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Mycobacterium bovis remains a hugely significant animal health and welfare issue. Clinical disease in any affected species must be a consideration for policymakers, with disease eradication as the primary objective. Increasing incidence in ‘domesticated’ species regarded as spill-over hosts such as camelids, pigs, goats, cats and dogs is a salutary reminder of a disease situation nowhere near under control. Continuing creep along ‘edge’ areas in the cattle and badger populations, most notably in Cheshire, provides further evidence of the difficulties we face in bearing down on the disease. Clinical infection with M bovis is an animal welfare issue as evidenced by the aggressive nature of infection in camelids and the gradual emaciation and death of deer, wild boar or badgers.
The BVA Council has called for continuation and roll out of the badger cull using trapping and shooting only (VR, April 25, 2014, vol 176, p 423). While we are delighted that the BVA is calling for continuation and …