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Anti-badger cull campaigners to walk from Gloucester to London

By The Citizen  |  Posted: May 18, 2014

Comments (12)

ANTI-BADGER cull protesters will walk from Gloucester to London to highlight what they feel is a ‘brutal and barbaric’ Government policy.

The determined dozen will walk 112 miles to raise awareness of alternative ways to tackle TB in cattle, promote the need for increased biosecurity on farms and hold demonstrations and other events as they go. The Great Badger Trail will also raise funds for Stop the Cull.

Organiser Julie Buxton said: “The Great Badger Trail shows the determination of the people in the Stop the Cull movement.

“We will stop the badger cull and show how brutal and cruel this barbaric, unscientific policy is. The continued slaughtering of a protected species, in the name of a disease it is not responsible for spreading, is not acceptable in a civilised society.”

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The cull, which took place in west Gloucestershire and west Somerset last autumn, remains hugely contentious, with opponents wanting an emphasis on vaccination and tighter cattle movement measures.

However, farmers and the Government insist a cull of badgers is needed to stop spiralling rates of TB in herds.

Ms Buxton added: “As recent evidence from Wales shows, increased bio-security and vaccination is the solution and this is the message that the walkers will be spreading as they travel to Westminster.”

The walkers will set off from Shire Hall in Gloucester on Thursday and will visit towns including Cheltenham, Witney and Slough before finishing at Westminster on May 31 – the day before the cull licences are due to start again.

Leading anti-cull campaigner Dominic Dyer, of the Badger Trust and Care for the Wild, said: “This is a fantastic protest which shows the determination, spirit and commitment of normal people who are completely opposed to this cull.”

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  • transcendant  |  May 29 2014, 3:43PM

    Bovine TB experts,ProfessorDonnelly and Dr Woodruffe, stated before the commencement of the 'cull' that estimating the proportion of badgers culled within a given area would be extremely difficult to achieve due to uncertain badger estimates, so this constitutes a flagrant contravention of the Berne Convention since the species could well disappear in local areas. Moreover, since Owen Paterson has declared that this 'cull' (massacre) is to continue for the next 25 years, it is obvious that there will be few if any badgers left alive. Professor Andrew Linzey of Oxford University has called for the citizens' arrest of all those involved in this massacre. No one seriously believes that farmers are going to count numbers. They have been illegally killing badgers for years, and dumping their corpses by the roadsides, and they will slaughter every badger they come across. These are the same people that were feeding their herbivorous cows on the corpses of other animals, thereby converting them into carnivores and even cannibals, and consequently giving rise to CJD in humans. They have caused Tb in their own cattle by subjecting them to appalling maltreatment, and now they wish to scapegoat the badgers that have had the misfortune to contract TB from the cattle. When this criminal act fails to eradicate the disease, they will turn their attention to the other forms of wildlife that also carry TB. They are already intending to slaughter half the deer population, but dare not mention the fact that deer carry TB, since this would decimate the venison industry.

  • Jake_Blake  |  May 20 2014, 9:59PM

    "the percentage seems to vary between a quarter and a half of one per cent, it's miniscule. " So why are you against a badger cull then? We're talking even smaller percentages for the current cull plan in terms of the national herd. But if you're going to pull estimated figures for mastitis maybe you should explain why the ARA's don't fight so hard to protect badgers from RTA's when it kills so many more each and every year?

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  • mmjames  |  May 20 2014, 6:25PM

    forgot link - scroll down to badger bin fight https://http://tinyurl.com/q9dahju

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  • mmjames  |  May 20 2014, 2:44PM

    Please take some rescued badgers with you, they'll enjoy London's bins.

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  • Villager1950  |  May 20 2014, 9:24AM

    At least they are numbers and not percentages or descriptions such as "miniscule". Sentences such as "As a percentage of the national herd, very, very few cattle are slaughtered prematurely because they're TB reactors - the percentage seems to vary between a quarter and a half of one per cent, it's miniscule. " may suit the anti cull campaign but I'm sure provide very little comfort to the cattle or the owners of 5,928 cattle slaughtered in January. Than goodness rats are not deemed to be cuddly and thus popular.

    |   -3
  • Clued-Up  |  May 19 2014, 9:20PM

    @Villager1950 Statistics and maths generally are tools for understanding situations and problems, what you've just quoted is a series of numbers without any attempt to use them to explain anything! Why?

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  • cortezcortez  |  May 19 2014, 7:27PM

    Only 12 loyal supporters as I suspected the rest were just trouble makers

    |   -4
  • Villager1950  |  May 19 2014, 6:39PM

    Statistics, statistics;  The provisional incidence rate for January to February 2014 is 3.9% compared to 4.0% for January to February 2013. However, care needs to be taken not to read too much into short term figures, especially as this figure includes a number of unclassified incidents. As such, the incidence rates are subject to further revisions as more tests and their results for the period are input.  The number of new herd incidents during the period January to February 2014 was 955 compared to 898 for January to February 2013. The number of tests on officially TB free herds was 15,977 during January to February 2014, compared to 14,906 during January to February 2013.  The number of cattle compulsorily slaughtered as reactors or direct contacts was 5,928 during January to February 2014, compared to 6,304 during January to February 2013.

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  • Clued-Up  |  May 19 2014, 1:06PM

    @Villager1950 As a percentage of the national herd, very, very few cattle are slaughtered prematurely because they're bTB reactors - the percentage seems to vary between a quarter and a half of one per cent, it's miniscule. Much higher percentages of cattle are prematurely slaughtered because of mastitis, lameness and being infertile. If you're a cynical member of the public you might be asking yourself why does the NFU and DEFRA focus on cattle bTB (their alleged reason for wanting to kill badgers) when action to reduce the toll of mastitis, lameness and bovine infertility problems would serve cattle farmers far better?

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  • Villager1950  |  May 19 2014, 12:00PM

    My favourite animal is the cow but sadly they contract TB and are culled by putting a bolt through their head. All cows with TB get the chop rather than just a percentage. Perhaps we should form a protest group to save the cow?

    |   -5