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Bovine TB
Badger culls: numerical targets achieved

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BADGER culling operations in 10 areas of England in 2016 all achieved their targets for the number of animals to be removed, according to figures released by Defra last week.

A summary of badger control monitoring, published on Defra's website on December 16, reports that the numbers of badgers culled in all 10 cull areas fell within the ranges set by Natural England for the minimum and maximum numbers of badgers to be removed. The number of badgers culled ranged from 217 in Somerset to 3000 in one area of Dorset.

In two areas – in Somerset and Gloucestershire – culling operations were carried out for a fourth consecutive year, while in one area of Dorset, a second year of culling was completed. A first year of culling was completed in seven new areas – two in Cornwall, two in Devon, one in Dorset, one in Gloucestershire and one in Herefordshire.

In a separate document, also published on December 16, the UK's Chief Veterinary Officer, Nigel Gibbens, advises that the outcome of this year's culls indicates that industry-led culling can deliver the …

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