Timms not catching

I check traps voluntarily for a few elderly residents in our village. They have Timms traps - I know there are possums there - My dog has killed more on site than the Timms - Didn’t have a problem trapping possums with Timms when we lived at Oparau - Do urban possums have a different skill set? I see a lot of you experienced guys modify your Timms traps - got any instructions for an old girl on how to do that?

I don’t know if urban possums have different skills than ones in the wild do, but they do have a wider variety of foods, due to exotic trees and shrubs to browse, and fruits to eat. Experimenting with different lures and different scent coatings (anise, cinnamon, nutmeg, curry powder, etc.) might help. Using aluminium foil as visual lures is used by some people.

Good luck.

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What are you using to lure them in? Any luck with apples and cinnamon or Nutella using the little white tab? Are you using Flipping Timmy’s or ground Timms?

They are ground Timms - Have done apple in cinnamon, feijoa, and pink smooth on corflute bite tabs. There are chickens at one place (they shouldn’t b around the trap - but do occasionally get out) and lots of Quail at the other. I have been trolling the forums and noticed that some people have mounted the timms on wood ramps - I was wondering about that - but not sure how to do it - And how do you rebait if they are on a base?

This modification came up at one of our meetings. Quote: "It allows for rebaiting of the trap without having to remove it when it is fixed to a board. In my view this is a better option than the Flipping Timmy - more robust and much less that can go wrong.

GW have been using Timms traps screwed to boards (fence palings) to control possums in open country. It would work well in the bush too. Possums love to walk up ramps. The trap goes at the top of the board, with the opening facing downhill. The board is then leant against a tree, at a gentle angle (so the possum can walk up the ramp rather than having to scrabble up with its claws) and the top end of the board is then screwed to the tree to secure it in place.

A vertical slot is cut in the front of the box, from the bottom of the keyhole down. With the trap unset, the bait bar can be swung out through the slot for rebaiting, then swung back into position and the trap set. Note that bait has to be firm on the wire so that it doesn’t slide down prior to setting. Note also that this requires the user to put their hand inside the box, so there is a risk that an inattentive user could put their hand in while the trap is still set. To mitigate this risk you could use a wire with a hook on the end to grab and swing the wire out through the slot, rather than your hand.

In general though, I see no reason not to just use ordinary Timms traps pegged to the ground in most situations."


Tony Chad

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Awesome - Thanks for that- I want to give this a go on one of them

We use that modification to the Timms traps at Brookfield Education Centre. It works well for us. I specifically carry a stick about 30 cm long on my tool belt that I use to unset the traps before I rebait them. I make sure I have a very specific regime of using the stick before doing anything else to the trap.

I’ve been using fresh apple as bait.

The slot in the trap looks like this:


We find dried apricots and peanut butter catch the most possums.
We’ve got all our Timms mounted on boards with the boards at about a 45 degree angle with the board screwed to trees or posts because we have kiwi.
We also have chooks but I don’t trust they wouldn’t try to go up the ramp so I don’t put these traps around the house or chook house.
We were given thin pieces of angle steel to screw onto the board to slide the trap in and out of for easy rebaiting for one trap. We then made the rest with cut down spouting - just used the edge part. I’ve seen the same thing done with strips of timber. Photo attached - with the ex spouting mount.

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I love the idea of a sliding Timms - awesome thanks for the picts!

Hi asjl the apple is better mounted horizontal not vertical, what happens is the possum can’t grasp the length of apple so they tend to twist their head sideways when they grab the apple, if they twist their head then the kill bar tend to strike them on the side of the neck which can result in a slow inhumane death ( Timms don’t pass humane std anyway ) or an escapee cheers

Most of the time it is a lack of bait that is the problem. Most people only put a small piece of fruit in the trap you really need to cut two small sides off an apple or pear. Then place the rest of the fruit in the trap, the two discarded pieces rub all over the entrance (make a mess) and throw what’s left close to the entrance. Adding more bait around entrance always a go to.
The large bait stops small animals taking bait and also gives possum more purchase, should work.
The best approach is to buy an AT220. Is has no friends nabs anything coming in resets and rebaits itself.

After a week using apple in my Timms trap under my Feijoa tree with no success, I simply covered the trap with long grass to disguise it and have found this has worked.

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Yeah - we have an AT220 available as a hire trap but people are concerned with the possibility of catching pet cats …

Cats should be kept indoors at night, so my sympathies would be limited.

I have just heard a rumour that the new AT220 being released at the Fieldays (June??) is equipped with a microchip detector. That would help to alleviate fears and encourage microchipping of cats. Better for those of us in the urban environs! Wonder whether we could retro fit our hire traps?