Anger at decision to pull funding for badger vaccinations - Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust

Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust highlights frustration and anger at Defra’s last minute decision to pull funding for badger vaccinations on the Notts/Leics border

Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust has today spoken of its frustration and anger that its efforts to vaccinate badgers to help control the spread of bovine tuberculosis (bTB) must end due to a last minute decision by Defra. The decision, made with just a week’s funding remaining, has left the Trust with no option but to end the project – which formed part of the Government’s Badger Edge Vaccination Scheme (BEVS).

Speaking on behalf of the Trust, Chief Executive Paul Wilkinson said: “Although Defra only provided partial funding, we have chosen to support the BEVS programme for the past seven years because it was the right thing to do – the right way to protect badgers and to protect farmers’ livelihoods. The match funding provided through our donors and cost savings delivered through our specially trained project volunteers meant our project, which has vaccinated 275 badgers, delivered excellent value for money and we are proud of our record. We would like to express our thanks to everyone that has donated and volunteered to make this possible and its very sad that we won’t now be able to continue. Having the rug pulled from under us by our project partner when we had a skilled and motivated team primed for action has left us baffled and frustrated - but knowing that we will not now be able to vaccinate badgers on land where farmers are ready and waiting for us to do so makes us angry”.

Defra is currently funding a £2.27 million pilot project designed to enable farmers to vaccinate badgers on their own land and the Trust feels that this change of direction is at the heart of the decision not to extend its funding for another 12 months.

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Posted On: 17/03/2023

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