Saturday, November 10, 2007

Cougars In Michigan - Group Needs Our Help

Outdoor Notebook: Deer hunters asked to watch for cougars
Compiled and edited by Steve Griffin
11/08/2007
Email to a friendPost a CommentPrinter-friendly
The Michigan Wildlife Conservancy is asking Michigan deer hunters to help it identify and protect an endangered species, the cougar, by reporting any sightings they experience or sign they encounter.

READ MORE:

http://www.ourmidland.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=19002816&BRD=2289&PAG=461&dept_id=472541&rfi=6




PERMISSION TO REPRINT: You may reprint any items from Trapper Ron's Articles in your print or electronic newsletter. But please include the following paragraph: Reprinted from "Trapper Ron's Animal Control" an ezine featuring tips, tricks and tools for animal Control Issues. Subscribe at http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com/ and receive by weekly tips for dealing with animal control issues. If you like these tips, please pass them on to your friends, clients and colleagues. You are receiving this because you signed up for it at the Trapperron.com® website at http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com or you told me you want to subscribe. PRIVACY STATEMENT: Trapperron.com® respects your privacy and has a strict anti-spam policy. ======================================================= Ron Baker a.k.a. Trapper Ron Phone: 248-426-0036 (Eastern)

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Study can help residents address nuisance wildlife


Study can help residents address nuisance wildlife
Andrew Sawmiller is a staff writer for the Spinal Column Newsweekly
November 07, 2007 - West Bloomfield Township has completed a wildlife study requested earlier this year to aid in managing what appears to some to be a growing population of bothersome animals in the lake-filled community.
PERMISSION TO REPRINT: You may reprint any items from Trapper Ron's Articles in your print or electronic newsletter. But please include the following paragraph: Reprinted from "Trapper Ron's Animal Control" an ezine featuring tips, tricks and tools for animal Control Issues. Subscribe at http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com/ and receive by weekly tips for dealing with animal control issues. If you like these tips, please pass them on to your friends, clients and colleagues. You are receiving this because you signed up for it at the Trapperron.com® website at http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com or you told me you want to subscribe. PRIVACY STATEMENT: Trapperron.com® respects your privacy and has a strict anti-spam policy. ======================================================= Ron Baker a.k.a. Trapper Ron Phone: 248-426-0036 (Eastern)

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Fox - Rabbies Scare

Health officials try to nip rabies scare
Michigan cases quadruple so far in '07, but some say it may be due to rise in testing

Christine Ferretti / The Detroit News
Clippings

PLYMOUTH TOWNSHIP -- Larry Root never gave much thought to rabies until one day, while he was minding his own business, a crazed fox sank its teeth into his foot and leg.
The 30-pound critter had its way in his Plymouth Township neighborhood earlier this month, mauling a jogger, nipping at a condominium worker and biting Root as he left his vehicle.
Root struck back, whacking the fox to death with a shovel, but the mad mammal had its revenge. A few days later, tests confirmed it was rabid, forcing Root to undergo a series of five shots to ensure he didn't get the deadly disease so nasty it takes its name from the Latin word for "madness."
Read More

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Wolves In the Northern Lower Peninsula ?

When more wolves draw near, how will we react?
October 28, 2007
By ERIC SHARP Detroit Free Press

GRAYLING, Mich. — Our oldest son, Cam, is 32, yet he vividly remembers a night when he was 10 and sleeping in a tent near a lake in Ontario, where a bush plane had dropped us off for a week of fishing.We had flown in with Craig Porter, now the Detroit Free Press deputy photo editor, and the late Lee Day, our copy desk chief, and we would amuse ourselves at night by calling to the packs of gray wolves we could hear howling in the hills around us, some of them many miles away. When the wolves answered, I could feel Cam snuggle closer and shiver as he listened to their indescribably wild songs.One night, just as we were dropping off to sleep, I heard him whisper urgently, "Dad! Dad! They're here!" Half-groggy, I didn't understand what he meant at first. But as I looked through the tent flap, I saw something moving in the faint light from the stars and the dying fire and realized it was two wolves, which apparently had run into our camp by accident.They were skittish, and we could see the firelight reflected in their eyes as they swung their heads around trying to figure out what the heck this strange-smelling place was.They must have seen some movement in the tent because both animals suddenly spun on their hind legs and were gone in a flash, so close we could hear their toenails skittering on the rocks. We saw them for only five seconds, yet those seconds are among the clearest memories I carry from a life spent in the outdoors.That night came to mind recently when the state Department of Natural Resources confirmed the presence of at least three wolves in the northern Lower Peninsula. The DNR also said it hasn't been able to get signals from another 20 or so wolves fitted with radio collars in the Upper Peninsula.A radio-collared wolf was killed near Rogers City by a trapper who said he thought it was an unusually large coyote. Then a Presque Isle County resident asked the DNR to look at some unusual tracks on his property, and a biologist confirmed they were wolf tracks.The DNR thinks some of the wolves whose radio collars can't be detected might have crossed the ice at the Straits of Mackinac to the Lower Peninsula.While the confirmation of wolves in the Lower Peninsula has thrilled wolf lovers, it will stir equally strong emotions among wolf haters. Michiganders will have to face this question: How many of these beautiful but controversial animals are we prepared to put up with, compared to the number the habitat can sustain?I occasionally hear hunters in the Upper Peninsula complain that wolves are responsible for drastic reductions in deer numbers. That's ridiculous. The DNR estimates the UP wolf population at about 360. Even if it were double that number, and every wolf ate a deer a week (a high estimate), wolves in the UP would still kill only a fraction of the deer taken by hunters or that starve each winter. I would bet cars kill more deer in the UP than wolves do.The public's reaction will be interesting when the wolves begin knocking off livestock and pets like dogs, which they will do if they get the chance. Remember, while they look like dogs, gray wolves are just as wild as any other predator and a lot smarter than most.About 20 years ago, we had a small summer cabin on Vancouver Island in British Columbia, and one year we arrived to find that a lot of people had new dogs. At first I thought we must be seeing the work of the world's greatest puppy salesman, but when I asked a neighbor, she answered, "Oh, it's the wolves." It turned out that the wolves live mostly in the mountainous interior of the island, but in the rare, severe winter, they come down from the hills and go through neighborhoods snatching up dogs.That shouldn't prove to be a big problem in Michigan. We have tough winters, but there are so many deer, the wolves can survive nicely on them. But I wonder what will happen if the wolves in one pack figure out they can make a much easier living by hanging out near a town and eating those four-legged offerings the nice people put out for them?I also can guarantee that some Lower Peninsula hunters will begin screaming that wolves are eating all of their deer.It's a lot easier to blame wolves than to admit that we created a deer herd way too large for the environment. And we raised deer hunters' expectations to unrealistic levels when they had unusually high success rates.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Unusual Deer Struck By Car In UP


In the Fall issue of Wild Rivers Guide (a local tourist and recreation newspaper) is the following article:Deer/automobile crashes numbered 45,000 in Wisconsin last year
[Excerpts:] - Deer are a deadly and costly driving hazard on Wisconsin highways. Last year there were more than 45,000 deer/auto collisions in Wisconsin resulting in six deaths, more than 600 injured and $100-million in property damage. Many of these accidents occur in November. Deer/auto collisions also cost the auto insurance industry about $2,000 per claim, according to the Wisconsin Insurance Alliance (WIA).[End excerpts.]Interesting. Speaking of deer...A motorist struck a "Sitka deer" on U.S.-2 in Quinnesec, Michigan, this week (a short drive from my northern Wisconsin home). Native to Europe, Sitka deer are also stocked at game farms that cater to hunters. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) believes the animal is a possible "escapee" from just such a farm. I searched for the following article after the girl at the BP station in Norway, MI, told me she witnessed the accident and called all her friends to tell them she "saw a car hit a moose!"
European deer involved in crash near Quinnesec
Iron Mountain Daily News, 22-OCT-2007
[Article includes photo.]

