A new bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives would ban the use of the most common type of trap used to control predator populations within the National Wildlife Refuge System.
HR 3710, introduced by Representative Nita Lowey (D- NY), would make it illegal to use any trap that will “kill or capture wildlife by physically restraining any part of the animal” within the Refuge system. This definition of banned traps include the most common types, such as Conibear-style traps and foothold traps, that are used to control both predator and nuisance populations.
For a first offense, the bill orders a civil fine of up to $500 for each proscribed trap used or possessed. For subsequent offenses, a person in violation faces fines up to $1000 for each trap used or possessed as well as imprisonment for up to 180 days. Additionally, all such traps would be forfeited.
Similar bills have been introduced in the last several years but have never moved forward.
“Trapping is universally regarded by the wildlife management community as an invaluable tool to control predators and furbearers,” stated Bud Pidgeon, U.S. Sportsmen’s Alliance president and CEO. “The USSA will be working to kill this bill should it gain any traction.”