UBC Research Data

Data for non-target interactions and humaneness evaluation on a captive-bolt trap for commensal rodents Ryan, Erin


The Goodnature® A24 automatic rat trap is a self-resetting captive-bolt trap powered by pressurized CO2. Little research has examined the humaneness of the trap or its potential to harm non-target mammals and birds. This study aimed to identify potential risks to non-target animals. 17 traps, each paired with a motion-activated video camera, were deployed at two sites where rodents were present. In a nine-week study, traps were baited but not activated, and a blocking device (“blocker”) was used in a cross-over design to evaluate its potential at reducing non-target strikes. Once the researchers were confident in avoiding non-target strikes, the traps were activated and recorded for 19 weeks across two different locations to evaluate humaneness. Surprisingly, only 11 trap triggers and eight kills were observed across the two locations. The eight observed kills included 3 house mice, 4 deer mice, and 1 grey squirrel. The Goodnature® A24 traps presented low risks to non-target animals, and the use of blockers effectively removed the risks to the common non-target species with the exception of one shrew in Study 1 and one squirrel in Study 2.

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