Petition to the Government to remove the otter’s ‘protected species’ status has been launched by Steve Pope, chairman of the Barbel Society.
Currently standing at just under 5,000 signatures, the petition makes no mention of culling, or even angling, and Steve hopes that it’ll garner support from conservation-minded individuals concerned about the impact of the mammals.
“Wild otters should be something we see once in a lifetime, but when they’re turning up in town centres, something isn’t right,” he told us.
“They’ll kill waterfowl, as well as fish, and we hope that people from other wildlife organisations will get involved. We need to do something to protect our waterways.”
However, the petition hasn’t been welcomed by the Angling Trust, with CEO Jamie Cook labelling it ‘downright dangerous.’
In a statement he said:
“Recent years have seen a growing trend in groups wanting angling banned, or at least seriously curtailed. This petition will give them nothing but further ammunition, and I have been told by two of the most knowledgeable pro-angling Parliamentarians in the country that this petition is going nowhere. There’s no doubt it does more harm than good.”