bTB infographic

Why the government's bovine TB policy needs to change

Our new infographic explains why vaccinating badgers, not culling them, should central to the government's strategy to control bovine TB.

View infographic

The Wildlife Trusts are firmly opposed to the badger cull and no Wildlife Trust will allow culling on its land.

  

Badgers matter - what you can do

 

1. Support our e-action petition asking David Cameron to drop the cull

Back in Spring 2014 we launched an e-action to ensure the Prime Minister feels the weight of serious public concern that any plans for continued and extended culling will make matters worse. The pilot culls are still continuing - and so is our e-action. Click here to take part and ask David Cameron to drop the cull and develop an alternative strategy for tackling bovine TB.


2. Contact your MP

Write to, email or tweet your local MP, urging them to put pressure on the Government to drop the cull.  We've created a template letter for you to use but local, personalised contact works best.
 

3. Support our badger vaccination programmes

You can donate now towards your Wildlife Trust's badger vaccination programme or one nearby. Funds help to pay for vaccines, training, equipment and  licenses.

 

4. Email your MEP about the EU cattle vaccine ban

Ask your MEP to press for the EU ban on a cattle vaccine to be lifted.
Find the details of your MEP. A cattle vaccine is the long term solution to the bTB problem, but EU rules currently prevent it from being tested and used in this country - find out why

 

The Badger Trust website also has lots of information on the badger cull and links to local badger groups around the UK.

   

Tackling the bovine TB problem 

The Wildlife Trusts believe that culling badgers is not the answer

The Wildlife Trusts have been working on the issue of bovine TB and its links to badgers for many years, as different Governments have put forward proposals for culling badgers as a strategy for controlling bovine TB.

Read our briefing on Bovine TB and Badgers and briefing on Bovine TB Vaccination.

We are very conscious of the hardship that bovine TB (bTB) causes in the farming community and the need to find the right mechanisms to control the disease. However, we believe that a badger cull is not the answer. Lord Krebs, who designed a previous trial, concluded that that “culling is not a viable policy option”.

We recognise the seriousness of the situation for farmers but the emphasis of all our efforts should be to find a long-term solution. We are urging the Government to drop badger culling from its bTB strategy and prioritise badger vaccination, alongside a comprehensive package of cattle measures: better biosecurity, stricter movement controls, improved TB testing and development of a cattle vaccine.

Tackling the disease should therefore include the following measures:

  • Better biosecurity: all possible measures should be pursued to prevent disease transmission on-farm
  • Stricter movement controls: to minimise the risk of spreading disease when cattle are transported
  • Improved TB testing: to increase detection of the disease - currently, many infected cattle are missed
  • Badger vaccination: support landowners to use the injectable BadgerBCG vaccine and continue development of an oral badger vaccine
  • Cattle vaccination: complete development of a cattle vaccine and secure changes to EU regulation to permit its commercial deployment 

What we are doing

Badger vaccination in Gloucestershire (photo: Neil Aldridge)

Wildlife Trusts are carrying out local vaccination programmes

Our activities include:

  • Lobbying the Government and MPs
    We continue to do this both nationally and at a local level at key moments and have facilitated meetings of MPs on the topic. We have also been lobbying the European Commission on cattle vaccination.
     
  • Encouraging our members to take action
    We have been encouraging our members to write to their MPs.  We've also encouraged people to contact their MEPs about the EU ban on a bTB cattle vaccine.
     
  • Submitting evidence to Government
    The EFRA (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) Select Committee
     
  • Organising local badger vaccination programmes
    In 2011 Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust was the first non-governmental organisation to begin deployment of the injectable BadgerBCG vaccine. A number of other Wildlife Trusts have joined Gloucestershire in carrying out local vaccination programmes - see the full list and read our vaccination progress report.
     
  • Standing up for badgers
    in the media including on national television and radio
     
  • Promoting the anti-cull petition
    on the Number 10 website - which reached more than 300,000 signatures
     
  • Responding to government consultations - For example you can download The Wildlife Trusts' response to the DEFRA consultation on draft strategy to manage bTB in Britain at the bottom of this page.

Simon King on badgers (BBC Newsnight)

Here's a film of our President Simon King appearing on BBC Newsnight in Autumn 2012 to argue against a cull.

 

  

Badger Trust 'Stop The Cull' film

The Wildlife Trusts’ President Simon King OBE and our President Emeritus Sir David Attenborough have, along with others, articulated their views on the badger cull in this short film produced by the Badger Trust.

 

 
 

Downloads

FilenameFile size
twt_btb_response_final.pdf609.67 KB