Lawsuit Launched to Protect Minnesota’s Rare Lynx From Trapping

State-permitted Fur Trapping Leads to Illegal Killings, Captures of Wild Cat

MINNEAPOLIS- The Center for Biological Diversity today
<https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/w/documents/31/Lynx_MN_Sec_9_–_NOI_12_
3_2019_to_send.pdf> notified the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
of plans to sue the agency for permitting trapping that harms Canada lynx,
in violation of the Endangered Species Act.

In the past decade, state and federal agencies have documented captures of
16 lynx in traps set for other wildlife in Minnesota, six of which resulted
in death. As few as 50 of the rare cats may remain in the state.

“It’s outrageous that Minnesota’s lynx keep needlessly suffering and
dying in indiscriminate traps,” said Collette Adkins, the Center’s
carnivore conservation director. “The state needs to step up and implement
sensible changes to prevent the tragic deaths of these highly imperiled
cats. Minnesota’s rare animals shouldn’t be strangled in neck snares.”

Trapping of Canada lynx, unless covered by a specific permit from the U.S.
Fish and Wildlife Service, constitutes an illegal “take” under the
Endangered Species Act, even if accidental.

Every year in Minnesota, a small number of trappers kill
<https://files.dnr.state.mn.us/recreation/hunting/trapping/harvest_17-18.pdf
> thousands of bobcats, pine martens and other wildlife, largely to sell
their furs.

In a previous lawsuit filed by wildlife conservation groups, a Minnesota
federal court in 2008
<https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/press_releases/2008/lynx-07-14-200
8.html> held the state liable for harm to lynx caused by trapping. It
ordered the state to apply to the Fish and Wildlife Service for a permit to
cover its trapping program. But the state never obtained the permit.

The court also ordered the state to better protect lynx by issuing
regulations to restrict trapping in core lynx habitat. But even after these
additional measures went into effect, the rare cats have continued to get
caught in traps.

“Year after year we see sickening reports of lynx getting caught and even
killed by traps, but the state refuses to act,” said Adkins. “Minnesota’s
wildlife managers would rather appease a small number of trappers than
protect these beautiful wild cats. We hope this lawsuit will finally
convince the state to make lynx conservation a true priority.”

The lawsuit will seek additional measures to prevent trappers from hurting
Canada lynx, such as requiring placement of certain traps within “lynx
exclusion devices” that prevent lynx deaths. Conibear traps snap shut in a
viselike grip and have killed lynx on numerous occasions, but the department
does not require trappers to place them within exclusion devices.

Today’s notice letter starts a 60-day clock, after which the Center can
file its lawsuit to compel the state to comply with the Endangered Species
Act.

Background

Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis) are distinguished from bobcats by their tufted
ears, hind legs that appear longer than front legs, and a pronounced goatee
under the chin. Their large paws work like snowshoes and enable them to walk
on top of deep, soft snows. These cold‐loving cats feed predominantly on
snowshoe hares but may also eat birds and small mammals and scavenge
carcasses.

The lynx was listed as a “threatened” species under the federal Endangered
Species Act in 2000. Its federally designated “critical habitat” includes
northeastern Minnesota.

Trapping, habitat destruction, climate change and other threats continue to
harm the Canada lynx. Although once more widespread, lynx currently reside
in small breeding populations in Minnesota, Idaho, Montana, Washington and
Maine. A reintroduced population also resides in Colorado. Currently,
biologists estimate, 50 to 200 lynx may range in northern Minnesota.

Last year the Trump administration
<https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/news/press_releases/2018/canada-lynx-01
-11-2018.php> announced plans to remove federal protection from lynx but has
not yet moved forward with an actual proposal.

<https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/resourcespace/pages/search.php?search=%
21collection531&k=127e8fd67e> Canada lynx (Lynx canadensis), Washington Dept
FWS.
<https://www.biologicaldiversity.org/resourcespace/pages/search.php?search=%
21collection531&k=127e8fd67e> Additional photos and video available for
download here.

The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation
organization with more than 1.6 million members and online activists
dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.

