The badger cull in Wales which was given the go ahead in January by the Welsh Assembly Government has been quashed in the Court of Appeal.
Following the success of the appeal we have issued this statement:
We are delighted to hear that the Badger Trust’s appeal has been allowed.
The RSPCA has always been firmly opposed to the proposed cull in Wales as we do not believe that the science justifies it. We believe that vaccination, increased levels of testing, improved biosecurity and stricter controls on the movement of cattle are more sustainable and effective ways of reducing the incidence of bovine tuberculosis (TB) in cattle.
We are, however, pleased with the concessions which were made. As we said in our response to the Welsh Assembly Government’s original consultation (on Tuberculosis Eradication Order 2009), we always had concerns that the proposed legislation applied to the whole of Wales and should have been more specific.
This is a timely reminder about the importance of meticulous attention to detail before any culling regime is considered.
We realise that bovine TB is a serious issue but don’t believe that a cull of badgers is an appropriate, practical or ethical solution. Many of the badgers culled would be likely to be disease-free.
Last month we reported on our dismay at the coalition government cuts to a project to vaccinate badgers against bovine TB due to take place this summer.
The project regarding the use of an injectable badger tuberculosis vaccine was initially announced on Thursday, 19 March by the then Environment Secretary, Hilary Benn. He said that the first vaccine against bovine TB in badgers would be used in the field in England, in Staffordshire, Herefordshire/Worcestershire and Devon.
Find out more about the proposed cuts to the project in our previous news story: Dismay at cuts to badger vaccination policy.
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