BPCA says Scottish glue board ban will affect most vulnerable

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Proposals in Scotland relating to a ban on the use of rodent glue traps, and increased regulation of other wildlife traps, have been published.

A consultation on the proposals is open now and will close on Wednesday, December 14.

British Pest Control Association said it will engage with stakeholders and respond to the consultation on behalf of members and has encouraged pest professionals working in Scotland to fill in the consultation and return it before the December 14 deadline.

The new Wildlife Management (Grouse Moor) Bill is largely centred around making sure that grouse moors are managed in a more sustainable way.

However, critically for pest controllers, it will also include a provision to ban the use of glue traps and further regulation on other types of traps.

The use of glue to trap birds is already an offence under The Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981; there is currently no legislation governing the use of glue traps to catch rodents in Scotland.

In its March 2021 report, the Scottish Animal Welfare Commission (SAWC) made its recommendations on the future of glue boards to ministers.

At the time of publication, BPCA expressed its concerns that the report didn’t fully consider public health implications surrounding a potential ban.

Unfortunately, the Scottish Government has accepted the SAWC’s recommendations and are proposing introducing a comprehensive ban on the use of glue traps by both members of the public and professional pest controllers.

The Scottish Government is proposing introducing a ban on the sale of rodent glue traps in Scotland, provided that this can be achieved under the terms of the Internal Market Act, which was brought in by the UK Government in 2020.

The Scottish Government is not currently looking at the introduction of a licensing regime for professional pest controllers, like the one BPCA successfully lobbied for in England.

The proposal is that there will be a two-year transition period between the legislation being passed and the ban on the use (and sale) of glue traps coming into force. This is to allow a reasonable period for businesses who use and sell glue traps to develop, trial and source alternative methods of rodent control.

Ian Andrew, chief executive at BPCA, said: “When used by pest management professionals, glue boards are the fastest and most efficient way to tackle an established rodent infestation.

“Without an alternative to glue boards, it’s possible we’ll see planes stuck on runways, school lunchrooms closed and hospital wards shut while waiting for a single mouse to be caught.”

BPCA supports the ban of retail sales and amateur-use of glue boards proposed in the Wildlife Management (Grouse) Bill, but is calling on Members of the Scottish Parliament to bring in a licensing scheme that would allow pest professionals to continue using them.

Mr Andrew added: “A typical consumer should never be able to purchase glue boards. They do not have the training to deploy glue boards safely without accidentally capturing non-target animals.

“But a total ban on glue boards would remove a tool that helps protect some of the most vulnerable people and high-risk environments.”

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With more than 25 years' experience in business-to-business publishing, Simon is editor of LBM titles Pest and OvertheCounter. Big fan of Manchester United.