How YOU can ACT NOW to help badgers
Despite what the Government says, the badger cull is far from over:
Another 5 years of intensive culling to go
140,000 MORE badgers estimated to be killed
New cull areas being added
Failure to focus on cattle
2021 cull is already underway
The facts on the badger cull
Recent announcements from the Government is leading to ‘fake news’ that the badger cull is almost over. Unfortunately that is far from the truth.
Let's look at what’s really happening in order to fully understand the ongoing – and senseless – level of persecution this normally protected species continues to face from our own Government:
The cull is nowhere near over
Despite headlines reporting ‘No more badger cull licences from 2022’ in reality there is still at least 5 more years left of badgers being killed as part of the Government’s bovine tuberculosis (bTB) eradication policy.
Yes, intensive cull licences issued in 2022 should be the last ones, but they will run for four years – so intensive badger culling continues to 2025 (and even then the Government can decide to extend it).
You can find our more about the Government’s plans on bTB eradication by reading our response to their consultation from early 2021
The 2021 cull is already underway
Cull activity is covered by two different licences, with two different levels of activity.
The ‘Intensive’ licences cull an area for the first time, in large numbers, and activity usually takes place from late August to end of November.
‘Supplementary’ licences are those issued for areas which have already seen badgers culled under the ‘Intensive’ licences, and activity can take place from 1st June to 31st January.
Another 140,000 badgers are due to be killed in the next 5 years
This estimate is based on the horrific trend of the number of badgers killed significantly increasing in recent years, and new areas still being licensed.
This means we are only half way through the senseless slaughter of 280,000 badgers.
How can this ever be seen as ‘the end’?
New cull areas are being added
Whilst details of new licences are not revealed until the culling starts, Badger Trust expects the 2021 and 2022 intensive licences to include new areas.
This is seemingly as a last push to cover as much area as possible and inflict the most damage on badger populations.
And this with little regard to the risk of local extinction of badger populations.
The increasing free shooting of badgers risks a horrific death for many
Of 38,642 badgers killed under intensive licences in 2020, 77% were ‘free shot’. This means using a high-power rifle at night and often at a distance – with a significant risk of injury leading to a prolonged and painful death, rather than an immediately fatal shot.
The British Veterinary Association has said that only cage trapped badgers should be shot as a cull method, as free shooting cannot be sure to be effective or humane.
Despite this, free shooting continues.
The answer to solving bTB in cattle starts and ends with cattle
Bovine TB is a respiratory disease in cattle. The primary transmission source is cattle. But badgers are still the starting point for blame.
This needs to change, fast, and certainly before we lose another 140,000 badgers.
Read more about this in our response to the Government’s recent ‘Call for Views’ on cattle measures.
How YOU can HELP BADGERS NOW
Write to your MP about the reality of the badger cull: this remains one of the most impactful things you can do. Use our dedicated printed cards if you can, or our ‘How to’ guide which you can find here. Make sure you find your MP, as they will only respond to their own constituents. When they reply let us know and be ready to write back – with our help.
Spread the word: this is so important in educating others on the reality of the cull. Please follow us on social and help share the facts on the badger cull by sharing and liking our content. You can find all our social links at the bottom of this web page. Talk to your friends and family about the cull. Write a letter to your local paper with the facts about the cull, for example. Think about how you can get the message out in your networks, and work to do that.
Get active locally: you can help badgers on the ground here and now by getting involved with your local badger group. We’ve a network of over 50 in England and Wales, all run by dedicated volunteers and offering a variety of services to help badgers. You can find your local Badger Group on our map. If you can’t find one near you google ‘badger group’ or ‘badger cull’ and your town/county to see if wider animal welfare groups come up, and then get in touch to find out more. Also check on social channels if you can’t easily find a web page for them, as some use facebook for their main online activity.
Donate to our campaigns: as a registered charity Badger Trust relies 100% on donations from people like you to do our work. Our priority campaign is the badger cull, but unfortunately badger crime is a close second as badgers continue to be persecuted by badger diggers and baiters, with increasing development pressures a close third in terms of threat to badgers, their setts, and their habitats. Please make a donation if you can, and set up a monthly one if possible as this helps provide us with regular funds so we can plan our work ahead more easily. All donations fund our work, with spend directed to where the need is greatest.
Join our clan: become part of our badger family by joining as a clan supporter. You’ll be among the first to hear about our campaigns, and will be a key to helping make them happen. Full details of our supporter plans can be found here
Request your Badger Cull Action Pack now and be ready to take action and spread the word
The pack contains:
Take Action leaflet with facts on the cull and how you can take action
Postcard to send to your MP (and one to pass to a friend) to call for an end to the cull
Window sticker to show your support for badgers
Bookmark to thank you for protecting badgers
Our thanks to Durham County Badger Group for the kind donation that paid for the postcard printing