Badger Cull Failed then?

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  • Badger Cull Failed then?
  • Junkyard
    Member

    you expect them to listen to the data ?

    It was a success in its aim of transferring another tranche of taxpayers’ money to the private sector and not getting the results expected. But never mind… More culls next year chaps?

    Can badgers relax now ?

    Premier Icon andytherocketeer
    Subscriber

    given they cancel a night’s shooting if unwanted people are spotted in the vicinity, and there were protesters protesting, it’s only to be expected. Unless of course the time window was supposed to take account of such protest?

    Looks like the anti-cull protesters failed by more, if 58% of the badgers they wanted saving got culled.

    soobalias
    Member

    how many cows have been killed in somerset this year due to TB?

    Looks like the anti-cull protesters failed by more, if 58% of the badgers got culled.

    You think the anti-cull protesters aim was to stop all badgers from being shot ?

    Well they certainly set the bar very high.

    Junkyard
    Member

    I thought it was more likely those shooting wanted to shoot everyone they were contracted to [ rather than protesters thought they could save every badger]but then again I am no spin doctor trying to give it the best sell with a weak angle of attack

    Premier Icon kimbers
    Subscriber

    the cull was always an experiment, even achieving 100% of their target DEFRA couldnt be sure that it would reduce bovine TB

    are the protestors the reason it failed or is it just harder to shoot that many badgers (without trapping them first) than thought?

    Premier Icon Rusty Spanner
    Subscriber

    They couldn’t get enough suitably qualified people to particpate in the cull.
    Were asking for help with the shooting/trapping after two weeks.

    Anyway, it wasn’t about TB or badgers. Or the facts.
    It was about the Eton Mess appeasing the Countryside Alliance types and
    showing how strong they are.

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    given they cancel a night’s shooting if unwanted people are spotted in the vicinity

    I’m not sure that’s a legitimate excuse. If there was routine culling in the countryside ( something this trail was set up to establish) I think I’d want any shooting to be halted if I was out on a night ride!

    Given that the need to cull a sizeable percentage of a population in a short time frame is a prerequisite of a successful cull, I’m with the scientists in saying I think we’ve established this method is unworkable and its back to the drawing board. I suspect DEFRA and the NUF may take a different view

    jimsmith
    Member

    well they didnt have much evidence to go on since all the science points to culling being pretty much ineffective at stopping bTB transmission…
    badger to cattle as a transmission vector is estimated at 3-5%.
    but in terms of the cull itself… badgers are easy to track and follow, Ive done it many a time. with the wind in right direction you can get to within a few meters pretty easily. So I guess the protestors made a pretty big difference, or the marksmen/ecologists were rubbish. or both.

    jimsmith
    Member

    spot on rusty spanner, a highly political game.
    look at what happened in Wales, entirely political…

    They couldn’t get enough suitably qualified people to particpate in the cull.

    That’s hardly surprising. I did wonder how they would find enough people willing to spend a night shooting badgers.

    ninfan
    Member

    Culling adhering to strict DEFRA rules and with police and DEFRA ordering repeated cessation of culling whenever semi-organised gang of protesters thought to be in area, less effective than planned shocker!

    in the meantime, thousands of foxes killed by nighttime shooting up and down the country without incident or fuss!

    So semi-organised protesters is what caused this cull to fail ? They must be well pleased. I guess any future culls will be doomed then.

    ninfan
    Member

    No, a political decision to refuse to consider the gassing of setts is what caused the cull to fail!

    Premier Icon nickc
    Subscriber

    I agree with Ernie, if culling can be halted by loose groups ( or even organised ones) so that they become ineffective, that’s pretty much the end of that

    Premier Icon Rusty Spanner
    Subscriber

    Don’t be daft.
    If the Tory’s wanted this enough, they’d just enforce/extend the CJA to cover the right to protest.

    They don’t want it enough though.
    It was a token gesture designed to fail.

    Premier Icon ransos
    Subscriber

    the cull was always an experiment, even achieving 100% of their target DEFRA couldnt be sure that it would reduce bovine TB

    There was substantial evidence that the proposed cull would achieve the opposite of its intentions – i.e. increase the spread of TB. Looks like it’s coming to pass.

    It seems appeasing the NFU is more important than what the research shows.

