01 October 1999
Badger cull extended to Wiltshire

by FWi staff

THE governments badger culling experiment, part of the ongoing battle against bovine tuberculosis, has been extended to north Wiltshire.

A 60-square-mile area in the county will be the next region targeted by Ministry of Agriculture researchers, said a government spokesman.

The cull aims to determine whether badgers transmit bovine TB to cattle – a theory subscribed to by many livestock farmers but which is disputed by conservationists.

Confirmation that culling is to take place in north Wiltshire means that five of 10 TB “hotspot” areas where the trial is due to take place have now been announced.

Four trials are already up and running in Gloucestershire and Herefordshire, the Devon-Cornwall borders, east Cornwall and east Herefordshire.

Explanatory leaflets about the cull will now be sent to farmers and landowners in north Wiltshire together with letters inviting them to participate in the trial.

“I am pleased to be able to announce that we are now ready to enrol the fifth triplet of north Wiltshire into the trial,” said junior agriculture minister Baroness Hayman.

It is understood that culling over an area of approximately 100km2 in east Cornwall will resume on Monday (4 October).