The Glue Traps (Offences) Bill has passed its second reading unopposed, with the exemption for pest controllers still included, through the House of Lords at Westminster.
Conservative peer Baroness Fookes argued that glue traps were “tantamount to torture” and no animal “whether regarded as a pest or not, should have to suffer such an inhumane way of dying”.
The Bill as it stands would make it an offence for a person to:
- Set a glue trap if the intention was to kill rodents or if they knew it could kill a rodent
- Allow or permit someone else to set the trap.
- In addition, if a person passing saw such a trap and did nothing whatever about it, this was also an offence. There are suggestions that this could be unfair on the innocent passer-by, however a passer-by who would not even recognise a glue trap if they saw one would be safe.
The British Pest Control Association fought for an exemption for pest controllers, and this amendment remains in the Bill after its second reading in the House of Lords. This will be managed through a licensing regime.
All this applies only to England; the devolved Administrations have the power to work on this issue themselves and almost all have expressed an interest in doing so.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Lord Benyon, explained that the two-year period before the offences apply would give adequate time to put a suitable licensing regime in place.
“Government looked forward to working closely with animal welfare groups and pest control organisations to ensure that the licensing regime is appropriate and effective”, he added.