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Trapper Ron Adds New Blog

Trapper Ron's adds a New Blog with Links to competition and National Animal Control Stories


Michigan Animal Control Companies

Trapper Ron's Humane Animal Removal & Relocation Services
Trapper Ron Baker has over 15 years of wildlife control experience, stories and advice for you to enjoy. He has handled every thing from mice, squirrels, skunks, ground hogs, raccoons, birds, bees, muskrats, coyote, and opossum. Trapper Ron is licensed by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources as a Wildlife Nuisance Animal Control Operator. LC# RC613. Many of our clients say that they wished they called Trapper Ron first !
If I cannot Help This New Blog Contains Every One Of My Competitors.
Use this list to compare services and pricing.

http://michigananimalcontrol.blogspot.com/


Make Sure to Register....

Thanks
Trapper Ron

Monday, April 30, 2007

Trapper Ron's - Tips of the Week

Trapper Ron's Humane Animal Removal & Relocation Services
Tips of the Week
> Issue #78 - April 30, 2007
> Publisher: Trapper Ron
> mailto:RGBASSOCIATES@MSN.COM
> http://www.trapperron.com
>
> http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com (Blog)




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"Tips, Tricks, True Stories and Tools for Animal Control"

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STORY OF THE WEEK - Sping Time Is Skunk Time
======================================

Let’s face it whether you see a skunk or smell a skunk the encounter is an unpleasant nose turning experience for most people. I have made a living out of trapping and relocating skunks and a host of other animals, such as raccoons, opossum, rats and mice, from property in the Farmington/Farmington Hills and surrounding areas. I can honesty tell you that there are exponentially more skunks than imaginable prowling our neighborhoods. Now, I don’t necessarily mind removing the animals for you because when you smell the odor of a skunk all I smell is the aroma of money.

There are a few simple tactics in removing skunks from you property. The first is to remove all food sources. Many people when they look at their lawns believe that they have mole problems, but in fact, many times they have skunk problems. Skunks can relentlessly tear up a lawn looking for grubs, which can easily be mistaken for moles tunnels and pop ups. Regardless if you believe it is moles or skunks, the first thing I recommend is to have your lawn checked and/or treated for grubs.

Secondly, I recommend taking your garbage out to the street the morning of garbage pick up days. Skunks are nocturnal creature’s typically venturing out between 11:00 PM and 5:00 AM. Skunks are primarily carnivores and will eat anything that smells like rotting meat such as steak, chicken, hot dogs, etc… By waiting until the morning you remove an additional potentially tasty food source for the skunks as well as other varmints.

Additionally, skunks and opossum will take over ground hog holes for their dens. Fill in all holes in your yard that may have been used by a ground hog or any holes that are large enough to allow a large house cat to enter. You may have to keep filling the same hole for a couple of days, but eventually the skunk will tire of re-digging his sleeping quarters each morning and will move on to an easier location to bed down.

Low laying decks are the skunk’s favorite bedding location. It offers a safe and warm location away from dogs, people and other predators who wish to harm them. You can deter skunks by barricading the outer perimeter of your deck with decorative block or wood. Skunks are inherently lazy and will not bother themselves with digging under the blocks to get to a bed site.

Lastly, you can go to your local hardware store and purchase a live trap (Average Price about $45.00) large enough for a skunk, bait it accordingly, and wait for your skunk to be trapped. There is no greater feeling when you trap the animal that has caused your nose to turn. The problem comes after the animal is trapped— NOW WHAT! Well I can’t help you with that, you can drive it far away from your property and release it back into the wild…but be careful, they can become very edgy by the time you open the trap to freedom. I won’t recommend transporting live skunks in trunks of cars for obvious reasons; use a pickup truck without a cap.

Oh, by the way when trapping for skunks, don’t let you dog out of the house in morning to do its duty. I can almost guarantee that they will go right up to the cage of the trapped skunk and more than likely your one problem will double.

The following recipe works well when you or a pet are sprayed during a skunk encounter. Mix quart of hydrogen peroxide with a cup of baking powder and a tablespoon of Dawn dish soap in a bucket. Stir until thoroughly combined and wash yourself/pet liberally. This is not 100 percent, but it seems to work fairly well. The trick is not to allow yourself or pets to get sprayed in the first place. If you are wondering, I have never been sprayed.

If you still have issues with a skunk and would like to have professional come out and review your situation, make sure they are insured and licensed with the Department of Natural Resources. There are a number of company’s that will take care of trapping and removing animals, do your homework and make sure you know what are all of the costs associated with the services and if there are any guarantees.




PERMISSION TO REPRINT: You may reprint any items from
Trapper Ron's Tips of the Week" in your print or
electronic newsletter. But please include the following
paragraph:

Reprinted from "Trapper Ron's Tips of the Week," an
ezine featuring tips, tricks and tools for animal Control Issues.
Subscribe at http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com/ and
receive by weekly tips for dealing with animal control issues.

If you like these tips, please pass them on to your friends,
clients and colleagues.

You are receiving this because you signed up for it at the Trapperron.com®
website at http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com or
you told me you want to subscribe.

PRIVACY STATEMENT: Trapperron.com® respects your privacy
and has a strict anti-spam policy. =======================================================
Ron Baker
a.k.a. Trapper Ron
Phone: 248-426-0036 (Eastern)

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Trapper Ron's Is Proud To Offer New Line Of Veggie Dog Food

Contact Information

Trapper Ron's Website: http://www.trapperron.com/

To Receive Updated Information via Email: http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com/

Email: RGBASSOCIATES@MSN.COM


Trapper Ron's Humane Animal Removal & Relocation Services is proud to anounce that we will begin to market and distribute a new line of all natural Vegetarian Dog Food.


To Order: http://trapperron.com/tykies.html


Tykie's Long Life Dry Mix Blend Homemade Vegetarian Dog Food is made fresh daily in Tykie's Kitchen and is "A Natural Dog Food". Made fresh daily in Tykie's Kitchen!This is the food that my loving dog "Anna" eats every day! Raw and unprocessed, for superior nutrition in every bite! Your dog will feel better, have more energy and have less health problems. Just add warm water and soak for a few minutes. Then add steamed veggies or other healthy leftovers!
All Natural ingredients, including whole grains, mixed vegetables, healing herbs, nutrional yeast and wheatgrass. By feeding your pet fresh, unprocessed ingredients, without byproducts, fillers, preservatives or chemicals, they feel better, have more energy and fewer health or joint problems.

Introduce Tykie's Long life to your dog's diet by mixing it with their regular food for a week or two. Then, feel free to add healthy extras like veggies. peanut butter or quality leftovers for a hearty meal with variety that all dogs love.
Tykie's Long Life is very convenient and economical too. An 8lb bag makes almost 20lbs of food after adding hot water and allowing it soak for 10 minutes or longer.


Ingredients:
Whole Rye, Barley and Oak Flakes, Texturized Vegetable Protein, Dehydrated Vegetables, Dried Cherries, Powdered Wheatgrass, Beets, Parsley, Ginger, Garlic, Kelp, Flaxseed, Peanut Butter Powder, and Nutritional Yeast.

