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Octopuses will have their emotions protected under British law

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Octopuses, crabs and lobsters are sentient beings that can have emotions, the UK government says.

Until now, decapod crustaceans including crab, crayfish, crayfish and shrimp, and cephalopods such as squid, octopus and squid were not recognized under the Animal Welfare Act.

However, the government plans to expand the scope of the proposed legislation following an independent review by the London School of Economics, which has found “strong scientific evidence” that animals are sentient to experience pain, suffering or harm.

Dr. Jonathan Birch, associate professor at the LSE Center for Philosophy in Natural and Social Sciences and lead researcher on the report, said: It is within the scope of the Animal Welfare Act.

“This amendment will also help eliminate major discrepancies. Octopuses and other cephalopods have been protected from science for many years, but so far they have not been protected outside of science. One way the UK can take the lead in animal welfare is to protect these invertebrates, which humans have often completely ignored.”

The LSE review also recommends opposing several current commercial practices, including extreme slaughter methods such as de-clawing, nicking, de-stalking, selling live decapod shells to untrained, non-professional handlers, and boiling without stunting. do.

Official figures show that nephrops (also known as langoustines or Norwegian lobsters) and crabs were among the top shellfish types caught by UK fishermen in 2019.

UK Animal Welfare Minister Zac Goldsmith said: Now science has made it clear that decapods and cephalopods can feel pain. So they are right that they are covered by this important piece of legislation.”

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2/ https://www.vice.com/en/article/pkpbwb/octopuses-to-have-their-feelings-protected-under-uk-law

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