Timms trap usage

I built a mount for a Timms with a couple of bits of plywood joined together with some firehose as a hinge. This lets you screw the upper part to a tree and then be able to lift the trap up to look inside. The trap is screwed to the base plate.

I modified the trap itself with a slot cut in the entry hole for the trap. This allows you to pull the bait pin out through the slot to slide a piece of apple etc on without having to unscrew the trap from the base plate.

Finally, I always carry a short stick to reach into the trap to release the trigger when I need to rebait the trap.

And today I caught my first possum with this rig!

See the pictures attached.


Hi Looks like a good mod. If you want to up the catch rate use a running board under the trap, I did a trial on 300 traps using a board increases catch rate by about 40 %, possum are naturally cautious but like most animals also neophobic, the board gives them a place to safely check out the trap and bait.
In kiwi country boards must be at 50 deg, a 1.2 metre long board set 900 up the tree is 50 deg, boards 20mm thick and 90 - 100 mm wide are good, 200mm from the top of board to bottom of trap.

Normally best to put the apple horizontal not vertical, when vertical the possum mostly needs to turn his head to grab the apple, this can result in when the trap goes off it gets caught more on the sides of the neck where you want him caught front so the kill bar will restrict the artery and windpipe


If you haven’t tried it before, I recommend giving your apple pieces a coating of cinnamon. It keeps the apple moist far longer than when it’s bare, because it reduces the evaporation-rate, and possums are big fans of cinnamon. Flour blazes with cinnamon in them give possums a sample. My kill-rates increased significantly when I made the switch, and I don’t have to re-lure the traps as frequently. Also, the cinnamon deters insects and invertebrates, and rodents definitely prefer apples that aren’t coated. I read an article recently by a possum trapper, and discovered that I’d been using pieces of apple that were far too big, the wrong shape, and skewered incorrectly. Rectangles about the size of your thumb, skewered horizontally is the way to do it, apparently (as another poster stated).

If you trap cats with your Timms, a lure that I’ve found to be very attractive is a piece of firm pork fat that has been dipped in white vinegar, which acts as a preservative, a scent lure, and keeps insects away for some time. With ants, the usual delay is around 2 days, and it’s hard for them to eat it. The fat is too tough for blowflies to lay eggs in it, which is a big problem for me when I use flesh lures.

As it dries, the fat adheres to the skewer tightly, unlike most meat lures, so you don’t have to worry about it sliding down. Because it stays put, cats have to really sink their teeth into the fat and give it a good pull to try it. Instead of nibbling away at my normal lures, I’ve trapped 3 large brown rats using vinegar pork, and I wouldn’t be surprised to trap a mustelid this way.

When I first tried the lure, I was worried that cats wouldn’t like the vinegar, but I trapped 2 of them within a few days of luring the traps, so the taste and smell of the vinegar should have still been detectable.

The fat lure treated with vinegar lasts way longer than untreated lures, which can start to smell bad quite quickly, so they’re worth a go if you can’t check your traps that often. A pack of cheap pork cuts will give you quite a few lures, because they don’t have to be very big - about the size of the end of your thumb. Like apple pieces, make them rectangular. In order to skewer the pork, you need to make an X with a knife through the tough fat, which can be tricky and risky, so be careful! I make a bunch of them at once, and then freeze the rest.

Good trapping!

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