Essex: Investigation after spate of attacks on badgers

Police are investigating after two badgers were killed in Essex

Police are investigating after two badgers were killed in Essex - Credit: PA

The chairman of an animal group has voiced her concern after a spate of badger attacks.

Renee Hockley-Byam, of North East Essex Badger Group, has spoken out after two badgers were found dead and three setts were illegally blocked in the past fortnight.

A dead female badger was found in woodland in Thorpe with facial injuries and a noose around her neck on November 30.

A resident contacted police after an appeal to say he found the dead badger in a field and dragged it away using a rope around the animal’s neck. It is not known how the badger was killed.

Three badger setts were blocked in Great Maplestead and Gestingthorpe last weekend while the mutilated body of a badger was found close to Ovington on Thursday.

Mrs Hockley-Byam said: “It’s been one thing after another recently.

“They have just finished culling badgers in the west of the country and hopefully that will never come here but I wonder if it’s going to become a badger free for all. I really hope not because it is still a protected species.”

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An Essex Police spokesman confirmed the force’s wildlife crime officer is looking into the mutilated badger death.

“The cause of death is unknown, but veterinary opinion is that it appears to have been mutilated after its death,” he added.

“Essex Police has also been informed of badger setts being blocked close to Monks Lodge Road, Great Maplestead, and Audley End and Little Maplestead Road, Gestingthorpe. These have also been passed to the force’s wildlife crime officer and he is liaising with the complainants.”

Anyone who finds a sick or injured badger should call the group’s hotline on 07751572175.

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