Opinion Former Article

RSPCA: Stuck on glue – robin rescued from lethal trap by teenage boys

RSPCA warns glue traps are cruel and indiscriminate

A little robin had a lucky escape after getting stuck on a glue board, in the same area and just a few days before a grass snake was fatally injured by a similar trap.

The RSPCA is calling for a ban on the extra-strong glue which is spread onto boards and marketed as a rat or mouse trap. It is designed not to dry or lose its stickiness so catches any animal which comes along and can cause them a slow, lingering death.

The bird was found in a London street last week (5 July) by two 12-year-old boys on their way back from school.

The bird was found struggling by the side of Park Road in Hornsey, London.

The boys called the RSPCA and waited with the bird until inspector Natalie Bartle arrived and managed to prise him away from the sticky mat.

Inspector Bartle said: “This poor little robin was a pitiful sight when I first arrived - very distressed and sticky all over. Without the caring attitude and diligence of these two young boys who knows how much longer it would have suffered.

“It just shows how cruel and indiscriminate these traps can be. They catch any animal which happens along and this robin was lucky – usually those caught die a long and drawn out death.”

Despite the loss of tail feathers, the robin survived and was taken to a wildlife centre where it was later released back to the wild.

A grass snake found in a similar trap 20 miles away at Fore Street in Pinner, Middlesex, a few days later (Wednesday 11 July) was not so lucky. The glue was so embedded that the snake’s scales were irrevocably damaged and sadly the animal had to be put to sleep.

It is an offence under the Wildlife and Countryside Act to set these glue boards in a place where wild birds could be caught. Unfortunately, it is legal to use them to catch rats and mice but anyone doing so is required to take precautions to avoid death or injury to wild birds or other protected animals.

Anyone with any information about people setting traps should contact the RSPCA’s cruelty line on 0300 1234 999.

The RSPCA can only carry out rescues and prevent cruelty with your help. Please text HELP to 78866 to give £3 (Text costs £3 + one standard network rate message).

Notes to editors

— For images and information please call the press office.

RSPCA, Wilberforce Way, Southwater, Horsham, West Sussex RH13 9RS
Press office direct lines: 0300 123 0244/0288 Fax: 0303 123 0099
Duty press officer (evenings and weekends) Tel 08448 222888 and ask for pager number 828825
Email: press@rspca.org.uk Website: www.rspca.org.uk
 

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