Choosing Which Purse Nets to Use When Ferreting

Purse nets have been made from just about any material you could ever dream of. And in a while range of lengths.So which is best for when ferreting for rabbits? Do you go for big green hemp nets, or small red spun polyester ones?

Well like most things it depends on what you have in mind. Some people will need stronger nets made from hemp but others want cheaper and easier nets made from nylon. Then you have to think about the length and colour, which both depend on when and where you plan on hunting.

The Top 3 Purse Net Materials


Hemp has been used to make hunting nets since the very beginning and with good reason. Hemp is a very strong material and the fact it has very tight fibres means its rare it'll pick up twigs and such from the ground. It is also light and thin, meaning you can carry more and be weighted down less.

The down side is that hemp doesn’t like being wet. Wet hemp rots and degrades quickly. If you have the time and space to hang out your nets after a trip your hemp nets will outlive you, but if not they wont last at all. Not forgetting the fact hemp isn't cheap at about £2-£3 a net.


A relatively new material, spun polyester is very strong, light and durable. It is also available in more colours then the other materials. The main problem with spun polyester is that if its tied badly it will slip on its self. Meaning the knots pull apart and leave you with a big hole in your net.

For this reason alone, these nets are often disregarded and considered useless. My advice would be to try a few before you buy. Make sure you can trust your suppler and your pleased with their work. Or if you feel your up to the job, make them yourself.

Which Colour of Purse Net Should I Use?

Why does colour matter? I happened to come across a perfect example of this on a ferreting trip in the snow.

We have 3 different colours of nets. Yellow, red and a few new ones which are blue. We got the blue nets because during the late autumn the ground is covered in leaves which made spotting the red and yellow nets tricky. But in the snow red nets are by far the best and blue tend to blend in.

You need to pick your nets according to where and how you plan on hunting. So if you plan on hunting in lush fields of grass, yellow is best. But if you plan on hunting in autumn leaves, blue, green or maybe even white is best. I personal think a mixture of nets is the way to go.

Net Length

A net can be made to any length and a good net maker will gladly take requests. But the most common lengths are 3, 3 and a half and 4 foot long. When choosing the length of your purse net you need to yet again think about how its going to be used.

A smaller net is much better for hunting in areas filled with trees and undergrowth. But on the other hand, larger nets are better for covering larger holes in open areas. If you hunt in an area with high sand levels the ground is softer and the holes will be bigger, so choose carefully. I think a mixture of small and medium sized nets will suit most hunters.

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