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Neck killing snares designed to kill wolves, coyotes and red foxes are used across Canada.  Not only do these devices cause extreme and prolonged suffering, they also kill considerable numbers of non-target wildlife species.

Snares do not render a quick and painless death.  They are inhumane and should be immediately phased out.  In the interim, snares should require a 24 hour mandatory check-time to alleviate suffering and release non-target victims.


  1. Killing snares are not required to meet standards set forward by the Agreement on International Humane Trapping Standards (AIHTS)

  2. Due to the musculature and anatomy of wild canids killing snares cause prolonged and excruciating suffering

  3. Snares are cheap and easy to make and therefor widely used 

  4. The scientific community is making a strong case against the inhumaneness of neck-killing snares and their lack selectivity


A recent article titled Humaneness and Selectivity of Killing Neck Snares Used to Capture Canids in Canada: A Review by Dr. Gilbert Proulx and other wildlife experts appeared in the Canadian Journal of Wildlife Biology and Management.  In this review, the authors reveal that although killing neck snares are used on trap-lines across Canada, they have a strong impact on animal welfare, and they are not subject to trap performance criteria set out in the Agreement on International Humane Trapping Standards (AIHTS).


Dwight Rodtka, a retired predator control specialist  for the Alberta government and an expert on snares, has this to say about them:


"A snare is one of the oldest and deadliest devices we use to capture animals, birds, and fish. After hundreds of years their design is still archaic and causes a lengthy torturous death.


They are cheap, easy to use, and very effective, thus their popularity. Death is supposed to be caused by strangulation and a stoppage of blood flow to and from the brain. Under field conditions this can take anywhere from several minutes to days or longer because of the high variability of snare positioning on the body, a malfunctioning lock, weather conditions, or the gait of the animal. In real life death is often caused by dehydration, exhaustion, or freezing. "


In addition, killing snares are not specific in what species they target, and can cause extended suffering to many non-intended animals. They review reminds us that Endangered Species are killed incidentally in snares, and even animals such as moose , caribou , and deer  have been captured and killed in snares intended for canids.

Contact your local MLA or MPP, as well as Premier and Ministers of Natural Resources and Environment to to demand change.

Below is a list (incomplete)  of animals that were killed from trapping (mostly with snares)  within Alberta Fish and Wildlife Division Districts which contain caribou range, between 2000 - 2012. Data  was collected from voluntary submissions by trappers, so these numbers are a bare minimum.

These lives are considered  "collateral damage".

Number and type of animal recorded
as killed by snare intended for wolf
as part of Alberta's Caribou Recovery Program


SPECIES                        TOTAL # OF ANIMALS

Black bear                                  12
Caribou                                       2

Cougar                                    163
Deer                                          62
Eagle (bald and golden)                40
Fisher                                       173
Fox                                              3
Grizzly bear                                  3
Goshawk                                      1
Lynx                                           70
Moose                                       12
Otter                                          73
Owls                                         12
Small mammals (marten,
skunk, squirrel,
weasel)                  12
Wolverine                                   38


TOTAL                                      676

We encourage you to contact your local MLA or MPP, as well as Premier and Ministers of Natural Resources and Environment to let them know your thoughts.
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