Great Plains Natural Science Society


Date of this Version


Document Type



The Prairie Naturalist 49:31–36; 2017


Published by the Great Plains Natural Science Society. Used by permission.


The use of safe and humane methods for the capture of wild animals is imperative in wildlife research, wildlife damage management, and feral animal control. When capturing animals successfully and humanely, several items must be addressed, including animal safety, personnel safety, non-target captures, and cost (Sikes et al. 2016). Additionally, public pressures against the use of traps have led to significant changes in trapping regulations across North America and beyond (Andelt et al. 1999, Darrow and Shivik 2008) and can place research projects at risk to loss of Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) approval (Larkin et al. 2003). Various types of trap transmitters have been used to address these concerns. Reported within the literature are multiple homemade, modified, and commercially available trap transmitter systems using very high frequency (VHF) radio, cellular phone networks, or trail cameras with cellular communication as mediums (Nolan et al. 1984, Larkin et al. 2003, O’Neill et al. 2007, Johansson et al. 2011, Thompson and Prude 2015). More recently, several studies indicate using commercially available satellite trap transmitters (Heinemeyer and Squires 2012, Riley et al. 2014, Scrafford and Boyce 2014).