Standing with Brian May in opposition to the needless slaughter of badgers

The author with Queen guitarist and animal welfare advocate, Brian May.A few days ago I joined Queen guitarist and campaigner Brian May to unveil a giant billboard poster in London against the culling of badgers.

Sadly, thousands of British badgers face imminent slaughter in a Government-sanctioned cull and with the first licences already issued, the killings could begin within days.

Although the aim is to protect cattle from TB, many scientists believe the science behind this plan is fundamentally flawed and will not reduce incidents of TB; in fact it could even help spread the disease further.

IFAW first began working with Brian May in 2010 when he started campaigning against hunting with dogs in the run-up to the last General Election. As ‘Team Badger’, we are very pleased to be standing alongside him again, along with many other groups, on another vital animal welfare issue.

We are asking members of the public to sign the ‘Stop the badger cull’ petition on the UK Government petition site and are delighted that today this petition passed the 100,000 signature mark, despite only having been up for a few days.

We are also encouraging people to write to their local MP, letting them know that they oppose the badger cull and asking their MP to speak out on the issue.

Representatives from "Team Badger" gather together.We strongly oppose this cull for many reasons. The idea of licensed free-shooting of badgers by farmers concerns us greatly - such a method has never been tested before and is likely to see badgers suffering slow, painful deaths after being injured because many of these farmers may be inexperienced shooters.

The cull would not be selective either, with many healthy badgers among those killed – we find this unacceptable and know that our supporters do too. If the cull gets out of control, which is a real possibility, badger populations could be reduced by more than 70%.

Scientists and wildlife experts warn that killing badgers in one area will simply result in others taking over their territory, increasing the movement of badgers from one area to another.

While the arguments rage on, we believe there is one humane and simple solution – vaccination of badgers.

Please sign our petition, make your voice heard and help us protect this iconic species of British wildlife.


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Azzedine Downes,IFAW President and CEO
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