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#207755 - 03/12/10 01:15 PM Whats best way to get rid of muskrats
Dave J Offline
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Registered: 04/21/09
Posts: 134
Loc: Bangor, MI
As the pond starts to melt I have noticed some holes around the pond and I am assuming they are muskrats. I have been throwing my dead HBG that I have been finding on the shore and I noticed a pile of eaten fish-minus the head by one of the holes. What is my best way to get rid of the muskrats?? Could I just by a small trap and put the dead fish in the trap or wont the muskrats enter it?? Any help would be appreciated.
Thanks

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#207759 - 03/12/10 01:51 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: Dave J]
n8ly Offline
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Registered: 04/10/06
Posts: 2505
Loc: peoria
Dave,
It sounds more like you have an otter as opposed to a muskrat. I would check into michigans laws for killing otters.
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#207763 - 03/12/10 02:07 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: n8ly]
Theo Gallus Offline
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Registered: 05/14/04
Posts: 12356
Loc: Central Ohio
 Originally Posted By: n8ly
Dave,
It sounds more like you have an otter as opposed to a muskrat.

Yep. Muskrats are plant eaters.
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#207765 - 03/12/10 02:14 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: Theo Gallus]
Dave J Offline
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Registered: 04/21/09
Posts: 134
Loc: Bangor, MI
Oh boy-an otter??? how do I get rid of otters if I can't kill them??

Dave

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#207767 - 03/12/10 02:30 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: Dave J]
n8ly Offline
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just keep feeding it fish and it wont do you any harm. heck it will probably become your best friend.....
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#207768 - 03/12/10 02:31 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: n8ly]
n8ly Offline
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Loc: peoria
on a more serious note, you just might have to get creative on this one, its one of those grey areas.
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#207771 - 03/12/10 02:44 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: n8ly]
Dave J Offline
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Registered: 04/21/09
Posts: 134
Loc: Bangor, MI
will they go into a steel small game trap if I put fish in it or do I need to try something else

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#207772 - 03/12/10 03:11 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: Dave J]
RAH Offline
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Registered: 05/17/09
Posts: 3999
Loc: Indiana, Boone County, 25 mile...
Muskrats will eat fish. Baiting with apple slices will likely work better.

http://www.nhptv.org/NatureWorks/muskrat.htm

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#207773 - 03/12/10 04:00 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: RAH]
CJBS2003 Offline
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If you have musk rats eating your winter kill fish, try placing one into a box trap if you have one. You might have muskrats and otters, double the fun! We sometimes have muskrats come in to feed on the left overs of our gutted fish. I doubt they catch fish, but they won't pass up a dead one. I have also seen them eating clams and crayfish before as well.
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#207786 - 03/12/10 05:23 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: CJBS2003]
LRunkle Offline

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Registered: 04/24/02
Posts: 181
Loc: Norman, Oklahoma
Or maybe a mink.
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#207793 - 03/12/10 06:19 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: LRunkle]
The Pond Frog Offline
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Registered: 01/25/10
Posts: 914
Loc: NorCal
Put some fine mud or silt around the entrances of the holes and any game trails. Check frequently for animal tracks. You could have anything from otters to raccoons. You have to verify what you have before you determine how to get rid of it/them.

One things muskrats very rarely do is leave visible holes to thier dens. Most of the entrances are underwater, if not all. They may have a ventilation hole to the den but that is normally very well hidden. Although they will eat a fish here and there, they prefer aquatic vegetation, especially cattails and reeds. Muskrats can be a disaster to your levees, embankments and dam, but not really a big fish eater.


Edited by The Pond Frog (03/12/10 06:33 PM)

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#207834 - 03/12/10 09:55 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: The Pond Frog]
Cecil Baird1 Offline
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Registered: 08/08/02
Posts: 20043
Loc: Northeastern Indiana
 Originally Posted By: The Pond Frog
Muskrats can be a disaster to your levees, embankments and dam, ...


Five star moles are worse. I can attest to that! I had one go 12 feet right though a dike separating two ponds last year! The muskrats I havem have bored 4 or 5 feet tops, usually less.


Edited by Cecil Baird1 (03/12/10 09:57 PM)
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#207893 - 03/13/10 11:16 AM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: Cecil Baird1]
CoachB Offline
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Registered: 02/18/09
Posts: 563
Loc: Southeast Michigan
I got my first muskrat of the year with my air rifle. Apple baiting with a trap has not worked yet. I observed a few days in the evening and they came out quite often. I could see them swimming along between the shore and the receding ice. Finally hit one, but there is another one swimming around.

Do you have lots of cut cattails and plants at the water's edge? This is a great sign of muskrats.
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#208218 - 03/15/10 04:54 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: CoachB]
CoachB Offline
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Registered: 02/18/09
Posts: 563
Loc: Southeast Michigan
apple baiting worked in the live trap! hauled one out of the pond. That is two down, a bunch to go.
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#208229 - 03/15/10 07:57 PM Re: Whats best way to get rid of muskrats [Re: CoachB]
scott69 Offline
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Registered: 07/12/08
Posts: 989
Loc: Chambers county(Valley), alaba...
i shot 3 in my pond last year in the early spring. i would see them late evening swimming around usually carrying reeds. i walked up on one boring a hole in the bank. he was kickiing up all sorts of muddy water. i knew he couldnt stay under forever. sure enough he finally came up and went swimming along the edge. it's the otters that worry me. i have caught 2 in the last 2 years ( one each year) below my pond while trapping beavers. i caught them on dam crossovers in 330 conibears.
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