I've had a home made (Single Catch) Larsen Trap working for around a month now on one of my permissions. It took a good few days starting from scratch with no call bird but once I had the first one to act as a call bird things went well. It caught around 20 birds over the next couple of weeks but one day my call bird started sneezing a little and the next day it was dead. Fortunately I was thinking of moving the trap to the woodlands anyhow as I had knocked a big hole in the magpie population where it was located to the extent that the landowner said that she thought that the songbirds were starting to make more of an appearance again, so job well done.
I moved the trap last week using some cat food and some hens eggs as bait. When checking it the other morning I could see that it had been triggered, but not by a magpie, it contained a Jay! I hadn't heard much about jays getting caught in a Larsen Trap before and thought no more of it and knocked the bird on the head. However the following day I had another Jay in the trap which was extremely noisy and was driving a few magpies bonkers, so I decided to try a little experiment and put this live jay in the call bird compartment. There was nothing yesterday evening but on checking the trap this morning lo and behold there was another jay caught in the trap.
I don't know if it is common to catch Jays in a Larsen Trap (3 in 3 days) but for the time being I will continue to try catching them using my Jay call bird.
Has anyone else experienced this situation using a Larsen Trap to catch Jays and (if push comes to shove) is the jay call bird likely to get any magpies interested?