Tackling the disease in badgers is not enough on its own to eradicate TB as disease transmission from badgers is a relatively small part of the wider cattle TB problem. However, it is hoped that it will go some way to helping to reduce the level of TB in cattle, offering an alternative to badger culling. The initiative is a team effort, with farmers pre-baiting traps with peanuts in the days leading up to the vaccination itself which is carried out by qualified scientists from international conservation charity ZSL (Zoological Society London).
Cornwall Wildlife Trust is coordinating the work on the farmer’s behalf. Head of Conservation Cheryl Marriott says,
“We were planning to just vaccinate badgers on our own nature reserves, but when farmers asked us to help them vaccinate on their farms as well we had to say yes. These farmers recognise that badger vaccination is a positive alternative to culling and it’s a pleasure and a privilege to be working alongside them”.
“We keep hearing ‘no-one wants to be killing badgers’ – so we would love to hear from any farmers or landowners across Cornwall who are interested in vaccination as an alternative to the cull”.