Help ban snares – fill in the Scottish Consultation before 3 October!

Posted on the 8th September 2023

The Scottish Government has opened a short consultation on snares, and we are asking everyone to take a few minutes to fill it in.

The consultation closes on 3rd October.

Please use the guidance below to help you respond to the consultation.

Click here for the consultation. Please note that the ‘answer boxes’ allow a maximum of 1500 characters.

Q1:  Do you agree with our proposals to amend the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 so that it is an offence to: a) use a snare or other type of cable restraint for the purpose of killing or trapping a wild animal and; b) use a snare or other type of cable restraint in any way that is likely to injure a wild animal

Please answer ‘yes’.

You may wish to add some of the following points:

  • Snares are inhumane and cause tremendous suffering and death. Panicked animals struggle to escape, causing injuries and tears to their flesh or muscle and possibly leading to strangulation. Animals can be trapped by other parts of their bodies causing horrific injuries, with animals being known to gnaw off part of their own bodies trying to escape.
  • Snares are indiscriminate and catch non-target animals such as cats, dogs or badgers. There are numerous stories in the press of companion animals being caught and even dying in snares.
  • Snared parent animals cannot return to their offspring leading to the deaths of their babies.
  • Snared, trapped animals may be attacked and killed whilst still conscious.
  • Trapped animals can die of dehydration (especially in hot weather) or exposure (in cold weather)
  • Cable restraints are the same as a snare, and therefore just as cruel.
  • Snares are most commonly used by the shooting industry, which sets snares to catch any animal considered a threat to game birds – birds who themselves are destined to be shot for sport. Killing wildlife to protect mass-produced birds who will later be shot and killed is inhumane and immoral.

Q2: Do you think that the Scottish Government should consider allowing an exception for the use of snares for the live capture of mammals for research purposes for example, catching foxes to allow tracking devices to be fitted?

Please answer ‘no’

You may wish to add some of the following points:

  • Animals will suffer when snared regardless of who carries out the snaring and for what purpose.
  • Exceptions will create loopholes in robust legislation, which will be exploited by those who already snare animals.
  • It is impossible to police and check on ‘legitimate’ and ‘illegitimate’ snare use, so, in order to ensure that animals do not suffer, a total ban is needed.

Q3: If you answered yes to question 2, do you agree that anyone using snares for this purpose would require a licence from NatureScot?

Please do not answer.

Q4: Other than for the purpose set out in question 2, are there any other purposes for which you think an exemption should be available to allow a person to use a snare or cable restraint to temporarily capture a wild animal?

Please answer ‘no’

You may wish to add some of the following points:

  • As previously described in Q1, snares are cruel and indiscriminate.
  • The Welsh Government has already banned the use of snares without exceptions, so the Scottish Government should follow its lead to ensure that no more animals suffer and die in snares.

Q5,6 & 7 ask about providing the Scottish SPCA with more powers to allow them to tackle wildlife crime.

We feel that it is best to answer ‘yes’ to all of these questions.

Q8 – 15

Please fill in your details and your consent.


Complete the consultation on snares

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