Zomboid Animal Traps: The Most Effective Way to Get Your Food from Animals

If you’re like most people, you’ll likely be stocking up on food in preparation for a zombie apocalypse. And if you’re like most people who play Project Zomboid, you’ll want to make sure you know how to trap animals to supplement your diet. In this guide, we’ll show you how to set up simple traps for small animals like birds.

Can you build traps in project zomboid?

In Project Zomboid, trapping is a key survival skill that allows the player to catch and butcher wild animals for food. There are two types of traps that can be built at the start – a stick trap for small birds, and a trap crate for rabbits or larger birds.

Trapping is a survivalist skill that is incredibly useful and often a necessity when surviving past the electricity shut-off point in any Project Zomboid playthrough, as you’ll ideally want to have plenty of meat to combine with vegetables and fruits that you’ll likely be growing through farming.

How do you set traps in project zomboid?

To trap animals, players must first get a trap and bait. Traps can be found in the world or crafted by the player if their skill is high enough. Once a trap is obtained, it must be placed in a valid zone and baited with the animal the player wishes to catch. After the trap is set, the player must wait at least an hour of in-game time before returning to collect their spoils. Different traps are required to catch different animals, and all traps except mouse traps must be baited to be effective.

set trap & add bait

The different types of traps and what animals they can catch

There are different types of traps that can be used to catch different animals in Project Zomboid. The most basic trap is the mouse trap, which can be found in the world.

Players can also use their trapping skills to create traps if they have learned the crafting recipes. The most common and effective trap for squirrels is the trap crate. The trap crate has a 30% chance of catching an animal, while the stick trap has a 40% chance of catching one. Stick traps are more effective for catching birds, as they are attracted to the bait more easily.

ItemDescriptionWeightStrengthCan catch Mouse?Can catch Rat?Can catch Squirrel?Can catch Rabbit?Can catch Small Bird?Base IDSkill Level
Mouse TrapSmall trap used by beginner trappers. Used to catch mice and rats.0.350Yes (30%)Yes (25%)NoNoNoBase.TrapMouseUncraftable
Trap StickStick Trap Small trap used by beginner trappers. Used to catch small birds.0.515NoNoNoNoYes (40%)Base.TrapStickTrapping 0
Snare TrapSnare Trap Medium size trap used by novice trappers. Used to catch squirrels and rabbits.0.510NoNoYes (30%)Yes (30%)NoBase.TrapSnareTrapping 1
Trap BoxTrap Box Medium size trap used by apprentice trappers. Used to catch squirrels and rabbits.115NoNoYes (25%)Yes (30%)NoBase.TrapBoxTrapping 2, Carpentry 1
Trap CrateTrap Crate Medium size trap used by beginner trappers. Used to catch squirrels and rabbits.115NoNoYes (30%)Yes (30%)NoBase.TrapCrateTrapping 0
Cage TrapCage Trap Medium size trap used by journeyman trappers. Used to catch squirrels and rabbits.120NoNoYes (40%)Yes (40%)NoBase.TrapCageTrapping 3

Source: pzwiki

The traps in the game are quite varied and have different strengths, abilities, and chances of catching an animal. It’s important to remember that not all traps are created equal, and some may be better suited for specific purposes than others. The best trap to use in a given situation typically depends on the animal being trapped and the materials available.

How to craft different traps

trap nameskill neededrecipeIngredient
Cage TrapTrapping 3The Hunter Magazine Vol. 3Wire (5 units)
Snare TrapTrapping 1The Hunter Magazine Vol. 1Saw or Handsaw, Plank x1, Twine(2 units)

Stick TrapnoneThe Hunter Magazine Vol. 2

Sturdy Stick x4, Twine(1 units)
Box TrapCarpentry 1, Trapping 2The Hunter Magazine Vol. 3Saw or Handsaw, Plank x4, Nails x7
Crate TrapnoneThe Hunter Magazine Vol. 2Saw or Handsaw, Plank x3, Nails x5
Make Traps

How to check a trap

Sometimes when you look at a trap and notice that the bait is probably gone. The trap might also break, and if it does, you will find something like scrap wood on the ground. It is important to make multiple traps because they do break easily.

