Wildlife crime takes many forms, from people shooting at birds with air guns in the local park, to the more organised crimes of badger baiting and the trade in endangered species.
There are around 150 different laws designed to protect wildlife in the UK and many more global controls that we have adopted. H.M. Revenue & Customs are responsible for the enforcement of controls on trade between the UK and non-EC states, but enforcement within the UK is the responsibility of the police.
The police service is responsible for enforcing the law in relation to:
- Illegal trade in endangered species
- Killing, injuring, taking, disturbing, etc. wild birds
- Taking/possessing/destroying wild birds eggs/nest disturbance
- Badger persecution
- Killing, injuring, taking, disturbing, wild bats
- Illegal trapping/snaring of wild animals
- Illegal hunting of wild mammals
- Damaging protected sites
- Illegal poisoning of wildlife
- Stealing wild plants
- Illegal hunting and poaching
If you need to report a wildlife crime, try and note the following details:
- Are the suspects alone or in a group?
- Are they trespassing?
- What equipment do they have with them?
- Do they have dogs with them?
- Do they have firearms with them?
- Where are they going – what direction are they heading in?
- Where have they been – what direction have they come from?
- What do they look like, what are they wearing?
- Where are their vehicles, can you see the vehicles?
- What make and model are the vehicles?
- What are the registration plates on the vehicles?
- Is it safe for you to photograph the vehicles or the suspects?