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Friday, January 19, 2018

Trapping is cruel, wanton and wasteful

Dear editor,

We shouldn’t have to be afraid to enjoy our own public lands because of the threat of hidden, dangerous traps.  We shouldn’t have to carry hardware, ropes and not venture alone on public lands because of traps. Traps catch any creature.  Trappers break rules that the rest of us abide by. Nobody else tortures, commercializes and takes unlimited numbers of animals; it’s contrary to the norms of civilized society.

Trappers suggest we keep our dogs on a leash.  However it’s not possible to have your dog on a leash while hunting birds, riding horseback, four wheelers or backpacking. Just another blame the victim tactic while they hold our public lands hostage.

“The leg-hold trap … is probably the most cruel device ever invented by man and is a direct cause of inexcusable destruction and waste of our wildlife,” wrote Dick Randall, a former federal trapper, in a statement to Congress in 1975.

“Even though I was an experienced, professional trapper, my trap victims often included non-target species such as bald and golden eagles, a variety of hawks and other birds, rabbits, sage grouse, pet dogs, deer and antelope, badger, porcupine, sheep and calves.

“My trapping records show that for each target animal I trapped, about two unwanted individuals were caught,” Randall wrote. “Because of trap injuries, these non-target species usually had to be destroyed.”  

Idaho Fish and Game Department’s 2012 report continues to show two unwanted captures for each target animal trapped.  Please vote yes for 177.

 

George S. McClure, Jr.

Bozeman

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