Best Lures and Baits for Trapping Your Target Animal

We want you to enjoy success on your trapline. Our products are top-notch lures and baits which will help you achieve that success. As the one who has developed, tested, and used these lures and baits for years allow me to share some recommendations on how to get the most out of our products. Below you will find my favorite set types and the lure/bait combinations that have worked the best on my trap lines. These recommendations are a starting point for sets and lure/bait combinations. The basics applied again and again will result in lots of fur in your traps.

Select your target below for Houben’s Animal Lures Trapping Tips:

Best Houben’s Animal Lures for Trapping Coyote

Best Houben’s Animal Lures for Trapping Coyote

Set Types – A mixture of dirt-hole sets, and flat sets should be used at a location. Depending on the coyote population set between 2-8 traps on a farm. Coyotes often travel in a group, so it is important to have enough sets for each coyote to possibly find a set. It is best to space the sets further apart than recommended for fox. Spacing traps about 30-100 yards apart seems to work well.

Lure/Bait Recommendations

  • Dirt-hole Sets:  A tablespoon of ‘Cat Cream or Top Dog smeared in the bottom of the hole and a squirt of Red Fox Urine on the backing is deadly.
  • Flat Sets: Alpha Dog, WSB-plus, and K-9 Interceptor are all good choices.  WSB-plus or Beaver Tail Oil give the greatest lick-bite-pull response and are good choices on T-bones. ‘Cat Cream or Top Dog baits are the best choices for pipe dream sets.
  • Scent Post Sets:  Up to Christmas Red Vixen is the first choice. After the first of the year and for summer coyote control work Natural Dog is the best choice.

Best Houben’s Animal Lures for Trapping Fox

Best Houben’s Animal Lures for Trapping Fox

Set Types – Generally there is little need to use anything, but dirt-hole sets for fox trapping. It is best to make two dirt-hole sets just 8-10 feet apart. Do this at the two best locations on a farm. Paired sets allow one to use a strong-smelling lure in one set and a mild lure in the second set. Giving the fox a choice works well when there are times of unusually warm weather. It’s easiest to keep track of your luring strategy by designating one lure or bait the right hand set and the other the left hand set.

Lure/Bait Recommendations

  • Dirt-hole #1: Top Dog is my bait of choice for fox. A tablespoon of bait smeared in the bottom of the hole and a little Red Vixen added on the back rim of the hole is deadly. These act as the strong lure/bait.
  • Dirt-hole #2: Use one of our mild call lures during early season trapping. WSB-plus or our muskrat lure Ondatra (believe it or not). Mid-season and late season use K-9 Interceptor. Place a squirt of Red Fox Urine on the backing.

Bobcat Profile

Best Houben’s Animal Lures for Trapping Bobcat

Set Types – A variety of sets can be used for bobcat trapping.  However, a dirt-hole is a very effective bobcat set which can be made in a variety of situations. I generally make a walk-through version of a dirt-hole with very heavy blocking in front of and behind the hole. The trap and hole being between the two. Make use of very defined stepping sticks and guides to put the bobcats’ foot on the pan. Flags are an important addition to bobcat sets. I place a flag several feet above and directly over the trap.

Lure/Bait Recommendations

  • In the dirt-hole: A tablespoon of ‘Cat Cream smeared in the bottom of the hole is my first choice. A generous squirt of Castorium down the hole is another excellent choice. If legal a handful of feathers down the hole, on top of the bait is helpful. Place a smear of Lynx Cat gland lure on the back rim of the hole.
  • On the flag: WSB-plus with Skunk Additive or K-9 Interceptor as a long-distance call.
  • Trailing Scent: Use a long squirt of bobcat urine down the trail to each side of the set.

Beaver Profile II

Best Houben’s Animal Lures for Trapping Beaver

Set Types – The use of lured sets is a very quick way to take beaver.  The use of lure is at the very core of most high production beaver trapping. The most common set for beaver that utilizes lure is a castor mound set. A lure with a strong castor base is used here. Food or feed bed sets can be made in similar fashion but utilize a food type lure and often fresh peeled sticks. Either of these types of sets can be made with leg-hold traps or conibears depending on the conditions.

Lure/Bait Recommendations

  • Castor mound sets: A good smear of Adirondack beaver lure applied to a dry stick or piece of bark and placed about a foot beyond the trap is just the ticket.
  • Food or feed bed sets: Our Poplar Creek beaver call lure is the best choice. 
  • Warm weather trapping: During warm summer conditions beaver can be particularly indifferent to lure. Our Poplar Creek beaver call lure was specifically designed for these conditions.

Muskrat Profile II

Best Houben’s Animal Lures for Trapping Muskrat

Set Types – Muskrats maybe captured in natural sets and artificially constructed sets. Both natural sets such as feed beds and artificial sets such as pocket sets are enhance by use of a good muskrat lure.  The use of lure while muskrat trapping increases your catch ratio even at natural sets and as such allows you to catch more ‘rats faster. Generally, food odor lures are relied on in the fall and glandular lures in the spring during the mating season.

Lure/Bait Recommendations

  • Fall muskrat trapping Our M’rat muskrat food lure is a good choice.  It has its maximum attraction to muskrats during the fall. M’rat is also the least attractive of our two lures to raccoons which can be problematic by destroying sets and pulling stakes. Ondatra muskrat lure is your best choice if you want to target muskrats, raccoons, beaver, and mink in your sets. Stake your traps well.
  • Spring muskrat trapping: Ondatra muskrat lure contains a heavy dose of sweet muskrat musk and is the best choice for spring ‘rat trapping. Use on floats, shelf sets, and feed bed sets.

Raccoon Profile 2

Best Houben’s Animal Lures for Trapping Raccoon

Set Types – Raccoons are easily captured in a variety of lured/baited sets with leg-hold traps. Dog Proof (DP) also use lure and bait to capture raccoon. DPs are perhaps the most used device for raccoon trapping today.

Lure/Bait Recommendations

Note that our raccoon DP Pellets and Shellfish Paste Bait are currently out of stock.

  • Sets using leg-hold traps: Ondatra muskrat lure is an extremely attractive raccoon lure. It is also less attractive to domestic cats, opossum, and skunks than fish type baits. Shellfish Paste Bait is a great choice for raccoons in pocket sets and dirt hole sets.
  • Dog proof traps: Our DP Pellets are very palatable to raccoons, and they will work to get every morsel out of the trap. A smear of Ondatra or Shellfish Paste Bait around the top of the DP will call raccoons from a further distance.