A badger has been killed in what the RSPCA described as a “sick act of cruelty” near Fegg Hayes in Stoke-on-Trent.
RSPCA officers and police were called to the Pittshill Bank area of Stoke-on-Trent on 15 February to a badger caught in a snare who the charity said suffered a “slow and agonising death in a deliberate act of cruelty.”
The badger was still alive when officers arrived, but died shortly afterwards.
The snare had been set up on a badger sett with plastic fencing found over the other sett entrances and RSPCA inspector Charlotte Melvin said she believed the family of badgers were deliberately targeted.
She said: “I can’t even bear to think about what a horrible, drawn-out death this badger would have endured.
“He was caught by the neck in the snare, tried to struggle to free himself, which only tightened the noose, slowly strangling him to death.
“This is not only a sick act of cruelty but it is also against the law.”
The sett is now being closely monitored by the police and other local wildlife agencies to prevent any further damage to the home of this protected species.
The area is busy, for dog walkers particularly, and the RSPCA is appealing for people to contact them with information.
Targeting badgers is a serious offence and offenders can face jail sentences if convicted.
Anyone with information can call the RSPCA inspector appeal line in the confidence on 0300 123 8018.