Nutritional Information:
Crude Protein - 17.5 %
Crude Fat - 9.64 %
Crude Fiber - 1.72 %
Crude Moisture - 10.2 %

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Trapper Ron's Receives Gracious Testimonial From Southfield Homeowner

Contact Information

Trapper Ron's Website:
http://www.trapperron.com/

To Receive Updated Information via Email:
http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com/

Trapper Ron's Latest Blog Entry:

http://trapperron.blogspot.com/2007/03/re-post-of-dont-forget-llittle-ones.html

Email:
RGBASSOCIATES@MSN.COM


TESTIMONIAL

My name is Drew Ramsey. To give you a flavor of who I am, I will make two comments. I am not into camping and I think chipmunks are cute as long as they are outside. Two months ago I went into my garage as I had numerous times before and to my surprise, I found overturned trashcans. Something had been looking for food. The raids on the garbage cans continued and I did my best to figure out what was doing this. I made sure the covers were on tight, and still, every morning they were off and the bags were ripped open. In my meager investigation, I found a whole in the rear of the garage. It looked as though an animal had created its own doorway by gnawing through the roof. I closed this opening with a piece of floor tile. The next day a new opening had been created by this animal so it could enjoy the meals found in garbage.
My insurance company wanted me to eliminate the animal(s), reducing the likelihood of my returning with similar claims. They told me to try mothballs. I bought about 20 boxes of mothballs and put them everywhere. Whenever I opened the garage door, it smelled like a mothball factory. The animals still came. I moved the trash outside of the garage. Boxes inside the garage were being opened in a new search for food. Nothing was safe. Even a bag of fertilizer was ripped open. …so too were boxes of summer clothes, Christmas decorations, and extra pots, pans and dishes. After about a week, the animal found the trashcans next to the garage. They knew how to take the covers off of the lockable type too, even the empties. I tried sprinkling my secret habanera hot sauce all over the trashcans and bags. It didn’t matter. It kept happening. I didn’t really know what to do anymore until one very cold night. My chimney and fireplace was built like an old log cabin – open to the elements.
That night, as I was touching up some digital photographs on my computer, I heard a sound from my fireplace. I had had an owl visit me once before. And before that, after four days of not having electricity, I came home to find small animal tracks going from my kitchen to the fireplace and straight up the chimney. So I firmly believe that we cohabitate with animals and I was ‘relatively’ ready to deal with an unknown. I was slightly startled to see what I thought was a pair of widely spaced eyes looking at me. It was very dark in there, and I could have been mistaken. I had a camera next to me so I took a picture. WOW! It was a raccoon! They’re okay as road-kill or in a park, but in your house the little critters are as big as a Great Dane (not really – but when it’s your house – yes, really!)! I calmly thought to myself “think calmly.” I figured he’d be here for the night since it was so cold outside, and as long as he didn’t try to bash through the metal ember netting and the glass doors, it was okay with me. Well, the next day came… and well into it, he was still here. So… I stopped working on my wedding photography project and went right on to Google.
I searched animal removal-southfield, mi and in the first two or three names was one who called himself “trapper.” I didn’t have to look any further. I needed someone who had this kind of claim on his ability to do this work. “Trapper Ron” was his name as listed. I gave him a call and he said he’d be here within an hour. Wow, I thought! I needed quick help. He came over and I showed him where my new furry friend was. Well, I guess the raccoon started likin’ my fireplace and he climbed up beyond Trapper Ron’s pole-yoke could reach. So he set some traps and said he’d be back to pick it up in the morning. We talked the next day he told me the bait was missing out of two traps and a dish filled with bait was taken from a third. It was such a cold and dreary night, the traps had frozen open! So he had re-baited them and the next day he called to tell me he caught them. Them?!, I thought. No. Mine was still with me. So I was rid of two extra pests that I didn’t know I had! Trapper Ron came over with a jar of stuff I remember as Scent of Coyote. He thought this smell of a raccoon’s mortal enemy would certainly run it out of its new home. No, not this time. So Trapper Ron baited and reset two fresh traps. Trapper Ron said if he didn’t trap him this time, he’d bring “Trapper” Erik, his son, and they’d get him from either the fireplace or the rooftop.
My furry friend was so smart, it did go out to eat, but it went to guess where… my garbage cans again! And then it came back in. Trapper Ron came over the next day and moved the raccoon to a position where it could be captured. And of course, I’m happy to be rid of my new furry friend… and his two pals! I am sharing this long story to tell you about raccoons. They are very smart and likeable. Even though I have learned much about raccoons through this experience, I am still very cautious about interacting with them. I must also speak about Trapper Ron. I watched him from a front row seat. In our case, the problem raccoon didn’t read the textbook. There are many things about Trapper Ron which I really like. He listens to you. He has an easy-going and pleasing personality. He gives from himself. He wants to do the job. He wants to work quickly on a very reasonable timetable. He has the experience and he has the equipment. If he needs a hand, he has Erik. And Erik seems to be relaxed and competent in this job too! If you need to have an animal removed, Trapper Ron will do it, answer your questions and maybe tell you a story too! Now I can concentrate on my Wedding Photography…or should I try Pet Photography?
Drew Ramsey
Photography by Drew
Southfield, MI

Trapper Ron Sales Skyrocket After Tip From The Publicity Hound



Contact Information

Trapper Ron's Website:
http://www.trapperron.com/

To Receive Updated Information via Email:
http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com/

Trapper Ron's Latest Blog Entry:
http://trapperron.blogspot.com/2007/03/re-post-of-dont-forget-llittle-ones.html

Email:
RGBASSOCIATES@MSN.COM

For Release:

Trapper Ron's Humane Animal Removal & Relocation Services sales have exploded since a full page article was written about our services. Not only was our article full page, it was contained in Section A Page two of the Sunday edition of the Detroit Free Press.

http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070311/NEWS05/703110601/-1/PRINT

I would like to personally thank Joan Stewart from the Publicity Hound for her Newsletters particularly the one with the contact information that ultimately resulted in a great article. Our phones have been ringing off the hook and our sales have quadrupled since the article was released on March 11, 2007.

If you are interested in free publicity tips that work then I highly recommend that you read her newsletters: http://www.publicityhound.com/

Joan has been an inspiration for us and we now wait and read her newsletters with great anticipation. Free publicity can be challenging and trying; but when you have a pro giving you advice, it can be very easy.

To receive the latest information or article from Trapper Ron's, please take a moment to register at: http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com/


About Trapper Ron's

Trapper Ron Baker has over 20 years of wildlife control experience, stories and advice for you to enjoy. He has handled every thing from mice, squirrels, skunks, ground hogs, raccoons, birds, bees, muskrats, coyote, and opossum.

Trapper Ron is licensed by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources as a Wildlife Nuisance Animal Control Operator. LC# RC613.

The typical service includes setting live traps, daily baiting, and removal of all animals for one standard fixed price. Our competition charges a setup fee and a per animal fee. This can get very expensive particularly if they catch animals not targeted.

Many of our clients say that they wished they called Trapper Ron first.

As always, anytime you require a professional trapper, make sure they are licensed with the Michigan Department of Natural Resource and insured. Cost varies greatly so do your homework and call several trappers and compare pricing for the services offered. Ron Baker is the owner of Trapper Ron’s Humane Animal Removal & Relocation Services located in Farmington Hills. He assists homeowners and business with all wildlife nuisance issues in Farmington and surrounding cities.


Good Luck,
Trapper Ron
Humane Animal Removal & Relocation Services.

http://www.trapperron.com/

Monday, March 19, 2007

Re-Post of "Don't Forget The Little One's"

Important Re-Repost.

Lately I have been hammered by phone calls already this spring about raccoons in attic spaces where home owners remove thier own raccoon. It seems simple enough, go to the store buy a trap, bait it, relocate the trapped raccoon..... right !

