Disconnect Between Animal Protection Laws and Economic Benefits of Keeping Animals Alive a Focus for Wyoming Untrapped

Tensions exist between Wyoming’s lax animal protection laws23 and research emphasizing economic benefits of keeping animals alive.24

Two sides of the same coin, says Lisa Robertson, President and Co-Founder of Wyoming Untrapped.

In 2012 this Jackson-based nonprofit formed to respond to increased trapping in the Tetons, particularly of the elusive bobcat.

Simultaneously, escalation in the number of pets caught in traps and snares was seen.

“Wyoming is treasured for its remaining wildlife, yet we punish our animals just for being a bobcat or for being a wolf.”

Wyoming Madison River bobcat. Photo credit Tom Mangelsen (see 5/6/18 60 Minutes —Into the Wild with Thomas D. Mangelsen: The renowned wildlife photographer shows 60 Minutes what goes into his iconic pictures,  https://www.cbsnews.com/news/into-the-wild-with-thomas-mangelsen/ )

A 2017 study24, 25, 26 found that ecotourism boosted a single bobcat’s one-year value to $308,000.

That represented a dollar amount nearly 1,000 times greater than income from a single trapping license and the pelt sale for the same animal.

Some believe  the new Outdoor Recreation and Tourism Management degree at the University of Wyoming 27, 28 will help address this conflict.

A University web page cites “stewardship and conservation of natural resources” first in its list of what the program emphasizes.29

Full-length bobcat coats can require 35 and 50 pelts each.

More Animal Concerns

While hunting as a sport is decreasing in the the U.S.,30 Wyoming Untrapped says tens of thousands of animals are, nonetheless, trapped here each year.

And beyond traps and snares, coyote killing contests are common31 and grizzly bear hunting may soon be a reality.

All the while increased popularity of fur coats in Russia, China and European countries have quadrupled24 trapping demands.

Full-length bobcat coats can require 35 and 50 pelts each.

Wyoming bobcat – with permission from Nick Garbutt

Meanwhile, federal law (H.R. 1438) to eliminate “body-gripping traps in the National Wildlife Refuge System” has been proposed. 32 

And while that might help, Wyoming has a fair distance to go with its 48th state ranking for animal cruelty laws.23

Lisa Robertson said, “Wyoming is treasured for its remaining wildlife, yet we punish our animals just for being a bobcat or for being a wolf.”

Wyoming Untrapped aims to change that.


 

Take Action!

•  Consider a donation to Wyoming Untrapped

 Learn how to release your pet from a trap with videos by
WyomingUntrapped

•  View miscellaneous educational videos from Wyoming
Untrapped

•  Read more about Project Coyote

•  Watch Ending Wildlife Killing Contests video

•  See the trailer to a documentary on wildlife killing contests,
    Killing Games: Wildlife in the the Crosshairs

•  See where your state ranks in the  2017 Trapping Report
from Born Free

•  •  •


Ellen Synakowski lives in Laramie, Wyoming.
Her website is EllenSynakowski.com

“Never forget that justice is what love looks like in public.1  — C. West

4 thoughts on “Disconnect Between Animal Protection Laws and Economic Benefits of Keeping Animals Alive a Focus for Wyoming Untrapped”

  1. Trapping and killing animals polarizes people who actually do care about animals, wild and domesticated.
    My question : how will we know when we are just senselessly hurting living beings or have exhausted the breed? Can we sit together and make a plan?We have some smart people on both sides. Let’s do it!

    1. Thank you Thelma. I would be delighted to meet you and to discuss this issue. Would you like to connect? lisarob22@gmail.com or 307-690-9528. Ellen, thank you for taking on this difficult subject with so many levels of concern. For those of us involved, it truly is the definition of justice in action, and what love looks like in public. Thank you Thank you!

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