Wildlife and trapping is managed at the provincial level, but with quickly changing demographics and land use as well as ongoing development, wildlife and trapping are rapidly becoming municipal matters as well.
Domestic animals like cats and dogs are commonly injured or killed by traps and residents are shocked to find native wildlife caught and maimed by traps in their communities. Yet when they seek answers, their local governments – those who are closest to these issues and most accessible – are unable to assist, despite their attempts to do so.
Numerous municipalities, including Nanaimo, Surrey, White Rock, Sechelt, and Vernon have created by-laws or requested permission to create by-laws that would allow then to effectively educate residents about traps and protect wildlife and families from danger. Even the Union of BC Municipalities has put forward resolutions in the past several years that include:
- FLNRO be encouraged to develop and promote educational programs on alternatives to trapping and the importance of trapping signage, particularly within urban interface areas;
- FLNRO prohibit the sale of wildlife traps to individuals without a license or permit;
- The Province investigate ways to prevent domestic animals from being injured in traps; and,
- Trap lines not be allowed in recreational areas close to communities.
Yet these efforts have been in vain. Trappers are not mandated to post signs, municipalities are unable to regulate a dangerous activity in their borders and families and wildlife remain at risk of terrible injuries or death.
It is time for Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development Doug Donaldson to take action and protect British Columbians from the dangers of traps.
Take action by contacting the Minister and your MLA (if you’re a resident of British Columbia) by using our form below and sharing with your friends and family on social media. Our leaders can do better – and it starts with acknowledging that they have failed to protect wildlife, pets and families in the past.