<https://biologicaldiversity.org/>

<https://biologicaldiversity.org/news/breaking/> More Press

https://biologicaldiversity.org/w/news/press-releases/lawsuit-launched-to-pr
otect-minnesotas-rare-lynx-from-trapping-2019-12-03-2019-12-04/?fbclid=IwAR1
XZtGtTp6cKY-SCelXobX1TlYqb3hn3ba53pezgo0dAJsOqOSgJ8XRJg4#.XefF0Mdzx3A.facebo
ok

Minnesota put on notice over incidental trapping of lynx

The group believes that Minnesota is not following the Endangered Species Act.

An environmental group has put the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources on notice that it plans to sue the agency for failing to protect Canada lynx from trappers.
The Center for Biological Diversity filed a 60-day notice on Wnesday as required by federal law before it can file a lawsuit to try to force the state to follow the Endangered Species Act. The notice says the state has failed to comply with a 2008 federal court order that’s meant to protect lynx from being caught by trappers seeking other species.
The group says state and federal agencies have documented captures of 16 lynx over the past decade in traps that were set for other species in northern Minnesota, including six that resulted in deaths of the rare cats.
The center cites a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service report that puts Minnesota’s Lynx population at between 50 and 200. The DNR says the number present at any given time is not known, but genetic analysis in recent years has identified nearly 100 individual lynx in the state.
DNR Deputy Commissioner Barb Naramore said her agency believes it’s in “full compliance” with the Endangered Species Act and the 2008 court order.

Lucky the lynx killed in car accident

The male lynx was killed on a state road along with the deer he was hunting. Lucky was one of the first lynx to be resettled in the wilderness of the western German state of Rhineland-Palatinate.

A Eurasian Luchs lynx licking its paw (picture-alliance/blickwinkel/R. Sturm)

Lucky, a 4-year-old male lynx, was killed on Monday, May 13, when he and the deer he was chasing jumped out onto a state road and were hit by a car. Both animals were killed in the accident. The driver of the car was uninjured.

Lucky, who was orphaned as a pup, was one of the first lynx to be resettled in the wilderness of Rhineland-Palatinate in western Germany. He was a year old when he was released into the Palatinate Forest in the summer of 2016.

Release was part of an EU environmental project

To date, some 16 lynx have been released in the area, with four more to come. The release was sponsored by the EU Life project, which funds environmental and climate change activities.

Watch video05:36

Palatinate Forest – Nature without borders

Not all of the animals released in the Palatinate Forest have survived. Two female pups died shortly after their release and another male left the area for the neighboring Vosges region in France.

Authorities say that at least seven pups have been born since the animals were originally released. The surviving animals have spread across large areas of the forest.

A lover and a hunter

Lucky was the first of the animals to make headlines, however. Though his first appearance in the papers was negative — he attacked a herd of sheep — he was also the first lynx in the area to become a father.

More recently he made news again by visiting the female Kiara at the Palatinate Forest Nature Park in Kaiserslautern, even disappearing into her pen.

Ultimately, it was Lucky’s penchant for hunting that led to his demise, yet his case is not unique. According to the Rhineland-Palatinate State Hunting Association, some 23,400 animals were involved in automobile accidents across the state in 2018.

Idaho must alter lynx trapping, court says

TUESDAY, JAN. 12, 2016, 1:10 P.M.

By Rich Landers

http://www.spokesman.com/blogs/outdoors/2016/jan/12/idaho-must-alter-lynx-trapping-court-says/

Canada lynx. (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)
Canada lynx. (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

WILDLIFE — In a lawsuit filed by animal protection groups, a federal judge has ruled that Idaho’s regulations for trapping furbearers in North Idaho violate the Endangered Species Act by allowing the inadvertent capture of federally protected Canada lynx.

Here are details from the Associated Press:

The 26-page decision made public Monday in U.S. District Court requires Idaho to propose a plan within 90 days that protects lynx in the Panhandle and Clearwater regions.

“We hope Idaho will now recognize that these rare and beautiful animals need more protection than the state has been willing to grant them,” Andrea Santarsiere, an attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity, said in a statement.

