Beaver hunting?

Discussion in 'Hunting' started by Kyle S., Nov 14, 2017.

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  1. Kyle S.

    Kyle S. Member

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    Dont get me wrong, i love the beavers, I think they are good for the environment and are nice to have around. But the farmers and local government think otherwise. They have a $25 bounty for every beaver tail you collect. I'm already trapping them but there are many more to harvest. I was curious if anyone has attempted to hunt them and how they went about doing it.
     
  2. .308 Norma

    .308 Norma Member

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    I'm pretty sure whether or not shooting beavers is legal depends on where you live. The first thing I'd do is check with my state's department of fish and game about hunting beavers. I could be wrong, but I don't think that Idaho (where I live) Department of Fish and Game regulations even allow hunting beavers in most cases.
     
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  3. Charliefrank

    Charliefrank Member

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    Years ago when I was just a young teenager my dad was a deputy game warden. Once in a while he would get calls from farmers about beavers flooding their fields and such. We would just sit hiding until we spotted the beaver. He would use my at the time deer rifle. Marlin 1894 44 magnum lever action fitted with a Williams peep site. It always did the job. I'm thankful we didn't have to collect the tails as they usually sank. If you don't mind getting wet, they don't go far.
     
  4. PapaG

    PapaG Member

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    Not legal in many venues but still.fun. they screw up my creek every year or two. Wait email out, 22 mag in the head, hope for a gullywasher to blow out the dam.
     
  5. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    In the South beavers are a nuisance animal and destroy thousands of trees/year. The timber companies hate them.

    I was duck hunting in a swamp in waist deep water a few years ago. I felt something go between my legs. I thought it was a gator and aimed my shotgun at the air bubbles. Up pops a 50 lb. beaver. I let him have it.
    I took out the very small backstraps and cooked them. Tasted a lot like deer.
     
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  6. Kyle S.

    Kyle S. Member

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    Shoot ya I forgot. I dont think its legal in Iowa. Sounds fun though.
     
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  7. caribou

    caribou Member

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    Trap them in the Winter, when the fur's nice and black , and we hunt them in the Spring break up of our river ice, when the fur is red.

    The two kinds of colors are awsome for Eskimo skin sewin' women.

    If you should shoot one and it sinks, 1/2 an hour later it will bloat and float.

    The virtue of Beaver is a very tough leather and a fur that will withstand repeated soakings without the fur shedding off. Makes for great trims and insoles on cold weather fur clothing.
     
  8. Ru4real

    Ru4real Member

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    I've knocked a hole in the dam for the sound of rushing water. Waited for them to show up to fix the dam. Wacked them while they worked, which to me seems like the best method.

    Beavers can only be trapped, legally, where I live.
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2017
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  9. <*(((><

    <*(((>< Member

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    We deal with an equipment broker out of Illinois that has a demolitions license and he gets paid by different states to blow up beaver dams. He loves his side job as you might imagine. So the rules and regulations vary widely state by state.

    Here in Idaho their hunting/trapping is regulated to maintain populations under the fur bearer category in our hunting regulations.
     
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  10. IlikeSA

    IlikeSA Member

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    One thing to think about is the legality of shooting over or in water. Here in Colorado the national forests let you shoot in general, but shooting over or in water is a big no-no, as I've seen people ticketed and fined for it (we were shooting the other direction). Whether that applies to hunting or not is debatable, and whether that applies to state or private land is also unknown. Just something else to consider.
     
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  11. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    Duck hunters would have a hard time of it if they couldn't shoot over or in water. ;)
     
  12. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    I take care of a couple of properties where beavers are a problem. One consists of a spring fed stream. The other is a small lake of a few acres. I tried traps and didn't like traps because of by-catch. I tried trapping under water, at dam breaks, etc. Under water was the best case scenario, but still caught a snapping turtle (not dead, had to shoot it) and a raccoon. The raccoon was surprise. So I shoot them using thermal.

    The problem with shooting beaver out in the water is that they tend to sink. It may take a while for them to float back up, assuming they don't get entangled in the vegetation growing under the water. If you can shoot them on the bank or at the dam, it is better. Of course, anytime shooting around water, be wary that bullets can skip and so make sure there are no down range issues and preferably have high banks as backstops.

     
  13. .308 Norma

    .308 Norma Member

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    I'm glad you found that out Kyle.:)
    I got in trouble when I was a kid because the local Game Warden figured out I was shooting muskrats in the drain ditch near our place. He never caught me in the act, so I didn't get a ticket, but he let my mom and dad know in no uncertain terms that trapping muskrats in Idaho was legal, but shooting them was not. And my parents let me know in even stronger, uncertain terms.:eek:
     
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  14. IlikeSA

    IlikeSA Member

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    Thats a good point. Perhaps it just applied to target shooting.
     
