What you can do...
- Email your MP to ask them to call for any further culling to be stopped
Email your local MP to ask them to continue to put pressure on the Government to scrap their cull plans and prioritise badger vaccination. We have produced this template letter to give you some ideas, and there's some further suggestions here, but it is much better if you can personalise it with your own thoughts.
- Support, and find out more about, our badger vaccination programme
You can donate and support our vaccination work in Dorset here
- Sign the Wildlife Trust e-action petition asking David Cameron to drop the cull
Click here to sign the e-action. The pilot culls in Somerset and Gloucestershire will resume in 2015, despite the previous years' failures and withdrawal of support (for controlled shooting) from the British Veterinary Association. You can sign our e-action asking David Cameron to drop badger culling from the Government's bovine TB eradication strategy.
- 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.
What we're doing - our badger vaccination programme
Read our badger vaccination information leaflet to find out about our badger vaccination programme.
Check out these photos and videos to find out how we vaccinate badgers
Information about badger culling
Bovine TB (bTB) costs the UK millions of pounds every year and we recognise the hardship that it causes in the farming community. However, we believe that a badger cull is not the answer.
Here is a simple summary of the science.
Paul Wilkinson, Head of Living Landscape at The Wildlife Trusts, has written a summary highlighting the "Cost of culling" in 2014.
Bovine TB: pilot culls ineffective. Read our latest briefing document
Badger cull trials - when and where
Two pilot culls of badgers took place in 2013 & 2014 in Somerset and Gloucestershire.
These culls are continuing and have now led to a roll-out to Dorset in 2015. The pilot culls did not measure the impact on bovine TB.
The Wildlife Trusts are firmly opposed to a cull. We believe there are alternative methods which should be used to tackle the bovine TB problem. You can read more about this below. No Wildlife Trust will allow culling on its land.
What we think
Dorset Wildlife Trust is keen to see the eradication of bovine tuberculosis (bTB) in cattle, but a badger cull is not the answer for three main reasons:
- Scientific evidence indicates that a cull is unlikely to make a substantive improvement in cattle infection rates and may make matters worse because it is likely to increase movement of remaining badgers into and around the area, potentially bringing infected and uninfected badgers (and cattle) into contact.
- It is not known what proportion of bTB in cattle arises from badgers, estimates range from 20% to 50%. Our view is it is better to concentrate on cattle to cattle transmission and improving bio-security to avoid badgers and cattle coming into contact.
- Vaccination of cattle in the long-term and vaccination of badgers as a short-term measure are more effective means of control.