The content of this tutorial doesn't have to be followed precisely, its just how i did things and it turned out well.
First you need to go gathering materials. I used Hazel wood. Choose the thin long shoots of wood which i would think are a couple of years old. You don't have to use hazel, There should be plenty of other wood types you can use. I can imagine Willow would work well but you could even use things like Alder whips.
Once you have got the wood you can strip the bark off and tie them together into small bundles and let them dry. Hazel dried for me over night on top of a hot radiator! The wood suffered no splitting.
Keep a hand full of wood fresh for the next stage though because its easier to bend when fresh.
|Ok, next you need to make some hoops which
will be part of the basic frame of your trap. With some wood that is still
fresh, gradually work it in your hands to make it more flexible, then
begin to shape into hoops. Like so:
Wrap string around them to hold them in place. Now leave them to dry and when all the moisture in the wood is gone they should keep their shape.
|I used a total of 6 hoops in the frame of my
|Once they are dry and solid you can taper the
ends so that they fit together nicely. Then bind them to create a nice
hoop. I used Lime bark to bind mine.
Its easier said that done as you might find out!
|Once the hoops are done and dusted, take some
of your dry wood and begin to make the basic frame up. Start by tieing 4
lengths of wood to the hoops. And then another 4 between them.
all your knotts are good and tight!!
|made this little door on mine for getting the
fish out. I would strongly advise this! It was very helpfull having this
little door so that i could put bait inside etc.
|Now just keep on adding wood to make up your cage. And you should have something which looks like this|
|Now its time to make the one way door/ doors.
(you can have one on both ends or not) Its very hard to explain how i did
this so im just going to give you another picture
Basically, rather than creating another really small hoop i tied all
the pieces together into a ring
|If you find that your cage construction has
large gaps in it then you can wrap string round the whole thing evenly so
the little ones cant escape!
|NOW FOR THE
I hear that these traps work best in rivers with the entrance facing upstream but i use mine in a lake and it works fine.
For the bait i stuffed a pine cone with bread and suspended it in the centre of the trap with 2 bits of string. I located it near to the entrance.
|Weight your trap down with rocks and put it in
the water. I put mine on a line of string so i could pull it back to the
lake side. I pushed it out with a long stick.
If you don't catch anything at first don't worry. It may just be a case of changing a few things.
Here's what i caught on my second day of fishing
You may need to leave
the trap in for a long time but always remember to regularly check it!!