I-177 MAKES THE BALLOT IN MONTANA!!! (SEE PRESS RELEASE BELOW)
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE….June 30, 2016
The Montana Trap-Free Public Lands Initiative, I-177, has qualified for the November 8, 2016 ballot. Montana Trap-Free Public Lands is a ballot initiative committee based in Missoula and supported by volunteer coordinators statewide. Volunteer and hired signature gatherers gathered more than 24,175 qualified signatures required for the ballot.
Members of Footloose Montana, a non-profit corporation supporting trap-free public lands, formed the ballot initiative committee.
Montana Trap-Free Public Lands missed qualifying a similar initiative in 2010 by about 1,500 signatures. I-177 will end commercial and recreational trapping on public lands. People, pets and wildlife will be free of indiscriminate, hidden and baited traps.
Trapping to protect livestock and property, for health and safety will continue if non-lethal methods have tried and failed. Trapping for wildlife management such as reintroduction and medical needs are allowed in I-177.
The Attorney General’s summary of I-177:
I-177 generally prohibits the use of traps and snares for animals on any public lands within Montana and establishes misdemeanor criminal penalties for violations of the trapping prohibitions. I-177 allows the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife, and Parks to use certain traps on public land when necessary if nonlethal methods have been tried and found ineffective. I-177 allows trapping by public employees and their agents to protect public health and safety, protect livestock and property, or conduct specified scientific and wildlife management activities. I-177, if passed by the electorate, will become effective immediately.
Some are confused as to how the initiative process works. While members of Footloose were independently responsible for writing the initiative, it is all handled by separate entity called a ballot initiative committee, or BIC. The BIC for I-177 is called Montanans for Trap-Free Public Lands. If you are looking for information on the initiative, you can go to the website above or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
CHILDREN FIND FOOTHOLD TRAP SET IN MISSOULA
CAT TRAPPED NEAR GREAT FALLS LOSES LEG (JANUARY 2016)
TRAP RELEASE WORKSHOPS ARE HAPPENING STATEWIDE! CHECK OUT OUR EVENTS CALENDAR!
“We trappers do cause pain and suffering to animals and apologize to no one” Dennis “Foothold” Schutz, former Vice President of the Montana Trappers Association (MTA)
Every year, tens of thousands of leghold traps, body-crushing Conibear traps and snares are legally set on Montana’s public lands and along waterways. Montana trappers kill an average of 50,000 reported wild animals every trapping season, including fisher, mink, marten, otter, bobcat, swift fox and wolverine. Trappers, however, are not required to report numbers for the most commonly trapped species, which include beaver, coyote, red fox, skunk, badger and raccoon, so the total number is likely much higher. While there is an official furbearer trapping season, with some lax regulations, that runs from September through May, traps set for ‘predators’ and ‘non-game wildlife’ can be placed year-round anywhere at any time on public lands. Montana trappers are not required to check their traps within any specific period of time, nor do they need to put up signs to warn the public. Hundreds of pets, endangered species and other non-target animals are injured or killed in traps every year. Trapping is an outdated hobby that benefits few but endangers those of us who like to enjoy public lands with our children and companion animals. In a nutshell, trapping is a public safety threat, further endangers already struggling wildlife species such as wolverine, swift fox, fisher, marten and otter, and it presents a case of animal cruelty!