Don't Forget the Little One's
by
Trapper Ron

Lately we have received calls regarding adolescent raccoons in attic spaces, under decks and in crawl spaces throughout the area. These animals were abandoned by the mother, possibly the mother was killed on the road or was trapped by a homeowner and relocated to a nearby park. This time of year when the adult raccoon is removed or relocated by a homeowner, they could be causing another unforeseen problem for themselves. Over the years I have accumulated story after story from experiences dealing with nuisance animals. The following is another story where homeowners thought they were solving a problem only to cause another.Not to long ago I received a call to help with a problem a resident was having. Apparently something was making scratching noises in their attic space and they needed someone to come and check it out. Over the phone they told me that they constantly see squirrels on their roof and wondered if one had made its way into their attic.Upon the arrival of our new client’s home, we noticed that the property was heavily wooded with several trees growing up against the house. My first mental note was to have the homeowner trim back the trees far enough to prevent animals from climbing up and jumping onto the roof.The homeowner greeted us outside and after an introduction and a few pleasantries; my attention turned to a large live trap in the garage. The homeowner explained that a couple of days ago, he was experiencing a problem with a raccoon stealing the grease drip pan from his barbecue grill. He had successfully trapped and relocated the problem raccoon to a nearby park. As he was telling me this, I could see the cartoon light bulb dimly lit over his head. He continued to explain that, a couple of days later he and his wife could hear meowing and scratching sounds in his attic. They feared there might be animals in their attic so they decided to call in a professional. As he concluded his story, at this point the light bulb was fully lit, he asked if it was possible that he removed a mother raccoon from babies in the attic. My thoughts exactly….As my son, Erik and I lifted ourselves into the attic we noticed that the screen from a rotary roof fan had been chewed, mangled and laid on the insulation just below leaving an opening for animals to enter. Further inspection showed an unbelievable amount of raccoon feces spanning the entire attic area. Some feces looked dried and as if it had been there for several years. Mental note #2, all of this feces is a calling card for other Raccoons and the homeowner need to clean it up as quickly possible.The highest point in the attic was only four-foot tall and it angled down in four directions towards the outside eaves. We did a cursory scan of the attic space and discovered that thereLittle Raccoon Trapped in an Atticwere no animals visible. We sat in silence for a few minutes until we heard the faint meows of adolescent raccoons. After a more detailed search we located the two small animals. They were tucked deeply in one corner of the attic near the lowest point of the rafters and behind electrical wiring that had been chewed upon. Mental note #3, electrical wiring needs to be repaired before it becomes a fire hazard. I crawled on my belly, as close as I could; however I wasn’t able to reach them by hand. I tried to extract them with my catchpole only to have them disappear into the eaves. We decided to set live traps and wait it out. As we left for our next assignment, I was concerned if the raccoons possibly still nursing; would they be tempted to enter a trap with solid food. Several hours had passed when we received a call from the homeowner. They heard the trap set off and as instructed they called us on our mobile telephone. One down, one to go. A couple more hours later we had the second raccoon. Before we left I made several recommendations from all of my mental notes and other standard common sense suggestions to prevent future invasions.While driving away we determined that the adolescent raccoons had been without their mother, food (other than what was in the trap as bait) or water for at least 4 days. Erik and I decided to bring them home to re-hydrate them before releasing them back into the wild. It is very satisfying to us to be able to release these and all animals back into an environment conducive to their well-being. They were sent off well fed and well hydrated and most importantly they were released to experience a new world together.These two raccoons were very lucky, if the homeowners hadn’t heard them meowing; they would have soon died. The homeowners were equally as lucky, if the raccoons had gone un-noticed and died, the aroma from the decaying carcasses would have been overwhelming for at least a week.Never approach a wild animal including infant, adolescent or adults, unless you are 100 percent positive there is no danger. Even infant wild animals can cause serious damage to a finger or a hand.
If you like reading my stories, pass them onto a friend....
To Subscribe to Our Quarterly Newsletter goto http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com/.Good Luck,Trapper RonHumane Animal Removal & Relocation Services.http://www.trapperron.com/

Thursday, March 15, 2007

The Infamous Uncle Don - Squirrels That Bite !

Careful review of the situation requires common sense. Never approach a wild animal unless you are positive there is no danger. Over the years I have accumulated story after story from experiences dealing with nuisance animals. The following is another story where common sense failed and the outcome turned out to be a painful lesson.

While growing up we would visit my Uncle Don and Aunt Jane’s home on the East Side in Warren. I need to give a little background on Uncle Don. Uncle Don is a great guy who would do anything for anyone. The problem: Uncle Don has extremely bad luck when it comes to his hands and fingers. For as long as I can remember he never had all ten digits on his hands. Uncle Don worked in steel plants, most of his life, where there was an inherent danger usually causing injuries to hands and fingers.

His most recent injury was caused a week before his daughters wedding. He was loading a truck with large steel coils when one fell off and rolled towards him. At the last second he managed to push himself out of the way, unfortunately his hands were slightly crushed in the incident. Since his hands were bandaged, his dinner at the wedding had to cut by his wife.

Now that you know about Uncle Don, let talk about animal safety. Uncle Don isn’t a careless man by any means, just un-lucky when it came to his hands. I was told of a story that happened many years ago. Uncle Don went camping up north with some friends and relatives. They where having a fun spending time in the woods hiking, biking and enjoying the fresh air. Uncle Don while hiking came across a squirrel, which appeared to be dead in the trail. He examined it for a while and decided that he would take it back to camp for everyone to see. Uncle Don knelt down then reached out to pick it up. The squirrel regained consciousness just as Uncle Don attempted to grab it by the tail. The squirrel twisted around and then bit down on the tip of one of the two remaining fingers on Uncle Don’s right hand.

In a panic Uncle Don swung his hand, in a whipping motion, trying to get the squirrel to release his finger resulting in the squirrel to clamp down harder. Every attempt to shake the squirrel loose didn’t work. Frantically Uncle Don, not sure what to do, started to slam the squirrel up against a tree trunk; still the determined squirrel would not release its bite. Witnesses in the area say that they saw a person running around in the woods like a madman screaming in pain and begging for someone to help him. Not knowing what else to do, he noticed a stream, he ran to the edge and dunked his hand into the water. Uncle Don was amazed that that squirrel didn’t immediately release its grip. Unfortunately the squirrel drowned and still the squirrel wouldn’t let go. With the animal, now dead, hanging limp off the tip of finger, he decided to go back to the camp.

When the initial laughter subsided, his comrades, realizing this was a serious matter contemplated how to get the varmint off of Uncle Don’s finger. They tried a number of ways but eventually they had to pry the squirrel off of his finger with a pair of pliers.

To this day, Uncle Don tells this story whenever he sees squirrels in the yard; it seems to get funnier every time he tells it. My point in telling this story is that squirrels are wild and unpredictable animals not to be taken for granted. When I hear that people are hand-feeding squirrels in the neighborhood, I think about uncle Don and wonder what it would take for the squirrel to latch onto the hand that feeds it. Moral of the store is to let your common sense dictate your actions and never hand feed wild animals, they have teeth and they can bite; just ask Uncle Don.
If you like reading my stories, pass them onto a friend....
To Subscribe to Our Quarterly Newsletter goto http://www.trapperron.blogspot.com/.
Good Luck,Trapper Ron
Humane Animal Removal & Relocation Services.
http://www.trapperron.com/

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Night Time S.O.S. Call – Trapper Ron To The Rescue

I pride myself on helping anyone in need especially if they seem frightened by the pest or varmint. This story happened a couple of weeks ago. It was 11:00 PM; I just sat down in my lazy-boy chair to catch up on the late news. After a long day and evening of crawling through attics and trapping everything from mice to skunks it was nice to put my feet up and relax. I wasn’t sitting for more than 2 minutes when the phone rang. The following is another story where people overreact when a little animal takes total control and dictates the actions of an otherwise rational person.

