County Fairgrounds in Ebensburg, PA.

I will fill you in on what took place at our Feb. meeting in next month’s column.

— Mike Spittle

District 11, Pa. Trapper’s Assoc.

Fur Auction

Berks Co. 4-H Center 1/10/09
(Listed by Species, Quantity, High, Low and Average)
Red Fox — 1,025, $31, $0.75, $12.63
Gray Fox — 24, $25.50, $10, $21.06
Opossum — 263, $4, $0.10, $2.94
Raccoon — 1,148, $18.50, $0.50, $12.12
Brown Muskrat — 1,148, $4.30, $0.10, $3.60
Skunks — 53, $6, $2.25, $4.75
Male Mink — 107, $13.50, $1, $11.36
Female Mink — 53, $8.50, $1, $7.13
Beaver — 33, $21, $16, $17.93
Coyote — 14, $18.50, $1, $12
Deer Hides — 37, $4.25, $2, $4.05
Bobcats — 7, $27.50, $19.50, $26.36
Squirrel Tails — 20, $0.15, $0.05, $0.11

Total Trapper Lots: 45

Fur Buyers: 10

— Submitted by Brian Mohn, District Director


Hello from the Southeast again,

It has been awhile since I sat down at the computer. Seems with everything going wrong in the world, small things fall into the cracks these days. I know many of us have been facing the stress of losing our jobs, losing our money and losing our sanity. This entire economic crisis is the absolute result of pure greed and nothing else. My recent favorite is the large corporation whose CEOs were handed out millions of dollars for end-of-the-year bonuses, all from economic bailout money. I wish I got paid handsomely for running my company into the ground, oops, there is that greed word again. Well, I’ll step off my soapbox and talk trapping so my blood pressure goes back down.

My season started off strong, but declined dramatically early on. It just didn’t seem like there were a whole lot of foxes to be caught. I also think my competition beat me to the punch in several areas. I only have myself to blame for that. Being a short timer in high competition areas is a hard way to play the game. At the time of writing this, I still haven’t hit the ’coons real hard. The fur market is pretty much in the toilet, but that wasn’t ever a surprise to me. Considering the prices, I fared pretty well anyway. At least the fuel prices were much more manageable this season.

The district’s spring meeting will take place on March 22, 2009, at the Perkiomen Sportmans Assoc. Club in Collegeville. The doors will open at 10 a.m. and the meeting will start at noon. We are also planning another fundraiser pig roast in the spring for the district. The last one was a great success.

Well, till the next time, God bless.

— Rick Ameisen

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