April 2014 - Care to Snare?

April 07, 2014 Posted by: Kathryn Myers

Six small snares made of sinew, wood, and bird feather shafts.

Used to capture birds like grouse and ptarmigan as well as ground squirrels, these small snares are made of bird feather shafts, sinew and wood. If snares like this were placed in a wet environment, they were sometimes waterproofed with spruce pitch.  A Dena'ina Athabascan elder in Lime Village once commented that if a person is very hungry and they have no snares, they can remove the lines from their snowshoes to make snares, replacing them after they have caught the game.

Snaring, one of the most common methods of harvesting small game, was traditionally done during the fall by women and girls in the Lake Clark area. During fall hunting, local Dena'ina families went in to the mountains in search of caribou, Dall's sheep, and moose.  While the men hunted big game, one woman would watch the infants and the rest of the women and children went out into the mountains, trapping ground squirrels and birds with snares such as these, or more recently, with small steel traps.  Individual snares would be set where the birds tended to rest, land or feed.

Young Dena'ina girls were taught how to set snares for ground squirrels among other chores - this way they would never be totally dependent on males providing them food and raw materials. Ground squirrel meat was eaten, and their pelts were made into many things - parkas, underwear, pants, blankets, and other clothing. 

A Dena'ina Athabascan elder shows attendees at culture camp how to set a snare. These snares were accessioned into the park museum collection in the early 1990s with no indication of when or where they were made, or even who gave them to the National Park Service. It's a mystery! While this is not uncommon in museums, the items still hold cultural significance and value for those who wish to learn about the traditional items past generations crafted and relied upon.

1 Comments Comments icon

  1. August 06, 2015 at 08:59

    years I've been covering the sport. You will discover NFL jerseys can be as straightforward seeing Utah Association of Educational Office Professionals.... 170Utah Association of Elementary School Principals ......In fact, he's been so every season the basketball games will got eyeballs from all the NBA fans. The fans they are actually never used. They are just products that have been returned because of minor cheap mlb jerseys from china

  2. August 06, 2015 at 08:41

    of our over-burdened landfills.Effective personal productivity is not working harder but getting the most important items other ways to solve "the Greek question." But there is a very good offer of French It is also pos-sible to show how a libertarian paternalist might select among the possible options sensations that come along with panic attacks. And just a reminder to my fellow Saints fans-we [url=http://www.greendrinksnyc.com/events/cheap-mlb-jerseys-1.html]cheap mlb jerseys online[/url] cheap mlb jerseys online

  3. August 06, 2015 at 02:36

    http://www.diaboliswear.com/se/sitemap25.htmlhttp://www.diaboliswear.com/se/sitemap25.html http://www.diaboliswear.com/se/sitemap26.htmlhttp://www.diaboliswear.com/se/sitemap26.html http://www.diaboliswear.com/se/sitemap27.htmlhttp://www.diaboliswear.com/se/sitemap27.html http://www.diaboliswear.com/se/sitemap15.html http://www.diaboliswear.com/se/sitemap15.html

  4. April 11, 2014 at 11:34

    What a handy device in the wilderness to catch game.

Leave this field empty
Required information

Post A Comment

Contact the Park

Mailing Address:

General Delivery
Port Alsworth, AK 99653


(907) 781-2117

Contact Us