Tuesday, September 11 2012, 7:24PM
“Not without incontrovertible proof that they are the sole cause of the problem. Why cannot the cows be vaccinated - is this possible?”
Tuesday, September 11 2012, 10:40PM
“It depends what restrictions are imposed and how those restrictions are enforced.As Karinfall1955 has rightly said - the proof that btb is contracted from Badgers has to be irrefutably proven before any cull can be authorised, and it has to be controlled otherwise we'll get farmers shooting every badger on sight.What are the boundaries?”
Wednesday, September 12 2012, 11:16PM
“No way should the Con government allow farmers to murder badgers.Stop eating beef in protest and let's hope millions of others will do the same.”
Thursday, September 13 2012, 11:19PM
“Ok Bob, stop eating Beef. Make all those cows die in vane instead,”
Monday, September 17 2012, 11:10AM
“A cull cannot be justified. Intensive agriculture and the misuse of pharmaceuticals in the "industry" causes many problems for Britain's dairy cows. This includes lower resistance to diseases like TB (i.e there's very little problem with organic farms).”
Monday, September 17 2012, 4:45PM
“Would there be such outrage if this was a cull of rats? Is it because badgers are perceived as cute in this society?”
Monday, September 17 2012, 6:10PM
“I am not sure that badgers are regarded as 'cute', certainly not by me anyway. They are however, Britain's largest mammal and do not transfer disease to humans as do rats; They do not invade houses as do rats; they do not breed prolifically as do rats and as far as I know have never lived in sewers. If anything we have invaded their territory rather than the other way round. This is very rough justice and not even conclusive.”
Monday, September 17 2012, 6:54PM
They also happen to be an endangered species.
Yours is an interesting point. Can you direct me towards any papers / references for this? Thanks.
From the BBC piece today (here http://tinyurl.com/9kbbwtl)
"The plan is based on the results of a nine-year trial which showed that the spread of the disease could be slowed slightly if more than 70% of badgers in an area could be eradicated. If it was less than 70% - the spread of TB to cattle might even increase.
But the scientist who carried out the study has told BBC News that these pilot studies make no sense.
Lord Krebs, who is one of the government's most respected scientific advisers, said that the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), which is administering the scheme, has no way of knowing how many badgers there are in the area, so will not know when they've killed 70% of the badgers in the area."”
Tuesday, September 18 2012, 8:46AM
“I do not know enough about this. Personally I hate to kill anything (apart from wasps, which I hate with a passion), even by accident.
If it can be proved incontrovertably that badgers are responsible for spreading TB to cattle, then something has to be done about it. Surely there must be an alternative to culling badgers. Is work being done on vaccination of cattle? Humans have been vaccinated against TB for years. Why not cattle?”
Tuesday, September 18 2012, 9:33AM
“heres your answer CGLee
Tuesday, September 18 2012, 10:08AM
“Thanks for that, Chappy, I am a little wiser now. I am still surprised that a vaccine has not been developed before now, though. I understand the difficulties with the EU mandarins, who have a totally different attitude to animal welfare than we do, and the detrimental effect it would have on trade, but we already have many animal species in decline. It would be terrible if our largest mammal became at risk just because of ignorance within the EU.Another reason to leave the EU - but that's another of my hobby horses!”
Tuesday, September 18 2012, 1:10PM
“The EU's biggest player - Germany -I have been quite a lot, something you don't see much of out there is Road Kill,I asked a friend, is it cleaned up? or is there Carrion?His answer was simply, no, there isn't that much small wildlife, like rabbits and hedgehogs.Birds of Prey and seem to be less evident than here in some areas also.Whether this is true for all of Germany I don't know,make of it what you will.”
Tuesday, September 18 2012, 2:02PM
“No they should not have the right to kill!”
Tuesday, September 18 2012, 9:36PM
“JayBe11 asked for some backgrond papers. I hope the following are useful:http://tinyurl.com/9q7ehyr provides advice to farmers about cattle vaccinations.type "effect of corticosteroids on cattle" for papers on reduced resistance to disease within cattle. It's heavy going, but there's a lot of material. The Soil Association website includes background papers on the effects of intensive dairy farming at http://tinyurl.com/yp4q29”
Thursday, September 20 2012, 5:15PM
Sunday, September 23 2012, 2:18PM
“by MusicalKMonday, September 17 2012, 4:45PM"Would there be such outrage if this was a cull of rats? Is it because badgers are perceived as cute in this society?"---------------------------------------------------------------------------------No, it's because badgers are a protected species. http://tinyurl.com/5tujgt7The irony is that the Government made laws to protect badgers -an endangered native species -then has happily torn up these laws in response to pressure from the farming lobbyists. Was nothing learned from the Mad cow and foot and mouth disasters? Why should farmers get free rein to do as they please no matter what the consequences.”
