Madison parks officials remove beaver traps after complaints

File photo (WLUK/Scott Hurley)

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Parks officials in Madison have removed beaver traps from a lagoon following complaints from animal rights activists.

Madison Parks Division officials tell the Wisconsin State Journal the traps to kill nuisance beavers became a safety hazard when people started removing them.

Parks Division superintendent Eric Knepp says a licensed trapper set the traps after tree-killing beavers were causing shoreline damage and flooding in and around the Warner Park lagoon. He says more than a dozen trees around the lagoon had irreparable damage from beavers.

PETA member Kent Stein wrote a letter to Mayor Paul Soglin and other city officials, saying body-gripping traps are inhumane as animals struggle for prolonged periods before drowning or suffocating. Stein recommended the city spray trees with repellent and use other devices that prevent damming.