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Tuesday, June 13, 2006

It's Illegal to Be Humane

An elderly man was having a problem with grey squirrels nesting on his property and attacking the birds. So instead of just killing them, he bought a humane cage trap and caught squirrels one-by-one. He covered the cages with a sheet to calm the squirrels as he drove them out to a woodland area away from his home, and released them safely. He rescued/saved/transplanted more than twenty squirrels until he was finally caught.

What he did was illegal. He should have simply shot them.

Now for those of you that read my anti-PETA posts, this has nothing to do with them or my opinion right now. The fact of the matter is that this man lives in England, where the British version of the ASPCA - the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) - says that "it is against the Wildlife and Country Act 1981 to release non-native species into the wild because there are problems they may cause to British wildlife such as red squirrels. Even the RSPCA could not re-release a grey squirrel." In fact, the RSPCA has absolutely no problem with killing the squirrels, and it's perfectly legal (as long as it's done "humanely").

This elderly man was forced to sign a statement acknowledging the law, and was warned that if he did it again, he could be prosecuted. It's not against the law to capture them, but it's against the law to release them once captured. One member of the RSPCA even suggested to him that he could buy and air rifle and shoot them, rather than break the law and release them. What makes matters worse is that the cage was already in the greenhouse and had caught yet another squirrel.

The cage used to humanely capture squirrels so they could be released and NOT have to die - is being manipulated by humans and being turned into the deathtrap it simply was not designed to be.

And if that's what we humans can do, maybe humane traps really are just glorified death-traps.

When you think about the crap we humans pull, it really makes you want to stop throwing the word "humane" around like it's a good thing.


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