1st June marked the potential start date of the badger cull. This means that any day now gunmen could begin indiscriminately shooting and killing thousands of badgers in the trial areas of West Somerset and West Gloucestershire.
The campaign against the cull is gathering pace and the League is calling on all of our supporters to sign the petition and join us in opposing the cull.
In the latest stage of the campaign the Labour Party tabled an Opposition Day debate on the Government's plans for a badger cull on 5th June. Parliament narrowly voted against Labour’s motion calling for the badger cull to be abandoned. 250 MPs voted in favour of the motion and 299 MPs voted against, a difference of just 49 votes, despite the Coalition Government instructing (known as whipping) its MPs to vote against the motion.
The National March Against the Badger Cull, saw thousands take to the streets of London on 1st June to show their opposition to the cull. The march was organised by London Against the Cull and supported by the League and other animal welfare organisations.
Public meetings were also held in both Taunton (20th April) and Dorset (24th May), by Team Badger. Speakers included musician Brian May; Gavin Grant, Chief Executive of RSPCA; and Steve Jones, retired dairy farmer and leader of the “not in this farmer’s name” campaign.
The League and our partners in Team Badger will continue our campaign to see this cruel and unnecessary policy of culling badgers dropped – Keep your eyes peeled on this page for action alerts.
We need the public to express their absolute opposition to the badger cull so that even if the current pilot culls take place, at least we can stop them spreading to other areas. There are different ways to do this, and you can help by doing some (or all) of the following:
Current actions against the badger cull
- Members of the public can sign the “Stop the badger cull” ePetition set up by Dr. Brian May, which has already collected more than 245,000 signatures. If it exceeds 260,000 signatures, it will be a record for this type of petition. Sign the petition now!
- Team Badger launched a “Myth Busters” document on 5th June. This document, which is a culmination of work and research by Team Badger members refutes the top ten myths supporting the badger cull in England and explains why the cull is doomed to fail. Please share this document far and wide – View it here.
- Social Media – Every Monday between 11am and 1pm is #badgermonday on Twitter. So if you have a Twitter account please express your opposition to the cull by using the hashtag #badgermonday between 11 – 1pm. Also every Tuesday is #PetitionTuesday – Please share the link to the Badger Cull E-petition every Tuesday.
We’re planning a number of other events with our Team Badger partners, which we’ll update you on shortly, so watch this space for next steps or support the campaign with a donation.
Background to the badger cull and the anti cull campaign
The badger cull has been planned by the Government in reaction to the continuing problem of bovine tuberculosis (TB) and is due to begin in two trial areas - West Somerset and West Gloucestershire - in June.
The Government remains committed to going ahead with the cull this summer, despite widespread opposition and the fact that the cull will have a minimal impact on the disease, but a maximum, negative, destructive impact on one of our best loved creatures.
With the lives of potentially thousands of badgers once more under threat, the League, our partner organisations and our supporters remain committed to ensuring the cull doesn’t go ahead and is abandoned for good in favour of vaccinating badgers and developing an effective bovine TB vaccine.
Vaccination has already been a proven success in Wales, where well over 1,400 badgers have already been protected against bovine TB as part of a five year programme of work to eradicate TB completely.
The Welsh initiative reflects the constructive alternative to culling that the League, along with Team Badger, is calling for. It also demonstrates the co-operation that is possible between the farming industry and government in taking swift, positive and decisive action against the spread of Bovine TB.
The cull has already been postponed from last October, following a sustained and comprehensive campaign that involved numerous organisations, including the League, our supporters and our Team Badger partners. In addition, a parliamentary debate at the time resulted in an overwhelming vote of 147 to 28 against the cull.
With your invaluable support, the League will continue to oppose the badger cull in 2013.