When it reaches 219.2 F, filter your syrup to remove niter (potassium nitrate) and other minerals that can affect flavor and be harmful to very young children. Use a commercial filter like those shown or several layers of cheesecloth slipped into a large funnel.
You can make a tap or purchase one. Two common sizes are 5/16 and 7/16ths of an inch. A cordless drill and bit that matches your tap diameter are essential. Any covered container will do for a collector, but choose one you can handle and won't over burden the tree.
MDC protects and manages Missouri's fish, forest, and wildlife resources. We also facilitate your participation in resource-management activities, and we provide opportunities for you to use, enjoy and learn about nature. Read more about our mission.