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Ole Miss Fan
The Jungle
Member since Sep 2010
6904 posts

Crawfish Trapping Tips
I have been running some catfish slat traps around my farm just for fun. Basically something to do with the kids. Using cheese bait and sardines. And when I empty the catfish, there's always a few crawfish in there.

Which got me to thinking about running some crawfish traps. I have never done it. Never been with anyone who did it. Never talked to anyone who did it. My crawfish trapping IQ is basically a zero.

Any help would be appreciated.


CrawDude
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Apr 2019
1091 posts
 Online 

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
Should answer your questions.

Louisiana Crawfish Production Manual. Chapter 8 - Harvest

Crawfish Trap Design and Construction.
This post was edited on 1/13 at 9:52 am


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Chuker
LSU Fan
St George, Louisiana
Member since Nov 2015
7544 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
You trying to catch enough for a boil? Might be tough if the water doesn't support big populations. I'm not sure if its possible to keep several catchings alive for a few weeks like in stock tank until enough is saved to make a boil worth it.

I actually don't know anything about catching crawfish so I shouldn't be posting in this thread, tbh.


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KemoSabe65
Member since Mar 2018
2043 posts
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re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
Not hard to make some pillow traps and test run them.


keakar
Member since Jan 2017
12244 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
youtube has videos showing how to make crawfish traps for a few dollars each

most likely it wont be enough to be worth the effort but you might get a sack or two before there arent enough left to find any.

think maybe getting a sack or two once or twice a year would be a best case scenario unless you have a very large area covered in water instead of just a few ponds here and there


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Ole Miss Fan
The Jungle
Member since Sep 2010
6904 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
I have access to an 80 acre borrow pit. It's public. Flat shallow lake. They took the dirt out of it to build the Port of Grand Gulf in the 1970s. That's where I set my catfish slat boxes. And they had crawfish in them.

And it's not really to be economically viable. It's more something to do with the kids. If I could set 5-10 traps and come back a week later and get 15-20 pounds that would be a huge success.

I'm curious if anyone had used the traps available on Amazon. Or if I need to build my own.


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Ole Miss Fan
The Jungle
Member since Sep 2010
6904 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
Also, what do people use for bait?


jimbeam
USA Fan
University of LSU
Member since Oct 2011
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re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
We use pogey mostly or shad. (pond operation)


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Saskwatch
Ole Miss Fan
Member since Feb 2016
7251 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
quote:

what do people use for bait?


You can probably use the leftovers from your catfish after you clean them


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Nicky Parrish
Member since Apr 2016
2490 posts
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re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
quote:

Also, what do people use for bait?

Beef melt. Can usually find it in frozen blocks in grocery stores during crawfish season.
This post was edited on 1/13 at 3:29 pm


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keakar
Member since Jan 2017
12244 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
quote:

I have access to an 80 acre borrow pit. It's public. Flat shallow lake. They took the dirt out of it to build the Port of Grand Gulf in the 1970s


no thats not how it works, you cant leave crawfish traps out for days, they would all be dead, plus people would steal them

you set the traps in the evening and raise them the next morning, or you set early morning and raise that evening

its not like crab traps that you can leave for a day or two

that said, speaking of crabs, it sounds like you have enough area there to support a good crab population as well, do they have crabs for the kids to have fun catching?

if not, have you thought about going catch a bushel or two of crabs to turn lose in there? crabs live fine in salt or fresh water so it doesnt matter where you get them from
This post was edited on 1/13 at 3:33 pm


Dissident Aggressor
LSU Fan
Member since Aug 2011
1397 posts
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re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
quote:

pillow traps


THIS
The water is a little cold right now though...


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CrawDude
LSU Fan
Baton Rouge
Member since Apr 2019
1091 posts
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re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
I’ll assume that the crawfish you caught in the slat traps are either red swamp crawfish or white river crawfish and not one of the many other species, smaller size, that people occasionally will catch.

Though you could try a few of the traps sold on Amazon - they are cheaper than I thought - might be best to make a few pillow traps of your own to try. Get 3/4 inch hexagonal mesh galvanized chicken wire, either 24, 36, or 48 inches in height, cut pieces about 48 inches or 54 inches long, roll into a cylinder and use small hog rings (you’ll need hog ring pliers) to close the cylinder, then on one end hog ring about 1/2 to 2/3 rd of the end closed and leave the other portion “open” to add bait and remove crawfish. That partially open end can be manually closed with a clothes line pin or folded over after adding bait. The other end you will hog ring closed except leaving 1 1/2 or 2 inches open and in those 2 open ends place a coke bottle neck, and push inward at a 45 degree angle to form an inverted funnel, as illustrated in fig 7 of the article I posted. Now you’ll have a pillow trap that looks like the one in Fig 1. You can “mash” them nearly flat for transport. Easy to do and a fun project. This should be pretty cheap if you can buy the galvanized wire by the linear foot, and not an entire roll. Good hardware store should have all you need.

Bait - shad, menhaden (pogy), cut carp or buffalofish are the best crawfish baits, but you could use catfish carcasses, tins of cat food with holes punched in them.

I’d try not to leave the traps set for more than 2 to 3 days - much longer than that and a high percentage of crawfish that enter the trap will escape out of the same funnels they entered.

Have fun - the kids should enjoy it, but keep your expectations in check as any permanent body of water that doesn’t dry out will likely have predatory fishes that eat crawfish, so the crawfish population would not be expected to be high, but sometimes you can hit an unexpected “jackpot”.


jimjackandjose
Member since Jun 2011
4064 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
I started crawfishing my property 3 years ago

I bought pyramid traps for 8 bucks a piece. Got 80 or so.
I use my duck hunting sled to carry bait and dump the the crawfish in it

Catfish heads work great for early season bait
The round terd bait they sell works great as it gets warmer.

Snakes and eels are great bait also.

Running water like drains or ditches that drain my duck impoundments is where I have been most successful.

It is pretty easy and last year I was catching 4 sacks a run during April.


jimjackandjose
Member since Jun 2011
4064 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
On soak time

I used to let me soak for a week. The small crawfish get out but the big ones stay in.

However, when they run out of food they will cannibalize each other.

My best runs last year were 2 day soaks


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No Colors
Ole Miss Fan
The Jungle
Member since Sep 2010
6904 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
quote:

have you thought about going catch a bushel or two of crabs to turn lose in there? crabs live fine in salt or fresh water so it doesnt matter where you get them from

Wait. Are you for real? I'm 150 miles north of the marsh. Are you saying I could throw crabs in there and then catch them again later? Certainly they wouldn't reproduce?


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No Colors
Ole Miss Fan
The Jungle
Member since Sep 2010
6904 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
quote:

CrawDude

Great detailed information. Many thanks.


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No Colors
Ole Miss Fan
The Jungle
Member since Sep 2010
6904 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
quote:

jimjackandjose

Thanks. Good info. Where do you buy the pyramid traps for $8 each? I would like to try some of those vs some of the other traps I can purchase or make.

Also copy on the 2-3 day soak. So, if I have plenty of bait in there I can place them on Friday and then check them on Sunday morning. That's perfect.


jimbeam
USA Fan
University of LSU
Member since Oct 2011
58580 posts
 Online 

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
We get our pyramids for like $10 I think it was


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Ole Miss Fan
The Jungle
Member since Sep 2010
6904 posts

re: Crawfish Trapping Tips
quote:

We get our pyramids for like $10 I think it was

Thanks. Can you tell me where?


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