On 9th January there will be a Westminster Hall Debate on the banning of free-running snares, following a Government e-petition that attracted over 102,000 signatures. It is estimated that a staggering 1.7 million animals are caught in snares in England and Wales alone each year, and there are only four countries in the EU where snaring is still permitted.
CAWF included the proposal to ban snares in our 2019 animal welfare manifesto sent to the Government to consider for its Conservative Manifesto in 2019. Defra’s Action Plan for Animal Welfare also committed to launching a Call for Evidence on the use of snares.
Other countries in Europe have banned this inherently cruel device which can cause a variety of welfare issues including asphyxiation owing to panic, animals being predated whilst still alive with no means of escape, and lactating animals being caught meaning that their young die of starvation. Snares indiscriminately trap and cause suffering to wild animals including hedgehogs, owls, domestic cats and dogs. One Defra study showed that up to 68% of all animals caught are non target.
Major landowners such as the RSPB, the Woodland Trust, and the Wildlife Trusts do not use snares on their estates for animal welfare reasons and all support a ban, alongside other leading organisations including the RSPCA, Cats Protection, Battersea Dogs and Cats Home, The Badger Trust and Dogs Trust.
Conservative Animal Welfare Foundation is urging supporters to write to their MP and ask them speak out against the use of this cruel and indiscriminate control method on 9th January.
You can also read Animal Aid’s full briefing on banning the use of snares in the UK here.