Liberal Youth Scotland Calls for a Ban on Snaring!
This year Liberal Youth Scotland, the youth wing of the Scottish Liberal Democrats, have chosen to campaign against snaring, believing it to be cruel, indiscriminate and needless.
In 2008 the Scottish Government introduced new measures to regulate snaring further in response to a consultation which resulted in improvements inclusive of the compulsory fitting of safety catches on the nooses, ID tags to easily allow authorities to track the owner as well as a constraints on where snares can be set. See here.
Michael Russell, the environment secretary responsible for the implementation at the time commented, “Accordingly I intend to bring forward a package which will aim to make fundamental changes to the practice of snaring in Scotland. I have discussed these changes with industry representatives – landowners and managers, gamekeepers and sporting interests – and I believe that they will command widespread support’.
Undoubtedly the result of the amendments to the Wildlife and Natural Environment (Scotland) Bill 2011 confirms Scotland as one of the countries leading the way in legislation of this kind. Whilst this may be the case within the Scottish Parliament, In a survey conducted by the SSPCA in 2007 they found that 85% of those questioned were in favour of banning snares outright with a vet from Aberdeenshire commenting that,
‘Snares are outdated and cause immeasurable suffering, pain, anxiety, dehydration, starvation. Far more efficient, less cruel alternatives exist for vermin control.’
We want the Scottish Government to continue to lead the UK in improving animal welfare.
The League Against Cruel Sports have reported that 75 per cent of Scottish voters support a total ban on snares and in the past, the Scottish Government admitted that illegal snaring will remain irrespective of how it is professionalised.
Data from the Scottish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SSPCA) shows that 70% of snaring incidents involved non-target animals between 31st March 2011 and 25th April 2012.
The non-target animals involved in snaring incidents include pets and European Protected Species. Other European countries have made the decision that a total ban is the only way to look after Protected Species. Farmers in these countries are still able to control pests through other methods – Scotland should follow Europe’s lead.
The reality is, regulation will never go far enough in protecting non-target wildlife species from the consequences of snaring. Liberal Youth Scotland is joining the evidence based calls for a total ban on the manufacture, sale and use of snares in Scotland to put an end to this needless suffering of animals.
Please support our campaign and sign our petition by clicking here!
Jenny Marr is 23 and works for an oil company in Aberdeen and first got involved with the Liberal Democrats through the society at the University of Aberdeen. She is currently an Ordinary Executive Member of Liberal Youth Scotland.
This blog is reporting a campaign by Liberal Youth Scotland. It is not necessarily the policy of other Liberal Youth affiliates, the Liberal Democrat party, or the editorship of the Libertine.