  15. desidog

    desidog Member

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    It's quite different, since a rifle bullet weighs a lot more than steel shot. Therefore it will travel much further and bounce much more. Take a look at this video.
     
  16. stownsend

    stownsend Member

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    A friend of mine gets a nuisance permit to rid the beavers from his ponds as their dams cause the levels to rise enough to flood basements- that's the only way we are able to hunt them here in Michigan. We hunt at night and start by tearing down part of the dam so they can hear the water running. We typically use a flood light (sometimes with a red gel over it) and they don't seem to be bothered by it. I have used everything from an AR in 223, and shotguns with a larger shot (#4 or greater) but my preferred is a 22 with a red dot site. We set up pretty close to the dam and can get close shots. Aim for the head. We have about a 30% floater rate with the rest sinking.
     

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  17. Double Naught Spy

    Double Naught Spy Sus Venator

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    I wish I was so lucky. Every Monday for 8 weeks, I shot (at?) 24 or 25 at this one place. For about 14 or 15 it was obviously that I made a good hit (bits flying off, thud impact noise, curly shuffle in the water, etc.). The others were a bit more ambiguous as to the result, all but 1 disappearing immediately. The 1 could see where I actually missed as i saw it swim off. We recovered ZERO. We had two weeks of no shows and after than the owner checks back randomly. He has seen no new beaver activity.

    Beavers actually are good for the environment. They promote local environmental change, reducing trees to open areas and creating wetlands and such. They is actually beneficial for the local plant and animal communities, often creating more permanent sources of water that otherwise would not be present and making the habitat more productive for more species. The problem is that as humans, we like for things to stay as they are or as we have created. In my folks' place, they actually enjoyed the benefit of the beavers on their little creek. The beavers cleared many of the younger trees and opened up the views. The problems came when the beavers started venturing about 100 yards up from the creek to eat my parents fruit trees that they had planted. That put an end to the welcome wagon and the beavers had to go.
     
    Last edited: Nov 16, 2017
  18. Sunray

    Sunray Member

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    "...legal depends on where you live..." Like everything else. Beavers and muskrats are considered fur bearers in most places.
     
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  19. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Member

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    I trap beaver here in Alabama. I get so many calls from landowners to catch the beaver that are flooding hay fields and drowning valuable timber that I have to turn many down. Nobody likes them here. They are a nuisance animal here even though they have fur bearer status. We can trap them year around but can only sell the fur during the trapping season which is 4 months long. We can shoot them year around but only during daylight hours. No license is required to trap beaver as long as you aren't charging to trap them or selling the fur. Beaver are rather easy to trap but do get trap shy so you have to have a varied repertoire of trap styles and sets. The fur market is very low right now and beaver is some of the lowest fur on the market. I harvest the hind quarters and tenderloins for the table. Beaver is excellent table fare.
     
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  20. alsaqr

    alsaqr Member

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    Shot a lot of beavers in my day. Retrieved only two; both were shot on land.
     
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  21. Patocazador

    Patocazador Member

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    Well, after skinning one I know I earned that hide. I've never skinned an animal where the hide wouldn't peel away in some spots until I skinned a beaver.
    The mountain men sure earned their pay.
     
  22. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Member

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    It's all in knowing how. It takes me about 10 minutes to skin a 30-40 pound beaver and about that long to flesh it. An expert can skin one in 3-5 minutes.
     
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  23. d2wing

    d2wing Member

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    Another guy and I had permission to kill beavers in a road ditch. Shot a few with an SKS. Now I think I would use a .22 magnum.
     
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  24. jimmyraythomason

    jimmyraythomason Member

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    I've used 22 mag on beaver and it works fine but I've found a 22 lr works equally well.
     
  25. Chuck R.

    Chuck R. Member

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    I'm not an expert by any means but I've killed 27 of them through trapping and shooting in the last 7 years or so.

    Bought 80 acres with a 9 acre pond and one heck of a beaver problem came with it. IMHO the most efficient use of time is trapping by far. 2 other methods I've used successfully is a tactical shotgun with white light, 4 shot and a .223 bolt gun running 55 grain ballistic tips. A light varmint bullet at high velocity doesn't skip. Problem with shooting is they're adaptive buggers, pop a couple in the early morning and they'll change their pattern. Most successful times I've had are right at dusk when they emerge and go on "patrol" (they'll literally swim the pond perimeter checking things out) and it's easy to line up shots when they're swimming at you and you'll have more of a target.

    I've yet to loose one with the .223, shotgun I'll find them floating the next day.

    Chuck
     
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