Page last updated at 08:12 GMT, Thursday, 15 January 2009

Couple's burrowing badgers bother


The couple filmed the badgers responsible for churning up their garden

A couple have said they cannot stop badgers churning up their garden lawn because the creatures are protected.

Tony and Belinda Gattie of Bournemouth, Dorset, have used noise alerts and erected a small gate but nothing has stop the animals getting in.

Now they have said they are prepared to get a licence and pay thousands of pounds for experts to remove them.

But Natural England has deferred the decision until July after the breeding season.

Mr Gattie said: "It has been wrecked. There is not much more than you can say, it has been ruined.

"It is not suitable for the children to run around in anymore.

We've done basically all we can do that is legal
Tony Gattie

"We noticed it last May and loved it at first but now we're fed up with it.

"We've been told to put lights up, which we have done, noise alerts, bleeping sounds, that doesn't bother them.

"We've put a small gate up but they jump over the wall.

"We've done basically all we can do that is legal."

The couple, who have four children, had been advised to put out food for the animals but this has made the problem worse.

The creatures are protected under the Badger Protection Act 1992, which prohibits badgers or their setts being damaged.

Natural England said it could not comment on individual cases but said in most cases the creatures can be moved on.

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