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MP defends the badger cull

By Somerset Standard  |  Posted: September 27, 2012

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The new Agriculture Minister David Heath, who is also Somerton and Frome MP has described proposed alternatives to a selective badger cull as "wishful thinking".

Mr Heath, writing in the Somerset Standard said: "Bovine tuberculosis is a devastating disease, resulting in the slaughter of about 25,000 cattle each year, and the devastation of farmers' lives. Nobody wants to kill badgers.

"But there isn't a single country which has managed to turn the tide on TB without addressing the disease in wildlife.

"The easy cry is to use vaccination, and we're spending £15.5 million on vaccine research over the next four years.

"But the vaccine we currently have for badgers requires them to be trapped and injected every year; impracticable and vastly expensive."

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  • Charlespk  |  October 18 2012, 12:53PM

    Now click the Page Not Found error in the "Sorry, the page cannot be displayed." The destination URL that seemed to produce a 404 Page Not Found error is: This is the criminal activity by Civil Servants and government ministers to avoid a cull, that has been taking place.

  • Charlespk  |  October 18 2012, 12:45PM
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  • Charlespk  |  October 18 2012, 12:37PM

    Wales has opted for vaccination which hasn't a cat's chance in Hell of working, because of a pusillanimous Labour administration who have silenced the Chief Veterinary officer, Professor Christianne Glossop. They've even had her original on-line video stating the need to kill badgers blocked, and replaced it with some 'twaddle' about vaccinating badgers. This is the video where Professor Christianne Glossop emphasised the NEED to cull/kill badgers if ever they are to get on top of the problem. http://tinyurl.com/3g22lwp (open in a new window)

  • NDJMILLER  |  October 01 2012, 1:19PM

    "It won't eradicate TB on its own. But taken with other measures, it will result in a substantial reduction" So please tell me do, what are these "other measures" you are referring to ? I have yet to hear anyone in the government or NFU offering alternatives, indeed the only people who seem interested in other options in England are (surprise, surprise) various wildlife trusts who are at this moment going ahead with vaccination as in Wales. All accompanied by a damning silence from the people in authority and those who supposedly want the disease eradicated.

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  • BrockStripes  |  September 28 2012, 9:18AM

    So how come Wales has opted to vaccinate badgers as part of a scientific programme to reduce bTB in cattle? As have the National Trust, the RSPB, and a growing number of UK Wildlife Trusts on their own land? According to Defra: "11.5 per cent of herds were restricted in 2011". So 88.5 per cent of herds were not restricted in 2011. Only a small proportion of the national herd is affected by bovine TB. So exactly how expensive would it be to run a badger vaccination programme in the hardest hit areas? According to Defra, it is going to run vaccination programmes around these areas in an attempt to limit the known risk that slaughtering badgers is likely to spread the disease into currently unaffected land (peturbation). So why isn't it just starting off with vaccinating badgers instead of slaughtering them, and also then make peturbation a non-risk to start with? All scientific studies have concluded that killing badgers is not the way forwards, vaccination and increased biosecurity measures are. A 12 - 16% reduction in bTB outbreaks, when just 11.5% of cattle is infected anyway, is no justification for a cruel, unnecessary and frankly dangerous slaughter of our native British wildlife in such huge numbers.

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