Cruelty of snares

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Nicolle Hamilton of the ­British Association for Shooting and Conservation (Letters, 26 September) claims snares are “an ­important tool in conservation and wildlife management” and that “a properly set snare is a ­humane restraining device”.

One of the main reasons snares and other traps are used is to reduce the numbers of native wild animals which might predate on captive-bred non-native ­species, such as pheasants, which are farmed to be released and shot.

Gamekeepers snare and kill rabbits to keep their numbers down but they also trap and kill stoats and weasels that would naturally predate on rabbits.

As for snares being humane ­restraining devices – I’m sure that’s a comfort to an animal as it fights and struggles to escape for as long as 23 hours.

Snares, whether set legally or not, are indiscriminate, cruel ­devices which can inflict pain and suffering on both target and non-target species. The Scottish ­Government should be ashamed for not banning them outright when it had the chance.

John F Robins

Animal Concern Advice Line