Watch this fascinating behavior of a pretty cagey beaver who "outwits" a trapper's conibear set and springs the trap without getting caught.
Scott Mackner is a trapper and outdoorsman who has a successful youtube channel called 330 MaNiaC. He documents many of his trapping adventures and in this particular video he captured something special. He was able to catch, on a trail camera, the behavior of a wary beaver at the base of one of his sets.
The beaver knew something wasn't right as it approached a set where Mackner had set a conibear trap. It sniffed and eyed the steel contraption closely, before deciding that "nope, this just doesn't look right." Watch what he does next.
The critter amazingly decides to swim under the trap! Coming up on the backside of the set the beaver then trips the trap from behind. Brilliant!
Now I don't know how much of the big rodent's behavior can be attributed to a thought process or any sort of reasoning - probably not too much. But even if it was all instinctual it was pretty darn good, you have to admit.
It's easy to see how and why we humans tend to anthropomorphize animals when they engage in behavior like this. It's not realistic to suggest that the beaver "outsmarted" Mackner, but it is fair to say that it did get the better of him in this instance.
That's not always the case with Mackner, as this other video shows where he has captured two beaver in conibear sets in a clear stream. Maybe these two furbearing fellows didn't have the experience of their more seasoned cousin that enabled them to outfox the trapper.
In any event, this critter's hide won't make the stretching board. Hats off to this cagey beaver!
Like what you see here? You can read more great articles by David Smith at his facebook page, Stumpjack Outdoors.