Sunday, July 16, 2017

Tongs and Snares Allow Wildlife to Be Moved

Badger Tongs are an ancient way of dealing with angry badgers at the end of a dig, and though they look primitive, it's worth remembering that they are actually a way of  moving a badger rather than using a gun or poison to kill it.

Here in the U.S., we use two slightly different tools.

Some years back, Bill Boatman invented "raccoon tongs" made of soft steel and with a cantered locking handle. Much shorter and lighter than the very long-handled iron badger tongs used in Europe, these still weigh more than the solo terrier digger wants, or needs, to carry.

My own pair of raccoon tongs never leaves the garage any more, and with the death of Bill Boatman and the demise of the Boatman Catalog, they are now a bit of history.

I never go out into the field hunting with the dogs without a lightweight pole snare.  I tell how to make those here.  These things weigh less than tongs, and allow the creature to be moved and released with ease.  This raccoon, pulled from a cistern next to a house, was released unharmed.


geonni banner said...

Wow. Thanks for showing us the tools of the trade.

Buenzlihund said...

The three tongs standing and the one in the first picture look very akin to what is used to pinch a horse's feet to detect sores. Wonder if it's just a tool that someone found handy for the latter as well.

Here, August 1st our national holiday is approaching. Badgers seem to be very intolerant of the fireworks. If ine has never seen one before, go driving the next morning and you will see plenty of them dead by the roadside. Same procedure as every year. Very sad. No one cares. And it's been increasing since the horrific bomb-like detonating fireworks have become so popular. Nothing to see just boom and your house shakes and the glasses chatter on the cupboard. War couldn't sound much worse. Wildlife is on edge already 2 to 3 weeks ahead of the event as frequently single fireworks are let go by people who can't wait and don't care about the law either. You can tell I really look forward to it.

David Lee said...

Found a set of these tongs in an Old barn/Schoolhouse I demo'd Wasn't sure what they were until I found your info. I even managed to find an old catalog page with a set of them pictured.
Thanks for the info.