I answered the phone to a frantic female voice that seemed very desperate for assistance. Once she calmed down, she explained that there was a bat flying around in their house and they didn’t know what to do. I tried to explain to her that I trap all types of animals, however bats were not one of them. Trapping bats was not my specialty and I suggested that she call someone with expertise in bats. In exasperation she explained that she had called the experts, in fact she said that she called about 15 experts with ads in the phone book. Not one of them would come out and assist her until late the next day or the day after that.

Sensing that I was destined to venture out for one more adventure, I attempted to explain to her how she or her husband could catch the bat herself. Unfortunately they were terrified of this creature and stated this would never happen. I finally conceded that I would come out under the premise that I was not a bat expert; however, I would do the best I could for them.

After a twenty-minute drive I arrived at their home. The house was a huge two-story home in a very nice neighborhood in Novi. The house was easy to spot since every light was on and the front screen door was propped open. I walked up and rang the doorbell. A second later a relieved voice came over an intercom telling me to let myself in.

I walked into the front hall and did a quick scan of the first floor; no bat or people. My attention was directed up the staircase were a woman’s head appeared out of a bedroom door just long enough to nervously tell me that the bat was somewhere on the first floor-then the bedroom door slammed shut.

As I began to look for the bat, I thought to myself that these people must be really scared if they would let a man they never meet before enter there house at 11:00pm unsupervised. Considering that I am a big guy who has been up a very long time catching animals all day and evening and no doubt, looked as if I had.

I looked everywhere for the bat. I looked in windows and behind curtains, behind pictures as well as the large vases they had. I looked in the branches and leaves of the trees and plants that seemed to dominate the d├ęcor of their home. I looked in every room and behind every piece of furniture they owned. I even went so far as to look through their dirty clothes in their laundry room. In other words, I checked every square inch of the first floor yet I found no bat. By this time the homeowners decided it was safe enough to venture down to the first floor and take a look for them.

We discussed a few possibilities of where the bat may have ventured. In our discussions it was said that the front door was left open for about five minutes after they had call me for help. After checking the house as thoroughly as I did, the only explanation was that the bat must have flown out while the door was open.

I explained to the homeowners that I didn’t believe the bat was in the house. I told them I would turn the lights down and wait in the kitchen for an hour to see if the bat would come out. They began to feel a little better about the situation and ventured to back to their bedroom to wait for the hour to pass.

Not feeling comfortable walking upstairs and knocking on the homeowner’s bedroom door, I decided to wait for them to come down on their own. The hour expired at 1:30 am as I continued to stand in their dimly lit house waiting for a bat. An animal I knew was not here. At 2:00am I was beginning to believe the homeowners had fallen asleep on me. Finally at 2:15am the husband came downstairs and thanked me for coming out to help them-then I departed.

The next day I received a very nice message from the homeowners. They were very appreciative and were very grateful that I came out even though they knew I was not a bat expert, but I was willing to help. They were able to sleep the rest of the night because I was able to calm them down and reassure to them that the bat was not interested in hurting them.

I was disappointed that I wasn’t able to capture the bat that night, the experience would have been added to my expertise and I could say that bats are part of the services that I offer.

The disappointment I felt the night before ended the next night with a telephone call at 2:30am with a woman screaming, “You’ve got to come back here right now, the bat is in our bedroom”. But that’s another story….
Ron Baker is the owner of Trapper Ron’s Humane Animal Removal & Relocation Services located in Farmington Hills. He assists homeowners and business with all wildlife nuisance issues in Farmington and surrounding cities.
To Subscribe to Our Quarterly Newsletter goto WWW.TRAPPERRON.BLOGSPOT.COM.
Good Luck,
Trapper Ron
Humane Animal Removal & Relocation Services.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Trapper Ron's 2007 Goose Round Up Service

Goose Round Up Service
Michigan DNR Trained & Licenced
Effective immediately - Trapper Ron's Humane Animal Removal & Relocations Services we start taking appointments for the 2007 Goose Round-up slated for June. This year, we project, the goose population in Southeastern Michigan to be completely out of control. Last year the Michigan DNR trained our staff to handle the geese effectively and humanely. We have positioned our organization to handle any size goose population in any environment. The costs will vary depending on the senerio and size of the flock, however we feel that our services will be much more cost effective than our competitors. Our website has a page dedicated to our Goose Round-up http://trapperron.com/goose.html please feel free to take a look.

FEES
Large Pond or Lake Site Preparation
$950.00 One Time Fee
Normal Site Preparation
$595.00 One Time Fee

Goose Removal
$9.00 Per Bird/100 or Less
Fixed Bid
(When the number of birds estimated is over 100)

Goose Round Up Service Consists of:
Site Preparation and Evaluation
Coral Erection
Volunteer Orientation - If Any
Morning Round Ups & Goose Crating

Delivery To DNR Goose Station in Waterford, MI
Return For More Geese

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Trapper Ron's Article of the Week

Bee's, Hornets & Wasps.

This is a reprint of an article I published in our local news paper last August, if you like it please pass it on to a friend, Thanks Trapper Ron.

Fall is approaching at break neck speed and all urban wildlife will soon be looking for cozy places to spend the colder months. If you want to save yourself problems this winter, then it will be prudent to fill in all openings under decks and holes in the yard. It is also wise to check eaves and attic vents for any obvious openings and a quick inspection of the attic space for intrusions. Also, yard clean up of fallen fruit from trees, removing bird seed beneath bird feeders and securing outside trash cans can save you clean up time and damage from animals over the winter months.

We spent hundreds of man hours this past spring and summer trapping animals as small as mice to animals as large as coyotes. Thankfully these hectic trapping seasons are winding to a close. This year the offspring population for skunks and raccoons seemed much larger than normal. Some of our clients who initally thought they had a skunk usually resulted in us trapping the mother skunk and as many as six little ones.

For the month of July we trapped over 75 skunks, over fifty raccoons, and dozens of other animals such as moles, coyotes, opossum, rats and mice. Many clients opted to have us install screening under their decks and porches. Personally, I am looking forward to the uncoming cooler months, since traditionally, the number of calls we receive should slow drastically. We usually get a break at the end of August and early September with calls increasing soon after.

This time of year the larger animal calls subside and we tend to get calls related to bees hornets and wasps. In the last two weeks, we removed two very large hornet nests and we have appointments for two more removals next week. We are willing to assist anyone who needs help with these pests, but quite frankly, you can handle this pest yourself. There are many different varieties of these types of insects and the following removal technique will work for all of them. Your local hardware store should have products that deal with wasp and hornet nests. I have found that the sprays that produce a stream of foam work the best. For a large nest you will need at least 5 or 6 of the larger cans.

Wait until the late evening or very early in the morning, this will ensure that the hive has most of the colony within the nest and they will be less active. It is best to wait until dark, however you should never shin a flash light at the hive since they will most likely fly directly towards the light. Trust me on this one, I learned this lesson a long time ago.

Most of the insect sprays will have a stream of twelve to twenty feet. Shake the can very well and test spray at the hive. Once you have a full pressure stream, aim for the opening of the hive; usually located near the bottom of the hive. Use one full can for the opening and two full cans for the rest of the hive. The idea is to soak the hive thoroughly; this can be done by spraying the top of the hive slowly and letting the fluids seep into the hive from the top. Repeat this step over the course of a day or two.

When you are satisfied that the hive is no longer active, you can cut it out of the tree or eaves. Leaving the hive should not be an option since the larvae on the inside of the hive will survive and can regenerate the population very quickly. Once the hive is removed place it in a plastic or paper lawn refuse bag, seal tightly and discard with you trash. If you need any advice or assistance, we are only a telephone call away are very happy to help.

