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There are many good lures and baits on the market today. Alternatively, you can make your own lures and baits.

Trap with food for bait
  • Ask your instructor or other experienced trappers for their opinion about different lures and baits.
  • Refer to the Trap Set Guide for lists of baits and lures that will tend to attract different types of furbearers.
  • Always use lures, urine, and bait responsibly. Check with your state's regulations regarding bait.
    • Some states do not allow domestic animals, wildlife, or fish parts to be used as bait.
    • The use of fur or feathers may not be allowed in some areas.
  • Choose the right item for the time of year, location, and type of furbearer you want to catch.
    • Gland lures can attract specific animals during their mating season.
    • Sweet baits and lures (marshmallow, anise, honey, hard candy, jam) are selective for raccoons.
  • Do not use items that might attract non-target animals.
    • Do not use pet food as bait.
    • Avoid other items that might attract pets or hunting dogs. For example, do not use fish if you are trapping in an area where pets might wander.
  • Remember that mammals depend primarily on their sense of smell to find food, whereas birds depend on their sense of sight. In sets on land, keep bait covered to prevent hawk, owls, and other birds from getting caught.
    • If left uncovered, even a small chunk of meat inside a dirt hole will attract blue jays and crows.
    • Eggs make good raccoon bait. However, exposed egg shells will attract birds also.