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Don't cull badgers, says Euro MP Peter Skinner
BADGERS have “a unique place in the British public consciousness”, says a Euro MP, who says a cull should be put on ice.
Peter Skinner, one of Bucks' representatives in the European Parliament, has joined Queen guitarist Brian May, pictured, and other celebrities in voicing his opposition to the plan.
He wants the Government's proposal delayed.
The Labour South East MEP has called for a European review.
He has joined several celebrities, including wildlife presenter Chris Packham, in writing to the Government requesting the cull is held back until the the European Convention protecting habitats and wildlife can review a complaint lodged by the Humane Society International.
The Coalition want to trial a shooting and cage-trapping regime in western England to stop the spread of bovine tuberculosis.
Mr Skinner said: “Badgers have a unique place in the British public consciousness and there is overwhelming opposition to the cull.
“The culling plan not only threatens badger populations but the evidence shows it could also worsen the situation for farmers.”
He said culling had a poor record for solving bovine TB, citing an official scientific report from 2007 which stated a cull would be ‘highly likely to prompt increases, rather than reductions, in the incidence of cattle TB’.
Badgers flee in panic, spreading bTB to other badgers and cattle.
He wants to see more research into vaccination programmes.
Mr Skinner said: “I want the cull delayed so that Bern can conduct a review – the Government must consider more humane and effective alternatives.”
A key meeting will take place on September 17 to hear evidence.