All traps except the mouse trap will not catch anything if the player is closer than 75 tiles, so the player must make sure they’re not camping next to the trap.

Zombies are attracted to traps and will break them, so if the player re-adds the bait multiple times, they might get the option to check the trap and collect the animal from it.

You will also notice that the trap looks different before they do this, so you will know that the trap has caught something. Now you can re-add the bait again and enjoy their meal.

What to do with the animal after it is caught

The best way to use a newly caught animal is to eat it, which will help sustain the player. In the meantime, it is important to cook the meat thoroughly before consuming it.

The best locations to set traps for different animals

There are various locations that are better for setting traps, depending on the animal you are targeting. There are multiple zones including farm, trailer park, town, vegetation forest, and deep Forest.

Mouseall day longFarm, Trailer Park, Town, Vegetation, Forest, Deep Forest
Rabbit19:00–5:00Deep Forest, Forest, Vegetation, Trailer Park, Town
Ratall day longFarm, Trailer Park, Town, Vegetation, Forest, Deep Forest
Small Birdall day longFarm, Town, Vegetation, Trailer Park, Forest, Deep Forest
Squirrel19:00–5:00Deep Forest, Forest, Vegetation, Trailer Park, Town

Some animals, like mice, prefer farms while animals like rabbits prefer deep forests.

The different types of bait that can be used, and which ones are the most effective

The different types of bait that can be used, and which ones are the most effective, vary depending on the animal being targeted. For example, some baits are more attractive to squirrels than others.

There are a few different types of bait that can be used to catch animals in Project Zomboid. The most effective type of bait for birds is bread, while the best possible bait for trap crates is carrots. Other good options include potatoes, tomatoes, and cabbages.

MouseCheese(60%), Peanut Butter(40%), Chocolate(30%), Tomato(35%)
RabbitCarrot(45%), Cabbage(40%), Potato(35%), Tomato(35%), Corn(35%), Bell Pepper(40%), Lettuce(40%), Apple(35%), Banana(35%), Peach(35%)
RatCheese(60%), Peanut Butter(40%), Chocolate(30%), Tomato(35%)
Small BirdBread(50%), Bread Slice(50%), Cereal(45%), Corn(45%), Cockroach(50%), Cricket(50%), Grasshopper(50%), Worm(50%)
SquirrelCereal(45%), Peanuts(40%), Peanut Butter(45%), Popcorn(40%), Peach(35%), Apple(40%), Orange(40%), Corn(40%), Bell Pepper(30%), Lettuce(40%)

Tips for checking and maintaining traps

Remember to check your traps regularly, as they can attract zombies if an animal is caught. You should also repair them regularly, as they can break over time.

When baiting a trap, keep in mind that each time you bait it, you will lose some hunger. So it’s best to bait traps near areas where you can find food easily.

Ice freezers are useful for trapping, so try to find one if you can.

Towns and farms actually have the highest chance of producing catches, but it may be easier to just place traps with other traps if you’re catching birds.

The benefits of combining trapping with other survival methods like farming and fishing

Relying on looted food items is not the best choice for long-term survival. There are benefits of combining trapping with other survival methods, such as farming and fishing.

If you are near a body of water, you can fish to sustain yourself. If you are living off of only vegetables, it is not the best choice but you can do it.

How to protect traps from zombies

The traps can still catch animals even on rooftops in inaccessible places so you can build a fence around them to protect them.

How to Level Up Your Trapping Skill Quickly

If you want to level up your Trapping skill, there are a few things you can do.

Firstly, certain occupations and traits can raise the initial Trapping skill and the XP multiplier for the skill. For example, the Park Ranger occupation starts with a plus two to trapping and knows all the trap recipes.

Secondly, a player gains trapping experience when they collect an animal from a trap that they placed. The amount of experience gained for this action is proportional to the animal’s size (noting that size is slightly randomized), with a floor of 3 XP.

Third, If you can find the book on trapping before day 6, you will be able to gain a lot of experience points (XP) by watching “Life and Living”

So if you want to level up your Trapping skill quickly, make sure to choose an occupation or trait that will give you a bonus to the skill, and set as many traps as possible!


Trapping is an important skill to learn in Project Zomboid, as it can help you catch and butcher wild animals for food.

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