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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My parents pond and house are being ruined by muskrats. Do you guys know of any secrets on how to get rid of them?
 

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BigV
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Conibear traps work best. Place them at the entrance to their holes along the bank of the pond. It kills them instantly. Muskrat can be very destructive if left unchecked. They can actually lower the water level or even drain a small pond.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks guys. The water level has dropped already from them.
 

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A 22 works GREAT & helps sharpen the eye. Just follow them scooting near the surface & BAM. Done.
Some years back we shot 12 of them in a pond about 1 acre in size. We now have a annual shoot cause they keep comming back.

Nik
 

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BigV
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Muskrat trapping should be a regular part of pond maintenance. Even if you get them all, eventually more will find a way into your pond. With the water level low, it should be very easy to find their holes in the bank.

Get a ½ dozen or so and set them in every hole along the bank don't skip any. If you catch one out of the holes, reset the trap and leave it there as multiple muskrat will use the same hole. If you go 3 or 4 days without catching one, move the traps to a different set of holes. Continue this process and you will eventually get them all. I recommend a #110 Conibear trap as they are the right size for muskrat.

I would not recommend shooting them with a rifle unless you are in a rural area with no houses or people with in 2 to 3 miles. Bullets can ricochet off the top of the water and kill innocent bystanders over a mile away.
 

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Use the shotgun for instant reduction, but you'll need to trap the pond to get them all. Contact either a local fur buyer (listed on ODNR's web site) or game warden to find someone who traps if you don't. My son & I are contacted for everything from muskrats to coyotes since most people don't have supplies.
 

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I live in a rural area and I did my dardest to shoot them out of my pond. It became like a second job trying to get them all. I finally gave up and resorted to traps. I cleaned them all out in a week with the box traps I had from when I was a kid. Knock on wood I have not had any back in 5-6 years.
 

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furs not worth anything this time of the year, and they are out of season you need to contact thre odnr about nusance trapping. since its property damage you should qualify for a permit so you dont get in hot water.
Do the 110 conibear thing. Cage traps in a run will stack 'em up also, your conibear will get 'em one at a time.
 

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If trapping them is not possible, remove the food source and they will not stay. The most common food source in the ponds around me are cattails. The guy I helped get them out of his pond put lots of 3 inch rock around his pond to get rid of the cattails and the 'rats don't like to try and dig through them. Problem solved. I hope all of the info will help. Good luck.
 

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Catfisherman/Bowfisherman
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Just use a colony trap and stake it down up against the hole of there den. It is made to hold several rats and it will hold them and they will drown.
 

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go out at night and turn your headlights INDIRECTLY
OVER THE WATER

by indirectly I mean away from the water itself but so the glow of the lights luminates the area


happy shooting, they will swarm the area back and forth all night

I did this in hubbard ohio in a small pond

and after they disappear from the noise, they will return in 15 minutes and swim all around like nothing happened

I also saw this at conneaut, at the public fuel dock , they were swarming around and around, about a dozen or so.
 

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A 22 works GREAT & helps sharpen the eye. Just follow them scooting near the surface & BAM. Done.
Some years back we shot 12 of them in a pond about 1 acre in size. We now have a annual shoot cause they keep comming back.

Nik
Are you crazy? Shooting at the waters surface is just as dangerous (if not more) than shooting at the surface of the land. Bullets can and do glance off these surfaces and can travel upwards to over a mile away. I'm sure you're not interested in accidently killing someone over a muskrat. If you're going to shoot on the water, use a shotgun as others have suggested. Not a single projectile bullet, especially a 22 cal. People get shot and/or killed every year by stray bullets. Use common sense and make sure you have a solid backstop.
 

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Now i might get shunned for this but i always used a 22lr and many times a 22wmr to rid my pond of the little s**ts BUT, i shot them as they were climbing out of the water on the shore or in the grass on the shore. never in the water while they were swimming there was a house about 500 feet behind my pond and i was shootin from the house that was roughly 15-20ft higher then the surface of the pond. as said before its an ongoing process there is always some that find their way to the pond. ALSO, my pond was 5ft lower then the rest of the yard around it. I definatly don't recomend shootin them while swimming, the whole solid backstop thing is what i went by.
 

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The only sure way to get rid of them is ask around in your area for names of guys who trap. Any trapper worth his weight will have them gone in less than a week. Once you have them out, stone the banks. Then watch for their return by looking for muddy "runs" along the bank, and "slides" on steeper parts of the bank. You are almost destined to trap yearly if you want to keep them out. During dry times those little boogers will travel quite a ways to find water.
 
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