Toothed rodent snap traps are causing horrific injuries to wildlife in British Columbia. Critter Care Wildlife Society, a non-profit rehabilitation centre, has reported several raccoons and skunks being brought in with significant injuries from these traps in recent days.
There are numerous brands and styles of these traps, but they are typically sold for under $10 each at hardware stores and home centres as easy-to-use and effective. With gripping jaws and a powerful snapping action, the traps catch any animal that may trigger them. Since they are meant to be baited, this will attract any animal nearby – including non-target animals, species at risk, or even pets.
Recently, Critter Care Wildlife Society assessed a skunk who had three separate toothed rodent traps on their body, causing lacerations and injuries to their paws. Their chances for survival and release to the wild are, at this time, uncertain.
As in many of these cases, the burden and costs of care for animals injured by these traps is carried by non-profit and frequently volunteer-run wildlife rehabilitators.
The Fur-Bearers is calling on the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development (FLNROD) to incorporate these devices into the province’s trapping regulations or mandate their removal from retail shelves.
We encourage residents of British Columbia to contact their MLA (provincial representative) regarding these traps (find your MLA by clicking here) as well as FLNROD (FishandWildlife@gov.bc.ca) to share this information and state the need for change. You can also use the form below, though a direct email or phone call is the most effective way to communicate with your MLA.