Trapping Video Review
Professional Fur Handling
By NAFA, Wisconsin Trapper’s Association, and Wisconsin DNR
With Rich Tischaefer, Greg Schroeder, and Brian MacMillan
Video: Professional Fur Handling with Rich Tischaefer, Greg Schroeder, and Brian MacMillan
Video format reviewed: DVD
Video category: Fur Handling
Video Length: four disks, four-plus hours
Video quality: 6
Audio quality: 6
Who is this designed for? Anyone who plans to process their fur
Who is this not designed for? Non-trappers
Rating system: 1-10 (1 = poor, 3 = below average, 5 = average, 7 = above average, 9-10 = excellent)
Professional Fur Handling, commonly referred to as the NAFA fur handling video or sometimes the Wisconsin Fur handling video is a unique video in the world of trapping. Unlike most videos, it’s not available at every trapping supplier, only at the Wisconsin Trapper’s Association website. It’s very detailed, covering many species that aren’t shown on other fur handling DVD’s, and it only costs twenty dollars.
The video is actually four disks, and while it doesn’t state a time on the website, my estimation is over four hours in length. On the video, you see ethics and field care for five species, sorting and grading for six species, and pelt handling for all twelve species- beaver, otter, mink, muskrat, fisher, marten, coyote, fox, bobcat, raccoon, skunk, and opossum.
Pelt handling, with Greg Schroeder shows examples of good and bad put up jobs, and of course skinning, fleshing, and boarding of each species. Greg often does fleshing with a cheap fleshing tool, as well as a Necker to show the difference in how each is held. He also talks about the correct fleshing beam shape. One thing I’d like to mention about the pelt handling segments is each animal gets its own share of time. The opossum and skunk sections get just as much attention as the otter, bobcat, and marten sections.
Rich Tischaefer gives discusses ethics and field care on otter, muskrat, beaver, fisher, and (I believe) raccoon. These segments include tips like how to avoid singing otter, cleaning fur, etc.
Brian MacMillan covers sorting and grading on otter, mink, muskrat, beaver, fisher, and raccoons. The sorting and grading segments show, through examples, the differences between hair length, thickness, color, size, and put up, and how variations in these affect the grade, and ultimately the price you receive for your fur.
Overall, the video and audio quality is good. On all of the disks, the segments are broken down on the menu, so you can easily watch what you want to without the hassle of fast forwarding or skipping through sections. Combined with all of the education in these segments, and the low price- just $20- it’s a deal that’s hard to pass up.
If I could only own two trapping videos, one would be a multi-species trapping DVD, and the other would be Professional Fur Handling.
Review by, B. Mitchell