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Badgers


PaulT
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Absolutely delighted, never knew any were near but this evening there was a badger in our garden.

Do badgers get the same bad press / persecution in France that they do in the UK.

Back to the UK tomorrow but will set up some cameras when we come back.

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Not sure I agree with you about the persecution of badgers in the UK. There seem to be more and more of them about. I have noticed a decline in the number of hedgehogs around which some experts attribute to predation by badgers.

Badgers have no predators in the UK apart from humans and this leads to a population explosion. Badgers have been linked to the spread of bovine TB which can spread to humans so it might be considered negligent not to control badger numbers.

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 Badgers like many animals are territorial and the numbers will be relative to what the local environment will support. Many animal welfare organisations are against culling badgers, because it simply isn't the answer. Vacination is more likely to be the way to go: http://www.savethebadger.com/brianmay.html

The spread of bovine TB is linked to more intensive farming methods.

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  • 1 month later...

Well, off back to France tomorrow and hoping that the badger is still about - and there should be more than one as they are social animals - so will try and encourage them.

And I do get annoyed with Man and his keenness to kill other creatures on a whim. I am particularly incensed at the screams that there are urban foxes - well Man is taking the habitats of animals so what are they supposed to do apart from adapt to their new environment.

Sometimes think that Man would like to kill off every creature apart from those used in the food chain - oh and also repeal the UK ban on fox hunting and keep the foxes so that some people can dress in red and participate in the least efficient method of killing animals which they do not do for sport, oh no, if you can define sport as having an animal pulled apart by a pack of dogs.

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Are you sure you know what you’re wishing for, PaulT ?

One of the reasons my stepson bought his house in Sheffield was because of the large garden. Like you he was delighted when he first spotted a badger, bought an infra-red camera and spent time watching them. Three years later, despite holding views which sound quite similar to yours, the delight is wearing a little thin. About a third of the garden is now unavailable for his boys to play in and the plan to buy a puppy has been abandoned.

The estate agent has told him that there would be very little chance of selling the house while the badgers remain.

Hoddy
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[quote user="Russethouse"]

 Badgers like many animals are territorial and the numbers will be relative to what the local environment will support. Many animal welfare organisations are against culling badgers, because it simply isn't the answer. Vacination is more likely to be the way to go: http://www.savethebadger.com/brianmay.html

The spread of bovine TB is linked to more intensive farming methods.

[/quote]

Amazing isn't it? Old rocker with plenty of dosh buys managed country estate, then decides he knows better and suddenly becomes an expert on all things wild life. Gets rid of management team and decides to allow "nature" to take over, and he wonders why he is falling out with his neighbours who just may be the ones who will suffer the consequences of Brian May's actions!

"Many animal welfare organisations are against culling badgers, because

it simply isn't the answer. " No they are against it simply because it is the 'in' thing. Strange is it not the hedgehog is declining, yet the fluffies dedicate their time and efforts supporting an animal which has the hedgehog on its menu of desirables for lunch?

"The spread of bovine TB is linked to more intensive farming methods." Please, where do you get that information from?

Vaccination may eventually be a way forward, but only when they've developed a reliable vaccine which to date they haven't.

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 Firstly - most animals have predators, even hedgehogs...that's nature...do you complain that hedgehogs eat slugs and snails ? No because most of us aren't as keen on slugs and snails as we are on hedgehogs... they are not all Mrs Tigywinkle you know [:)]

Perhaps the Badgers predator has become extinct in this country because in the US predators include golden eagles, bobcats, cougars, and coyotes and sometimes bears.

You say that a suitable vaccine has not been found, but then neither is it proven beyond doubt that the TB is spread by badgers - culling may work for a short time but its not a long term solution unless you really want to rid the UK of the species altogether.

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[quote user="Russethouse"]

 Firstly - most animals have predators, even hedgehogs...that's nature...do you complain that hedgehogs eat slugs and snails ? No because most of us aren't as keen on slugs and snails as we are on hedgehogs... they are not all Mrs Tigywinkle you know [:)]

I take it you've never seen the results of a badger attack on a new born lamb?

Perhaps the Badgers predator has become extinct in this country because in the US predators include golden eagles, bobcats, cougars, and coyotes and sometimes bears.

So with no natural predator, is the species self-controlling its numbers or flourishing to an extent where control may be required? One only has to look at deer numbers within the UK, and they are subject to control.

You say that a suitable vaccine has not been found, but then neither is it proven beyond doubt that the TB is spread by badgers - culling may work for a short time but its not a long term solution unless you really want to rid the UK of the species altogether.

Controlled culling has proved positive elsewhere and there is the science to reinforce this. Talk of wiping the species out completely is quite frankly - rubbish, in a similar way as your previous statement, "The spread of bovine TB is linked to more intensive farming methods", which I note you have not commented upon!