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    Natural England, the cull licensing body, set the minimum number of badgers to be killed in Somerset at 2,100, or 70% of the total. But Defra sources said only 1,450 badgers were now believed to exist in the area.

    Even with that 40% cut in the estimated population, the shooters still failed to reach the required 70%, killing only 850 animals or 58% of the new total. Defra sources could not explain the dramatic apparent drop in the population.

    “Extending the cull still further will potentially cause more damage as culls conducted more slowly have a substantially greater impact in raising TB infections,”

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/oct/08/badger-cull-extension-too-few-killed

    So that’s all gone spiffingly well, then.

    I guess as a trial it’s proven that a cull is not quite the panacea it has been touted as?

    fasthaggis
    Member

    soobalias

    how many cows have been killed in somerset this year due to TB?

    UK total since 2008 ( allegedly )

    Cow Counter

    No, a political decision to refuse to consider the gassing of setts is what caused the cull to fail!

    I always had you down as a shooting man Z-11.

    Although I can see that gassing might have less psychological effect on those charged with carrying out the mass killings.

    Klunk
    Member

    if they set out with the aim to gas 2100 badgers, that wouldn’t have been a cull it would be complete extermination.

    zip
    Member

    If these “marksmen” needed to trap the animals before shooting them, why didn’t the badgers just get vaccinated? Trapping to shoot hundreds of badgers seems like a good way of satisfying certain peoples blood lust and giving them an excuse to use their weapons, without much of a challenge. Especially considering the science was ignored.

    Premier Icon Rusty Spanner
    Subscriber

    They didn’t need to trap them before shooting them.
    The trapping was in addition to the shooting, not instead of it, as far as I’m aware, anyway.

    The drop in numbers is gonna be due to the badgers moving out. Nobody wants to live in an area with that amount of gun crime.

    Premier Icon bigjim
    Subscriber

    Anyway, it wasn’t about TB or badgers. Or the facts.
    It was about the Eton Mess appeasing the Countryside Alliance types and
    showing how strong they are.

    this

    globalti
    Member

    So the cull hasn’t reached the tipping point where the numbers killed begin to outweigh the greater mobility of the remaining badgers in the environment and thanks to this cockup (and perhaps the protestors) TB will spread even more rapidly – assuming TB really is spread by badgers.

    Great!

    Premier Icon kimbers
    Subscriber

    Thick Of It comment from the Environment secretary….

    ”badgers moved the goalposts”

    cynic-al
    Member

    wwaswas – Member
    Natural England, the cull licensing body, set the minimum number of badgers to be killed in Somerset at 2,100, or 70% of the total. But Defra sources said only 1,450 badgers were now believed to exist in the area.

    Even with that 40% cut in the estimated population, the shooters still failed to reach the required 70%, killing only 850 animals or 58% of the new total. Defra sources could not explain the dramatic apparent drop in the population.

    “Extending the cull still further will potentially cause more damage as culls conducted more slowly have a substantially greater impact in raising TB infections,”

    http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2013/oct/08/badger-cull-extension-too-few-killed

    So that’s all gone spiffingly well, then.

    I guess as a trial it’s proven that a cull is not quite the panacea it has been touted as?

    HAve you even read the article you linked to?

    Yes they’ve not killed as many as projected, but it hardly means the trial was a failure – no matter how desperate you are to label it as such.

    Premier Icon ransos
    Subscriber

    Yes they’ve not killed as many as projected, but it hardly means the trial was a failure – no matter how desperate you are to label it as such.

    The failed to kill the minimum amount specified and have probably caused TB to be spread into other areas.

    If that’s not failure, I don’t know what is.

    jimsmith
    Member

    I suspect there will be little change in new cases due to the cull as the likelyhood of current farming practice being the culprit is very high.
    overstocking, overuse of antibiotics causing resistance and little regulation on cattle movements being the significant causes.
    nose to nose between cattle is far and away the biggest vector.

    most importantly cattle breeding programs which havent considered disease resistance in the long term (pre antibiotics TB resistance in the national herd was being worked on in the UK)

    A microcosm of whats happening with many diseases conventionally treated by antibiotics I think

