Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Animal trapping is unethical

When the Idaho Fish and Game Commission met in January, I sent this letter for their consideration. A recent series of gruesome trapping incidents have taken place during the 2011-12 wolf hunting season that have further convinced me that it is past time to end inhumane treatment of animals.

Although wildlife funding comes mainly from hunters and trappers, Idaho Fish and Game does have a responsibility to manage Idaho's wildlife in a responsible and humane way. Snaring and trapping are neither responsible nor humane.

There have been several cases this winter of dogs getting snared or trapped. I believe that trapping and snaring on public lands are dangerous and irresponsible. Because I spend nearly half of every day walking on public lands, I really resent the possibility that my dog could become trapped through no fault of ours. Surely trappers are far outnumbered by recreationists, and as our population continues to grow, this proportion will only grow. I resent the fact that a few trappers are creating this dangerous situation.


As I said, I spend a great deal of time on public lands and am advised to take safety precautions throughout the hunting season, which is relatively short and well-regulated. Now I am forced to contend with wolf hunting, snaring and trapping that goes on all winter. Hunting and trapping are privileges, not rights, and I urge you to consider my rights to enjoy my public lands without fear for my safety and that of my best friend.

I must also take this opportunity to remind the Fish and Game commissioners and the department that we are frequently admonished not to feed wildlife, and yet bear baiting is exactly that. Isn't it time to end this unethical and unfair practice?

Christine Gertschen

Blaine County

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