A police probe is under way after a number of badgers were found in illegal snares near Chesterfield.
Three were found to have been caught in a field east of the industrial estate near Pilsley Road, Clay Cross.
Officers alerted to the discovery released one and found that another had managed to escape. The third had died.
Illegally placed snares have also been discovered in land near Lower Pilsley and officers have recovered the devices from both scenes.
Badgers have full protection under the Protection of Badgers Act, which makes it an offence to intentionally capture, kill or injure a badger, or interfere with badger setts.
Anyone with information should call police on 101 or Crimestoppers on 0800 555111.