What you need to know about the 2017 regulations changes.
Many of you have contacted us with questions about the new changes to Utah's trapping rules. This page lists the most common questions and answers. We will add to this list as needed, so please check back periodically for updates.
The rule now clarifies that when any person sets a trapping device for furbearers, coyotes or raccoons — and the device is more than 600 feet from a dwelling or structure used by humans or domestic livestock — that person must obtain a trap registration license (previously called a trap registration number) and comply with the trapping rules and regulations set by the Utah Wildlife Board.
Trapping devices are capable of catching a variety of species. As a result, people often capture protected wildlife when targeting other animals (like coyotes or raccoons). For example, during the 2016–2017 trapping season, nearly half of the badgers and grey foxes taken in the state were caught in traps set for other species. These rule changes will do three important things:
Improve the chances that non-targeted species can be released unharmed
Help conservation officers prevent intentional illegal trapping of protected species, such as bobcats, by people who claim to be trapping only coyotes
Provide a level of security for law-abiding people who unintentionally catch protected wildlife
Changes to the rule provide protection from criminal liability to people who comply with the trapping rules, even if they accidentally catch and/or kill a protected species. For example, if you set a trap for coyotes and accidentally catch a bobcat — but you have your traps marked with your trap number, use approved set types and comply with the trapping rules — you will not get a ticket for taking protected wildlife without a license.
Yes. If you are setting a trap capable of catching protected wildlife — and that trap is more than 600 feet from a dwelling or structure used by humans or domestic livestock — you need a trap registration license, and all traps must be marked with your trap number. Because trapping devices set for coyotes and raccoons are capable of taking protected species (including badgers, grey foxes, raptors and bobcats), you need a trap registration license to set them.
The license costs $10 and is good for life. If you already have a trap registration number, you do not need to purchase a new license. The $10 fee for the lifetime license will be waived for any Utah resident who obtains a new trap registration number between September 18, 2017 and June 30, 2018.
You can obtain a trap registration license by visiting or calling a Utah Division of Wildlife Resources (DWR) office. You cannot obtain a trap registration license at any other license vendor location.
Yes. You must have your trap registration license on your person while setting or checking traps in the field. You can also meet this requirement by downloading the Utah Hunting and Fishing app and carrying an electronic copy of your trap registration license on your smartphone when setting or checking traps. If you have trouble downloading your license to your phone, contact a DWR office for assistance.
No. You must check non-lethal leg hold traps every 48 hours and lethal sets every 96 hours. This is required for all traps and did not change. For more information on trap check requirements, see the 2017–2018 Utah Furbearer Guidebook.