Proposed regulatory changes to neck snares may harm wildlife

An eastern coyote (Canis latrans) in the prairies of Canada. Photo by Jillian Cooper / Getty Images

The Fur-Bearers has sent a submission to Ontario’s public consultation on proposed changes to trapping regulations. The proposed amendments involve changing the design of restraining neck snares (also known as “relaxing cable restraints”).

Our submission raises concerns over the absence of research to support these proposed changes and the potential negative impacts to wildlife, including the possibility for excessive constriction for wolves and coyotes by decreasing the minimum loop diameter of snares. According to the proposal details, the rationale for decreasing the minimum loop diameter of neck snares is to, “…address concerns about pelt damage that have been identified by trappers.”

We oppose the changes as there is insufficient information provided by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry to support the proposed amendments, and they could result in increased harms towards wildlife. Instead, we recommend that the province promote non-lethal, humane farming practices and prohibit the use of snares in the province.

Take Action!

There’s still time for you to submit comments to this consultation. The Government of Ontario is accepting public comments until July 8, 2024. Make your voice heard today! How to take action:

  1. Click here to be taken to the consultation website. The link will open in a new window.
  2. Read the information on the webpage and click the blue button that says “Submit a comment”.
  3. You can sign in if you have an account. If you do not have an account, you can submit a comment anonymously by selecting the blue button that says “Comment without registering”.
  4. Enter your comments on the following page and click ‘Submit your comment’ to finish the process.

Submission tips

It’s important to submit comments in your own voice, but here are some points that can help guide your submission:

  • The province needs to publish the research findings it references on the ERO page so that the public can make informed comments on this consultation.
  • Laws around trapping need to prioritize animal welfare and should be informed by current, peer-reviewed science, not guidelines created by the commercial fur industry.
  • Relaxing cable restraints are not certified traps under the Agreement on International Humane Trapping Standards, which Canada is a party to.
  • Killing and restraining snares should not be used to trap wildlife in Ontario as research has shown that they result in negative animal welfare outcomes for both target and non-target animals. Snares are not certified traps under the Agreement on International Humane Trapping Standards and should be prohibited in the province.
  • Many countries around the world have banned snares entirely and it’s time for the province to end the use of these devices in Ontario as well.
  • Farmers should be encouraged to use non-lethal, predator friendly farming methods instead of trapping wildlife.

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Established in 1953, The Fur-Bearers is a charitable, non-partisan organization whose goals are to end the commercial fur trade and promote solutions for wildlife coexistence in communities. Your donation is tax-deductible. Charitable registration number: 130006125RR0002

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