By Chris Smith 29/03 Updated: 29/03 13:21
AN ILLEGALLY set trap has killed a badger on farmland in Ansty.
The RSCPA has appealed for any information about the trap which it said breached the government's code of practise.
The dead badger - a female believed to have had a baby somewhere - was found on an access road to Hillside Farm off Coombe Fields Road in Ansty.
The access road is also a public right of way and the farmer had not reported seeing anyone on the land in the days leading up to the find on Friday, March 16.
Snares had been placed under a metal five-bar gate that was the only open space in a long, dense field hedge. One was cutting tightly into her snout and the other was tangled around her back leg.
RSPCA inspector Ben Jones said: "There was one stake with two wire snares coming from it, meaning whatever got caught in it had no chance of wriggling free.
"The lethal device was set in such a way and location that breached the Defra code of practice.
"Badgers search out their prey by scent not by sight so this poor badger probably thought the sticks and wire were part of the gate that they had no doubt passed under many times on their nightly prowls.
"We believe she was a lactating female so she may have had dependant young that could also now have died as a consequence."
Badgers are a protected species and it is illegal to wilfully kill, injure or take one. If you are convicted you could face up to six months imprisonment or a substantial fine.
The RSPCA is opposed to the sale and use of snares, but accepted the use of certain ones remained legal in specific circumstances although anyone setting a legal snare should adhere to the Defra code of practice, Mr Jones added.
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