Reaction to the Delay of the Badger Cull

Tuesday 23rd October 2012

The Wildlife Trust for Birmingham and the Black Country welcomes the extra time to implement a lasting solution to the issue of Bovine Tuberculosis (BTb) due to the postponement of the cull.

Today Secretary of State for the Environment, Owen Paterson, confirmed that the numbers of badgers are too great in the areas where badger cull trials were planned for them to be carried out, so has postponed the start until next year.

The Wildlife Trust considers that the weight of scientific evidence is that badger culling is not the way to control this disease; however, the decision to defer the test culls for a year should not be a reason for inaction.

The main reason for the spread of Bovine is cattle to cattle transmission. If EU regulations allowed the vaccination of cattle against BTb this would have greater impact on stopping the disease than any other measure.

There is now a reliable test to differentiate between inoculated and infected cattle, so there is now no practical barrier to the implementation of a cattle vaccine.

Chief Executive of The Wildflife Trust for Birmingham and the Black Country, Neil Wyatt, explains:

"The next twelve months must not be wasted, it is vital that all those concerned about the impact of this terrible disease join forces to overcome final the legal and technical hurdles and implement the vaccination of cattle against BTb in the UK as soon as possible. 

"We are urging MPs to support concerted action to implement a lasting solution to the issue of Bovine Tuberculosis.

"This hangs like a dark cloud over the countryside. Its impact on individual cattle is rarely as severe as Tb in humans, but when a case is found it can mean a farmer losing all his livestock - a devastating impact."
 

Tagged with: Species, Badger cull