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WILDLIFE CRIMEWATCH LINE 01483 361 108

Landowners Make Mockery of Snaring Rules

6 December 2006

Shooting estates across the country are routinely turning a blind eye to rules introduced by the Government to control the use of snares.

Snares are routinely used by gamekeepers to protect game birds from predators. Illegal in some European countries they remain legal in the UK despite calls from vets, the RSPCA and wildlife rescue centres for them to be banned.

Foxes, otters, rabbits, badgers and even domestic pets, including cats and dogs, are routinely caught. Many suffer horrific injuries and die agonizingly slow deaths.

In 2005 the Government issued a Code of Good Practice on the Use of Snares in Fox and Rabbit Control. A League investigation into 68 commercial shooting estates in England, Scotland and Wales, has found that 78 percent of those using snares are blatantly ignoring the Code of Conduct.

The League found:

•snares set on drag poles, such that a strong animal could drag the snare away and die before being found.
•Snare set on the fence lines, such that a struggling animal could climb over the fence and hang itself
•A snare set on a bridge, such that a caught animal could die from hanging beneath the bridge.

Over 200 MPs are now calling for a total ban on snares in the UK.

Cerys Roberts, League snaring campaigner said:

"The code of conduct just doesn’t work. Every day we receive reports of animals, often family pets, maimed by snares. There is only one answer and that is to take our lead from Europe and ban these vile instruments of torture”.