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In 1978 I was working for a large taxidermy operation and became acquainted with the forest and recreation manager for a large Alabama paper corporation, who offered me a dream opportunity to trap a 10,000 acre wildlife preserve near Aliceville, Alabama and bordered the Tombigbee river for several miles. The only hitch was that we couldn't begin trapping until the end of deer hunting season which would leave us only two weeks to work the property until trapping season would close. Realizing the magnitude of such an opportunity I located a well seasoned trapper named Noah Isabell to be my partner.

Noah and I trapped the preserve for one week but unfortunately I didn't get any photos since we were working the trapline so hard in such a short time span. After a week Noah decided to pull out, so my friend Randy Julian trapped with me for the last week and I somehow managed to get a few pictures working at a more relaxed pace. Enjoy...

TWO WEEKS IN WEST ALABAMA!

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There was a lot of bottomland on this preserve so it was a meca for beaver and otter.

Randy cooking up a meal in our campsite during a cold February morning.

Another otter and beaver.

The preserve was woven with several dirt roads making it relatively easy to move around the 10,000 acres. Here I am with another raccoon and a water moccasin that was lying almost dormant atop a beaver dam. I must have jumped a foot off the dam when I bent over to make a trail set and there was this monster snake! If the day had been much warmer I know that snake would have bit me.

Several raccoons and a bobcat

Raccoons and a bobcat

Removing a small beaver from a conibear trap

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A very fine 26 pound bobcat. By the way this photo made the front cover of The Trapper magazine, and also where I had many featured trapping articles published.

We caught a lot of fur during those two weeks and I learned a lot more about what it takes to be a professional trapper. As a matter of fact Wayne Fears (the forest and recreation manager) liked the job I did getting beaver under control that he invited me to dinner at his home on several occasions, which led to a contact with an Alaskan outfitter which I ended up working for two seasons. (See the ALASKAN OUTFITTER link on the homepage for the complete story.)

Go on to THE FUR AUCTION by clicking NEXT, or go back to the TRAPPING INDEX page for more choices, or go back to the HOMEPAGE and choose a new adventure.

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