As always, anytime you require a professional trapper, make sure they are licensed with the Michigan Department of Natural Resource and insured. Cost vary greatly so do your homework and call several trappers and compare pricing for the services offered.

If you enjoyed this article and would like to recieve new articles each week, you can subscribe to my blog at WWW.TRAPPERRON.BLOGSPOT.COM.

For More information on the Services that Trapper Ron Provides please visit or Website: WWW.TRAPPERRON.COM

Ron Baker is the owner of Trapper Rons Humane Animal Removal & Relocation Services located in Farmington Hills. He assists homeowners and business with all wildlife nuisance issues in Farmington and surrounding cities. Email: RGBASSOICATES@MSN.COM

Friday, January 26, 2007

Trapper Ron Taking 2007 Goose Round-Up Appointments

Effective immediately - Trapper Ron's Humane Animal Removal & Relocations Services we start taking appointments for the 2007 Goose Round-up slated for June.

This year, we project, the goose population in Southeastern Michigan to be completely out of control. Last year the Michigan DNR trained our staff to handle the geese effectively and humanely. We have positioned our organization to handle any size goose population in any environment. The costs will vary depending on the senerio and size of the flock, however we feel that our services will be much more cost effective than our competitors. Our website has a page dedicated to our Goose Round-up http://trapperron.com/goose.html please feel free to take a look.

On a sidebar note, Trapper Ron's also has a Dog Waste removal service that can be modified to handle the removal goose doodoo. Pricing may be slightly different based upon the size and amount of DooDoo consistantly reappearing: http://trapperron.com/doodoo.html

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Kathy & The Giant Rat

While dating my wife, Kathy many years ago. I was invited to spend the evening with her and her parents to watch a movie at their home. The evening was going well; we had our sodas and popcorn, and a warm blanket to snuggle up with and the lights turned low.
I don’t remember what we were watching but I do remember the rest of the eventful evening.

Kathy’s parents had a den off of their living room with a door leading to their attached garage. While we were watching the movie Kathy insisted that she heard scratching sounds coming from the garage. At first we discarded her concerns and continued watching the movie. Kathy continued to insist that something was in the garage and the brave men of the house decided to investigate. We put the movie on pause and ventured into the garage. A quick inspection revealed nothing, with the exception of small animal footprints on a dust covered shelving unit near the door. After deciding that Kathy was hearing things, we continued with the movie. After a short while, she began to hear the scratching noises again. This time she took it upon herself to investigate. I cannot fully describe the look of horror on her face as she opened the door to the garage, or the screams of “It’s a huge rat”. Kathy slammed the door and while darting away from the door she shook with vile disgust. Meanwhile, hearing Kathy scream, I jumped up to see what had happened. To my disbelief a very large opossum was standing with its hind legs on the doorstep and its front paws holding itself upright against the screen door. It appeared to be looking into the house. At first glance the opossum did look very similar to a rat and after a second or two decided that it was in fact an opossum.

Kathy’s father, bless his heart ran down the hall to a closet where he stored a shotgun. When he returned he attempted to load the gun, however his hands had a very nervous shake and he found it difficult to load the chamber. The chaos and excitement in the house that night was unbelievable, one minute we are watching a movie the next my future father-in-law had a shotgun in his hands.

I suggested that he not shoot at the opossum since there were two very expensive cars parked in the garage. Chances were better than average the animal would be missed, and the bb’s from the shotgun shell would ricochet around the garage; the cars most likely, would get the worst of it.

After everyone calmed down, Kathy’s father and I ventured into the garage armed with a golf club. The animal was under some boxes in the far end of the garage. I slowly approached the animal, not knowing how it would react. I could feel the hot breath of my future farther-in-law against the nap of my neck. I turned and asked him sarcastically if he would rather take the lead. He got the hint and backed up a couple of feet. We slowly continued to approach until I was close enough to reach it with the golf club. I gently poked at its rear end hoping it would move; instead it hissed at me and showed its teeth while staring at me with devilish red glowing eyes. After gaining a little more confidence, I gave it a couple more pokes and it finally decided to retreat. The opossum slowly waddled out of the now open main garage door never to be seen again.

Looking back, I always had a knack for dealing with animals; I just didn’t realize it at the time. Over the years I have had many experiences, some funny, some very terrifying, all of which have helped me become the best professional trapper around.

Raccoon’s And Family Heirlooms

I will spend a lot of time over the coming winter months trapping and relocating nuisance animals, such as raccoons, opossum, skunks, rats, mice and, coyotes from property in the Farmington/Farmington Hills and surrounding areas. I wrote the following to emphasize that reasonable precautions and a simple maintenance chore this winter would help in dealing with and living with wildlife in our city and surrounding areas.

Several weeks ago, my son, Erik and I were out fairly early in the morning checking our traps. It was a light day of trapping with several raccoons, two Skunks and an opossum neatly stored in the bed of my pickup truck. We had several hours before our next appointment so we stopped at a coffee shop for donuts-then headed for home. As we pulled into our driveway around 7:00am, I noticed my wife standing in her robe waiting for us.

Kathy had been trying to get in touch with us for the last 45 minutes; unfortunately I had left my cell phone at home. After she let me know, in not so many words, how she had been woken up prematurely, she informed us of an emergency call that needed our attention. With an apology, the address, my cell phone, and our highly trained golden retriever Anna, we left for the emergency.

Kathy had been sleeping when the phone rang at 6:15 am. The woman on the other end seemed very distraught and wanted assistance quickly. She explained that a very large raccoon had entered their home and was knocking things off of her cabinets. Kathy did her best to calm her down a told her that someone would be there within the hour.

The home was easy to find since there was an elderly couple joyously flagging us down and directing us into their driveway. I told Erik to leave Anna in the truck until we needed her. We walked through front door armed with five-foot catchpoles. Catch poles are basically pipes with a cable noose on one end used to humanely and safely capture large animals.

A quick scan of the room revealed multiple piles of broken glass and pottery. The homeowners explained that the raccoon had successfully destroyed 15 antique cookie jars that had been in their family for several generations. When we ventured deeper into the home we noticed, on top of a curio cabinet, a very large raccoon and it was not happy. I told Erik to go back to the truck and be ready with a transport cage.

I approached the animal and slowly placed the noose of my catchpole over the head and neck. With a quick tug I had what felt like a 35-pound raccoon securely harnessed. It jumped about and flailed desperately trying to wedge itself behind the cabinet. The fight was futile for the raccoon and soon it gave up the struggle and submitted to my will-it was clearly under control. I dragged the raccoon outside to the open cage Erik had prepared and 30 seconds later we had it securely stowed with the other animals captured during the morning.

Afterwards it was determined that the raccoon had crawled down the fireplace chimney sometime during the night and calmly walked out the fireplace opening into their living room. Fortunately the homeowners were home and not on vacation--the raccoon could have done significant damage to their property.

This situation could have been avoided with one simple product - a chimney flue screen cap. Flue caps are covers that allow smoke to exit a chimney while preventing wildlife from gaining access to the home. They can be purchased from any hardware or home supply warehouse and most are reasonable in price. The advice that we give out most often is to secure all of your Chimney flues with covers. This is a simple maintenance task that can save you a potential headache. Unfortunately, in this case the loss of priceless family heirlooms and the heartache associated with their destruction should have never happened.

Don't Forget The Little Ones

Lately we have received calls regarding adolescent raccoons in attic spaces, under decks and in crawl spaces throughout the area. These animals were abandoned by the mother, possibly the mother was killed on the road or was trapped by a homeowner and relocated to a nearby park. This time of year when the adult raccoon is removed or relocated by a homeowner, they could be causing another unforeseen problem for themselves. Over the years I have accumulated story after story from experiences dealing with nuisance animals. The following is another story where homeowners thought they were solving a problem only to cause another.

