Let me start off by saying I know nothing about trapping mink I知 normally a land trapping guy
This year my 5 year old has his heart set on catching a mink while I知 trying to trap beaver
I have a few old duke 1.75 traps i used for bobcats and coyotes in the past.
is this to much trap for mink using a pocket set ?
Adjust those traps so that pan falls on its own. That is the pan tension you want on mink or muskrat traps. When setting the trap, pull the pan down until it is almost off or out of pan notch.
Those will be fine for mink trapping. Remember you can crowd mink hard, so do so. In pocket sets would prefer the hole to be no larger than the trap width. I would prefer about an 1" of water over the pan. I would prefer the mink can see the bait so I do not cover it up. If using a lure or liquid bait then I would make a false or fake mouse nest or rat nest with grass. If you have mink lure, use it sparingly. Most mink lure is made for trappers not mink. I have used a couple good ones and made a couple of good ones but good mink lures are scarce as hens teeth. If the water is going to be dropping you can lightly camp the trap with leaves but not too much. In my mind the mink does not see the trap as a trap if the water drops but just something to jump over. Camo the trap a bit and it is sort of ready to a semi dry set.
You can alter your pocket set by not making a traditional pocket. If you have the bank, which should be vertical or shape the bank to vertical, you can dig a small pocket or hole about three inches in diameter about as deep as you can but not necessary to go over 8 or 10 inches. The hole can be about anywhere but for mink or muskrats 9 inches to a bit more above the water lever. Set your trap directly under the hole. Place the trap so the loose jaw is against the bank. The pan should be about 1 inch under water. Place a jaw guard guide stick up against the jaw held by the dog, close to the dog. Use jaw guard stick about the diameter of a pencil and it should be sticking out of the water perhaps 8 or more inches. It sounds complicated but it is a very fast and effective set to put in. I first learned about this style of set talking to Ivan White, a name few these days will recognized.
If you have any mild smelling fish oil like salmon oil or a good trout oil, you can stick a twig in the bottle and sort of flip or fling a little scent trail up the bank from the pocket. This is more of a liquid bait and far better than most lures. There are things that one can add to make the oil more effective but I have rambled on too much.
Good luck and thanks for sharing what you know with your son. Those young folks will have to carry on the tradition.