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”