Protecting Predators on National Wildlife Refuges

The US Fish and Wildlife Service has proposed prohibiting most forms of predator control on National Wildlife Refuge System lands, which AWI strongly supports. In comments, we highlighted the critical roles that predators play in maintaining ecosystem health and balance. The removal of carnivores causes profound impacts, altering the dynamics of disease, wildfires, carbon sequestration, invasive species, nutrient cycling, and biodiversity. Killing predators undermines the reason refuges were established: to protect lands where wildlife can thrive, and where Americans can enjoy our great outdoors. 

However, the proposal contains exceptions that would allow lethal management in certain circumstances. AWI has urged the USFWS to prohibit the use of neck snares, steel-jaw leghold traps, and body-crushing traps in those circumstances. These devices are cruel and pose a danger to people, companion animals, and nontarget species.

Take action

Before the May 6 deadline, visit AWI’s Action Center to send comments to the USFWS supporting the proposal but urging the agency to ban the use of body-gripping traps and snares altogether as a predator management tool on national refuges.

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