Defra shows increases in TB in cull zone

Defra shows bTB increases in the cull zones during the badger culls

An article in the Farmers guardian  http://www.fginsight.com/news/extraordinary-success-of-pilots-shows-badger-culling-works---owen-paterson-5173) saw Owen Paterson making more inaccurate claims, that were his signature tune when in office, and may be the reason of his short career as a minister.

“The ‘extraordinary reduction’ in bovine TB disease levels see in the Somerset and Gloucestershire pilot areas prove badger culling works, according to former Defra Secretary Owen Paterson. In an interview with Farmers Guardian, Mr Paterson called on Defra to show more urgency in rolling out the cull, a policy he set in motion in 2013. Last week, Prime Minister David Cameron indicated the Government was on the verge of giving the go ahead to extending the cull to new areas of England. A number of prospective new areas, including Dorset, which was prepared as a reserve area in 2013, have submitted applications for licences to Natural England. They are being considered with a view to being granted this year, but the agency is understood to be waiting on an announcement from Government before making any decisions. Speaking at the Royal Welsh Show last Thursday, Mr Cameron gave the strongest indication yet of the Government’s intentions, describing badger culling as ‘absolutely the right thing to do’.

He referred to his characteristic phrase of  'anecdotal evidence' of the ‘extraordinary reductions in disease’ “Virtually all the 36 herds under restriction when culling started in 2013 had gone clear at some point since, with just ’10 or 12’ under restriction now, he said.”

Looking at these two maps based on interactive DEFRA data http://www.ibtb.co.uk the picture is clear the culls have clearly made the situation worse but is anyone inside government listening?

Interestingly, in the Dorset zone where they want to cull but haven't, there has been a significant drop from 36 outbreaks to 20 over the same time period.

It would be funny if it weren't so serious. The badger culls have failed on every level and now, new Defra statistics shows that bTB has risen in the cull zones.

At what point do our government  abandon a policy that is too expensive, ineffective, unscientific, hugely unpopular and just plain crazy.