The Justice Clearinghouse has provided numerous resources on humane means to handle human-wildlife conflict. While those working in the animal welfare and services organizations have been more and more mindful of the impact of the different approaches to resolving human-wildlife conflict, there are still organizations and individuals that practice less than ideal methods like trapping which are detrimental to both wildlife and companion animals.
Dave Pauli joins the Justice Clearinghouse and zeroes in on practical tips to successfully release trapped animals. Dave is a Field Responder and the Director for the Humane Society of the United States. He has responded to domestic, exotic, and wild animal projects around the US and the world, working on natural disasters, major cruelty, volume captures, and hoarding cases, among others.
Topics he covered are:
- Illustrative examples that demonstrate why trapping is rarely the best solution for human conflicts with wildlife.
- Pointers to remember for humans to avoid having their companion animals captured in traps, paying close attention to visual hints of trapping activity, seasons when trapping is prevalent, and handling companion animals.
- The importance of getting veterinary attention to check for potential injuries after an animal is caught in a trap.
- Advocating for site designations to ensure the safety of both humans and companion animals.
- A glimpse into the different species that are likely to be trapped.
- The varying legal considerations to take into account in terms of trapping animals particularly in terms of signage, permits, release, specifications of traps, and liabilities.
- The most common trapping equipment used – its design, features, and danger level.
- Tips on how to release wrongly caught animals from the different traps discussed.
- The most common issues, injuries, and risks that trapped animals may be subjected to and how to respond to these.
- A rundown on the items that must be included in wildlife rescue kits in the event that an animal must be removed from the trap.
- The survival rate of animals that are trapped and released.
- The difference between translocation and relocation, and hard release and soft release.
- The methods that are recommended to be done to ensure better chances of survival for the animals.
- The resources available through the Humane Society’s Wild Neighbors Pledge.
Questions from the webinar audience were about:
- Determining if a trapped animal is actually the animal that the trap was set up for.
- Best practices to release skunks and avoid getting sprayed.
- The legality of leg traps.
- The best local resource to reach out to for humane trapping guidelines.
- Hazing groundhogs and opossums from your property.
Resources and Handouts
- “Safe release methods. Great, informative presentation…”. — Annoula
- “Very important information on how to trap and also statistics on the health of animals released.” — Phyllis
- “How to release wildlife caught in our traps. The skunk one was very helpful.” 🙂 — Shannon
- “Lots of helpful info. The survival rate for relocated raccoons was harsh to hear. I knew it was bad to do but didn’t realize it was such a low rate of survival.” — Maranda
- “The different types of traps and how best to remove them to cause the least amount of pain to the animal. Great webinar!” — Alanna
- “It was all very informative.” — Andres