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Magpie Hunting/Tapping

Discussion in 'The Powder Keg' started by Sixgun_Redneck, Nov 6, 2004.

  1. Sixgun_Redneck

    Sixgun_Redneck G&G Newbie

    Nov 2, 2004
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    Does anyone know how to make a trap for magpies or how to call them in and shoot em down as they come? i started killing them with the pellet gun, then the .22 and then the 12 gauge. It doesn't take long for them to learn what me reach is. Now, as soon as they see me or the truck their gone (they only do this when i have a gun, they seem to know wheni have the reach to kill em), they'll even spot me 200-300yrds and fly away, so it makes it nearly impossible to shoot em unless i make a hide or something.

  2. jerry

    jerry G&G Evangelist Forum Contributor

    Mar 15, 2002
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    Set up a ground blind (in a fly way) & sleep in it overnight. Use a call and Owl decoy. Stick w/ the 12 ga. Unless they are on the ground where an accurate flat shooting rifle gets the nod at onger ranges.
  3. Logansdad

    Logansdad Guest

    The Magpie
    When it comes to magpie hunting you have to make sure you are covered up from head to toe. They can spot a human lurking like a turd in a swimming pool. What will give you away the most is if your face is revealed. Use a head veil or similar clothing to disfigure the dominant head shape. Gloves would also be a wise piece of kit to use.

    When stalking them try to use as much cover as there is available. Whatever you do don't go out into the open unless you have to. A hide is a good approach to shoot the magpie, but stalking them is probably equally as effective. If you want to bait them there is 2 techniques which I prefer. The first is to buy a full size Owl decoy, and place it on a fence post or something similar. Make sure you are hiding well and watch the magpies attack the owl. Another effective way of baiting them is to use frozen chips! Sounds crazy but works better than you would think.

    I've never heard of eating magpies....somepeople have said they've tried them, but let's not eh?

  4. Sixgun_Redneck

    Sixgun_Redneck G&G Newbie

    Nov 2, 2004
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    oops, that shouldn't be "tapping", i'm sure you guessed trapping but w/e. Some neighbor near the farm, i forget who, made a trap and caugth 52 magpies that summer. He would throw a tarp over the cage and stick the exhaust pipe underneath to kill em. Anyone know how to make this trap?

    I didn't have any plans to eat magpies, they don't seem remotely appetizing to me. Thx for your replies so far.
  5. Logansdad

    Logansdad Guest

    An Improved Magpie Trap$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/agdex3496?opendocument
  6. Logansdad

    Logansdad Guest

    It seems a paradox that one of the most clever and most beautiful members of the bird family Corvidae (also includes jays, crows and ravens) could also be a serious pest. Unfortunately, the magpies’ carnivorous habit presents a problem when it preys on beneficial wildlife, inflicts injury on young livestock and spreads livestock disease. Ultimately, there may be a need for some type of control.
    The beneficial aspects of the magpie must also be considered when control programs are designed and employed. The role of magpies as scavengers and consumers of insects is well documented by several studies, and these beneficial aspects must always be taken into account.

    In some cases, control is restricted to trapping when other methods are not desirable or practical. However, many hunters, farmers and naturalists will acknowledge that the magpie, because of its wily and wary nature, is a bird that is seldom easy to shoot or trap. The trapping technique outlined in this factsheet has proven to be substantially more efficient and successful than other traps, because of the trap’s unique circular design.

    About Magpies

    Feeding habits
    During winter (December-March), magpies feed chiefly on carrion, plus some small mammals, and a considerable amount of grain and vegetable matter. In springtime (April-May), insects are the main dietary component, with considerable animal matter and carrion second. Very little grain and vegetable matter is consumed at this time.

    During the summer months, magpies eat a considerable number of insects, miscellaneous animal matter and wild fruit. During fall (September - November) insects, wild fruit, grain and animal matter are consumed.

    Carrion is not a significant constitutent of their diet during summer and fall. The food material fed to young magpies is 90 per cent animal matter. Magpies have a keen sense of smell for rancid food, sick animals, etc. and depend a great deal upon their own habits as scavengers to obtain food, rather than following specific, predictable feeding patterns.

    Consequently, farm sites that are kept free of waste, food materials, carrion, animal matter, debris, open garbage, etc. in close association with temporary water holes are not likely to be attractive to magpies as permanent feeding grounds.

