Police are asking for help tracking down the culprit who set a snare in the Somerset countryside that killed an otter.
Staff from Secret World Wildlife Rescue near Bridgwater were called out by the Environment Agency last week to rescue an otter caught in a snare at the Bleadon Sluice gate.
The snare had trapped the otter around its middle, and a response driver had difficulty in rescuing it as it was a full grown male weighing 8.7 kilos.
The otter was taken to Quantock Veterinary Hospital for the snare to be removed.
At first the animal appeared to not have any severe injuries, but sadly he then deteriorated and died within 48 hours. It is likely that he had suffered internal bleeding.
From the position and the size of the snare it would appear to have been set deliberately to catch an otter, and a stake had been driven in to the mud to secure the snare.
The snare that was set to trap passing animals.
Secret World Founder, Pauline Kidner, said, “It is such a waste to see an otter in prime condition killed by a thoughtless person with had no qualms in setting the evil device that has caused pain and trauma to this wild creature.
“I just don’t understand why it’s possible for anyone who wants one to buy a snare that can be set either legally or illegally.
“Set legally, a free running snare loosens when the animal relaxes, but it can also be set illegally as a self-locking snare, so then every time the animal pulls against it the snare gets tighter and tighter, causing horrendous wounds and eventually killing the animal. These snares are indiscriminate – cats and dogs have been caught up in them too. We think snares like this should be banned ’.
Anyone with information regarding the setting of this snare, please call police 101 and contact the Wildlife Liaison Officer PC Peter Wills.