We’ve seen some harrowing stuff, but this is nuts!
Two trappers, shown in the videos below, were inspecting their line which had sets out for fox when they came across “Mr. Bobcat.” Knowing they didn’t have the proper credentials to keep the cat, they began to document the situation of releasing it. They got it on film “so everybody believes us,” and while we’re not fans of how they lightly taunt the trapped cat, at least they know to do the right thing.
Here is the video they shot as they came upon the critter.
That’s one unhappy kitty right there. Lucky for us they kept true to their word and followed up with a video of the release. What would usually be a quick opening of the trap becomes much more difficult when a riled up bobcat is attached to it.
Even though he’s free half way through, the freed bobcat sticks around to give them some scowls while he regains himself. Once that happens, getting under the car is likely his response to stress, seeking a place to hide under while he continues to regain strength. Then, just like that, he’s gone. Judging by the way he’s able to run off through the woods, one of the trappers mentions that he looks as though “he’ll make a great recovery.”
Animal trapping is timeless. The history of the practice dates back to the Neolithic era, where hunters in Romania and Ukraine (ca. 5500-2750 BC), used traps to capture their prey. Our notion of trapping is more closely related to the Native Americans though, many of which taught our ancestors their craft, as well as the advanced trapping technology that occurred during the Industrial Era. From Wikipedia,
Native Americans trapped fur bearing animals with pits, dead falls, and snares. Trapping was widespread in the early days of North American settlements, and companies such as the Canadian fur brigade were established. In the 18th century blacksmiths manually built leghold traps, and by the mid-19th century trap companies manufacturing traps and fur stretchers, became established.
Nowadays you’ll find trappers all across the country, but most notably in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, North Dakota, Louisiana and Minnesota, and while times have changed the top trapping species are pretty steady. Raccoon, muskrat, beaver, and coyote top the list with some trappers also still going after the ever-famous mink. Trapping is very closely tied to family business as many trappers can trace back their roots to learning from a father, uncle or other patriarchal member of the family.
It is a practice that is often very misunderstood. One of the most common questions trappers often get is, “What happens when you trap something that you didn’t intend to?” The answer is simple – you let it go! The actual carrying out of that answer though is oftentimes quite challenging, especially if what you inadvertently trapped is a bobcat.
As controversial as trapping has become, in states that have banned the use of the foothold trap, a number of issues have arisen. In Massachusetts, the beaver population increased from 24,000 in 1996 to over 70,000 beaver in 2001. Coyote attacks on humans rose from 4 to 10 per year, during the five year period following a 1998 ban on leghold traps in Southern California.