Badger cull consultation reveals concerns about public safety

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1st June 2016 11:00 - Public Consultation

A recent public consultation across nine counties in England, on application for badger culling licenses, has revealed widespread concern amongst the public about risks to negative tourism and public safety.Badger cull consultation reveals concerns about public safety

The badger culling licensee, Natural England, said that it had gathered 939 responses to 29 new applications for badger culling licenses, including Dorset and Somerset and Devon and Cornwall.

Of the respondents, more than 2 in 3 said that they were concerned that a badger cull in their local area could potentially have a negative imoact on local businesses, as people may avoid the area.

Approximately 400 respondents said that they were concerned about health and safety risks that shooting in areas where people walk, camp and watch the wildlife could potentially have.

Livestock farmers from the South West of England (a hotspot for tuberculosis) are reportedly desperate to extend the culls, with many of their businesses being under threat from bovine tuberculosis, whereby 70 per cent of badgers in a cull zone must be killed.

The Department for the Environment is in control of the cull and have defended their policy, which currently has been in place for three years in West Gloucestershire and West Somerset and for one year in Dorset.

The UK Government has revealed that it is considering 29 new cull license applications for new cull zone, from within nine counties, at the moment. These nine counties are: Cornwall, Cheshire, Dorset, Devon, Gloucestershire, Herefordshire, Somerset, Worcestershire and Wiltshire.

The licenses for 2016 are yet to be issues, however, culling in anticipated to carry on for the fourth consecutive year in Gloucestershire and in Somerset and for the second year in Dorset. In previous years, badger culling has commenced towards the end of August or early in September.

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