Sunday, September 23 2012, 7:31PM
“They shouldn't but Defra should have an open debate on the subject,There have to be proper controls before any kind of Cull can be implemented,proper seasons where any kind of Cull is illegal.All sides need to forward representatives to speak around the same table in equal proportions.Sensible arguments should be lobbied. Not just because the are cute, or any other response by the Animal Rights people that doesn't listen to the reason.Don't forget that a lot of animal rights people oppose eating meat and drinking milk etc, and keeping cow herds for this purpose - so their argument will always state, badgers before cows.But in the same light the farmers should listen to sensible suggestions, and scientific evidence from researchers. If you allow them to shoot on sight - how do you know when you have exceeded the limits on what you can cull.What if after a cull the rate of TB doesn't drop - and badgers become endagered, will they just say, oh well it was worth a try.A lot of disease is down to conditions, transport, insects, waterborne bacteria, proliferation with poorly quarantined animals from other countries.This is why the whole debate needs to happen in a controlled manner, over how ever long it takes, with no specific deadline.By the Way Rats came here from abroad and are prolific breeders.You can't just rule in favour of one side without considering the whole argument, conceding a few wrongs and establishing a workable solution.”
Sunday, November 04 2012, 3:16PM
“I believe Brian May would be better employed using his great wealth and influence getting BCG vaccination programs established for the children and deprived populations of the Third World. . The BCG is now a failing vaccine. . Using it on badgers and just contributing to the reduction in its efficacy whilst there are human populations still in desperate need, is both crass and insensitive. . Close to two million human beings are dying each year from tuberculosis although WHO say the number is reducing despite the marked increase in MDR and XDR stains of the disease.The science of Mycobacterium bovis and the difficulties of control of the whole Mycobacterium genus is now well understood by scientists around the world. . What these last devastating years for our farmers have shown is that the Badger Trust and their followers are determined to keep the infected badger population growing exponentially without any concern for the effect on the human population or any other animals. . The badger (and cattle) vaccination program is based on 90 year old BCG science that is no longer even accepted as really useful for humans, let alone animals. . The only real advance in TB treatment in recent times has been the discovery of enzymes that will increase detection rates in Mycobacterium tuberculosis, and the discovery of enzymes that can also increase the efficacy of currently used anti-biotics. . The particular Mycobacterium that cause TB are all very slow growing and insidious, and notoriously difficult to stop reproducing, let alone kill. . Some of the best work being done at the moment is by scientists using phage therapy. . That is over 60year old Russian science that uses bacteriophages; viruses that can attack and kill the TB bacterium.The thing the badger groups just will not accept and now even deny with sophistry and distortion, is the fact that we once conquered this problem by clearing badger setts in the locality of herds and culling all and any reactor cattle. . The 'clean ring strategy'. The national herd was clear of disease and all herds in the UK were officially designated 'Brucellosis Free' in October 1985. . That is 'all such pathogens'.With the discovery of Streptomycin and other antibiotics and drugs; we thought we had beaten tuberculosis and all the sanatoriums had long been closed. . . Then some in their mistaken wisdom decided the risk from badgers was by then minimal. . With the explosion in the badger population, we can all now see just how 'minimal' that was.The gassing of badgers ceased in the late 1970s and testing of cattle continued.In 1986, a total of 38,000 herds comprising 3,200,000 cattle were tested, resulting in the slaughter of just 506 cattle that reacted to the test. . The latest position with over 30,000 being slaughtered is neither acceptable or sustainable. . The Badger Trust and all their followers apparently now believe we can just let this situation continue until some one comes up with a new effective vaccine for cattle and wildlife. . That may never happen.The only way we will ever have a clean badger population again is if we first close down all the infected setts.”
Sunday, November 04 2012, 3:23PM
“Badgers have never, nor will they ever be at risk. . They have no natural predators. . Protecting them was one of the biggest mistakes of wildlife protection of the 20th century, and it merely contributed to the demise and decrease in many other of their prey species.”
Sunday, November 04 2012, 5:45PM
“Charlespk. You speak a great deal of sense and obviously know your stuff. Do you think they are responsible for the very obvious demise of the hedgehog?My only contention would be TB is very definitely on the rise in parts of London and Birmingham even though it had been virtually eradicated; immigration is believed responsible. However, the grotesque explosion of the human population is never queried, not suggesting a cull but why should humans just continue to expand and if anything gets in their way it gets culled...”
Monday, November 05 2012, 9:49AM
“Charlespk - There were never calls to use human Vaccines on Badgers, where did you get this from?The problem is that the blood Vaccinated CATTLE are indistinguishable from cattle which have the disease, because to stimulate the antibodies needed for the immune system to fight the disease, a small dose of the disease must be present. The problem is cattle are regularly screened and perfectly healthy cattle could be mis-diagnosed.Cattle are controlled, tagged and movement restricted. Badgers are a wild animal.Badgers are predated - by Humans, and would be under a cull.Dogs will fight with Badgers - especially if bred to do so.Rats will raid Badger Sets and attack cubs.We hunted badgers almost to extinction earlier in the 20th Century, with a population half of what it is now, with a natural habitat far greater than it is now. As we have a smaller area, greater mobility, more variety in methods of culling badgers, and a larger population, do you honestly believe the badger population will be as robust. It is still rare to see badgers for a reason.My Grandad farmed cattle - It's in my blood, but as I have said before - until you have undisputed proof that badgers are the cause of BTB - and you have a controlled cull, and seasonal restrictions, then you cannot proceed - full stop.As for countries where Children are dying from TB - not being heartless, but what are their Governments doing about it?”
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