Animal traps found near popular trails in Draper

Dec 9, 2022, 10:54 PM | Updated: 11:25 pm

DRAPER, Utah — Even though we don’t know exactly what they’re saying, Jannifer Young and her son Christian like to imagine they’re saying hi.

“They just come to us,” Jannifer Young said with a laugh. “I didn’t know I needed ducks in my life.”

The Youngs visit Mehraban Wetlands Park in Draper several times a week to feed the ducks.

As soon as the ducks see them coming, the quacking begins.

For Jannifer Young, it is a way to escape from daily life for a few minutes.

“Peace. Calm. I love it here,” she said.

However, even in this peaceful park, she recently saw something she didn’t need.

“It just breaks my heart. It just makes me sad,” she said. “We saw a little raccoon in a trap, and I haven’t been able to stop thinking about it.”

Someone set an animal foot trap in the marshland. Draper police got a call about it, as well as another trap near the Jordan River Parkway Trail off 123rd South, where a cat was caught in one.

They’re the kind of traps designed to clamp down on an animal’s leg when it steps on a trigger point.

“They’re dangerous. They’re very strong traps. If a small child or a dog were to get caught in it, it could cause a lot of injury,” said Draper Police Lt. Pat Evans.

Draper police want to know who is setting them and why.

“There are people who like to catch raccoons and different animals, or a fox, for their skin, for their fur,” Evans said. “It could be somebody with chickens that maybe animals have been getting into their chickens. There are all kinds of reasons. It could be kids playing around.”

It is illegal to trap within Draper City limits, but it’s not illegal to own these types of traps. However, the bigger concern is these traps are close to popular trails.

Draper animal control officers have searched several areas for more traps, but only the two have been found so far.

Whatever the reason, the Youngs are hoping no more traps are out there. For as much peace as this park brings them, they can’t fathom a child, or one of their precious ducks, getting injured in a trap here.

“I don’t understand why anyone could do that to an animal that has done nothing to them,” Young said. “Little kids are out here riding their bikes all the time. I wouldn’t want to see any of them get hurt.”

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Animal traps found near popular trails in Draper