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A RECENT Veterinary Record Comment on the postponement of the badger cull pilots (October 27, 2012, vol 171, p 410) was absolutely right to outline the ‘need to make progress in the battle for hearts and minds’.
In that context, the BVA and BCVA would like to express their support for the Government's decision to allow the postponement of the two licensed badger culling pilot exercises in England, after the National Farmers' Union expressed concern regarding comprehensive delivery this year. With decreased badger activity over the winter months, a closed season for trapping to commence on December 1 compromising that element of the cull, and a larger population of badgers than had first been thought to be the case, it would have been difficult to achieve the desired results at this time. The decision to postpone the cull until next year, when these factors can be addressed, is a responsible one. We also support the continued policy of a targeted badger cull by licensing these two pilots, which will now be undertaken in 2013.
Work must still go on, however, to address other aspects of bovine TB control, and the changes to the control programme to be introduced …
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