[/quote]
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As someone who lives in an area with many dairy farmers I have seen the devastation caused by an outbreak of bovine TB. The human tragedies are heartbreaking when you see a herd built up over many years  destroyed. The consequences for these farmers are horrendous.

There is ample scientific evidence that the badger population provides a reservoir of TB  infection which means that the risk of re-infection of a dairy herd is ever present. The badger population has increased dramatically in this part of England over the last twenty years mainly because there are no natural predators  I have seen a large decline in the number of hedgehogs over the same period.

Something needs to be done before we get increasing cases of TB in the human population. The emotional opposition of well-meaning people is not helping us to deal with this crisis in a rational  manner.

Just an afterthought. Why are badgers more important than hedgehogs to the animal rights people? Perhaps they could explain this on a rational basis.

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Rabbie, why are hedgehogs more important than badgers .? I like hedgehogs, but I don't think they are anymore important than any other animal in natures great scheme

If I thought Badger culling was the answer I'd be all for it, but I don't, you get rid of one lot of badgers and within a short time another lot will appear...in the long term vaccination is the answer to most effectively deal with the problem.

Human TB is another matter , from NHS Choices 2010:

Tuberculosis is known to occur more often in areas of deprivation, where poor living conditions, poor nutrition and poorer health are more common. Those with a depleted immune system and poorer general health are at increased risk, for example, people with HIV, alcoholics and those who are malnourished.

The article also says its caught by prolonged contact with a carrier.

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RH, hedgehogs are not more important than badgers but they are not less important either. Bio diversity is good for our environment. What is not so good is the population explosion of badgers.

I am afraid that we have probably missed the boat with regard to TB in the badger population. The logistical problems in vaccinating enough badgers means that we are unlikely to be able to stop TB being endemic in the population. The same argument can also be applied to culling simply because of the sheer size of the badger population. Unless we can develop an effective vaccine for cattle the problem will be with us for a long time.
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There is a need to cull deer in  large numbers as well .... They have been permitted to breed out of control and are the cause of many serious road traffic accidents .  There is a good chance if you hit a badger you will not have a lot of damage  but hit a deer at speed and its likely to write you car off.

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Many years ago I was driving a mini on the road off the road north of Hambledon in the Foothills of the Chilterns ( Vicar of Dibley country ) when I came across a very dead but quite large badger, it was approaching the size of a small pig.....I was quite amazed and I would certainly not have wanted to hit it.

We have a lot of munjack around here, it's not that unusual to see them walk down our road in the early hours, they live mainly in the local cemetery and the little bits of scrubby woodland around here, so far they haven't been a problem although one did run in front of my sons car coming through Sonning and he was left to pull it out and remove it to the side of the road, not pleasant.

The LACS have not done anything to help with populations of deer in some places where they have sanctuaries, where in the past their policies have lead to unnatural increases

With badgered I wonder if there couldn't be some type of contraceptive control?

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I happen to live in the UK on the edge of an estate that was owned by one of the landed gentry who decided to leave his wife  abandon  the estate and move to London and France . Before he got himself murdered .. Result fencing that rusted away over years Hedges with holes in and loads of deer breeding and mingling with the traffic.  I have killed two and written off a car when a bunch came through the hedge at 1030 am giving me about 10 foot to stop in ! 

My daughter has also  hit and killed one of nine that also ran through a hedge damaging her car ...If I did a parish poll I doubt if there would be many drivers round here who have not done the same .  Hopefully when they have finished seeing off badgers they will start on our local  deer 

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I have a friend who lives in upstate New York. She is very keen gardener so deer most certainly are not on her most loved list....she tells how they have often been invited to receptions at the new homes being built nearby. When they first meet the new people they are in awe of those 'cute deer ' and the wildlife, a year or so later when 'those cute deer' have eaten their thousands of $$$$ of landscaping its a very different story......
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  • 4 months later...
I can't see anywhere your original question was answered, (maybe need specsavers).

Badgers are routinely killed in France using various means - shooting, digging out and stabbing, even illegally poisoning. Large organised digs occur and even competitions and can take place at any time of year with authorisation.

However the reason in France isn't given as Bovine TB although cattle here do have it, (less and less as increasingly dairy herds are kept in buildings), the reason is because they are supposed to eat the crops and I suppose just for fun.

Chris
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What I found interesting was that GB national newspapers printed misleading figures based on deer research. The media proclaimed that “750,000 deer must be shot”.

Amazingly, there was little public reaction to this, whereas the news that approximately 5,000 badgers were to be culled provoked endless newspaper articles, as well as numerous marches and protests.

Funny ol' world we live in!

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