Annual Meeting 2013
The tenth Annual General Meeting of the Association was held at the Old Surrey Burstow West Kent on 10th October 2013. Pictures from the event are available and the Minutes of the AGM are available (below) with many thanks to our photographer - Liz Rhys Jones.
Vaccination of badgers is probably futile and certainly hugely expensive
See below/attached copy of letter submitted to the Daily Telegraph 28.8.13 Vaccination of badgers is not just “simply impractical in the immediate term” as stated in a leader in the Daily Telegraph (27.8.13) in support of the badger cull, it is probably futile and certainly hugely expensive (the welsh CVO estimates over £650 a badger in 2012). What the National Trust, the Welsh Government, the RSPCA and others that advocate vaccination as an alternative to culling should know is that the Badger BCG vaccine, which was granted only a Limited Marketing Authorisation in March 2010, has no proven efficacy against bovine TB in the field. And even in challenge experiments with naive, uninfected badgers in the laboratory it fails to protect solidly against the infection. To expect such a vaccine to protect against the huge burden of infection currently present in large parts of the badger population can therefore only be described as highly speculative, driven largely by perceived public opinion rather than scientific reality.
Law Commission's review of wildlife legislation
The Law Commission has now (July 2013) reported to DEFRA and we await their response. VAWM welcomes the opportunity the review provides to rationalise wildlife legislation. Download the VAWM submission on this link.
Video about Badgers and bovine TB
Our latest video about Badgers and bovine TB
The case for culling badgers to control bovine TB is irrefutable
The disease was almost eradicated in the 1980s by a combined strategy of tuberculin testing of cattle and culling of badgers. But following the Zuckerman report of 1980 culling was scaled down and entirely abandoned following the Krebs report in 1997 by the in coming Labour Government. Since when, as may be seen from the chart below, the disease has escalated out of control:
Hunting wildlife management and the moral issue
Latest joint publication with the All Party Parliamentary Middle Way Group:
“We are pleased to collaborate again with the Middle Way Group to produce this latest document, the third in a series of joint publications, which we believe, together with our Veterinary Opinion on Hunting with Hounds published in 2002, represents an overwhelming welfare case for repeal of the Hunting Act (2004).”
Understanding Life in the Wild
New review sheds light on the lives of wild animals
'Wild animals must be treated in ways that do not necessarily apply to domestic animals' according to a new review produced by the VAWM. 'Life in the Wild' highlights the fundamental differences in the way in which wild and domestic animals live and the differing approaches to their management and welfare.
In the wild there are pressures on wild animals, such as disease and population control that do not apply to domestic animals. In an environment that is called 'wild', yet is almost exclusively man-managed, there is a responsibility on man to ensure a proper balance is kept. Life in the Wild describes the detrimental consequences of 'leaving things to nature' and explains why certain actions that are unnecessary and possibly devastating to a domestic animal are essential and natural for wild animals.
Download a copy of Life in the Wild in PDF format on this link