BOOK REVIEW: Cull of the Wild: a Contemporary Analysis of Wildlife Trapping in the United States

Cull of the Wild a Contemporary Analysis of Wildlife Trapping in the United States

To many modern Americans, animal trapping is a relic of the distant past—certainly not something they think about frequently. This mindset has worked to trappers’ advantage, allowing them to inflict suffering and death to the tune of thousands of animals per year.

Understanding the industry is key to exposing it, and this book will go far in educating readers. Written intelligently and factually, the authors wisely choose to impart the facts without relying heavily on arguments and opinions; indeed, the facts and photos of trapping practices speak for themselves.

Like dog- and cockfighting, the “sport” of trapping is a remnant of a time in which animals were considered objects and were treated as such. Unlike organized animal fighting, trapping in not only legal, it’s practiced extensively by our federal and state governments in the name of “pest control.” This book will serve as an excellent resource for those hoping to enact change in public policy or anyone simply researching the subject.

The downside is, Cull of the Wild is not exactly a book to curl up with. The ratio of text to graphs has the former coming out on the losing side. A large portion of the book is taken up by state-by-state analysis of trapping regulations and reported kill numbers—which of course will have to be updated periodically. I would prefer if this dense information could be whittled into a bestseller on the subject, a la Eating Animals.

(review originally appeared at


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Lynwood Lashbaugh
    Nov 14, 2011 @ 00:57:11

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