The Center, the Western Watersheds Project, Friends of the Clearwater and WildEarth Guardians filed the lawsuit in June 2014 asking that lethal body-crushing traps and snares be made illegal. The groups also want to limit the size of foothold traps in lynx habitat and require daily checks of traps.

Named in the lawsuit are Idaho Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter, Idaho Department of Fish and Game Director Virgil Moore, and members of the Idaho Fish and Game Commission.

Fish and Game spokesman Mike Keckler said Monday the agency is reviewing the decision and couldn’t comment.

The Idaho Trappers Association intervened on behalf of the state.

“I believe the judge made a mistake,” said the group’s president, Patrick Carney. He said if all the limits the conservations groups want on trapping are put in place, it would greatly limit trapping in the regions.

“If they implement all that, wolf trapping is over, and so is all of the other trapping,” he said.

Besides wolves, other animals legal to trap in Idaho include coyotes, bobcats, otters, beavers, foxes, marten and mink.

The conservation groups in the lawsuit said trapping in Idaho has increased from about 650 licenses issued in the 2001-2002 season to more than 2,300 in recent years. Officials say that at least four lynx have been trapped in Idaho since 2012. One was killed after a trapper mistook it for a bobcat.

Judge B. Lynn Winmill in his ruling found that trappers likely would capture additional lynx in the Panhandle and Clearwater regions through inadvertent trapping.

The conservation groups sought to limit trapping based on potential lynx encounters in other parts of the state as well. But Winmill rejected that argument, noting that the record didn’t support inadvertent trapping of lynx in those areas.

Canada lynx weigh about 20 pounds and have large paws that give them an advantage in both pursuing prey and eluding predators when traveling across snow. They feed primarily on snowshoe hares and are believed to number in the hundreds in the continental U.S. It’s unclear how many are in Idaho.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service listed lynx in the continental U.S. as threatened with extinction in 2000.

Wolves, lynx and wild boar ‘should be reintroduced to British forests’

http://www.independent.co.uk/environment/wolves-lynx-and-wild-boar-could-be-reintroduced-to-british-forests-10389469.html

Lynx are to be reintroduced into the wild in Britain after a 1,300-year absence, under an ambitious ‘rewilding’ plan drawn up by a conservation charity

‘These are important keystone species which actually drive ecological processes’

20K
Wild animals including wolves, lynx and wild boar could be reintroduced to British forests as part of a campaign to restore species hunted to extinction.

Plans put together by Rewilding Britain would see the animals roaming Scotland and other parts of the UK in an attempt to allow “native forests to regenerate, while giving the seas a chance to recover from industrial fishing”.

Supporters of the scheme argue that Britain should follow in the footsteps of other European countries, which are already home to large predators. They also maintain that the move would improve biodiversity.

Lynx, which eat deer, rabbits and hares among other animals but are not considered a risk to people, have not been seen in Britain for 1,300 years.

Kielder Forest considered as site for return of wild lynx
Campaigners want the lynx to be reintroduced to Scotland

Spokeswoman Susan Wright told BBC Scotland: “A lot of our important animals were hunted to extinction, species like the wolf, the wild boar, the lynx.

“These are important keystone species which actually drive ecological processes and we should be looking a lot more seriously at bringing these animals back.”

Lynx to be reintroduced into wild in Britain
Missing ‘lynx’ outfoxes police

But the proposals have drawn criticism from farmers’ leaders – who say that the countryside has already experienced problems after the reintroduction of other species, such as beavers and sea eagles.

They say that dams built by beavers have increased erosion and the risk of flooding in neighbouring fields, and that sea eagles, also known as white tailed eagles, kill lambs.

The Scottish government is now trying to decide whether the beavers – which were put in place in Argyll as part of a scientific study – should stay.

NFU Scotland said politicians and Scottish Natural Heritage should “show stronger leadership” on the issue of rewilding.

Vice President Andrew McCornick said: “Our countryside provides food, forestry, tourism, renewables, field sports and environmental goods.

