New Mexico Lifts Trapping Ban


On Thursday, New Mexicoís Game Commission voted unanimously on the Department of Game and Fish’s proposal to lift a ban on trapping of furbearing animals.

A ban was put in place in parts of the state last year under former Governor Bill Richardson, who supported wolf recovery efforts and also noted that traps canít differentiate between protected species and their target prey, according to the Associated Press.

Concern over the threat of trapping to Mexican gray wolves is also a point of contention over the ban. Mexican gray wolves were listed under the Endangered Species Act in 1976, at which point they were essentially gone from the Southwest as a result of human encroachment into their territory and a government sanctioned killing spree. Today, there are only an estimated 50 in the U.S.

At the time the ban was put in place, there had been six confirmed and three probable Mexican wolves trapped, which left five injured and two requiring leg amputations. More than a dozen wolves have lost legs in traps, and continued to survive in the wild, yet for some asinine reason, traps have been legal in parts of New Mexicoís wolf recovery area where one of the most endangered animals in the U.S. lives.

The ban was extended to provide researchers more time to study the effects of trapping/snaring on wolves, but the findings have yet to be released.

Conservation groups including WildEarth Guardians and the Sierra Club believe that the vote came as a result of persuasion from trapping and livestock groups …surprise!

According to the Sierra Club, more than 5,000 residents sent messages, petitions, letters and e-mails to each commissioner asking that leg-hold traps, snares and other body-crushing traps be kept off of public lands. Unfortunately, their pleas fell on deaf ears.

Wendy Keefover, director of WildEarth Guardians’ carnivore protection program, said she believes the commissioners had already made up their minds about the ban. Most of them were appointed by Republican Gov. Susana Martinez, who has expressed concerns about the wolf program’s impacts on ranchers, reports the AP.

A growing number of countries has recognized the cruelty of using leg-hold and other traps and have taken steps to ban this inhumane practice. Yet only eight states in the U.S. have banned, or restricted, their use leaving countless wild and domestic animals vulnerable to the pain they cause.

Visit Trap Free New Mexico to learn more and become a fan of Trap Free on Facebook.

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Photo credit: USFWS via flickr


William C
William C4 months ago


W. C
W. C4 months ago

Thank you for caring.

Sue H.
sue H4 years ago

Traps, my how humane... stop the killing of our wildlife... what is this war on wildlife????
It is wild so it is there for us to kill... we have a bunch of sick people in this world!

Duane B.
.5 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

parnel i.
parnel i5 years ago

This is an extremely cruel and painful thing to do to any animal. It needs to stop forever!

Veronique L.
Veronique L5 years ago

Very very sad....trapping is appalling.

Thomas P.
Thomas P5 years ago

Very sad

christine robertson

I wonder how the members of the government of New Mexico will like to be know as the those who caused the extinction of one of God's creatures?

Teresa B.
Teresa B5 years ago

Fred apparently joined just today to say things like: We kill every domestic cat we see in the outdoors also

The statements you're making are just the kind of thing to press for more gun restrictions. Did you realize you're on CARE2, and not the NRA?

LMj Sunshine
James Merit5 years ago

Sad, New Mexico!