Today, it’s been announced that seven new badger culling licenses have been granted to Cornwall, Herefordshire, Devon, Gloucestershire, Somerset and Dorset. Almost 10000 animals are due to be killed with this year’s cull and it continues to threaten badgers across the UK. The culling is in response to eliminating Bovine TB, but there is little evidence to support this barbaric practice has any positive effect.
The National Farmers Union has welcomed the cull, yet there has been no evidence released by the government that culling is helping to control cattle TB. According to Claire Bass of the Humane Society International, “it’s both shocking and sad that the government is expanding the cruel ‘pilot’ policy to three new counties. England’s badgers are being needlessly killed as scapegoats, part of a smoke and mirrors attempt to appease farmers and detract attention and resources away from an effective long-term solution to bovine TB.”
I’m inclined to agree that the culling of badgers is wrong and should be stopped. Nearly 1500 animals were culled last year and those figures will only increase by the end of 2016. Adding to this, the cost to taxpayers for the cull was £17.6m for the three from 2013 to 2015 and the results for the first year of culling were listed as inhumane.
The badger population has continued to be devastated by scare-mongering tactics. They are a symbol of the UK countryside and deserve to be treated better. The RSPCA has urged action by writing to your local MP to stop the cruelty and convince them to attend the badger cull debate at Westminster Hall on the 7th September.
Another charity who defends badgers is the Badger Trust, who’re hosting a conference on the 4-6th November to discuss issues and come up with new conservation tactics.
If badgers continue to be culled then it’s possible they may be wiped out from the English countryside all together. We can help them by banding together and becoming a united voice in the face of a practice that has gone on for too long.