Glue Traps Are Cruel and Indiscriminate
Glue traps are also known as glue boards or sticky boards, and consist either of a sheet of cardboard, plastic or wood coated with a non-drying adhesive, or a shallow tray of the adhesive.
The Cape of Good Hope SPCA is opposed to the manufacture, sale and use of all snares and any trap or trapping device or substance or form of animal control which causes or may cause suffering.
These so-called traps have major animal welfare concerns and should not be used.
- When animals cross the board, they become stuck by their feet. Unable to free themselves, other parts of their body then become stuck, further entrapping them. In attempting to get free, they may rip out patches of fur, break bones and even chew through their own limbs to escape.
- After three to five hours animals have been reported as covered in their own faeces and urine. However, trapped animals may be left for much longer periods than that, during which time they will experience pain, distress, and unacceptable suffering. If trapped animals are left unattended, they will die slowly from dehydration, starvation, or exhaustion.
- Any animal can be caught in these traps and suffer the same inhumane death. There are several known cases of kittens and fledglings being caught in these traps.
- These traps will not solve a genuine rodent infestation problem.
- No controls are in place to restrict or limit the sales of these contraptions. ie. Age restrictions or information on trap use, and warning on trap misuse.
The use of glue traps is inhumane, whether it does cause suffering or may cause suffering.
Many suppliers in South Africa have recognised the potential legal ramifications of selling these products and have stopped supplying them.
What does the law say?
It is our opinion that the use of rodent glue traps may constitute a contravention in terms of the Animals Protection Act 71 of 1962.
The Animals Protection Act 71 of 1962 protects any animal, including rodents, that are in captivity or under the control of any person.
Once an animal is caught in a glue trap, then the animal is considered ‘under the control of any person’ and as such the Animals Protection Act 71 of 1962 will apply.
The extent to which it applies, and whether an offence is committed, will depend on the situation.
No animal may be exposed to unnecessary suffering.
Report the sale of glue traps
Sadly, these traps are openly available to the public through hardware stores, garden centres and other retailers.
If you have seen glue traps being sold, please fill in the form below or you can forward the following information to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Name and address of the store where the traps are being sold (include postcode where possible).
- The name of the manager or owner of the store concerned (if known) and the address if different to the above.
- The date you saw the traps on sale.
We will then write to the retailer and ask them to stop selling glue traps, remove all glue traps from their stock and avoid re-stocking them in the future – to prevent the problem from reoccurring.
To report live animals caught in glue traps, please contact our Inspectorate on
021 700 4158/9
during office hours
083 326 1604 after hours.
Amendments to Animal Keeping By Law
In September 2022, the Cape of Good Hope SPCA wrote to the City of Cape Town to request that the Animal Keeping By Law be amended to include the prohibition of the sale of glue traps by any person or store within the City of Cape Town. We await feedback from the City of Cape Town on this issue.