This is Brian May. I’m writing this from my personal point of view, and please note that when I use the word “we”, it does not imply that I have anything other than humility and respect for the members of the Gatcombe team, all of whom understand many of these points better than I do. I began researching bovine TB ten years ago, when I founded the Save-Me trust (with the object of giving wild animals a voice) with Anne Brummer, whose Harper Asprey Wildlife rescue had already given thousands of animals a second chance in the wild; together we embarked on a mission to find out the truth about cows and badgers and the scourge of bovine TB, in which the badgers stood accused of being a ‘wildlife reservoir’ of disease. Five years ago, after an introduction by John Royal of the NFU, we set to work in collaboration with specialist farming vet Dick Sibley, to battle with the disease first-hand, at the dairy farm of Robert Reed at Gatcombe in South Devon. Since then, at least 40,000 badgers have been killed in the UK under licenses issued by Natural England.
My aim here is to put the journey and insights of the Gatcombe project in a form which will be easily understandable to all. And I am hoping that this will also pave the way for a better understanding between the various ‘stakeholders’ in the fight against Bovine TB, and will eventually lead to a better life for farmers, cows, and badgers in the UK. You may question our logic in this summary, and we will readily admit that some of the evidence needs augmenting, but we ask only that you read what we have to say and form your own conclusions. We will welcome constructive feedback, and further discussion.
If you would like to contact us about anything in this story or would like to receive a printed copy as shown in the photo above please go to https://www.crazycow.rocks/product-page/the-journey-and-insights-into-gatcombe-farm. Thank you
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