Reward offered in death of coyote in illegal trap

By Associated Press
Published: December 31, 2014, 10:03 AM

SEATTLE — Animal welfare organizations are offering a $2,500 reward for information after an illegal, leg-hold trap led to the death of a female coyote in the north Seattle suburb of Lake Forest Park.

The Seattle Times reports that the Humane Society of the United States and The Humane Society Wildlife Land Trust announced the reward Tuesday. They say a teenage girl out walking her dog found the dead coyote on Dec. 21. The groups say the animal apparently dragged herself to a creek after she managed to pull the trap on her foot loose from an anchoring stake.

Humane Society spokeswoman Lisa Wathne says officials think the trap was likely set on private property, but the animal was found on property owned by the Lake Forest Park Water District.

The Humane Society statement says leg-hold traps and other body-gripping animal traps were largely outlawed in Washington following passage of a citizen initiative in 2000 and the City of Lake Forest Park passed an ordinance banning the use of body-gripping animal traps in 2012.

Do humans get caught in traps?

The Nevada Trapper’s Assoc. emphatically says “NO! This never happens.”   But, of course, they’ve ignored the data.


TrailSafe added this on Sept. 22, 2014:  Two local cases, thoroughly documented. One was a hiker in Griffith Canyon, snared by the ankle. The other was a hiker near Gardnerville, snared by the foot. Details at


Reported: Jan 14, 2011

Location: Geneva, Illinois, Species: Human

Trap Type: Leghold, Incident Date: Jan 09, 2011

Victim’s Disposition: injured
Victim’s Name: private

Summary: A 65-pound husky/collie mix was nearly choked to death by a steel snare trap during a walk with it’s owner. The owner later went back to the area to post a note to the hunter letting him know that the trap nearly killed his dog and to get rid of the traps before someone gets hurt, when the man himself was caught in a separate trap. His boot triggered a 6-inch diameter, rusty-toothed claw trap just 15-yards from where his dog was caught. The Fire Department had to cut the claw trap off of the man’s boot. The dog is recovering, and the man was unhurt due to his heavy boots. There was a third bucket trap nearby with a piece of bait inside. All three traps were illegally set. (Source: Daily Herald newspaper)

Reported: Jan 16, 2009
Location: Malcolm, Nebraska  Species: Human

Trap Type: Kill, Incident Date: Dec 26, 2008

Victim’s Disposition: minor injuries
Victim’s Name: withheld

Legal Action: Yes
Result: Ban on trapping wildlife in county road rights of way

Summary: A bill before the Nebraska state legislature earned a uniquely qualified witness when a Lancaster County Commissioner stepped into a Conibear trap placed in a ditch near his farm. He was wearing good boots and wasn’t seriously hurt. But the trap was large enough to catch a coyote or a beaver — even a farmer — and the commissioner couldn’t open it with his hands. So he hobbled to his truck for a crowbar. He reported the incident to the state Game and Parks Commission. The trap’s owner could not be traced because the trap did not have an ID number [ed note: Nevada no longer requires trap registration]. The commissioner, of course, testified against the bill, which sought to eliminate restrictions and penalties for trapping wildlife in county road rights-of-way. (The ban went into effect on 05/05/09.  Source: Lincoln Journal Star)


Reported: Oct 24, 2007  Location: Stony Plain, Alberta

Species: Human   Trap Type: Other
Incident Date: Oct 24, 2007

Victim’s Disposition: injured
Victim’s Name: unknown

Summary: A woman walking her dog in Hasse Lake Provincial Park spotted the trap. Fearing it could be dangerous for children or dogs, she tried to disable it by fiddling with some levers on the back, but it clamped shut on her hand. Two fishermen managed to pry the trap open. She managed to escape without any broken bones, but she says she plans to ask both the county — which has confirmed it owned the trap — and the provincial government why the trap was there without warning signs. (Source: Calgary Sun)

Reported: Jan 11, 2004
Location: Webster Parish, Louisiana

Species: Human (16 yr old girl)
Trap Type: Kill
Incident Date: Jan 11, 2004

Victim’s Disposition: unknown
Victim’s Name: unknown

Summary: A 16-year-old girl was caught by the foot in a trap set for beaver. The girl was wearing lace-up boots and was caught on the heel. She escaped without injury. (Source: Shreveport Times)


Reported: Apr 12, 2002

Location: Abbotsford, British Columbia

Species: Human (13 yr old boy)
Trap Type: Kill
Incident Date: Apr 10, 2002

Victim’s Disposition: injured
Victim’s Name: unknown

Summary: Picton Park, near a city-owned ravinein a trap set for beaver. (Source: Vancouver Sun)