All wildlife is protected by the state of California and it is unlawful to trap, relocate or kill any healthy wild creature that is living in its natural habitat.
Even though traps are set for a particular animal, there is no guarantee as to what domestic pet, or wild creature may be the victim. The bait used in these traps tempts a variety of animals and puts them all at risk. Relocating wildlife is not an ideal solution and it does not work. These animals live in a particular location because it provides for their specific needs. If one animal of that species is removed, another will quickly move into the unoccupied spot. Trapping, relocating, or killing will not rid the area of that species of animal. Gardens and valuable plants must be protected by fencing. There is no other way to prevent an animal from invading that space. Domestic animals can be just as invasive and destructive as wildlife. Sonoma County is still essentially rural. Wildlife performs a valuable service by removing undesirable rodents, bugs and insects, from the surrounding area. An abundance of nourishment is what attracts them. A balance of nature. Humans move into their space and provide more attractions. Once our gardens are protected, the animals return to their wild source of food.
Trapping and relocating wildlife is a life-threatening procedure for these animals. They must adapt in an unfamiliar, hostile environment. They must readjust quickly to locate alternate water and food sources. They must compete in a territory already claimed by others of the same species. They are not accepted by the resident group and are driven from an overpopulated area, or killed. Young animals have not learned the skills for survival that they will learn by staying with the parent animal as they mature. Quite often, animals removed from their home territory and their families, and forced to cope alone, will die of stress even before they die of starvation.
Place mothballs under your buildings or any area you wish to keep free of wildlife. This method has proven successful in driving the wild creature out without harm. Once the animal has left, close up any holes, fence in your valuable plantings, and remove all uneaten pet food.
by Marjorie Davis