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Essay Ideas 6 to 10

6. Big Business

A large pest control company fumigates an empty chicken shed to kill various insect pests. Unknown to them, their poison has also killed a family of badgers who took up residence very recently.

  • What elements of the actions can be assigned to "bad luck", and what can be assigned to "good luck"?
  • Are the company guilty of persecuting a badger?
  • What else could have gone wrong?
  • Should they plead guilty or not guilty in court?
  • Do they need to change their procedures?

7. Precautionary Action?

In the 1990s people believed that eating the brains of cattle could give you the fatal CJD brain disease. At the time, the scientists said that there was not enough evidence to prove that harm would take place. As a result, the politicians did not act, which allowed some people to contract and later die from CJD.

Now some farmers believe that badgers might give tuberculosis to cattle. Some scientists believe that cattle get TB mainly from one another; and very little (if any) from badgers. So far as is known, there have been no cases of TB-infected meat or milk getting into the human food chain for at least 40 years.

  • What questions do the politicians need to ask before they decide to kill thousands of badgers?
  • What factors do they need to consider?
  • How important should public opinion be?

8. Selling Out?

A Badger Group formed itself "to protect badgers, their setts and their environment in as natural and interference-free state as possible". A nearby stately home has just received lottery funding to open a "UK Native Zoo". The stately home want to pay the badger group 150,000 to build an artificial badger sett with an observation gallery, as well as 25,000 per year to maintain the sett for the badgers.

  • What moral choices to the badger group have?
  • Would it be better if the observation gallery was accessible for wheelchairs?
  • What if the artificial badger sett would be used to look after cuddly orphaned badger cubs?
  • Should they accept the money?

9. Is trying to help good enough?

A badger group have a well-regarded rehabilitation pen located deep inside some remote woodland. One year the pen is broken into and two badgers stolen. It is believed that badger baiters stole the badgers so they can be used for badger baiting with dogs. Given that the rehabilitation pen can never be made 100% "burglar-proof", should the badger group close down the pen?

  • Give your reasons.

10. Nurturing Nature?

A farmers wife takes in a poorly abandoned badger cub, nurses it to health and maturity, and successfully releases it into the wild. After a few weeks the badger returns to the farm, and kills several rabbits.

  • To what extent does it matter whether the rabbits are wild (causing damage to crops and undermining walls) or domestic pets (living in a hutch)?
Finding Badgers?
See our Finding Evidence of Badgers booklet

Michael Clark
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His affection
for badgers
really shines
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Perfect Badger Photos
The very best photos you have ever seen of badgers are in this remarkable book by John Darbyshire and Laurie Campbell. Click here to buy Badgers by Darbyshire & Campbell


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