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House Bill 287, a bill requiring daily trap checks, will be introduced to the house Fish, Wildlife and Parks Committee shortly. Dozens of other states already have this requirement. Montana's lack of one is one reason why Montana earned a D- on its trapping laws.

The brain parts in which pain and emotions such as fear, grief and anguish are centered are shared by all mammals, from rats to humans. Imagine yourself being caught in one of these devices, unable to break free. Metal jaws cutting into your flesh deeper with every effort you make to free yourself. These animals feel the same things you would. The damage suffered by non-target species, including pets, becomes increasingly severe and often non-survivable after 24 hours.

Trappers will complain that it's too onerous given the length of their trap lines. These trap lines, in the absence of a trap check requirement, were established to maximize profits with no thought to the damage, pain and suffering they inflict on our wildlife, as they view wildlife as "things" rather than as sentient, feeling beings.

It's well past time to bring a modicum of ethics and morality to trapping. Contact your representative asking them to support HB287.

Wesley Miles,


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