Trapping Reform in Wyoming

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Born Free USA Reveals Best and Worst States in 2017 Animal Trapping Report

Born Free USA’s 2017 Trapping Report is compiled by reviewing the laws of each individual state on a variety of different trapping-related topics and then, using a weighted point system, assigning individual letter grades and a final weighted grade to each state. (PRNewsfoto/Born Free USA)

Rates “F” in new 2017 U.S. State Trapping Report.
Ranked #48 in animal cruelty laws.

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WASHINGTONSept. 22, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Born Free USA, a global leader in animal welfare and wildlife conservation, today released its 2017 Trapping Report, which assigns a letter grade to each of the 50 U.S. states based on the existence and effectiveness of the state’s animal trapping regulations on animal welfare, wildlife conservation and public safety.

“Indiscriminate body-crushing traps are used to capture or kill furbearing animals who are deemed a ‘nuisance’ or who are valued only for the fur on their backs,” said Prashant K. Khetan, CEO and general counsel for Born Free USA. “In many instances, animals are caught in these brutal traps, but remain trapped for days, slowly dying while subject to the elements, other animals, physical pain and emotional torture. And both targeted and non-targeted animals—including household pets and endangered species—fall victim to these traps. While our report card applauds the states that are leading the way to end trapping, we must also ask ourselves, ‘what kind of a society allows this senseless butchering of our beloved wildlife to continue year after year?’ It must end. And end now.”

The report card is compiled by reviewing the laws of each individual state on a variety of different trapping-related topics and then, using a weighted point system, assigning individual letter grades and a final weighted grade to each state. Grades also include positive marks for prohibiting the trapping of bobcats and otters, two species native to most states but vulnerable to overexploitation.

According to Born Free USA’s analysis, only four states received an “A” grade or better:

  1. California
  2. Colorado
  3. Hawaii
  4. Washington

Conversely, 14 states received an “F” grade:

  1. Alaska
  2. Arkansas
  3. Idaho
  4. Iowa
  5. Louisiana
  6. Missouri
  7. Montana
  8. Nevada
  9. North Carolina
  10. North Dakota
  11. South Dakota
  12. Texas
  13. Virginia
  14. Wyoming

“As the report clearly shows, most states don’t have good laws on trapping,” Khetan said. “We’re working to shed light on the issue and help the states who are most interested in turning around their legislation.”

For those who are interested in standing up against trapping, Khetan recommends that they:

  • Learn more about the anti-trapping and anti-fur movement here
  • Write their government representatives to encourage them to enact and enforce better laws, including to prevent trapping on public lands
  • Support fur free products/retailers

To view the 2017 Trapping Report Card, as well as the full report, visit

About Born Free USA
Born Free believes that every animal matters. Inspired by the Academy Award-winning film, Born Free, we work locally, nationally and internationally on the conservation frontlines, in communities, classrooms, courtrooms and the halls of Congress, to end wild animal cruelty and suffering, and protect threatened wildlife. Born Free USA also operates one of the country’s largest wildlife sanctuaries, which provides a permanent home for 600 primates. Many are retired from research facilities, some rescued from inhumane conditions at circuses, zoos and private ownership. They have often endured a lifetime of abuse, neglect and cruelty. But at our sanctuary in Dilley, Texas, they are safe and live free.

Launched in 2002, Born Free USA is inspired by Virginia McKenna and her (late) husband Bill Travers, who, along with their son, Will, founded The Born Free Foundation (UK) in 1984. Their experience in Kenya filming the classic 1966 Academy Award-winning film Born Free, the story of Joy and George Adamson’s fight to successfully return Elsa the lioness to a wild and free life, launched the couple’s Compassionate Conservation movement, aimed at keeping wildlife in the wild. This movement continues to motivate millions of followers and activists across the globe. In 2007, Born Free USA merged with the Animal Protection Institute.

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Heather Ripley
Ripley PR


  • David Bentley

    Trapping is an essential conservation tool. A sport and recreation practiced humanly by the vast majority of trappers. I have seen first hand the cruelty and devastation caused by Rabies, distemper and mange when animal numbers escalate to desease controlling numbers. California now spends more money trying to control coyote numbers due to the fact that they dont allow the trapping or hunting of them. What Im trying to do is educate you as to the reality of nature and how it works. You really need to spend some time with trappers and hunters so you can become enlightened as to the reality of the whole process of keeping our wildlife healthy and desease free. We trappers and hunters understand your concern for our wildlife, but are increasingly more fustrated by your nievity to all things wild and mans roll as supervisor of our natural resources. Please take the time to learn the whole picture of the matter not just what you FEEL is right. Thank you

    • Wyoming Untrapped

      Hi David,
      Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Our WU members are diverse….born and raised in Wyoming or living here half of their lives, ethical hunters, outfitters, guides, biologists, outdoors enthusiasts at every level, conservationists, farmers, ranchers, and even ex-trappers. Their experiences have led them to current beliefs that our progressive modern world has shifted to value animals on our landscape for many reasons other than to be controlled by man. They believe that brutal trapping and snaring which causes pain, fear, hunger and thirst for days is inhumane. Traps and snares are indiscriminate and kill thousands of non-target animals every single year as well.

      Following eight years of dedicated efforts to collaborate for trapping reform and to seek science-based wildlife management, we know now that every wild animal in Wyoming is exposed to deadly steel devices on our landscapes without any protections. No one is held accountable for their injuries or deaths. We now know that we will stand even stronger to envision a future where inhumane trapping and snaring are unimaginable.

  • David Bentley

    Sorry, your all just wrong in your choice of reason. All you can do is reverberate your talking points with no facts or reality to the fact that we do indeed need to act as top preditor and suppervisior of our wildlife. We by our industry have created this situation and the animal circle of life cant be left on its own, unbalanced, but monitored by those that know it best: the trappers. If you destroy the way of the trapper now he may abandon you latter. And you WILL need him again!

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