Letter: Badger cull is not the answer

There is no evidence of how badgers might pass TB to cattle.

Letter: Badger cull is not the answer

There is no evidence of how badgers might pass TB to cattle.

TB is a respiratory disease, so the usual transmission is breath to breath, although the bacteria can be ingested via infected food but apparently large quantities of bacteria are needed because the digestive system can destroy them.

The proposed badger cull will not eradicate TB in cattle. The best scientific evidence, which came from the Krebs trial, is that total culling over a prolonged period might reduce the incidence of TB in cattle by 14 to 16 per cent but it could also make matters worse by dispersing the badgers that are not killed.

It is impossible to tell if a badger has TB by simple observation so the shooters will simply shoot any animals, and there are no plans for a postmortem examination to see if they have TB.

There will be an examination to establish whether the badgers have been killed humanely which of course means that any not killed but might escape injured will not be included in the eventual results.

Badger protection was originally introduced in 1973 to deal with badger digging and baiting and the original Act was then enshrined in later legislation.

More information is available from Shropshire Badger Group on (01743) 271999 or PO Box 100 Whitchurch.

Jim Ashley

Whitchurch

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