Following an appeal by PETA India, the Uttarakhand Animal Welfare Board has issued a circular instructing the district magistrates and president of the district society for the prevention of cruelty to animals, Uttarakhand, to comply with Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) advisories prohibiting glue traps.
The circular cites advisories issued by the AWBI in 2001 and 2020 calling for the strict implementation of a ban on the manufacture, sale, and use of glue traps.
In its appeal, PETA India requested that the state take immediate steps to implement the AWBI’s directions. Similar circulars taking action on glue traps have previously been issued by the governments of Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Lakshadweep, Madhya Pradesh, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Sikkim, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, and West Bengal.
The use of glue traps is a punishable offence under Section 11 of The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960. Usually made of plastic trays or sheets of cardboard covered with strong glue, these traps are indiscriminate killers, often catching non-target animals, including birds, squirrels, reptiles, and frogs. This makes their use also a violation of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972, which prohibits the “hunting” of protected indigenous species. Mice, rats, and other animals caught in these traps can die of hunger, dehydration, or exposure after days of prolonged suffering. Others may suffocate when their noses and mouths become stuck in the glue, while some even chew through their legs in a desperate bid for freedom and die from blood loss. Those found alive may be thrown away along with the trap or face an even more traumatic death, such as bludgeoning or drowning.
The best way to control rodent populations is to make the area unattractive or inaccessible to them: eliminate food sources by keeping surfaces and floors clean and storing food in chew-proof containers, sealing trash cans, and using ammonia-soaked cotton balls or rags to drive rodents away (they hate the smell). After giving them a few days to leave, seal entry points using foam sealant, steel wool, hardware cloth, or metal flashing. Rodents can also be removed using humane cage traps but must be released where they will find adequate food, water, and shelter to help them survive.