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Mouse trap usage at the high school deemed inhumane

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Mouse trap usage at the high school deemed inhumane

Ouch! The poor critters that get stuck to this glue mouse trap perish over a period of several days.

Ouch! The poor critters that get stuck to this glue mouse trap perish over a period of several days.

Chris Wan / Contributing Photographer

Ouch! The poor critters that get stuck to this glue mouse trap perish over a period of several days.

Chris Wan / Contributing Photographer

Chris Wan / Contributing Photographer

Ouch! The poor critters that get stuck to this glue mouse trap perish over a period of several days.

Rachel Vin, Staff Writer

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A mouse “glue trap” is a flat, adhesive board that immobilizes mice on the sticky surface. Once caught on the board, assuming that the mouse doesn’t collapse into the glue and suffocate, the mouse will die over several days of starvation and dehydration.

These traps are largely viewed as inhumane, and animal rights organizations such as People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and The Humane Society condemn their usage. Despite this, they are still the only method of pest control that is allowed to be used at the high school.

According to Assistant Headmaster Hal Mason, glue traps are a harsh way to eliminate mice, but the magnitude of the rodent problem and the risks of alternative trapping methods leaves administration with no other choice but to use them.

“There are certainly mice in the building,” Mason said. “The goal is to keep them under control, but it’s almost impossible to completely eradicate them. The school looks for any effective way to get rid of rodents.”

Junior Evelyn Gilbert has several rats as domestic pets. She said that people’s hatred towards rodents makes humane treatment seem unimportant to them.

“They’re really terrible and inhumane,” Gilbert said. “Mice are known to freak out when they get stuck to them and chew at their own ankles, which is a terrible way to die.”

According to exterminator Todd Mcnamara, while there are a multitude of obscure techniques, the primary two methods are glue traps and snap traps. Mcnamara said that snap traps are a more humane process to kill mice because they take the mouse’s life instantly with a blow to the back of their neck.

According to Mcnamara, it is not always practical to implement new snap traps.

“Sometimes when you’re dealing with rodents they do become what’s called trap averse, and they will start to avoid the snap traps,” Mcnamara said. “Also, sometimes you can’t get snap traps in certain areas just because of space, because they don’t have enough room for the .”

Mcnamara said the main conflict with having snap traps in schools is the risk that children will get caught in the traps.

“A lot of times the issue with schools is when there’s children around you can’t just have the snap trap, because children could get injured,” Mcnamara said. “With a glue board you can’t get injured.”

Senior Hannah Farman, co-president of Veg Club, works with the club to promote animal rights activism throughout the high school. Farman said she dislikes the use of glue traps at the high school. Farman believes that animal rights need to be acknowledged and discussed more openly at the high school.

“I have a problem with glue traps. It’s unethical because it kills the mice slowly, so they just suffer for a long time,” Farman said. “Most people get angry when we talk about it, so I think people people don’t want to think about it.”

According to Mason, the school would use a more humane trapping process if they were able to.

“If there was a humane alternative that could keep the mouse population under control, the school would probably use that,” Mason said. “I don’t think there is such a way to do it.”

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2 Comments

2 Responses to “Mouse trap usage at the high school deemed inhumane”

  1. Larry on December 8th, 2016 1:20 pm

    They can put snap traps in bait boxes where kids can’t get their hands in.

    So what’s the problem?

    Sounds like they’re using glue traps just because it’s cheaper for them. These traps are banned in many parts of the world, no schools have problems eliminating mice despite this. And a glue trap will most certainly injure a child – especially if there’s a live animal on it. Not only that, but children can get sick because these traps will pretty much be full of mouse poop and pee.

  2. gail on May 18th, 2018 12:48 am

    I hear what you are saying and YES for sure, glue traps cause very long term suffering and an inevitably slow death for the poor mice. (and any other small creature which happens along. There are loads of photos on the internet of other animals trapped: frogs, snakes , worms, birds, and more.

    BUT I HAve to advise you to NOT encourage the use of neck traps as I’ve done many tests with these and have found, contrary to popular opinion, that these traps do not always ‘kill the mouse instantly’. Nor do they break their necks or backs all the time.

    I’ve taken it upon myself to be up at the times mice are mobile and out. I’ve listened to these baited traps and counted the seconds until the mouse stops struggling. (and watched also as I am determined to find out what is the best way to dispose of mice.)

    Tonight I put a strong baited neck trap out and within 30 minutes had a mouse. It was caught just behind its head, as almost all of the mice I’ve caught have been, certainly part of its neck or all of it was being squeezed with significant force. One eye bulged out of its head. Despite all this, this mouse did not die ‘instantly’. I watched (in horror) as this mouse- and he most definitely was in suffering, as his four feet and tail thrashed violently about for at least 30 seconds and possibly more, and then he slowly, slowly stopped breathing and moving about.It was just awful!
    He just strangled to death. No mercy killing here. It had to be fully conscience to be able to fight like this. Its neck and back therefore were NOT broken . and this was a very strong snapper. not a cheap 2/$1 trap!

    I have witnessed this type of ”humane death’ numerous times, each time hoping to find a short, maybe 5 second, ending.

    So, having used neck snappers and poison ( dreadful!!!), and now electronic traps, I have to reluctantly advise that the latter one is the best solution for the time being.

    I have found that the mice that enter this electric trap do die fairly quickly. Although I have not witnessed enough to declare them merciful- it could be that some also struggled- but of the ones that I have ‘heard’, the time was short, maybe 5-10 seconds of struggle. But I am under the impression that they were ‘stunned’ and so probably not aware of what was going on.

    I hope that someone comes up with a better solution to all this endless killing of our small creatures, who if they had of been born in a pet shop, would have been taken home as a pet and cared for.
    After all, what exactly IS the difference between a pet store mouse and a mouse loose in your house?
    Nothing.
    Except one happens to be luckier then the other.

    My suggestion would be to encourage the ‘thinkers’ in this highly commercialized mouse killing business, to use methods of birth control rather then death. lets PREVENT mice from having babies. How? I am just a lay person and am putting this out to the scientific community, but there must be someway to lace mouse food with hormones that makes male mice sterile or makes female mice unable to conceive. Humans use these methods. Is there any reason that something of this sort cant be used?

    Thank you for listening.

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Mouse trap usage at the high school deemed inhumane