“Recent history has taught us any species introduction, whether legal or illegal, can have an impact on the many benefits that the Scottish countryside currently delivers.”

The Scottish government said they intend to consider the issues carefully – but said there are currently “no plans” to reintroduce top predators such as lynx or wolves.

Cougar Chews Off Foot to Escape Wolf Trap

Photo Jim Robertson

Photo Jim Robertson

I’ve had more than my share of heart-wrenching experiences with the gruesome evils of trapping. On a walk near our home in Eastern Washington, my dog stepped into a leg-hold trap that clamped down onto his front paw, prying his toes apart. He cried out in terror and frantically tried to shake it off, biting at the trap, at his paw, and at me as I fought to open the mindless steel jaws. The trap continued to cut deeper into his tender flesh and my efforts caused him even more pain. Finally, after many harrowing minutes, I was able to loosen the torture device enough for him to pull his foot free.  

Another dog I freed was caught in two leg-hold traps. One was latched onto her front leg, while the second gripped her hind leg, forcing her to remain standing for untold agonizing hours. Judging by how fatigued and dehydrated she was, she had been stuck there for several days. The sinister traps caused so much damage that a vet had to amputate one of her injured legs.  

With no other hope of escape and feeling vulnerable to anyone that comes along, many trapped animals resort to amputating their own leg. Trappers callously label this grim act of despair “wring-off”. Truly, freedom is precious to any animal desperate enough to take this extreme step. But if they don’t bleed to death or die from infection, they spend the rest of their lives crippled and quite possibly unable to keep up with a demanding life in the wild. Unlike the fictional character “Little Big Man,” who was distraught to the brink of suicide when he found that an animal had chewed off its leg to escape one of his traps, most trappers who find a wring-off are indifferent to the suffering they caused as they begrudgingly pitch the chewed-off limb and reset their trap.   

While I was camped near Bowron Lakes Provincial Park in B.C., Canada, in late March, my dog found just such a discarded limb–the front leg of a trapped lynx. In what has to be one of the more deceitful abuses of trust ever, free roaming animals– safely protected within the arbitrary boundaries of parks– lose all such protection and are deemed “fair game” for trapping as soon as they step across an invisible dividing line. Trappers consider the lands adjoining parks the most “productive” and will pay tens of thousands of dollars for permits to run trap-lines in those areas. I’ve had the displeasure of seeing three-legged coyotes near the North Cascades National Park, and within the Grand Tetons National Park.  

Sidestepping the indisputable cruelty issue, pro-trapping factions try to perpetuate the myth that trapping is sustainable. But time and again entire populations of “furbearers” are completely trapped out of an area, often within a single season. The winter after I found wolf tracks in Alaska’s Katmai National Park, all seven members of a pack who had found a niche in and around that preserve were killed–permissibly “harvested”– by trappers. Though wolves are extinct or endangered in most of the U.S., 1,500 are legally trapped in Alaska each year.

The preceding was excerpt from the book Exposing the Big Game,

http://www.earth-books.net/books/exposing-the-big-game

No animal should EVER go through the evil of trapping. And yet, in Montana, the Missoulian just reported that a mountain lion just got caught in a wolf trap: Mountain lion paw in wolf trap upsets Darby ex-houndsman

http://missoulian.com/news/local/mountain-lion-paw-in-wolf-trap-upsets-darby-ex-houndsman/article_1e1f05bc-0ccf-5603-8882-45982cd49763.html

April 11, 2015 8:00 am  •  by

HAMILTON – A mountain lion paw found torn off in a wolf trap has a former houndsman from Darby asking for change in the way the state manages the predator.

A little over two weeks ago, a friend of Cal Ruark’s dropped off the trap with the severed lion paw in it.

Ruark – a former president of the Bitterroot Houndsmen Association and now a mountain lion advocate – said his friend was antler hunting in the Reimel Creek area, east of the Sula Ranger District, when he made the gruesome find.

The man told Ruark there were deep claw marks in a tree near the location of the trap.

“He told me the trees were all tore to hell,” Ruark said. “The drag on the trap was hung up on a tree and there were claw marks on the trees where the lion had stood up on its back legs and tried to climb.”

