The Sierra Club has long pretended to be an ally to hunters and trappers, but if they move forward with a proposed anti-trapping policy, they will have drawn a clear line in the sand that they are no friend to outdoorsmen.
With the proposed policy, the Sierra Club would officially oppose the use of bodygrip traps, foothold traps, snares and other similar devices. The draft policy on the Sierra Club’s website reads in part:
Use of body-gripping devices – including leghold traps, snares, and Conibear® traps – are indiscriminate to age, sex and species and typically result in injury, pain, suffering, and/or death of target and non-target animals.
The Sierra Club considers body-gripping, restraining and killing traps and snares to be ecologically indiscriminate and unnecessarily inhumane and therefore opposes their use.
The Sierra Club promotes and supports humane, practical and effective methods of mitigating human-wildlife conflicts and actively discourages the use of inhumane and indiscriminate methods. Implementation and application of this policy should be based on the most recent and relevant science and should minimize harm to ecosystems.
The Sierra Club just completed a member’s online comment period. The comments will now be reviewed by a six-person National Task Force appointed by the Sierra Club Board. The Task Force will then draft an official policy on the use of trapping devices.
This new proposal shouldn’t be a shock to sportsmen. Despite claiming for years that it is a pro-hunting organization, the Sierra Club and its local chapters have opposed pro-hunting or trapping initiatives across the country. Its online magazine has even run a story supporting the efforts of Born Free U.S.A., an avid anti-trapping organization.
The conclusion the Sierra Club has made about trapping seems eerily similar to the misinformed anti-trapping agenda pushed by the Humane Society of the United States. Of course, those misconceptions about trapping are easily rebutted with truth. The National Trappers Association “Trapping Facts” page is a good start for those with an open mind.
Unfortunately, I think the Sierra Club decision makers made up their mind long ago…