The shocking figure was released yesterday by the Government. They confirmed that at least 32,601 badgers were culled across 32 badger cull zones in England and that the badger cull has gone ahead for the first year in Staffordshire and Cumbria, in addition to the existing areas of Gloucestershire, Somerset, Dorset, Cornwall, Devon, Herefordshire, Cheshire and Wiltshire.
Tim Birch at Derbyshire Wildlife Trust said, “It is truly appalling that so many badgers have been shot with the approval of the Government this year. There is no justification for this. No evidence has been produced that shows shooting so many badgers is having any significant impact on the bovine TB disease. This is a disease of cattle primarily spread by cattle. Badgers are being used as a scapegoat by the Government. In Derbyshire we are successfully vaccinating badgers to ensure they do not contract the disease from cattle. We are focussed on keeping our badgers healthy. The Government should focus its efforts on stopping the spread of this disease by cattle amongst cattle. It’s time to stop the badger cull before more of these iconic animals are shot.”