Badger cull goes on and on

The Badger cull is not to be effectively banned in 2022, it is to be slightly scaled down it seems to me. You see what you think – click here.

We’ve been here before where DEFRA say that culling Badgers is coming to an end and that was followed by a massive increase in culling! Forgive me if I find the combination of DEFRA and the Daily Telegraph’s Helena Horton (see for example here) not completely convincing.

The Guardian headline is more guarded;

The government announcement contains this phrase:

Government considers that it is important that intensive culls are deployed across as much as possible of the area where there is a reservoir of infection in badgers to ensure progress towards the 2038 eradication goal. Maximum benefits should arise after simultaneous culling across all licensed areas.’ (section 8.4).

The rationale for this slight change in position isn’t given, but then the rationale for this government’s position on Badger culling has never been completely clear, nor completely based on the science, it seems to me.

As well as having a look at the consultation the appropriate response to this news is to sign this e-petition Ban the shooting of badgers immediately which has over 78,000 signatures and just under eight weeks to run.

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13 Replies to “Badger cull goes on and on”

  1. Mark, I am glad you read that the same as me. I thought I was just confused, as usual. To issue four year licences in 2022 doesnt look like a ban to me.

  2. I am afraid one cannot believe a word this Government says. They are behoved solely to the NFU representing the big consortium farmers, the large landowners, and the shooting brigade. They represent little intelligence and little or no science. Prejudice and money are their main drivers.

  3. It’s quite obviously not a cull.
    It’s the extermination of a protected species on a landscape scale.
    Sounds familiar to me!

  4. During a virtual pub pint via zoom last night one of my farmer pals who is heavily involved in the badger cull announced that several farmers in the cull area have confirmed M.bovis in their herds. The incidence of the disease is not going down despite the slaughter! Simply an appalling waste of life!

  5. Some of comments on this blog make me smile, you go on about scientific data on this and the other, but your happy to give opinions on subjects you have very little knowledge of, think some of you need to stop looking at nature through rose tinted spectacles.

    1. Perhaps you can enlighten us then. I haven’t heard anything scientific from the pro-cull lobby. Please do educate us!

      1. Careful, Bill, he’s a “Countryman”! And he’s probably got a flat hat, so he must know what he’s on about.

        1. Ah yes, a ‘Countryman’. My Badger murdering farmer pal often talks about the “true countryman”. Based upon his own practices this is someone who kills wildlife on the basis that he is protecting the pheasants he rears and because he is helping to “conserve song birds”. His subsidised involvement in Badger slaughtering too is just an extension of his own shooting season. He must be one of the few remaining ‘countrymen’ who still uses barbed wire as a gibbet to hang his trophies from and anyone who cares to study the hung remains will see Polecats, Stoats, Weasels, Crows, Rooks, Grey Squirrels and any anything else which wanders into his traps and snares protected in law or otherwise! Other creatures to go missing in his part of the world are neighbours cats and the occasional Buzzard! Of course he mitigates all this murder by explaining to me that the countryside is “out of balance” and his practices redress this perceived imbalance and I, as an “anti”, simply don’t understand. I applaud the fact that he plants wild flowers on his farm but I’m fairly sure this is part of an agricultural subsidy (I may be wrong, he might do it out of the goodness of his own heart). But having spent very considerable time in his company over the last 45 years or so, and taking part myself in game bird shooting-something I am not too proud of these days- I’ve come to realise that he and his brethren are not the kindly custodians of the countryside they purport to be and a very good many are ignorant of ecology and as in my pal’s case anachronisms whose ideas will never be swayed and will continue to spout garbage about “vermin” and murder mercilessly until they day they can no longer pick up a gun!

      2. Well Bill do you not think the Government have not had there scientists set this up or is it that you are all content to follow the scientists on Coronavirus and everything that suits you, you really have to be more genuine and believe everything or nothing.
        You all seem happy to say everything the Conservation scientists say is correct but not those proposing the cull.
        It is a really peculiar position to take.
        Guess you think it OK to pick and choose.
        Of course whether we like it or not without doubt the cull is driven by scientists using the old cliche scientific evidence.

        1. Well so far, on record, and plain for even you to see, there are at least 100,000 others who disagree with the cull! So I guess I’m not alone. By anybody’s standards this is a wildlife holocaust and using euphemisms like ‘culling’ doesn’t make it any prettier! Despite the abject murder M.bovis infection continues which suggests there are vectors other than Badgers and more science needs to be done to better understand the transmission mechanism. Why not put a decent effort into the vaccination experiment. It can’t be money because the money was found quickly enough to develop Coronavirus vaccines! Why do those baying for Badger blood resist vaccination? So explain why you say my position is a peculiar one? Your argument that we should ‘believe everything or nothing’ is the peculiar position, ie black or white, yes or no! Rationally it is surely the way forward that having shown that the culling has and continues to fail we should do the scientific best thing and try an alternative approach. Or maybe you’re one of the paid so-called marksmen signed up to provide the service….

          1. Bill, not a marksman but rather the opposite having dairy farmed all my life with Badgers on the farm never having any trouble with them.
            My point is you lot pick and choose which scientists you side with which cannot be correct.
            Your point about the numbers against the cull 100,000 is laughable as it is a very small % of UK population as I may be wrong but it see!s likely that even 0.1% would be 65,000 and of course even a lot of those signings would have signed just to join the clique club of we sign as our other friends do and then they will return the favour.
            I guess it is more likely I know more about Badgers on farms than .you do

    2. Well I have to say ‘Countryman’, your comment makes me smile. You seem to think that calling yourself ‘Countryman’ confers some special status of expertise but I am afraid you are wrong. Ignorance can reside anywhere, town or country. At the same time you assert that people making comments that you disagree with have very little knowledge of the subject but provide no grounds for making this assertion. If you think that people on this blog do not understand the facts around badgers, bovine TB and the cull you would be much more persuasive if you actually provided some proper arguments and backed them up with some evidence. The fact that you don’t leads me to suppose that you can’t, so instead you play the man and not the ball with your vague assertions of other people not knowing what they are talking about. I would suggest that if you are going to claim superior knowledge you should put up or shut up.

      As to ‘looking at nature through rose-tinted spectacles’, that expression is usually taken to mean only seeing what is good in a given situation and being blind to what is wrong. I think you will find that most of the people who read and comment on this blog are painfully conscious that all is not well with nature. If we were looking through rose-tinted spectacles we would not be concerned about the continued trashing of habitats, persecution (legal and illegal) of various species including badgers and birds of prey, pollution of the environment and so on and on. Sadly these are real problems that we cannot imagine away however much we might wish to.

  6. Long since given up trusting politicians, but certainly didn’t read the press reports as reliable interpretation of abandoning the cull.

    Time will tell who is right and there are plenty of observers and monitors such that the slaughter will be witnessed if it continues, then we’ll no doubt be treated to media spin why another U-turn?

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