Abolish Wolf Trapping in New Mexico

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Originally Posted: 10 July 2010

Abolish Wolf Trapping in New Mexico

FROM Wild Earth Guardians

Tell the U.S. Forest Service and the Fish and Wildlife Service that you support a total ban on trapping in the Blue Range Wolf Recovery Area.


Sign an online petition

And/Or make direct contact:

Tom Tidwell
Chief of the Forest Service
phone (202) 205-8439

Benjamin Tuggle
Regional Fish and Wildlife Service Director
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
P.O. Box 1306
Albuquerque, NM 87103-1306
phone (505) 248-6911


A trap caused this wolf to lose one of her legs. This does not need to happen again.
Photo credit: Mexican Wolf Interagency Field Team

The bone-crushing retort of a steel-jawed leghold trap is still legal on a part of the Mexican wolf’s habitat. These horrific restraints cause unbearable pain, but they also injure and maim. Some wolves even chew off their limbs to get free.

In June, WildEarth Guardians issued formal requests to stop all trapping and snaring on the Mexican wolf’s recovery area—a place that should have been set aside to offer lobos safe harbor.

Tell federal officials that critically endangered Mexican wolves deserve refuge in their own habitat. That means no more traps. That means putting conservation before bureaucratic jujitsu.

Trappers anchor traps and set smelly bait lures to draw in wild native carnivores. The trouble is, the lures do not distinguish between species. The inadvertent or even intentional trapping on the range of a highly endangered animal is simply poor management, and that must change.

Today, only 41 Mexican wolves remain in the wild and they face extinction from human persecution. Since 2002, 12 of the 14 lobos trapped by individuals have happened in New Mexico where trapping on their habitat remains legal. In contrast, Arizona voters banned trapping on public lands, affording greater protections for wolves and all other species.

As a result of trapping activities, two lobos have had their legs amputated. Both the alpha male and female of the Middle Fork pack are missing limbs—one from a trap, the other from an unknown cause.

Trapping on the range of a highly endangered species is simply irresponsible. Contact the Chief of the Forest Service Tom Tidwell and Regional Fish and Wildlife Service Director Benjamin Tuggle and request an immediate cessation of trapping activities in the range of the Mexican wolf.

Traps are nasty, cruel devices. Mexican wolves, bobcats, coyotes, and foxes captured in body-gripping traps endure physiological trauma, dehydration, and exposure to extreme weather. Lobos that have been trapped and then released may sustain tissue damage and other injuries that can reduce their survivability, or increase the likelihood of their preying on domestic livestock because they are easier prey than the native wildlife, their natural preference.

Mexican wolves require freedom to roam in their native habitat. Ask federal officials to make their home safe—eliminate trapping on the Blue Range Wolf Recovery Area.

Thank you for everything you do for animals!