North Oxfordshire Green Party calls on MPs to oppose extension of badger cull into Oxfordshire

The North Oxfordshire Green Party has urged Oxfordshire residents and businesses to respond to a government consultation being held prior to the extension of badger culling to the county.

https://consult.defra.gov.uk/natural-england/8899f8e7/

Responses have been invited by DEFRA to a survey asking how such a cull would affect their daily lives. But the consultation closes after only 2 weeks on 19th March.

The Green Party is totally opposed to the continuation of programme that could be set to eradicate one of our most beloved wild creatures. It’s clear that these culls have no positive impact on the transmission of disease. They are politically motivated and intended simply to placate a farming lobby which supports the Conservative government.

There is no conclusive scientific evidence to support the transmission of bovine TB from badgers to cattle. Indeed there is evidence to suggest that cattle actually infect the badgers and culls simply dissipate the badger population leading to an increased spread of infected animals.

Even then only a small percentage of culled badgers have been shown to carry bovine TB and the vast majority of infection spread is more likely due to cattle to cattle contact and poor biosecurity practices on farms.

Whatever the vector of bTB there are other proven methods of control in wildlife such as vaccination and more stringent controls on the movement of cattle.

Ian Middleton from the North Oxfordshire Green Party said: “While we continue to heap blame on the badger population for the spread of bovine TB we are ignoring other more likely causes of the spread of the disease such as lack of attention to simple biosecurity procedures on farms including poorly maintained water troughs in grazing areas”

“There is still no conclusive evidence from previous culls that they have lead to a significant reduction in bovine TB, but there is mounting evidence that the culls have caused appalling suffering to badgers along with damage to delicate ecosystems.

“We need to halt these culls and hold an independent study into their effectiveness before we consider extending them into other areas. Wildlife in Oxfordshire is already subject to a number of threats, not least the potential for unprecedented levels of development on greenbelt land which will devastate habitats”

“I call on all Oxfordshire MPs to resist any extension of this cruel, misguided and unnecessary cull into Oxfordshire’s countryside. I’d particularly like to see North Oxfordshire MP Victoria Prentis taking a stand on this issue, especially given her support for fox hunting which it has been suggested may also play a role in the spread of bovine TB”

More Infomation

The Oxfordshire Badger Group

Contact Ian Middleton:

  • Email: ian.middleton@greenoxford.com
  • Telephone: 07779 628211
Written on March 14, 2018