muskrat trapping

Randy Newberg Illustrates Muskrat Trapping, Fur Handling and Even Cooking

Randy Newberg runs the table on muskrat trapping here, touching on trapping, fur handling and preparing for the table in these three brief videos.

Well-known hunter Randy Newberg is also an outdoorsman with a passion for muskrat trapping. He fits rat trapping into his winter schedule as much as possible, and takes great pride how he handles the furs.

In the following three videos he addresses those topics - trapping and fur handling; additionally he prepares and cooks some muskrat hams and backstraps on the grill. We'll see how that turns out.

But first, Newberg speaks directly from the creek and explains just how he sets traps for muskrats.

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In the following video, Newberg checks his traps and retrieves about a dozen rats. Along the way he offers some tips on how to dry rats (in snow), answers why spring creeks have such a high density of rats come February (they move into these creeks from surrounding areas where they've lived during summer and fall), the vagaries of international fur prices, and the differences in regional coloration of the rodents.

Finally, in this last video, Randy shows how he skins a muskrat and prepares its fur for market. Skinning, fleshing and stretching is a fairly simple and quick process, which is good, especially if you've got several hundred rats to process over the course of a season.

Randy said that a few years ago he got really serious about muskrat trapping, and he caught over 300 rats. That equals a lot of work in processing the furs of that many animals.

He removes the hind quarters and backstraps of these muskrats, and somewhat dubiously prepares them for grilling. Newberg marinates them for several hours, places them on a grill and dusts with a spice mix. He's pleasantly surprised at how good they are.

"I'm hear to tell you folks, I'm not making this up," he declares, "this is better than some of the mule deer I've eaten in my life."

Like what you see here? You can read more great articles by David Smith at his facebook page, Stumpjack Outdoors.

NEXT: Trapping is Better for Kids Than Video Games