Not to long ago I received a call to help with a problem a resident was having. Apparently something was making scratching noises in their attic space and they needed someone to come and check it out. Over the phone they told me that they constantly see squirrels on their roof and wondered if one had made its way into their attic.

Upon the arrival of our new client’s home, we noticed that the property was heavily wooded with several trees growing up against the house. My first mental note was to have the homeowner trim back the trees far enough to prevent animals from climbing up and jumping onto the roof.

The homeowner greeted us outside and after an introduction and a few pleasantries; my attention turned to a large live trap in the garage. The homeowner explained that a couple of days ago, he was experiencing a problem with a raccoon stealing the grease drip pan from his barbecue grill. He had successfully trapped and relocated the problem raccoon to a nearby park. As he was telling me this, I could see the cartoon light bulb dimly lit over his head. He continued to explain that, a couple of days later he and his wife could hear meowing and scratching sounds in his attic. They feared there might be animals in their attic so they decided to call in a professional. As he concluded his story, at this point the light bulb was fully lit, he asked if it was possible that he removed a mother raccoon from babies in the attic. My thoughts exactly….

As my son, Erik and I lifted ourselves into the attic we noticed that the screen from a rotary roof fan had been chewed, mangled and laid on the insulation just below leaving an opening for animals to enter. Further inspection showed an unbelievable amount of raccoon feces spanning the entire attic area. Some feces looked dried and as if it had been there for several years. Mental note #2, all of this feces is a calling card for other Raccoons and the homeowner need to clean it up as quickly possible.
The highest point in the attic was only four-foot tall and it angled down in four directions towards the outside eaves. We did a cursory scan of the attic space and discovered that there

Little Raccoon Trapped in an Attic

were no animals visible. We sat in silence for a few minutes until we heard the faint meows of adolescent raccoons.


After a more detailed search we located the two small animals. They were tucked deeply in one corner of the attic near the lowest point of the rafters and behind electrical wiring that had been chewed upon. Mental note #3, electrical wiring needs to be repaired before it becomes a fire hazard. I crawled on my belly, as close as I could; however I wasn’t able to reach them by hand. I tried to extract them with my catchpole only to have them disappear into the eaves.

We decided to set live traps and wait it out. As we left for our next assignment, I was concerned if the raccoons possibly still nursing; would they be tempted to enter a trap with solid food. Several hours had passed when we received a call from the homeowner. They heard the trap set off and as instructed they called us on our mobile telephone. One down, one to go. A couple more hours later we had the second raccoon. Before we left I made several recommendations from all of my mental notes and other standard common sense suggestions to prevent future invasions.

While driving away we determined that the adolescent raccoons had been without their mother, food (other than what was in the trap as bait) or water for at least 4 days. Erik and I decided to bring them home to re-hydrate them before releasing them back into the wild. It is very satisfying to us to be able to release these and all animals back into an environment conducive to their well-being. They were sent off well fed and well hydrated and most importantly they were released to experience a new world together.

These two raccoons were very lucky, if the homeowners hadn’t heard them meowing; they would have soon died. The homeowners were equally as lucky, if the raccoons had gone un-noticed and died, the aroma from the decaying carcasses would have been overwhelming for at least a week.

Never approach a wild animal including infant, adolescent or adults, unless you are 100 percent positive there is no danger. Even infant wild animals can cause serious damage to a finger or a hand.

Spring is Upon Us Again

Spring is finally here and already many animals have come out of hibernation. The trapping business in general becomes very slow during the winter months. Early to mid-March shows a slow but steady increase in varmint sightings, skunk smells and calls for the removal of the nuisance animals. I will spend a lot of time over the coming months trapping and relocating nuisance animals, such as raccoons, opossum, skunks, rats, mice and Coyotes from property in the Farmington/Farmington Hills and surrounding areas.

Many people ask, what do I do with the animals I live trap, such as skunks. My standard, favorite, answer is “Well, I let them go”, they always ask where do I release them, I respond, “At my next client, of course”. It usually takes about 5 to 10 seconds for it to register that I am kidding with them. Releasing animals is not rocket science; however, how I deal with a trapped skunk is a trade secret. I do not want to be responsible for a novice to accidentally get a special gift from their new striped friend. In reality, I must follow the guidelines outlined by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. The license that was issued to me, and my competitors, is very specific in dealing with animals caught in live traps. Most animals can be released in a habitat that is conducive to their well-being. Unfortunately, some animals need to be destroyed, such as rabid, injured, or animals that otherwise will cause harm to themselves or there surroundings.

Remember, animals are among us and for the most part they just want to live quietly and will remain unseen. With our expansion into animal habitats, our encounters will only increase. Removal should be considered when animals become a danger to humans or property. Apartment complex residents are usually the first to experience nuisance animal problems in the spring. The mere numbers of dumpsters in a large complex are a smorgasbord of fresh delicacies. Raccoons, Opossum, and Skunks are the main culprits that tend to startle residents as they dispose of their refuge.

Imagine yourself taking the garbage out early in the morning before you go to work. It’s still dark out as you walk to your dumpster across the parking area. You have done this chore a thousand times since you moved in with nothing to fear except the cold morning air. You approach the dumpster and lift the lid; it slams loudly metal against metal. Suddenly, one, two, or more raccoons jump out, or worse yet, you startled a skunk or two. I don’t care how brave you are; the surprise of this would rattle the nerves of anyone, including Trapper Ron.

Calls from homeowners, urban and rural, follow the apartment complexes. Skunks hibernate in January and February, usually for two coldest months of the year. You may have already noticed the smell of skunks in your area; they are looking for food and a cozy place to sleep during the daytime hours. Low-lying decks, preferably those with dryer vents exhausting warm air, are the preferred locations for bedding around homes. Skunks primarily eat grubs, insects, and worms when the ground is loose enough for them to dig. When the ground is frozen they will eat anything, including irresistible tidbits in garbage cans or dumpsters.

For those who are brave enough to capture a skunk on their own, live traps can be purchased at your local hardware store (Average Price about $45.00). Bait it accordingly, and wait for your skunk to be trapped. It may take a couple of days, and you may catch other animals in the process. Eventually you will trap the skunk or skunks in your area. I can tell you there is no greater feeling when you trap the animal that has caused your nose to turn. The problem comes after the animal is trapped--now what.

I recently received a call from a local women who decided to live trap a skunk that was on her property. The good news is she caught the pesky critter, the bad news is she didn’t know how to transport or how release the varmint. She was very concerned about getting sprayed and didn’t want to put it in her car. She had called several of my well-known competitors for assistance and their fees were out of line with her budget. She was very concerned about the cost of removing the animal and I tried to accommodate her. As you all know by now, I will gladly assist anyone in need, when possible. As a compromise, I traded removing the skunk in lieu of her live trap. In the end, everyone was happy, she got rid of the varmint and I got a new cage.

Dog or Coyote ?

So you think you saw a stray dog in your neighborhood, do not be so sure it could be a coyote. The average adult coyote stands about 20 inches at the shoulder and weighs roughly 35 pounds. A coyote has the general appearance of skinny German shepherd, having a narrow muzzle; large pointed ears and yellowish eyes. Coyotes are nocturnal creature’s typically venturing out between 11:00 PM and 5:00 AM; however, it is not uncommon to see them during the day.

I spend a lot of time trapping and relocating nuisance animals, such as raccoons, opossum, skunks, rats, mice and Coyotes from property in the Farmington/Farmington Hills and surrounding areas. Concerned calls inquiring about the trapping and removal of coyotes have increased sharply for us from a year ago. The latest DNR estimates are that there are about 200 coyotes in Oakland County. I honesty believe there are a lot more coyotes than they predict prowling our neighborhoods.

