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Trappers Can't be Trusted to Police Themselves; Time to Revise the Rules

Letters / Anchorage Daily News / April 21, 2005

I am a lifelong Alaskan and have family members who have run traplines. I also enjoy hiking the trails with my dog.

I was very disturbed to read about traps being set close to trail heads where families hike with their children and pets, and even more disturbed to learn that it is legal and left up to the "ethics" of individual trappers ("Trailside traps raise hackles," April 11).

Why don't we just allow mine fields in the parks? These Conibear traps are as deadly as a land mine. What will it take to convince the authorities to regulate trapping in these public areas -- some toddler getting his neck snapped?

Many of us hike with dogs. My mother and brother were killed by a bear in 1995 when they ran by a fresh moose kill next to the trail. One of the great regrets that I have is that they did not have a dog with them that might have warned them.

So now we have trappers setting up bait out of season next to trail heads to attract bears and kill the dogs that we have with us for protection. Isn't that special.

There should be no trapping allowed in many of these areas, and the places where they are allowed should be clearly posted.

I don't trust trappers to police themselves.

Steve Waldron / Anchorage

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