Muskrats are rodents that wreak havoc in irrigation ditches and ponds that ranchers use to irrigate their crops and water their livestock. Among some of the destruction they cause, extensive burrowing into ditch banks, which can cause the loss of stored water, and destroying the roots of vegetation with their eating habits are a very big deal to ranchers. If muskrat populations aren’t controlled, stability of structures can also be compromised from the muskrat tunnels formed underneath buildings, and this is where trapping plays a big role.
Some people are known to shoot muskrats on sight, but for every one you see, you can trap approximately 15, depending on how many traps you set out and where. Traps are working when you are not there. But, even though muskrats are nuisance animals, oddly enough, they have thick, beautiful fur. And, you can see by the pictures, 18 muskrats later, these rodents can make quite the coat. The trapper that is sporting this gorgeous coat said that the coat still keeps her warm after more than 25 years, and she trapped all of the muskrats herself!
So, before you take a shot at what you think looks like an oversized rat with a beaver face, think about what you can do with the whole entire rat if you trap them. When you trap these animals, they actually become beneficial, as, aside from the fur, people buy their skulls and use the glands for lures. You can even use the carcass for a bait mixture.
Who knew? If you have a muskrat problem, talk to a trapper about getting help! There’s a whole lot you can learn about trapping by visiting www.montanatrappers.org.