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How do I set rabbit snares?

EDWARD COOK says: It would need a full article or two to cover this subject properly – maybe even a small book.

To keep things as short as possible there’s basically only two places where you can snares on a run and expect some success for your efforts.

Some people favour setting them where the rabbits hop over untrodden grass (or other vegetation), but I prefer to put them smack bang in the middle of what I refer to as the ‘fast beats’ – sections of a run where the rabbits are moving more quickly.

These fast beats are easy to identify; you simply look for small print marks spaced further apart than the rest. The marks indicate the rabbits are hopping or running at speed and, in these situations, they can be caught more efficiently and humanely.

If the ‘beats’ are large, this is an indication of where the rabbit stops, and sits. There’s no point setting a snare here or, for that matter, in any place where you can see droppings. Both are signs that the rabbit isn’t moving and, therefore, almost impossible to catch.

How high above ground you set a snare is crucial and my best results come when I put them about the height and width of my hand above the run. Minor changes, however, might have to be made depending on the vegetation and also the speed the rabbits are travelling at.

Some prefer a large loop in a snare but I’m not convinced by this and tend to use a loop that’s not much bigger than my fist in most places.

I really do enjoy snaring and it is a must in any serious rabbit catcher’s armoury. I’ve learnt a lot more about rabbits by trying to trap them with my homemade all-in-one peg, tealer and snare than I do from most of the other methods I use.

This is certainly an art which takes years to perfect, but it’s definitely worthwhile learning how to do it.

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