    Not sure what the controversy is. Through manipulating the environment through agriculture we’ve upset the blance of nature and predators and as such we now need to control the populations of animals as there is no natural mechanism to do it. Badgers are a pest just like Foxes and other cute fluffy animals as their populations have gone out of control. So having some form of cull or ongoing population control measure is perfectly sensible and correct. It is not acceptable to continue to suffer TB in cattle. In all this 38,000 heads of cattle have had to be slaughterd because of TB so I think the relative numbers of Badgers we are talking about are pretty small so well worth the cull even if for experimental purposes. Once we’ve done it at least we’ll know. But if the cull doesn’t work it doesn’t remove the original problem. Burying our heads in the sand isn’t a sensible suggestion.

    ninfan
    Member

    cynic-al does make a good point – the failure of the cull to reach the figure doesn’t mean that the trial has failed, as it will only show out in the future cattle TB figures, which might go down, or might go up – it could well go to prove or disprove the theories about perturbation.

    It also doesn’t say that culling as a method has failed, it only says that culling using the very restrictive procedure as laid out by DEFRA is not effective, but anyone into shooting knew that the political decisions to restrict culling to 70 metres and not within 30 metres of a sett was hamstringing it from the start (when fox and deer culling is carried out at much greater distances) and that if you wanted to cull badgers en masse then the best way to do it was to gas them in their sett.

    Premier Icon ransos
    Subscriber

    Burying our heads in the sand isn’t a sensible suggestion.

    It’s more sensible than a course of action likely to make the problem worse.

    Premier Icon bigjim
    Subscriber

    Not sure what the controversy is. Through manipulating the environment through agriculture we’ve upset the blance of nature and predators and as such we now need to control the populations of animals as there is no natural mechanism to do it. Badgers are a pest just like Foxes and other cute fluffy animals as their populations have gone out of control

    Hate to break it to you but cows aren’t wild animals. Perhaps cows are the pest here.

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    Great quote from the minister;


    A government minster said “badgers moved the goalposts” when asked why marksmen failed to reach a cull target.

    dreadfully unsporting of them.

    Klunk
    Member

    and that if you wanted to cull exterminate badgers en masse then the best way to do it was to gas them in their sett.

    FIFY

    Not sure what the controversy is. Through manipulating the environment through agriculture we’ve upset the blance of nature and predators and as such we now need to control the populations of animals as there is no natural mechanism to do it. Badgers are a pest just like Foxes and other cute fluffy animals as their populations have gone out of control. So having some form of cull or ongoing population control measure is perfectly sensible and correct. It is not acceptable to continue to suffer TB in cattle. In all this 38,000 heads of cattle have had to be slaughterd because of TB so I think the relative numbers of Badgers we are talking about are pretty small so well worth the cull even if for experimental purposes. Once we’ve done it at least we’ll know. But if the cull doesn’t work it doesn’t remove the original problem. Burying our heads in the sand isn’t a sensible suggestion.

    no such thing as “balance of nature”

    Bazz
    Member

    Just a thought but surely Bovine TB will always be a problem in bovine (aka cows) all the time we have intensive farming and no vaccine, sure badgers may contribute but having a couple of hundred cows in a shed is going to cause far more spread of the disease than any badger wondering around. Or am i missing a massive point?

    Klunk
    Member

    those badgers should play for england! fiendishly good 🙂

    yunki
    Member

    All this pontificating fails to address something that was noticed by anyone who spends time in the country.. Badger numbers are down, regardless of the cull, and were significantly lower than the pre-full research estimations.. Not quite the ‘spiralling out of control numbers’ line that was being bandied about by the press and the pro-full lobby.
    So what gives?

    no such thing as ‘balance of nature’

    not on this sceptic isle, no

    Klunk
    Member

    In a phone call to Phil Spencer at Natural England, he acknowledged the following
    1. He didn’t understand how the rules of a trial could be changed after the event – this was for Defra to explain
    2. He accepted that the cost per killed Badger was approx £3000 including Police costs, but did not know who would pay for the additional policing costs if the cull was extended.
    3. He understood that the Pilot Cull was to test free shooting, but confirmed that a very high proportion of Badgers killed towards the end of the cull had been cage trapped and shot. He couldn’t explain how a trial of one particular method of culling could actually use a completely different method and produce meaningful results.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Subscriber

    you expect them to listen to the data ?

    ?

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