A phone app to help combat poaching has been downloaded more than 5,500 times. The Project Poacher app has been used to report more than 135 incidents.
The app makes it easy to use a smart phone to report to the police suspicious activities that might be linked to poaching.
The app can be downloaded free on Android, Apple and Windows phones and takes the user step-by-step through creating a report while providing accurate GPS location tags.
The app was launched in November 2015 at the National Wildlife Crime Enforcers’ Conference in Leamington Spa. It was developed as part of Project Poacher, a national initiative launched by the England and Wales Poaching Priority Delivery Group which is chaired by BASC’s Glynn Evans, Head of Game and Deer management.
Alex Farrell, one of BASC’s game and gamekeeping officers, said: “A major issue with poaching is that incidents often goes unreported. Without people providing the intelligence, it is difficult for the police to respond effectively. This app is starting to prove to be an effective way of doing this. Poaching is a serious rural crime and analysis has shown that given an opportunity poachers have diversified into thefts, burglaries, assaults and other rural crimes.”
Reports can be sent to the police and other enforcement agencies with information about the type of incident, vehicles or suspects and any other witnesses; the app also provides extra information about poaching legislation.