Success: Cruel Cyanide Traps Halted in Idaho

Target: Sonny Perdue, Secretary of Agriculture

Goal: Applaud the ban on cyanide traps and encourage a permanent nationwide ban.

After a tragic accident involving a boy and his dog, the Department of Agriculture has placed a ban on the deadly cyanide traps used to kill wildlife in Idaho. These cyanide traps look like sprinkler heads and are activated when a predator is drawn to the bait placed on the trigger. Unfortunately, wildlife aren’t the only victims of these horrific traps. ForceChange covered the accident involving a boy and his dog in a recent petition. The decision to temporarily ban the use of these traps is a welcome one, but it does leave room for improvement.

The cyanide traps, also called M-44s, release a cloud of orange smoke that contains the poison. Coyotes are the intended victims of these traps, but as this most recent incident indicates, pets are often the ones to get killed. Just on Monday the U.S. Department of Agriculture placed a ban on the use of these traps on federal and private lands in Idaho. The Department is currently reviewing their operating procedures for the devices and representatives are beginning to push for a nationwide ban of the traps.

A current lawsuit is focusing on completely halting the use of the traps until the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service can consult with the EPA on the full impact of using these traps. Until then, this state ban is welcome news and a great opportunity to push for the nationwide ban of these devices. The Department of Agriculture will to leave the ban in place while representatives contniue to meet with conservationists and animal activists on how to move forward. Please commend the ban of these traps and urge the Secretary of Agriculture to create a nationwide ban on the use of M-44s.


Dear Sonny Perdue,

The temporary ban on the use of cyanide traps in Idaho is a victory for everyone. These deadly poison bombs have killed hundreds of pets and injured a handful of people over the years. It is unfortunate that it took a tragic incident for these horrific tools to come under scrutiny for their lack of safety and their cruelty. The Department of Agriculture is taking a great step forward in creating this ban and continuing to work with concerned citizens.

While these traps are banned, the people of Idaho will not have to worry about accidently stumbling upon one. However, those living in places like Arizona still face the uncertainty of whether there might be a M-44 in the area. We greatly appreciate your willingness to work with representatives and organizations to review the use of these traps. The safety of people and their families should always come first and you have made it known that you uphold the value of safety.

Please continue to work towards creating a nationwide ban on these traps until the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service can meet with the EPA and determine the full effect of this poison. Thank you for placing safety first and working towards a solution to a dangerous problem.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Victor Graphics

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  1. Just wondering why people have to work SO hard to make the US government do something that any sane ordinary person would know is logical and right to do?

  2. Dr. Tony DeLia says:

    Really? Fish and Wildlife will consult with the Scott Pruitt’s “EPA?” Pruitt is likely to want to double the amount of cyanide in the capsules. Under Scott Pruitt the P in EPA stands for Poisoning and Polluting

  3. Lisa Zarafonetis says:

    Signed & Shared

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