ANIMAL protection groups are calling for new restrictions on trapping, after the discovery of a badger strangled by a snare.

The badger was discovered on a road in North Yorkshire, prompting claims it had been placed there so it would be run over, disguising its true fate.

Its death has provoked renewed concerns about the widespread use of snares, used to catch pests such as foxes, but indiscriminately claiming the lives of other animals.

The badger, a male thought to be about two years old, was found on the Egton to Goathland road, near Whitby.

David Dunne, of the Ryedale Badger Group, said: “We’re fairly sure somebody set the snare for a fox and, when they saw the badger in it, they panicked and threw it on the road to look like a road casualty.”

He said legal snares were supposed to catch animals and not kill them and released their grip a little if the animal relaxed.

But there were concerns over the type of snare that killed the badger, which tightened as the animal struggled, until it was eventually strangled.

He said: “They fight and fight and fight and that is how they do the damage. As the badger pulls against it, the snare tightens and acts like cheese-wire.”

Geoff Edmond, RSPCA inspector for North Yorkshire, said they could not comment on the type of snare used but were alarmed by the number of animals caught in snares.

He said: “We’re very concerned about snaring because of the indiscriminate nature that it can take any animal. Clearly, this badger should not have been caught.