Responses to the consultation on badger culling in the LRA
What was the consultation?
The consultation was aimed at getting views on 6 questions relating to the culling of badgers in the low risk area (LRA) in England. Broadly speaking this is in Northern and Eastern England where TB incidence is low (for a map of the different TB areas click here).
Who responded to the consultation?
Most of the 832 people who responded were from wildlife or animal welfare organisations, or were members of the public. Unfortunately very few farmers (3% or around 24) responded.
What did they say?
Most people were against proposals for culling in the LRA, which is not surprising given the makeup of the groups/ people responding.
What was the Governments response?
Taken from section 3 of the document….“The government’s view remains that enabling badger control in the LRA where disease in badgers is linked with infected herds is a rational extension of the TB strategy to eradicate bovine TB. The consultation responses have not provided new or compelling evidence to change that view.”Essentially meaning that the government still intends to cull in the LRA (where badgers are linked to infection).
Which areas might be culled?
This is not stated, but the document does mention that there have been 18 (or 21 – the numbers are not consistent) potential hotspot areas in the LRA from 2004 – 2017 and one of these has confirmed infection in the badger population.