For the most part you may never see a coyote, however coyote sightings are increasing and the likelihood of you seeing one in the future is very possible. The coyote is one of the most adaptable creatures in the world. They are common in most rural area, but because of their secretive nature, few are seen. Efforts to control the coyote seem to have produced an animal that is extremely alert and wary, enabling it to survive in every county of the United States.

Coyotes are very useful and necessary animals and should be treated with the respect due to wild predator. They are very effective at controlling the populations of many other varmint species such as: ground hogs, rabbits, squirrels, skunks and mice. The coyote becomes a problem when household pets are added to their diet. Dogs that are not contained may approach a coyote to investigate or attempt to chase it from its territory only to find it either outmatched or outnumbered.

I was recently contracted to remove a problem coyote from a property in Farmington Hills because one of their dogs was attacked and killed by a local coyote. By obeying the leash law this incident could have been prevented, unfortunately the homeowners didn’t realize the danger for they’re pet until it was too late. Since the attack the coyote(s) have been spotted on a daily basis coming very close to their house, including the patio. There concern for their remaining pets was justified and we proceeded to remove the problem coyote(s).

There are a few things to consider when coyotes are known to be in the area.
1) Do not keep pet food outdoors.
2) Keep trashcan lids on tight and store in your garage. 3) Keep household pets inside at night, Coyotes will prey on cats and small dogs.
4) Pick ripe fruit from trees and pick up fallen fruit.
5) Clean up areas around bird feeders.
6) Never try to feed a coyote! There have been no reports of coyotes attacking people in Michigan; however, incidents nationally are due to people feeding coyotes.
7) Inform your neighbors about the coyote(s) and recommend that they follow the same precautions.

From the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (Michigan DNR).”If you see a coyote while you are outside, never try to run away from it. If the coyote approaches you, throw rocks or sticks to frighten it away. The best thing for all wildlife, including coyotes, is for them to remain their instinctive fear of people”

If you decide to remove the coyote yourself, you will need a live trap or snare. Your local hardware store may have live traps; however, the largest trap they will have is for a raccoon (Average Price about $45.00). Traps are sold for larger animals through larger trapping supply company’s (Average Price about $275.00+Shipping). There are a couple of problems with these traps. First, you will catch other animals while trying to capture you problem coyote. Secondly, where there is one coyote there are usually one or more in their area. Lastly, The problem comes after the animal is trapped— now what do you do? Snares are only to be used as a last resort and I would not recommend an amateur attempting to snare a coyote.

Ultimately, I recommend using a professional trapper, one with large animal experience. If you decide to have a professional come out and review your situation, make sure they are insured and licensed with the Department of Natural Resources. There are a number of companies that will take care of trapping and removing small animals, make sure they are qualified and have experience trapping coyotes. Do your homework and make sure you know what are all of the costs associated with the services and if there are any guarantees.

The Legend of Trapper Ron

My father once told me to be careful of what you ask for in life; you may accidentally receive it. I will spend a lot of time over the coming months trapping and relocating nuisance animals, such as raccoon, opossum, skunks, rats, mice and coyotes from property in the Farmington/Farmington Hills and surrounding areas.

Since I started writing trapping stories, I have received many questions on trapping. One question in particular, I am asked relates to how I started trapping nuisance animals. The follo

It all started about fifteen years ago in the driveway of my home in the City of Farmington. It was about 9:00 p.m. and my wife and I were attempting to remove the window sticker from our brand new full sized van we had just purchased.

I was standing on the passenger side with the door open scrapping the sticker off when two skunks appeared at my feet from under the van. I was in shock and feared moving. The skunks walked casually past my feet towards the backyard and squeezed under the fence. I slowly peeked around the corner of my house and watched them crawl under my deck.

My wife, Kathy, insisted that I get rid if them for obvious reasons. I did not have a clue what to do, so I called the city for help. They said that as long as the animals were outside the home, they could not do anything. However, they did have a couple of live traps I could use, if I wanted to trap it myself. I have hunted and fished my whole life and I thought that trapping should be easy enough, so I went to the police station to borrow a trap. At the station, I talked with an officer while waiting for a trap to be brought out from a back storage room. He asked what I was trapping and I told him my story about the skunks.

I asked him what should I do with any skunks I trap;
He just laughed and said, “Sounds like skunk fricassee to me”.
I replied, “You mean I can shoot it once I trap it”.
The officer looked at me with a very concerned expression and said,
“No, you cannot shoot it, city ordinance does not allow someone to set off a firearm within the city”.

After a second or two I asked, “Well, can I shoot it with my bow?”

The officer looked at me with a devilish grin and walked away. I took that to mean that I have a viable alternative, until I looked at the trap. The metal wiring of the trap was too tight to shoot it with a bow and arrow so I dismissed this option altogether.

Later that evening, I set up the live trap in the driveway near the area of my deck where the skunks had entered the night before. I did not know what to bait the trap with so I looked in the refrigerator. The only thing I could see that might work was hot dogs. I grabbed a couple and threw them into the trap.

Early the next morning, I looked out my kitchen window and to my surprise; there was a very large skunk inside the live trap. My chest pumped up as I strutted down the hall to brag to my wife who was still sleeping.

Kathy was very happy but wondered how and where I was going to get rid of it. The reality of this finally sank in as I drank a cup of coffee and watched the skunk from the safety of my kitchen

Many questions were running through my head; would it spray me, how far could it spray, how was I to get close to the cage, never mind opening the cage without being sprayed, and how and where do I take it.

After several cups of coffee, I remembered that I had a tarp in the garage. I mustered the courage to deal with the skunk by covering the cage with the tarp. I slowly approached the cage with the tarp as a shield and laid it over the skunk without further incident. I continued to wrap the cage with the loose ends of the tarp until I had the entire cage securely wrapped. Now that I had this hurdle jumped, I called my father for assistance.

My father was still laughing when he arrived at my house; he was as clueless as I was on what to do. Fortunately, he owned a pickup truck and we could use it to move the trapped skunk. My father, Erik my oldest son, he must have been around 5 years old at the time, and I piled into the pickup for our adventure. We slowly drove to the nearest park since I did not want the tarp to blow off the cage.

Once at the park, I took the trap and sat it on the ground away from my father, my son and the truck. We talked it over for a minute until I got the nerve to reach inside the tarp to unlatch the trap door. When the door was securely open, I ran from it as fast as could. We waited for five minutes and the skunk did not come out of the cage.

After ten minutes, I walked up to the cage, gave it a light kick, and then ran. I was amazed that the skunk would not leave the cage. My father and I just looked at each other in puzzlement. Jokingly my father told me to go over and shake the skunk out of the cage. The look I gave him surely indicated that he was insane, but after waiting, another five minutes decided what the heck.

I left my son by the truck and told him he was about to witness two grown men running from a small fury animal; we slowly approached the cage. I grabbed the rear end of the cage and tilted it so that the open end was pointing to the ground. The skunk still did not come out. I lifted the cage higher and still nothing.

Then, in a moment of bravery, I picked up the cage and I gave it a good shake. Suddenly the cage got a little lighter. My father was already running away from me when I noticed that the skunk was on the ground at my feet. A split second later the cage was going one way, me another, and the skunk another.

After my first experience. I continued to trap at night in an attempt to capture the other skunk. In the process, I caught two raccoons, an opossum and eventually trapped the remaining skunk.

Work quickly spread throughout the neighborhood and I found myself doing favors for friends, relatives and neighbors. I continued to education myself on various trapping techniques eventually turning my new hobby into a business; the rest is history.

Ultimately, the answer to the question of how I became an animal trapper is by pure accident. My father, like many times before, was right again. As he would put it, “Ask and you shall receive”