Animal charity calls for complete snare ban

Image caption, This badger was found alive in a snare on a shooting estate in the Borders

An animal welfare charity has called for a complete ban on snaring.

The League Against Cruel Sports has released a film showing animals snared on Scottish shooting estates to highlight the issue.

The film, and an accompanying report, has been released to coincide with the start of the grouse shooting season.

The charity said the footage documented the ineffectiveness of the Snaring (Scotland) Order 2010, introduced in March.

The order came into force to regulate the use of snaring under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981.

The call comes after a three-month investigation by the charity into the shooting industry, during which they visited a number of Scottish estates.

The graphic film features footage of a live badger found struggling and injured after being trapped in a snare on land used for shooting near Roxburgh in the Borders.

The animal was later treated by the Scottish SPCA and released back into the wild.

League spokeswoman Louise Robertson said: "The league has said over and over again that regulating snaring will not solve any problems and yet despite new, supposed stricter regulations, our investigators have found countless examples of unacceptable suffering.

"The only way to prevent animals suffering horrific injuries and slow, painful deaths is for a complete ban on all snares in Scotland.

"It's time the Scottish government listened to public opinion and addressed the problem rather than continuing with these farcical regulations".

A spokeswoman for the Scottish government said: "All issues relating to the use of snares were examined in detail by the Scottish government in 2008 and concluded that snaring is an essential tool for land managers in pest and predator control where other methods are ineffective.

"The Wildlife and Natural Environment (Scotland) Bill, to be considered by the parliament in the autumn, proposes new guidelines to tighten the use of snares - including a training course for operators and technical changes which will reduce the number of non target species captured."

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