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Stackyard News Jun 06

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NFU badger culling demand "laughable" say conservationists

Conservationists today dismissed the NFU's call for a targeted cull of diseased badgers as "laughable", pointing out that this is precisely what the entire scientific community agrees will make the bovine TB situation worse.

photo courtesy of The Badger Trust


Trevor Lawson, spokesman for the Badger Trust, said: "Everyone in the scientific community, from Sir David Attenborough to Defra's own Science Advisory Council, agrees that targeted badger culling will spread bovine TB. It creates a vacuum which draws in other badgers, spreading the disease further afield.

"Officers of the NFU are either deaf to the scientific advice or simply unable to grasp it. For the NFU to demand targeted culling now is simply laughable, because they haven't got a scientific leg to stand on. We really pity farmers who depend on the NFU for intelligent leadership, because on this issue they certainly are not getting it.

"It's also interesting to note that the NFU fails to mention how many badgers should be killed. But Defra's own consultation proposes minimum culling areas within 1km of farms with TB and Ben Bradshaw has now admitted that this covers an area of up to 25,000 square kilometres [3]. The NFU conveniently fails to explain how badgers across that vast area could be humanely and efficiently killed, notwithstanding the fact that the vast majority of them will not even have TB?

"The NFU is trying to pretend that they are interested in badger
welfare, by arguing that they only want to kill diseased badgers.
But as the NFU well knows, you can't determine the TB status of any badger until you've killed it."

link How we beat bovine TB before: Badger Trust
link More top scientists reject badger culling to control bovine TB
link Tony Blair plays down public response to badger killing

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