Yesterday’s Opposition Day Debate led by Labour MPs opposed to the Government’s controversial badger cull was sadly defeated by a small margin in the final vote. We join other animal campaigners in our pledge to fight on.

The debate in Parliament was the culmination of months of hard campaigning which saw thousands write to their MPs, 245,000 people sign an online Government petition and a huge march through the nation’s capital led by celebrities and animal welfare campaigners.

Despite overwhelming public opposition to plans to slaughter thousands of badgers in a misguided attempt to stop the spread of TB in cattle, the whipped vote forced many MPs to vote along party lines and prevent an embarrassing U-turn for the Government on this beleaguered and controversial policy.

Network for Animals has been at the forefront of the campaign to stop the badger cull; funding badger vaccination projects and working with Team Badger to raise awareness of the badger cull and mobilise opposition.

Although the narrow defeat in Parliament signals the imminent beginning of the mass slaughter of badgers in the two cull zones of West Somerset and West Gloucestershire, we believe that this is just the beginning of a long fight to win justice for our wildlife.

Christina Dixon, campaigner at Network for Animals said, “The policy of culling badgers to stop the spread of TB in cattle is nothing but a shot in the dark. Effective biosecurity, improved cattle welfare and the vaccination of cattle are the only long-term and sustainable solutions to tackling this problem. The cull going ahead is another example of disastrous short-termist policy that will come at great cost to farmers, taxpayers and animals.”

Network for Animals are pledging to continue their fight to stop the cull by supporting badger vaccination projects and working with regional groups to oppose the slaughter within the cull zones.