Mostly Trapping

OH: Teen Masters Dying Art of Trapping
Jun 1, 2018 21:09 ET
Comments: Yes this is the story Clint Locklear mentioned on his show. Great job Alex!


Dayton Review News

May 9 at 4:43pm
DAYTON – Thirteen year old Alex Spillman doesn’t fit the mold that most of his peer group does. While his same-aged peers are playing video games and are on cell phones, Spillman instead is in the outdoors on the trapline and in his family’s fur shed harvesting his hard work.
“I want to hunt and trap,” said Spillman. “I love being in the outdoors enjoying God’s creation! Trapping is definitely a dying art. I think society as a whole has lost touch with the outdoors. I believe trapping is one of the most important tools in helping to keep a healthy balance in nature.”
Spillman earned the nickname ‘Coyote Hunter’ after trapping a dozen coyotes last season within just a two mile radius of his family home.
“My dad gave me great instructions,” said Spillman. “I can’t wait until I can drive myself so I can increase my trapline to catch big numbers of coyotes. Learning how to trap them has been the most rewarding and taught me the most about patience!”
Spillman has been trapping for years, he said, and enjoys riding the trapline with his father. It’s a challenge that he enjoys, but says, but is one that is necessary to the ecosystem.
“The importance of trapping is to manage animal populations,” said Spillman. “Without harvesting the excess animals, they are prone to suffer from diseases such as mange, distemper, and rabies. Starvation can also be an issue in tough years. Also, high numbers of predators such as coyotes can be extremely hard on the deer, turkey, and pheasant populations.”
Spillman said it’s equally important to understand the animal that is being trapped and to have patience as it has to step into a trap that is just a two-inch circle.
Last season, Spillman and his father trapped beaver, mink, raccoon, muskrats, and coyotes. His favorite, though, is the coyote.
“After the coyotes or any other fur bearing animal is caught they are brought home to be cleaned, skinned, and dried,” said Spillman. “From there, we market them to a county fur buyer or we ship a large majority off to the North American Fur Auction in Canada. From there they go all over the world to places like Russia and China.”
Trapping, said Spillman, requires a lot of patience and research about the animal, their behaviors, and their environment, but more importantly, it gives him an opportunity to spend time with his family.
“My favorite reason for being in the outdoors every day in all types of weather is spending time with my family. For me it has given me a ton of priceless memories that are worth far more than the amount of money you receive at the end of the season!"