    Although magpies are a common winter resident in central and southern Alberta, migration may occur in varying degrees, depending on the neeed to escape severe winter conditions. Sporadic movements of magpies to areas of more abundant food occur frequently in winter in Alberta.

    Population dynamics
    Magpies tend to live in colonies varying in size from single pairs to several hundred. The size of the colony will vary from year to year, and the size of the territory occupied by a given colony is not necessarily directly related to the size of the colony. Locations of colonies will change abruptly and regularly. Records of longevity for magpies raised in captivity extend to more than 20 years.

    Relationship to man
    Magpies usually need and are quick to take advantage of the increased food supplies that human settlement brings. It is rare that human concentration reaches a point where magpie numbers are threatened unless direct artificial reduction is employed. When magpie numbers are reduced deliberately, they recover rapidly when the pressure is removed. Consequently, local control programs in specific areas do not jeopardize the general status of this bird.

    Procedures in Setting Traps

    1. Determine the best place for positioning the trap, preferably where magpies congregate or near their flyway.
    2. Place draw-bait in a suitable location. Large bones, beef heads, fat, dead rabbits or any frozen carcasses and offal may be used as draw-bait.
    3. Place the trap in close proximity to the draw-bait, allowing birds to become accustomed to the trap. Leave bait and trap separate for one or two days until magpies accept the bait.
    4. Place trap over the bait and stake it down. Position the bait in front of inner end of tunnel but well away from the outer wall of the trap. Small amounts of bait should be placed in the entrance to entice birds to enter.
    Note: The above operations should be carried out late in the day to avoid disturbing the routine of the magpies.
    5. A daily check should be made near evening and any trapped birds disposed of humanely. Any evidence of feathers, blood, etc. should be carefully removed. If trapping is successful, one or two live magpies may be left in trap overnight to act as decoys.
    6. If no results are obtained after several days, the trap should be moved to a new location and the above procedures repeated.

    Magpie Trap

    Circular design

    1 length of 1/4" reinforcing rod - 12' 8"
    1 piece 1 in2 mesh mink wire 30" x 12' 8"
    2 pieces, 1 in2 mesh mink wire 30" x 48" (cut to fit top).
    1 piece 1 in2 mesh mink wire 30" x 42" (cut and tapered for funnel).
    3 stakes approximately 10" long with "U" shaped heads.
    Directions for construction
    Bend 1/4" rod in circle and weld. Attach rod to bottom of wire, crimp wire around rod and secure with several short pieces or "ties" using flexible haywire.
    Cut out tunnel as shown in Figure 3, and form into conical shape as illustrated in Figure 4.
    Fit cone to inside of trap wall at ground level, making sure the base of tunnel is parallel to, and resting on ground. Attach securely with wire "ties".
    Cut out wall of trap according to size of tunnel opening.
    Cut rectangular opening 1" X 1' 6" on three sides at back of trap, leaving the fourth side as hinge.

    Figure 1.

    Figure 2.

    Note: Stucco wire may be substituted if 16 gauge mink wire is unavailable. However, an additional reinforcing rod would be required around the top of the trap.

    Figure 3.
    General "setting" information
    Magpies may be trapped year round, but the ideal trapping time is during the cold winter months when carrion is less readily available and birds require more food to sustain life. Any suitable draw-bait such as meat scraps, small dead animals, offal, etc. may be used to bring magpies into a given area. The importance of choosing a proper bait location and the use of draw-baits for several days before actually setting the trap cannot be stressed to highly enough.

    Figure 4.

    Best results will be obtained if the trap has a "weathered" or old appearance, as magpies are suspicious of shiny material.

    Allow a one or two-day period of successful pre-baiting before placing the trap over bait and staking it down.

    Position the bait in front of inner end of tunnel, but well away from the outer wall of the trap.

    Prepared by:
    John Bourne
    Vertebrate Pest Specialist
    Pest Prevention and Management

    Attached Files:

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 8, 2004
  7. Sixgun_Redneck

    Sixgun_Redneck G&G Newbie

    Nov 2, 2004
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    Thats just what i was looking for. You've been a great help. thankyou.
  8. Logansdad

    Logansdad Guest

    you're welcome !

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