This little Cactus Wren (Arizona’s state bird) recently found himself in a sticky situation as he wandered onto a glue trap, unable to escape. Luckily, he was discovered and brought to Tucson Wildlife Center. Upon arrival, TWC’s animal care team was able to manage the stress of the bird while carefully removing him from the glue trap’s sticky substance without causing any further damage to his feathers or body. Unfortunately, he had been struggling to free himself for a while, so most of his tail feathers had been pulled out. But we are happy to report that, in time, his feathers will re-grow, and he will be released back to the wild.
Other animals may not find themselves as lucky. Glue traps might seem like a safe and easy solution to pest problems, but they are one of the cruelest. These super-sticky boards catch everything that comes in contact with them, including non-target wildlife and pets. Most animals caught this way, even if rescued, suffer significant trauma and injury. And for intended targets like rodents, glue traps make for an inhumane, painful, and slow death as the animal typically dies of suffocation or dehydration and exhaustion as it struggles to escape. Some will even bite through their limbs to free themselves.
Instead of glue traps, TWC recommends using safe and humane devices such as Havahart catch-and-release traps. For tips on using live traps, visit TWC’s website at https://tucsonwildlife.com/rescue-faq/ (How can I trap and release an animal humanely?).
If you find an animal that has been caught by a glue trap, do not attempt to remove the animal from the trap yourself. Removing an animal from these traps is a delicate procedure and can easily cause more injury. For the best chance of the animal’s survival, call Tucson Wildlife Center. Medical treatment is almost always needed once the animal is free of the trap.
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