The spring run muskrat set is a popular way to trap muskrats plus you have the added bonus of catching an occasional mink!
Spring runs or small creeks and streams are natural funnels that flow into a larger body of water.
The amount of flowing water and size of the spring run will vary in size.
In fact, some of the small runs that don't have very much water at all running through them are one of the best locations to make the set.
These smaller spring runs have natural "pinch points" where the stream is not very wide.
A well placed conibear trap in the middle of this natural funnel is very productive.
Mink are especially known for traveling down these runs. Raccoons also like to follow the edges of these small streams searching for food.
As with any other set, location is extremely important. It's better to have 2 well placed sets compared to 4 sloppy ones.
Once you've found a spring run or small creek locate the spot where the creek meets the larger body of water. Check for muskrat sign such as droppings, cut vegetation or even a distinctive trail leading down the creek though the reeds and grass.
Once you find a good area to make the set, look around and try to set the trap in a spot that naturally funnels the animal into the trap. It's easier to catch something in a body gripping trap at narrow points of the stream compared to wide spots. Using a narrow spot increases the odds of the animal entering the trap.
Make sure the trap is securely fastened in place and it won't swivel if the muskrat bumps into the side of it. Use guide sticks if necessary on both sides of the trap to help direct the animal through the trap.
You can also choose to set a foothold trap at these locations but set them in a spot where the water is deep enough to drown the animal. Using a sliding wire technique for the submersion set works good or use a tangle stake.
Remember, when making this set there's a good possibility a mink or even a raccoon could get caught in the trap so keep this in mind when choosing a trap and staking it down.
The spring run muskrat set is another great way to trap a muskrat. Once you find a good location they're easy to make and they give you the opportunity of even trapping a mink!