Home news Almost 20,000 badgers killed in this year's cull

Almost 20,000 badgers killed in this year's cull


Almost 20,000 badgers were killed this year as part of a government plan to control the spread of bovine TB.

The animals were culled in 19 areas in Gloucestershire, Somerset, Dorset, Cornwall, Devon, Herefordshire, Cheshire and Wiltshire.

Farming Minister George Eustice said the cull had been “effective”.

Culling is part of the government’s 25-year strategy to eradicate bovine TB, but opponents say there is no evidence it is effective.

Data for two further supplementary cull zones, in Gloucestershire and Somerset, had not yet been analysed, Defra said.

The cull began in parts of Somerset and Gloucestershire in 2013 and has widened to the other counties since.

Figures released by the government show the minimum target of culls was achieved, and the maximum not exceeded, in all 19 areas.

‘Delivered successfully’

This year the cull took place between 6 September and 28 October. A total of 19,274 badgers were shot or removed by cage trapping.

Mr Eustice said: “There is broad scientific consensus that badgers are implicated in the spread of TB to cattle.

“This year, effective, licensed badger control operations were completed by local farmers and landowners in eleven new areas and eight existing areas.

“This shows that badger control can be delivered successfully on a much wider scale than before.”

Claire Bass of Humane Society International UK said it was a “cruel, bloody and pointless massacre on tens of thousands of badgers”.

Licences previously issued by Natural England will allow further culling for at least another four years.

Source: BBC Here