Welsh snares ban disastrous for threatened wildlife

A fox

The future of Wales’ most threatened species has been put at significant risk, after a ban on all snares was taken forward by the Welsh Government this week.

The ban includes the most modern type of snares, known as humane cable restraints (HCRs).

Samuel Kurtz MS, chair of the cross-party group for shooting and conservation, placed amendments at Stage 3 of the Agriculture (Wales) Bill. However the amendments – to licence modern HCRs for the sole purpose of species restoration and conservation of targeted species – were voted against by 38 votes. 

This means that their use, along with ordinary snares in Wales, will become illegal following Royal Assent later this year.

Steve Griffiths, BASC Wales director, said: “The failure of the Welsh Government to accept the clear evidence of these devices’ ability to reduce predation of ground-nesting birds at vital times of the year is disastrous news for our most threatened wildlife.

“The proposed amendments were not loopholes, but key regulation to maintain high welfare standards and allow for a targeted wildlife management approach.

“Our thanks go to the Members of the Senedd who stood up for the continued use of HCRs. BASC’s position remains that HCRs are a legitimate tool to help save our most threatened species.”

BASC will be publishing further information on this issue over the coming days.