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Bovine TB
Badger culling: BVA withdraws support for controlled shooting

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THE BVA has concluded that it can no longer support the use of controlled shooting of badgers as a culling method and has called for the four-year pilot culls of badgers in Somerset and Gloucestershire to be completed using the ‘tried and tested’ method of cage trapping and shooting only.

In a position statement agreed at a meeting of the BVA Council on April 15, the Association says that, ‘in light of the results following the second year of culling, BVA believes that it has not been demonstrated conclusively that controlled shooting can be carried out effectively and humanely based on the criteria that were set for the pilots. Nor are we confident that the effectiveness and humaneness can be significantly further improved, despite Defra's assurances after the first year of culling. We therefore do not support the continued use of controlled shooting as part of the badger control policy.’

The pilot badger culls being conducted over four years in Somerset and Gloucestershire have been assessing the efficacy, humaneness and safety of controlled shooting as a method of culling badgers. After the first year of culling, a report by an Independent Expert Panel made …

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