Killer-Type (Conibear) Trap Rules

trapping laws book cover

Killer-type traps with jaw spread of 8 inches or less must be set within an exclusion device unless if (1) when set, placed, and tended, they are completely underwater, or if (2) the trap has an inside jaw spread 5 inches or less and is:

  • Either set so as to be partially covered by water at all times, or
  • Set under overhanging stream banks, or
  • Used at a blind set (without the use of bait, lure or visible attractor). Bait, lure and visible attractor do not include animal droppings (scat) or urine.

It is unlawful to use a killer-type trap with a jaw spread larger than 8 inches, except during the open season on beaver. These traps may only be used if when set, placed, and tended, the trap is completely underwater.

Lynx Exclusion Device Rules

For all exclusion devices, the jaws of the killer-type trap must be completely within the exclusion device; however, trap springs can be outside of the device.

Exclusion devices will have the following designs:

  1. For traps with a jaw spread less than or equal to 5 inches (primarily used for marten trapping), the device must have an opening of 4 x 4 inches or less. The entrance hole may be placed on the end or on the side of the device, and the trap must be set a minimum of 18 inches from the closest edge of the entrance hole (See Figure 1 below).
  2. For traps with a jaw spread greater than 5 inches but less than 8 inches, two designs may be constructed. For both devices the trap must be placed no closer than 18 inches from the closest edge of the entrance hole.
    1. The first design has an entrance hole on the end of the device that must not exceed 5 x 6 inches. A baffle must be placed no more than 6 inches back from the entrance hole and must not leave an opening greater than 5 x 6 inches. With the baffle in place, the entrance hole and interior opening must not overlap to create an unobstructed view to the interior of the exclusion device (See Figure 2a below).
    2. For the second design the entrance hole must not exceed 6 x 7 inches and must be placed on the side of the device. A baffle must be placed at the edge of the entrance with the baffle opening opposite of the entrance hole, and the interior opening must not exceed 6 x 6 inches (See Figure 2b below).

Exclusion devices can be constructed of wood, plastic, or wire mesh. If using wire mesh, the mesh cannot exceed 1  by 1  inches, or 1 inch by 2 inch openings (side to side). The wire mesh has to be 16 gauge or less (wire diameter of 0.05 inches or greater). The opening slot in the exclusion device that allows the trap springs to extend outside the device can be no more than 7  inches wide and a height of no more than 1 inches. The back of the device must be secured to withstand heavy pulling; if using wire mesh with a wood or plastic box, the wire mesh must wrap around two opposite sides of the box and be securely fastened. There must be at least 1 attachment point for each side of the device where a joint or panels come together. The trap must be securely anchored outside of the exclusion device. Bait must not be visible from above. When enclosed in an exclusion device, killer-type traps can be set directly on the ground, or elevated in trees or on poles, with no specific requirements as to the height above ground or diameter of the tree or pole.

Exclusion devices

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