Harefield Gazette

Non-target animals die on ‘vicious‘ glue trap


THE RSPCA has renewed its call for a ban on “vicious” glue traps after two blue tits and a mouse suffered slow and painful deaths when they were caught in one that was placed on a West London street.

The three little animals were discovered in a residentia­l street in Southall by members of the public, having been caught in a trap designed to catch rodents. One of the blue tits and the mouse were already dead, while the other blue tit was fatally injured as it struggled to free itself, so had to be put down.

Glue traps consist of a sheet of plastic, cardboard or wood coated with non-drying adhesive and are widely accessible in the UK but have been banned in the Republic of Ireland.

RSPCA rescue officer Holly Walker, said: “These glue traps are vicious and indiscrimi­nate. Though meant to catch rodents, we see non-target animals – from birds to cats – getting stuck on the traps’ powerful glue and as they struggle to free themselves, they invariably suffer terrible injuries and die.”

Between 2016 and 2021, there were 263 incidents involving glue traps reported to the RSPCA in England alone, with non-target species including cats, robins and other wild birds often falling victim. The charity said 73% of the glue trap incidents reported between 2016 and 2020 involved non-target animals. The RSPCA has campaigned against their use as they believe they can cause animals pain, distress and severe suffering.

Holly added: “Unfortunat­ely, glue traps are widely available and a cheap method of rodent control – but there are other, more humane methods available too, such as humane deterrence. We hope any ban on glue traps extends to their sale, as well as their use, and urge British nations to work together to overcome any barriers in law to stopping their sale; and work to get these devices out of shopping baskets and into the history books.”

A glue trap ban in England is close after the Glue Traps (Offences) Bill completed its passage through the House of Commons recently. It has the backing of the Government and would make using a glue trap to catch a rodent illegal in England, unless under licence.

If you see an animal caught in a trap, call the RSPCA’s emergency line on 0300 1234 999.

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