Ruark is sure the mountain lion didn’t survive.

“It might have been able to get along for a little while, but it’s dead now,” he said. “It can’t hunt on three legs.”

Every year, mountain lions die after being caught in traps set for wolves or other furbearers.

Under the current rules, those dead lions are not considered under the quota system that Fish, Wildlife and Parks uses to manage mountain lion numbers.

Ruark believes that needs to change. He will take that request before the Fish and Wildlife Commission at its regular meeting this month.

***

KC York of Hamilton is leading an effort place a referendum on the ballot that could ban all trapping on public lands.

York said between October 2013 and February 2015, 32 mountain lions were captured in traps set for furbearers other than wolves. State records showed that 21 died, six suffered some type of damage to their paws, but were released and another five were set free unharmed.

“So 84 percent of those mountain lions captured in non-wolf sets were either dead or injured,” York said. “Only one of those trappings was determined to be illegal.”

In the two years that wolf trapping has been legal in Montana, York said state FWP records show that 16 mountain lions were caught in traps set for wolves. Five of those lions died.

York said 96 percent of the trappings were considered legal.

“You can’t legally trap a mountain lion in Montana,” she said. “These trappings are considered incidental. It goes with the territory of trapping in this state.”

Anja Heister, co-founder of Footloose Montana, said no one knows for sure how often a mountain lion loses a paw or toes to a trap.

“It was a horrific sight,” Heister said about the lion’s paw in the trap. “This was an incident that was actually discovered. No one knows for sure how often it happens. Trappers have a term for it when an animal loses a foot or a toe. They call it twist off or ring off.”

***

The Ravalli Republic contacted Montana Trapping Association president Toby Walrath of Corvallis for a comment on this story. Walrath said he would either provide a written comment or a phone contact for someone else in the organization Thursday night. By Friday’s end, the newspaper had received neither.

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks regional wildlife manager Mike Thompson said all he could say about the issue at this point is that it was being investigated.

Ruark said he wants people to know about this.

“There are a lot of people who should be angry about this lion caught in a wolf trap,” Ruark said. “Trappers should be mad because it makes them look bad. Outfitters should be thoroughly angry because they get $5,000 a pop from their clients to kill one and now there’s one less to hunt. The fact that it’s not counted toward the quota should make local houndsmen angry, too. Everyone involved should be upset.

“But unless there’s a consequence, it’s only going to get worse,” he said. “It’s not right to ignore it when a mountain lion dies.”

If someone put all the mountain lions that died after being trapped in a pile and took a photograph, Ruark said people would pay attention.

“From my perspective, these incidental kills should be counted,” he said.

Lynx Harmed by Idaho Trapping

The Canada lynx is one of Idaho’s coolest cats and among the rarest of wild felines in the United States, but that hasn’t prevented them from being caught in recreational fur-trappers body-crushing traps and snares. At least three have been killed or caught by bobcat trappers in the last two years.

Because the lynx is protected as Threatened under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), any trapping is illegal. An agency permitting such trapping violates the ESA unless it has an approved plan that avoids or reduces “incidental take” or unintentional harm to the species. Idaho Department of Fish and Game lacks such a permit, and today, Western Watersheds Project and our allies sent the state a Notice of Intent to Sue if it doesn’t start protecting lynx and complying with the ESA in the next 60 days.

The threats to lynx from trapping just add to the issues this species is facing; the species is specially-adapted to feed on snowshoe-hares (video) and to survive in cold weather. With rising temperatures and reduced snowpack under climate change, the lynx is already losing important habitat. Accidentally killing them in traps is an unnecessary – and unacceptable – harm to the species already at risk.

WWP and our allies, Center for Biological Diversity and Friends of the Clearwater, will continue to press for full protection for lynx in Idaho and across the West.

lynx

 

‘Carnivore cleansing’ is damaging ecosystems, scientists warn

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/jan/09/carnivore-cleansing-damaging-ecosystems

Extermination of large predators such as wolves and bears has a cascading effect on delicate ecological balance

·  theguardian.com, Thursday 9 January 2014 19.00 GMT

 

Carnivore extermination damaging ecosystems : Hunters skin a wolf.

