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Hooked on Trapping

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Hooked on Trapping

Alexis is only 10 years old, and Jake is only nine, but these two kids are already hooked on trapping. Meet a girl from Wisconsin and a boy from Iowa, who both learned valuable lessons this year about hard work, wildlife, and economics. They trapped raccoons.

This is the first year Alexis set her own traps on private, family land in Wisconsin. Waking Alexis for school some mornings isn’t easy, but on the days Mom said, “Let’s go check your traps,” she popped out of bed in an instant. “She’s learning what it is all about,” said her mother, Trisha Bowen. Trisha is one of the most passionate hunters I know, and she is passing on incredible skills and knowledge to her young daughter.

So is Tommy Skarlis, a champion walleye and crappie angler and avid hunter from Iowa. “I grew up trapping as a boy, but I let it go and I hadn’t trapped for, oh, 20 years, probably,” shared Skarlis. “My oldest son, Jake, was interested this year, so we put out a long line set with a focus primarily on raccoons.” Tommy and Jake trapped and sold 33 raccoons. “It was a great lesson in economics. He understood working for the money we made, and he learned how to negotiate with the buyer for our furs.” They practiced what to say in the truck. Even the “flinch” that lets the buyer know they started too low with their first offer, and how to politely counter.

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