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U.S. Wildlife Services reauthorizes use of spring-loaded cyanide bomb traps to kill animals

Wildlife Services program uses the cyanide bombs for 'predator control'. Critics urged the government to ban the use of the devices, saying they threaten endangered species, domesticated animals and humans.

RALPH R. ORTEGA: ‘The Trump administration reauthorized the government’s continued use of controversial, spring-activated devices that spray poisonous cyanide to kill unwanted wildlife, despite protests from critics who say the deadly traps also threaten endangered species, domestic pets and humans. The use of M-44 ejector devices will continue to be allowed following a routine review, officials at the Environmental Protection Agency said…

The agency’s Wildlife Services program uses the devices for ‘predator control’ to target ‘coyotes, feral dogs, and red and gray foxes that are either suspected of preying upon livestock, poultry, or federally designated threatened and endangered species or are vectors of communicable disease,’ according to the fact sheet. Critics, however, urged the government to ban the use of the devices, saying they threaten endangered species, domesticated animals and humans.

‘These ‘cyanide bombs’ received approval from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency despite inhumanely and indiscriminately killing thousands of animals each year while also injuring people,’ said the Animal Welfare Institute in a statement released by the animal rights and protection organization… Wildlife Services did temporarily halt use of M-44s after the Mansfield suit and others were filed by environmental groups.

After the most recent review, however, government environmental officials disagreed with critics and allowed the continued use of M-44s with certain restrictions, mostly to keep the poisonous devices at a safer distance from public areas, including roads. ‘Cyanide traps can’t be used safely by anyone, anywhere,’ said Collette Adkins, carnivore conservation director at the Center for Biological Diversity’. SOURCE…

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