Hunters skin a wolf killed in a forest in the Ukraine. Humans have waged a long-standing war with large carnivores that kill livestock and threaten rural communities. Photograph: Vasily Fedosenko/Reuters

A plea to restore populations of some of the world’s most dangerous animals has been made by scientists who claim the loss of large carnivores is damaging ecosystems.

More than three-quarters of the 31 species of large land predators, such as lions and wolves, are in decline, according to a new study. Of these, 17 species are now restricted to less than half the territory they once occupied.

Large carnivores have already been exterminated in many developed regions, including western Europe and eastern United States – and the same pattern of “carnivore cleansing” is being repeated throughout the world, said scientists.

Yet evidence suggests carnivores play a vital role in maintaining the delicate balance of ecosystems which cannot be replaced by humans hunting the animals they normally prey on.

“Globally, we are losing our large carnivores,” said lead researcher Prof William Ripple, from the department of forest ecosystems and society at Oregon State University in the US.

“Many of them are endangered. Their ranges are collapsing. Many of these animals are at risk of extinction, either locally or globally. And, ironically, they are vanishing just as we are learning about their important ecological effects.”

Humans have waged a long-standing war with large carnivores that kill livestock and threaten rural communities.

But the international team from the US, Australia, Italy and Sweden called for a global initiative to conserve large predators.

The scientists suggested it could be modelled on the Large Carnivore Initiative for Europe, an expert group affiliated with the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN). It is committed to helping European predators including the wolf, lynx and brown bear reoccupy many of their former habitats.

Prof Ripple and his colleagues focused on seven key species whose ecological impact has been extensively studied – the African lion, leopard, Eurasian lynx, cougar, grey wolf, sea otter and dingo.

A review of the evidence showed how the decline of cougars and wolves from Yellowstone and other North American national parks led to an increase in browsing animals such as deer and elk.

This in turn had a cascading effect, disrupting vegetation growth and upsetting populations of birds and small mammals.

Studies of the European lynx, Australian dingo, lions and sea otters have shown similar effects, said the researchers whose findings were reported in the journal Science.

Lynx were strongly linked to the abundance of roe deer, red fox and hare, while in Africa the loss of lions and leopards had coincided with a dramatic increase in olive baboons, which threaten farm crops and livestock.

In the waters of south-east Alaska, a decline in sea otters hunted by killer whales had led to a rise in sea urchins and the loss of kelp beds.

Ecosystems had responded quickly where large carnivores had been returned to their former habitats, said Prof Ripple. Two examples were the reintroduction of wolves in Yellowstone and the Eurasian lynx in Finland.

“I am impressed with how resilient the Yellowstone ecosystem is,” said the professor. “It isn’t happening quickly everywhere, but in some places, ecosystem restoration has started there.”

The classic concept of predators being harmful is outdated, the scientists claimed.

Prof Ripple added: “Human tolerance of these species is a major issue for conservation. We say these animals have an intrinsic right to exist, but they are also providing economic and ecological services that people value.

“Nature is highly interconnected. The work at Yellowstone and other places shows how one species affects another and another through different pathways. It’s humbling as a scientist to see the interconnectedness of nature.”

Disruption of large carnivore populations had led to crop damage, altered stream structures, and changes to the abundance and diversity of birds, mammals, reptiles and invertebrates, said the scientists.

By keeping herbivores in check and allowing woody plants to flourish and store more carbon, carnivores also acted as a buffer against climate change.

The researchers accepted that getting human communities to accept the reintroduction of large carnivores was a “major sociopolitical challenge”.

They wrote: “It will probably take a change in both human attitudes and actions to avoid imminent large carnivore extinctions. A future for these carnivore species and their continued effects on planet Earth’s ecosystems may depend on it.”

