Blumenauer Introduces Legislation to Reduce Unsafe, Inhumane Trapping

U.S. press release: For once the NRB listened to the citizens. There is a first time for everything.

Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Representative Earl Blumenauer (OR-03) introduced the Limiting Inhumane Federal Trapping (LIFT) for Public Safety Act, legislation to reign in unsafe and inhumane trapping on public lands and by public officials.

 

Countless pets and wild animals are injured and killed each year in body-gripping traps such as leg and foothold, Conibear, and snare traps. Despite the existence of viable non-lethal alternatives, body-gripping traps are used by federal agencies, state and local governments, private entities, and individual trappers to catch creatures for their fur, keep animals away from livestock and crops, and even for recreational purposes. Unfortunately, these traps often subject captured animals to excruciating pain for hours or even days, before they eventually die from dehydration, injuries, or predation, or when the trapper eventually finds them. Additionally, these traps are indiscriminate in their victims, and while intended for certain species or “problem animals,” they may capture – and even kill – companion animals if hidden along popular trails or waterways. Humans also risk being inadvertently caught in poorly placed traps, or attack from distressed captured animals they try to free.

 

“We’ve seen too many concerning examples of wild animals suffering and pets falling victim to body-gripping traps. It’s disgusting such inhumane traps are so widely used,” said Representative Blumenauer. “With many effective non-lethal methods that can be used in place of these cruel traps, the federal government should not and cannot continue to endorse their use.”

 

Wildlife Services, a federal agency notorious for its secrecy and use of inhumane animal management techniques, is responsible for the death or capture of thousands of animals per year in cruel body-gripping traps, often used as a first resort. Wildlife Services also advises and enters into contracts and cooperative agreements with state and local governments, as well as with private entities, to kill animals using these traps. Other federal agencies, too, allow or use body-gripping traps to control animal species – too often without attempting or requiring more humane and non-lethal control options first.

The LIFT for Public Safety Act acknowledges the inhumane nature of body-gripping traps and takes a two-pronged approach to severely restricting use of these traps to protect public safety and reduce animal suffering:

 

  • First, the bill prohibits officials and contractors of the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Interior – including Wildlife Services and agencies like the Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, and Fish & Wildlife Service – from using or recommending the use of these inhumane traps.
  • Second, it prohibits use of these traps on land managed by the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Interior, such as National Forests, Bureau of Land Management land, and National Wildlife Refuges.

 

The legislation contains limited exceptions for certain lands, the protection of endangered species, and the control of invasive species, while promoting transparency and requiring use and documentation of non-lethal methods first.

9 thoughts on “Blumenauer Introduces Legislation to Reduce Unsafe, Inhumane Trapping

  1. ◾First, the bill prohibits officials and contractors of the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Interior – including Wildlife Services and agencies like the Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, and Fish & Wildlife Service – from using or recommending the use of these inhumane traps.
    ◾Second, it prohibits use of these traps on land managed by the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Interior, such as National Forests, Bureau of Land Management land, and National Wildlife Refuges.

    Thank the good Lord. Yahoo! And ‘transparency’ – all words we like to hear.

  2. Every trapping/ranching group in the country, and the NRA will come crawling out of the woodwork, but this bill would be a good beginning, at least. Wildlife “Services” (aka, Animal Damage Control) works primarily for the Grazing Industry Special Interests, which view native wild animals, especially so-called “predators” as vermin. Public Lands are laden with these barbaric devices. It took us about an hour to save a beautiful coyote from dying a slow death in a steel trap.

    http://www.foranimals.org

      • We have State Land adjacent to where we live. It is trapped for bobcat pelts, coyote “control,” etc. People hiking the area have had dogs caught in them. Such people need a state permit to be on this land. A local public lands rancher grazes livestock there.
        One thing that caring people can do is walk any state/federal lands to check for trap lines, which may be partially under dirt or near a brush or tree. If there is one trap there are probably several more (a trap line).
        I met a woman years ago who told me she looked for trap lines when she was out in these areas. She then practiced her conscience, and took appropriate action. I remember her telling me she had about 100 traps hanging in her shed! It is “against the law” to “tamper” with these traps, but her conscience apparently told her otherwise. She also told me she “never left a trap there to be reset.”
        Traps must be unset before “handling”, as they will take off fingers and break bones–as millions of coyotes, etc., probably would tell us–if they lived. It takes more time and $ if a trapper has to replace them every so often, plus the area might end up trap free for awhile.
        “Desperate times call for desperate measures)” she said.

  3. In Idaho trappers can set these vicious things 5′ from the centerline of a trail! Not that there’s any enforcement anyway, of course. Trappers are the filthiest form of life on earth.

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