Trap Free Montana Public Lands, Inc. (TFMPL) is a nonprofit 501(c)(4) coalition of diverse supporters. Our board comprises farmers, hikers, scientists, retired law enforcement, and former lobbyists.
TFMPL mission is to achieve trapping reform and trap free Montana public lands by advocating for ethics, the best available science, responsible stewardship of our wildlife and public lands.
Montana’s few and lax trapping regulations are among the worst in the country. Montana received a D- grade in comparison to the rest of the nation. Our wildlife, including rare and protected species, and family pets all pay the consequences. Trapping is a commercialized recreation for less than 1% of Montanans resulting in an average of 50,000 reported wildlife killed annually in the state for fun and fur. The majority of species do not even need to be reported. Many species can be trapped in unlimited numbers, without a quota, year round, and without a trapping license for residents.
TFMPL goals further the common good and general welfare of the people of Montana, the wildlife, and the visitors to the state and our economy by fostering responsible and safe use of our public lands and improved trapping regulations.
Under the Public Trust, all Montanans and all US citizens have a say for wildlife. The major draws to our state for residents, visitors, and small business are our incredible wildlife and our treasured public lands. Trappers seek to seize them both, to exploit them for their own personal gain including via the political arena. They pay a pittance to Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks or nothing at all profitting off publicly owned resources.
We cannot let this happen!
No animal deserves the suffering trapping inflicts.
Trapping violates principles of ethical hunting, the public trust doctrine, and is indiscriminate, irresponsible and unnecessary. Trapping is a black eye to Montana that needs healing not preserving.
Our formation grew from a ballot initiative committee we created with the state of Montana for the November 2014 election for TRAP FREE MONTANA PUBLIC LANDS after another organization rescinded on the initiative effort. We quickly learned from the good people of Montana that our ongoing education and exposure of the truths in trapping had opened their eyes about this unethical secreted recreation. From basically all volunteers, TFMPL obtained more valid signatures for the 2014 ballot initiative than any other 2014 citizen driven initiative. Although our initiative (I-169) did not gain enough signatures in the 4 months remaining for the deadline, the response from the general public was positive and overwhelmingly enthusiastic.
Our efforts to collaborate with another group on a unified 2016 ballot initiative were unsuccessful. However, it would have been very damaging to the cause and confusing to the public for there to be two initiatives had TFMPL submitted ours as was planned and committed to our supporters.
Identity Confusion: Trap Free Montana Public Lands (TFMPL) did NOT conduct or participate in an initiative for the 2016 ballot and held no responsibility as such. The appropriation of our work products from our 2014 initiative I-169 attempt and the use by I-177 of the moniker "Trap Free" coined by Montanans for TFMPL, led to considerable public confusion.
Our daily efforts helped the overall cause and I-177 did qualify for the ballot, but did not pass.
Trap Free Montana Public Lands, Inc. work continues advocating for much needed trapping reform, improved legislation and safe, responsible use of our treasured, yet, minimal public lands in Montana. We have high standards to maintain credibility and provide you with the facts, the evidence.
Our affiliate is Trap Free Montana, Inc. a 501(c)(3) educational charitable nonprofit organization. TFM mission is to connect peoples' hearts and minds through the best available science, truths in trapping, and compassion, fostering coexistence with wildlife, biodiversity, responsible stewardship, and trap free public lands. Visit https://trapfreemt.org/