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/jan/10/rapid-loss-of-top-predators-a-major-environmental-threat

America’s Top 10 Threats to Trapping; or, The enemy of my enemy is my friend

525140_440817092654544_311118433_n

http://www.ussportsmen.org/trapping/americas-top-10-threats-to-trapping-2/

Posted on August 22, 2012

Courtesy of the U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance/ http://www.ussportsmen.org.

There are many forces in America working to end trapping and wise wildlife management. Here are a few of those anti-trapping groups:

1- Sierra Club—this group’s board of directors has let America know it opposes any and all trapping—period. The official Sierra Club statement reads: “The Sierra Club considers body-gripping, restraining and killing traps and snares to be ecologically indiscriminate and unnecessarily inhumane and therefore opposes their use.” This position earns this group a No. 1 spot.

2- PETA—best known for being wackos, this group opposes fur, trapping and anything non-vegan. PETA also wanted to “trap” and euthanize problem hogs in Florida to prevent them from being hunted.

3- Humane Society of the United States—this radical animal rights group lists trapping as wildlife abuse. This group is currently being sued for violation of federal racketeering laws.

4- American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (alias ASPCA)—states openly on its website that “The ASPCA is against the use of leg-hold or body gripping traps to capture wild animals because of the pain and distress that they cause.” The group also opposes hunting.

5- Defenders of Wildlife—this group opposes wolf hunting and trapping, and launched an aggressive on-line campaign to skew an Idaho wolf trapping survey in its favor. D o W reported it had 39,000 followers overwhelm the Idaho Game and Fish Commission’s website.

6- Born Free USA—this radical animal rights group labels trapping as “barbaric” and has a trapping victims fund to help cover veterinarian costs for animals—including wildlife—caught in traps. It distributes a free “How to Organize an Anti-Trapping Campaign” booklet through its Animal Protection Institute group.

7- In Defense of Animals—opposes trapping and has created a “furkills” website to promote the group’s propaganda—and to collect funds. The group also encourages followers to create a display in their local public library to display leaflets, posters, and books about the cruelty involved in trapping or leg-hold traps.

8- Animal Welfare Institute: Opposes trapping and is pushing the Refuge from Cruel Trapping Act in Congress to end trapping on national wildlife refuges. Filed a lawsuit in 2008 to stop coyote and fox trapping in Maine under the guise of protecting Canada lynx.

9- Center for Biological Diversity: has campaigns underway to stop wolf trapping and hunting in Montana, Wyoming and Idaho, and another in New Mexico to save Mexican gray wolves. Some of the group’s “urgent letters of action” also includes requests for donations to end trapping.

10- Footloose Montana—works to oppose wolf trapping and the management of these large predators in Montana while other wildlife species, like elk, dwindle in numbers at the hands, or paws, of wolves. Also works to end trapping on public lands.

As you can tell, trappers and hunters need to work together to overcome these radical forces…

MFWP Sued Over Lynx Trapping

Today the Missoulian reported that:

– Three conservation groups filed a federal court lawsuit Thursday against Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks commissioners and Director Jeff Hagener for allowing trapping and snaring in Canada lynx habitat.

The Friends of the Wild Swan, the WildEarth Guardians and the Alliance for the Wild Rockies say FWP reported at least nine incidents since 2000 of lynx being caught in traps set for other species; and say four of those animals died. They alleged that this violates the federal Endangered Species Act, which lists lynx as a threatened species and warranted for protection, and want the trapping prohibited in lynx habitat.

“In one instance, a young female lynx was found in a pool of her own blood, with extensive muscle damage, and an empty stomach — all from lingering far too long in a cruel, steel-jawed trap,” Wendy Keefover, carnivore protection program director for WildEarth Guardians, said in a news release. “Montana allowed this unnecessary death, which impedes lynx recovery, especially when it involves potential breeding animals.”

The lawsuit outlines some of the cases in which lynx were caught and died, including one that starved to death. 

Yes, you read that right, a lynx STARVED TO DEATH in a trap! Obviously there’s no 24 hour trap check required for species like bobcat or whoever trappers are “legally” targeting. How many more precious animals have to bleed to death, lose limbs or starve in traps before the world wakes up and trapping ends for good?

525140_440817092654544_311118433_n