Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Trapping nixed in 51 parks after second family pet dies

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Manitoba has banned trapping in 51 provincial parks after a second dog was killed by a trap.

Earlier this week, the province suspended all trapping in Grand Beach Provincial Park after Rob Shura's Rottweiler, Pippin, was killed by a trap near a hiking trail. The province was in the midst of conducting a review of trapping in provincial parks when a second dog was killed by a trap in a provincial park in the central region.

The name of the park will not be identified to protect the identity of the owners, officials said.

Manitoba Conservation and Water Stewardship's central region director Rob Nedotiafko called both incidents "unfortunate" and said trapping will no longer be permitted in provincial parks used year-round by families and pets.

The province is continuing to investigate both incidents to determine whether fines or charges will be laid. "We rarely get reports of this happening, so it's unfortunate we have two in a short time frame," Nedotiafko said.

On Nov. 22, Shura and his two dogs were out for their usual walk in Grand Beach park when Pippin let out a yelp about nine metres from a hiking trail. Shura, 45, said he found Pippin's head caught in a Conibear 220, a metal trap used to kill animals such as raccoons, badgers, foxes and beavers.

"It was just horrifying. I immediately rushed to her and I tried to pry it off with my hands. I couldn't budge it. I tried to press the springs with my hands and I couldn't," he said.

Nedotiafko said the department received feedback from concerned members of the public following news of Pippin's death.

He said trapping will be immediately banned in 51 provincial parks located next to or near populated areas, including Grand Beach and Winnipeg Beach provincial parks.

Nedotiafko said trapping will continue in certain parks in northern Manitoba, though traps are not allowed within 50 metres of a developed area and designated hiking, skiing and snowmobile trails.

Existing bans are in place in Beaudry, Pembina Valley and Birds Hill provincial parks.

The province will post signs in these parks and natural resource officers have begun working with the Manitoba Trappers Association to notify registered trappers to remove traps.

 

jen.skerritt@freepress.mb.ca

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 7, 2012 A9

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Updated on Friday, December 7, 2012 at 11:11 AM CST: replaces photo

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