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Government gives badgers a reprieve - The Wildlife Trusts

The Wildlife Trusts delighted that vaccination gets priority in the fight against bovine tuberculosis

Today the Government set out the next phase of their strategy to combat bovine tuberculosis. The Wildlife Trusts – who have campaigned for a halt to the badger cull ever since it began – are delighted with the Government’s new approach.

Katherine Hawkins, The Wildlife Trusts’ senior living landscape officer, says: “We welcome the transition from culling to vaccinating badgers – Thursday’s announcement is really good news. It’s an open acknowledgement that culling badgers to control bTB is not a viable long-term strategy. It is hugely heartening to know that the large areas in which badgers have been vaccinated – most of which has been carried out by Wildlife Trusts – will be protected and potentially ‘buffered’ to ensure culling will not happen in those places.”

The Wildlife Trusts have demonstrated that badger vaccination works: twelve Wildlife Trusts across England and Wales have conducted badger vaccination since 2011. The largest programme is run by Derbyshire Wildlife Trust and the National Trust who worked together with volunteers to vaccinate hundreds of badgers since their programme began in 2014. They have also delivered training nationally in partnership with the Animal and Plant Health Agency over the last two years.

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