President — Stacy J. White, U.K. Cooperative Extension Service, Bell County, 101 Courthouse Square, Pineville, KY 40977; phone: 606-337-2376; cell phone: 606-521-1705; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Vice President — David Kriege Jr., 3513 Cowie Ave., Erlanger, KY 41018-1608; phone: 859-342-8109
Financial Secretary — Dave Dykes, 152 Mapleview Ct., Mt. Washington, KY 40047; phone: 502-538-3290
Executive Director — Chet Hayes, 3951 Neises Rd., California, KY 41007; phone: 859-635-3102;
• Class A Kentucky trapper including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $25
• Family Membership including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $35
• Associate Membership including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $20
• Youth Kentucky trapper including subscription to The Trapper & Predator Caller — $15
• Lifetime Class A Kentucky trapper — $250
Complete membership application on first page of association section and send dues to:
UTK, Financial Secretary
152 Mapleview Ct., Mt. Washington, KY 40047
There is fur in the shed and my hands smell like castor. You all can guess what I have been doing. It feels good to be out on the line again. I hope everyone has a good season. Take time to enjoy it.
The KDFWR has started conducting beginning trapper trainings. There has been one in Frankfort, KY and one at Barren River Lake State Resort Park in Lucas, KY. These programs are geared toward folks who have never trapped but want to get started. I encourage our members to volunteer as instructors for any programs held close to where you live. Getting new trappers on the line, especially young trappers, will keep trapping alive and growing.
By the time you read this, I will have conducted beaver trapping programs at Bell Co. High School and Knox Central High School. This will be the sixth year for the students at BCHS and the first for the students at KCHS. They love to wade through the mud and learn hands-on about trapping.
Andrea Shipley, a graduate student at Eastern Kentucky University, will be conducting a bobcat research project this winter at Robinson Forest in eastern Kentucky. She will be trapping bobcats, collaring them, and tracking their movements. She is scheduled to come to Bell Co. this week to get a crash course on bobcat trapping. If she contacts any of you trappers who live near her study area, please help if you can. The more we know about bobcats the better. While on the subject of bobcat research, my Master’s Thesis is nearly completed. I plan to present an oral defense sometime this winter and then I will be finished. I will be glad when it is finally done.
Recently I received a call from the mother of 8-year-old Jesse Creech. She said that Jesse wanted to learn to trap but neither she nor her husband knows anything about it. Jesse had been trapping minnows in the creek near their house and now wants to catch something bigger. He is hoping for a fox someday. They all came by my place last Sunday afternoon and looked at the traps and furs. They left with plans to build a rabbit box. There was excitement in Jesse’s eyes. I would say the rabbits around his house better beware.
Robbie Hoover has been under the weather lately. Please remember him and his family when you pray. It is bad to be sick anytime, but I am sure it has put a hurt on Robbie’s trapping plans.
I have beaver traps to check this morning and more to set this afternoon. That makes it hard to stop and write this report. Until next time, have a blessed day and enjoy life.
— Stacy J. White
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR’S REPORT
Now that the fur season is in full swing, let me remind everyone to represent our activity in the most responsible and ethical way. Know and obey all the regulations, respect landowners and fellow sportsmen and spend some time with a youngster or two.
The fur market will likely continue through the season in a weak state. With projected low prices, this is a good year for teaching and experimentation. Each year, regardless of the value of fur, I devote a portion of the season to trying new methods, equipment, baits, etc. This has increased my knowledge more than anything else including tapes, videos, books, watching demos at trapping conventions. And it keeps the trapping experience new and exciting. Doing this, a trapper will catch a few less pelts than when sticking with the “tried and true” but will develop new skills which will result in more fur in the long run.
Teaching a new trapper, especially a youngster, and watching them develop, brings new pleasure and excitement also. After catching thousands of furbearers over the years, most trappers vividly remember their first catch of each species. Most of the others fade into memory. I know it’s that way with me. But the first harvest of each of the young trappers and hunters I have mentored become precious memories that I will never forget, a sort of personal reward or accomplishment of my own, and a shared experience worth more than money.
A good number of our UTK members enjoyed such experiences at our “Introduction to Trapping” weekend here in northern Kentucky Nov. 7-8.
This was our biggest and best class to date with about 60 students present for a beautiful weekend outdoors. Saturday was spent with each group setting out a trapline with their instructors. Sunday was spent checking the sets and processing the fur. A good catch of beavers, raccoons, muskrats and one otter was made by the students and parents who were totally pleased with the class.
Many thanks are in order for the success of this class. Most sign-ups came thanks to Hunter Ed. classes, so thanks to Northern Kentucky Hunter Education Assn. Thanks to KDFWR Sergeant Mick Craig and Officer James Beckett. A great big thanks to the Bob White Club for hosting the event at their excellent facility. Thanks to the numerous trap supply dealers who sent catalogs for the students. Charlie Masheck of Hoosier Trapper Supply also sent us numerous jars of excellent coon bait which resulted in several coons being caught.
And a big thanks to our UTK instructors: Mike Dougherty, Mike Hurst, Charlie Hornback, Adam Wilson, Mick Craig, Greg Bickel, Oral Jones, Barth Johnson, Rodney Mattingly and Dave Kriege. You fellows have brought some new trappers into our ranks. That’s what we’re about!
Until next month.
— Chet Hayes