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Letter: Facts about trapping

Re “Remembering a canine companion’s horrible death” (Sunday Monitor letter, Dec. 1):

Fact: Trapping, like hunting and fishing, remains an important tool of wildlife biologists to control wildlife populations.

Fact: Trapping is one of the most heavily regulated of the “hook and bullet” sports. For example, all trappers are required to check all of their traps every 24 hours, to obtain landowner permission before placing traps and to provide GPS coordinates of their sets at Fish and Game’s request.

No trapper I know would place a trap as close to a well-used hiking trail as the one that took the life of poor Andrew the dog. The behavior of the species targeted by trappers (beaver, fisher, etc.) dictate that they be placed well away from areas of human activity.

I question whether this unfortunate incident can even be pinned on the trapping community in New Hampshire. Does anybody know if they ever identified the person who placed the trap that killed Andrew? Was it a legitimate, licensed trapper? Or perhaps he or she had some other motive? To get back at someone? Maybe it was a crazy dog-hater?

One thing is certain: The person who placed that trap next to the trail in Auburn was a thoughtless idiot who deserves to have a leg caught in a trap. The person not only took the life of someone’s beloved pet but also did a massive disservice to the community of New Hampshire sportsmen and women. And I have no doubt that those sportsmen and women will come out in droves this winter to oppose any legislation that would intrude on their rights. Just as they did the last time such legislation came up for a vote.

DAN WILLIAMS

Concord

Well, this regulated trapping apparently was not very regulated on the day Andrew lost his life. That is mostly the point, to ban the types of traps that are cruel and kill non-target animals. Andrew's bill is not to ban trapping but to restrict it. Wildlife agencies will still be able to trap nuisance animals. I feel for all animals targeted or non that are in one of the body gripping traps currently in use that are in those for 24 hours. How cruel can humanity remain towards other species in 2013? It is time for change.

Fact: Wild animal populations are regulated by several naturally occurring means-the carrying capacity of the ecosystem (food, water, shelter), predators, disease, and a birth rate/death rate adjustment phenomenon known as density dependence. When allowed to control their own populations the strongest and healthiest survive which better maintains the health of the species. Fact: Regulations do not prevent wrong captures. Traps are indiscriminate and will slam shut on whoever triggers the device, and not just the coyote or fox it is set for. Fact: The person responsible for Andrew's death was part of the NH trapping community. He was a licensed trapper who went to court for illegally setting a trap. He was ordered by the court to pay a fine, to pay restitution to Andrew's owner and he lost his trapping license.

Thank you for proving my point. The system works. One unethical trapper broke the law and he got punished for it. One less unethical person out there to worry about. The law is fine as it stands.

No animal deserves to be tortured, whether domestic or wild. It is not right and that is all there is to it.

I agree completely!

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