Here's what got trapped and how much money it was worth
(Reprinted from above link)
Only about half of the state's 1,280 licensed fur hunters actually trapped last year, reflecting a trend of declining interest among hunters.
The Division of Fish and Wildlife said one reason for the loss of interest is the money for pelts is not there anymore.
New Jersey's fur hunters trapped nearly 20,000 animals last year that were worth about $120,000 at fur auctions. See the breakout chart below to see how many of each animal was harvested.
Those numbers are down from 46,000 animals that brought in $545,589 in fur sales for 2013-2014 trapping season, according to the division's last posted Harvest, Recreational and Economic survey.
"Pelts are at an all-time low. People don't really trap for money anymore, it's a novelty or continuing a way of life," said Bob Misak, 57 of Lacey and a longtime trapper. "The last beaver pelts I had, I ended up giving away to some Civil War re-enactors."
The fur trapping season typically runs from mid-November to mid-March when an animal's fur coat is thickest. The state allows trapping of 12 species: beaver, otter, mink, muskrat, nutria, coyote, gray fox, red fox, opossum, raccoon, skunk and weasel.
The fur trade peaked in the 1970s in New Jersey when there was a strong market for muskrat furs. Over 4,000 hunters trapped annually during that decade, according to the division.
By the early 1990s, only about 500 people were trapping. The number rose again to over 1,000 by 2010, but is dropping once more.
Only 692 trappers were active, down from 734 in the 2016-2017 season, and the 1,154 who actively trapped in the 2015-2016 season.
Misak said the decline in participation could also be because of the lottery system for beaver and otter. The lottery randomly selects who gets a permit to trap. Only 150 permits are available. See Misak in 2014 when he took a reporter on the hunt for a beaver lodge in the above video.
"The lottery is so everyone gets a chance at it, but not everyone who gets a permit goes out and traps, or is successful at it. I haven't been able to get a permit the last four years, and I kind of gave up on it this year," Misak said.