Police are investigating after a badger was killed by a snare in near Maryport.
The animal, which would have suffered a slow and painful death, was discovered by a member of the public hanging from a wire fence on Monday.
The dead badger was found at around 5pm by a walker in Broughton Moor, on the boundaries of the old RNAD depot.
Officers are now appealing for information to help them catch the culprits.
Although the use of snares is allowed in some cases – to catch rabbits and foxes – it is illegal under the Wildlife and Countryside Act to use a snare against a badger, which is a protected animal.
A spokeswoman for the force said: “The badger had been caught in a snare. It had been placed on a wire fence. The badger is likely to have suffered a horrific and slow death.”
Anyone with any information or who witnessed anything suspicious in the area is urged to contact police on 0845 33 00 247 or call crime stoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.