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Activists Oppose Badger Cull Move

24 Feb 2006 - BBC News

South West environmental and wildlife groups are submitting written opposition to a Government consultation on tackling TB with a badger cull.

The report represents the views from the South West Green Party and six regional wildlife groups. It is be handed to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs' Animal Health Minister Ben Bradshaw in Exeter on Friday. A cull was one of the proposals made in a consultation launched in December.

The South West Green Party said a badger cull made "no scientific or economic sense. We recognise that bovine tuberculosis is a significant problem for farmers in South West England, but like many other groups who are concerned about both cattle and badgers we have found no evidence to show that a cull would help," said Charlie Graham, coordinator of the party.

The opposition is being supported by Exeter Friends for Animals, Protect Our Wild Animals, North Devon Animal Defense, the Coalition of Badger Action Groups, Animal Aid and North Devon Friends of the Earth.

The consultation exercise will cover whether to cull badgers in areas hit badly by bovine TB, and how to do it. The consultation paper seeks views on three options that could be used should badger culling be introduced: individual licensing; a targeted cull in specific areas; and a general cull over larger areas of high TB incidence.

Defra said it would welcome all opinions as part of its consultation.

Public consultation on the issue is due to end on 10 March.

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