The RSPCA has issued a reminder about the laws surrounding snares after a badger hit by a car was tragically found dead with one of the devices around his chest in Hereford.
Inspector Suzanne Smith was responding to reports of a badger involved in a road traffic collision on a lane off the A465 in the Hereford area.
Unfortunately, she found the badger was dead – and, on closer inspection, had a snare around his chest with old but severe injuries to his armpits caused by the device.
Tragically, it seems this badger suffered long-term pain from the injuries caused by the snare, likely severely impairing his movement, before he was hit by a car.
Suzanne said: “Sadly, this poor badger was found dead after a road traffic collision on a lane off the A465 – and I soon found a snare around his chest; which would have not only impeded his movement and stopped him from getting away from the cars but also caused him a great deal of pain.
“Snares are dangerous and indiscriminate – and the RSPCA wants to see an outright ban on their use. But while they are still legal, people must know the law around snares – and it’s illegal to set one to catch a badger.
“While this was a free running snare – it was so rusted that it had stopped running; suggesting it may have been attached to this poor badger for some while.
“I have little doubt this badger would have been unable to avoid slow-moving traffic down this lane due to being caught by this snare. It’s so sad to think the suffering this poor animal endured because a snare was set irresponsibly in the Hereford area.
“Anyone concerned about the irresponsible and illegal use of snares in the Hereford area can contact our emergency line on 0300 1234 999.”
The RSPCA is opposed to the manufacture, sale and use of all snares – which they brand “indiscriminate” and “dangerous” – and any traps which cause suffering.
In England and Wales, the use of snares is not currently illegal – but under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 it is illegal to set a snare for a badger; while under the Protection of Badgers Act 1992, it is an offence to injure, kill or take a badger, except under licence.