EUROBADGER; the newly formed Federation of European Badger Protection Organisations, today calls upon the European Parliament, MEPS, the European Commission and EU Member States, to combine forces and to outlaw the needless and cruel mass-killing of badgers across Europe.
With tens of thousands of badgers being killed across Europe as a result of Government sanctioned culling programmes, illegal persecution, hunting, building developments and death on the roads, the species is under greater threat than ever before.
Eurobadger calls upon the European Institutions and Member States to particularly focus on effective cattle-based disease reduction strategies to reduce bovine TB, a serious cattle disease that is once again on the increase This is rather than to allow EU funds or resources potentially to be used, or to support large scale, scientifically ineffective and cruel badger culls in England, Ireland and other countries where the disease may now spread.
Presenting a new Eurobadger report focusing on one of the many threats to the survival of badgers across Europe to MEP’s meeting at the European Parliament Intergroup on Animal Welfare and Conservation in Strasbourg, the Chief Executive of the Badger Trust and Policy Advisor to the Born Free Foundation, Dominic Dyer said:
“The badger has lived in the landscape of Europe for over half a million years but its future today is under ever increasing threat. The crisis in the European dairy industry is directly linked to the fate of the badger. With falling milk prices, dairy farmers are already having to increase the size of their herds, keep more cattle indoors for longer periods of time, and move and sell more cattle to remain profitable.
All of these developments are increasing the risk of the spread of bovine TB. To make matters worse, any steps to introduce a TB cattle vaccine are being put on hold in view of the danger of losing key export markets for meat and dairy products in the EU or countries such as China. We cannot allow the local extinction of badgers from certain parts of EU Members States, to enable increasingly desperate dairy farmers to produce powdered milk for the China market.
We must develop food and farming systems that encourage nature and landscapes to thrive as well as supporting livelihoods and local communities. Public health, animal welfare and wildlife protection must be at the heart of good policy. To do this we must recognise that bovine TB is primarily a cattle- based disease and that limitations within TB testing regimes combined with inadequate biosecurity and movement controls are all leading to continued spread of the disease and not badgers”
Team Broc (Ireland), Meles (France), Das & Boom (The Netherlands), The Badger Trust (England & Wales)
Source: Badger Trust 14th April 2016