Badger crime crackdown

A police operation to protect badgers is taking place across the Isle as part of a force-wide drive to crackdown on wildlife crime.

Tuesday, 24th April 2018, 11:39 am
Updated Tuesday, 24th April 2018, 11:41 am
Humberside Police launch Operation Badger

Humberside Police are ramping up their commitment to tackling rural crimes with Operation Badger.

Crimes against badgers can take many forms and the issues of badger digging and killing is more common than people might think.

Badgers and their homes, called setts, are protected under the Protection of Badgers Act 1992 and other relevant wildlife and animal welfare legislation.

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They can only be killed or their sett disturbed under licence from Natural England in limited circumstances.

Wildlife Crime Officer Brandon Ward says, “Badger digging and baiting are vicious, barbaric acts carried out by cruel and mindless criminals who are fully aware that what they are doing is criminal. Offenders should be aware, however, that they are on our radar, they and anyone else who commits offences against badgers or any of our wildlife should be looking over their shoulder and if caught we will deal strongly with them.

“We don’t work on these operations on our own, to help tackle wildlife offences involving badgers we work alongside various partner agencies and neighbouring forces. We have also linked up with the East Yorkshire Badger Protection Group (EYBPG) to ensure that all instances of persecution are recorded and information shared so that we can deal with all reported cases.”

Badger digging involves the offending person entering a terrier wearing a locator collar into a sett. Once it finds a badger the offender will dig down and remove the badger, where it is often then horrifically injured and thrown to the dogs, this often results in the badger suffering an agonising and prolonged death. The dogs involved can also suffer terrible injuries.

The move comes after it was announced that residents in the Isle will now enjoy 24/7 police coverage thanks to the relocation of ten officers following a recruitment drive. The ten community patrol officers joined the existing community policing team based at Epworth station in a bid to offer reassurance to residents and improve visibility.