You'd expect alarmist, misleading nonsense from the League Against Cruel Sprouts. And their risible anti-snaring campaign doesn't disappoint.
"Norfolk pet owners warned of snare danger" screams their latest press release - which highlights a handful of cases where pets were killed or injured in illegal snares, and then calls for a ban on legal snares. Because the people who're already breaking the law will immediately stop when something else is banned, won't they?
You might hope for a more responsible approach from the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, though, what with them being a registered charity, patron The Queen, etc. Nah. They've jumped squarely on the anti-airgun bandwagon with a misleading and alarmist release: "Surge of air gun attacks feared" which makes no mention of legitimate, responsible airgun use and calls for "anyone who witnesses an air gun attack on an animal" to call the RSPCA "24-hour cruelty and advice line" - virtually guaranteeing conflict between well meaning members of the public and legitimate pest controllers. By remarkable coincidence, this is released at a time when Scottish ministers are seeking the power to ban airguns.
If I was thinking of donating money to the RSPCA, I'd want to know just how much of my donation would be spent on expensive spin-doctors and lobbyists, and how much on actually helping the unfortunate animals that are entrusted to their care.
According to their latest Trustees Report, there were 143,501 animals "collected: rescued/signed over/seized" in 2008, of which so far as I can see 60,203 were killed - including an unspecified number killed "with great reluctance when there is no reasonably possibility of rehoming" - ie they were perfectly healthy but an expensive inconvenience.
In fact, glancing through the spending breakdown on p13 of the report, it's clear that they're spending proportionately less on animal establishments, and hugely more on turning themselves into a bossy 'Animal Police'.