Thursday, 29 August 2013

'Wounded badger patrol' cull protest camp set up

Around 200 people walked through the streets of Minehead in Somerset on Monday night, many wearing badger masks or t-shirts and carrying candles.

In a sombre atmosphere, the 55 candles were then extinguished to represent the planned cull of 5,500 badgers over the next six weeks.

Farmers claim badgers spread the cattle disease bovine tuberculosis (TB).

But Adrian Coward, Chairman of the Somerset Badger Group, said it was "needless slaughter" as better cattle control and vaccines would stop the disease.

He said the cull was the equivalent of a dead badger every 10m from Taunton to Bristol.

“This is not a mini trial, this is mass slaughter,” he said.

Later around 20 people in high visibility jackets walked along rural footpaths in the dark looking for signs of baiting, traps or any signs the setts have been interfered with.

Carla Kidd, 39, an organic gardener from Cornwall, said the so called "patrols" will not trespass onto private land.

But she insisted that there are so many setts close to public land that it should be possible for protesters to legally "monitor" and even prevent the cull going ahead.

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