A record of wildlife in my garden and various trips to the Warwickshire countryside and occasionally further afield.
"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."
From "Auguries of Innocence"
by William Blake
Tuesday, 30 August 2016
New e-Petition to End the Badger Cull Instead of Expanding it to new areas
As many of you will know the Government has been carrying out pilot badger culls in Somerset and Gloucestershire since 2013 and extended the cull to Dorset last year. Today it has been announced that seven new licences have been granted for parts of Cornwall, Devon, Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Somerset and Dorset. Up to 10,000 badgers could be killed this year.
Regular readers of my blog will know how strongly I feel about these slaughters. I am not going to turn this into a long rant and repeat all my reasons for being so anti-cull but will just say that independent badger experts and scientists are against the culls, the vast majority of badgers slaughtered will be healthy and an independent panel in the first year of the pilot cull came to the conclusion that the slaughters had been inhumane and ineffective. None of the badgers killed have been tested for bTB and monitoring of the slaughters has been virtually non-existent. The main cause of bTB in cattle is due to cattle to cattle transmission - the badger (a protected species) is just being used as a scapegoat. The way forward is not the mass extermination of badgers in such an inhumane way but better biosecurity, improved cattle testing and movement regulations, vaccination of badgers (and eventually cattle).
Since 2013 the slaughter of badgers has cost the tax payer £25 million and yet DEFRA's own statistics show that, despite badger culling, the number of cattle slaughtered because they are infected with bTB continues to increase both in and around the cull zones. Scotland became officially bTB free without killing a single badger and badger vaccination (not culling) in Wales has resulted in new herd TB incidences decreasing by 14% in the past year. Ireland, having slaughtered badgers for years, has now decided to stop this policy and vaccinate instead.
There is a link here to an article in the Guardian last week by Dr Brian May.
The main purpose of writing this post is to ask you please to consider signing a new Government e-petition put forward by Simon King to end the badger cull instead of expanding it to new areas. The link is here
Already 8000 people have signed this petition and I would also ask please if you could consider sharing it on facebook/twitter and ask family and friends to sign. We have to give badgers a voice and let the Government know how we feel about these senseless slaughters otherwise 1000's of badgers could be killed for no reason.
Welcome to my blog. I have been interested in natural history from an early age and we have tried to create a garden attractive to wildlife. I also enjoy reading, photography, collecting fossils, visiting historic buildings and gardens and supporting Aston Villa. Please feel free to leave a comment and, if you would like to email me, my email address is ciraggedrobinsATgmail.com - remember to replace AT with @. Thank you for visiting.