A judge announced today that a judicial review of the legality of the badger cull has been dismissed, meaning the cull will go ahead this autumn.

The Badger Trust’s challenge against the Government at the Royal Courts of Justice in London has been fully supported by Network for Animals, a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to ending cruelty to animals around the world.  Today’s decision was purely a legal consideration and did not involve discussion of the scientific and welfare controversy surrounding the badger cull.

Brian Davies, Network for Animals founder said of today’s decision, “This is a very sad day for our nation of animal lovers to see a protected species – England’s badgers, inhumanely eradicated in areas of the country the size of the Isle of the Wight.  We can only applaud The Badger Trust for undertaking this legal process to try and stop the Government’s frantic and misguided attempt to reduce levels of bovine TB in cows.  We were pleased to have made a donation towards helping The Badger Trust fight this important issue and also by helping fund rural badger vaccination projects around the country which we strongly believe is the way forward.”

The Government’s proposed method of ‘free shooting’ has triggered widespread concern about its efficacy in achieving humane slaughter and the potential for exacerbating the spread of disease by causing badgers to scatter.  Network for Animals urge anyone concerned about today’s decision, which gives the green light for badgers to be shot dead on sight within areas of West Gloucester and West Somerset, to visit our campaign site and write to Caroline Spelman, Secretary of State for Defra expressing their concern.

Network for Animals believe that a more humane and effective approach to the issue of bovine TB is essential for the eradication of this disease.  As well as widespread vaccination of badgers, we call for the development of an oral vaccine, more effective biosecurity measures and improved cattle welfare to be implemented to help tackle this problem.