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Environment Secretary Owen Paterson faces a High Court appearance when his 'irrational' decision to hold the 2014 badger cull with no independent expert scrutiny is subjected to Judicial Review.

Badger cull High Court challenge goes ahead

The Ecologist

2nd July 2014

The Badger Trust has been granted leave for a Judicial Review of Environment Secretary Owen Paterson and Natural England over their 'irrational' decision to conduct the 2013 badger cull with no independent expert scrutiny. more...
Wild beavers caught on film in the River Otter, Devon, by Tom Buckley. Photo via BBC News and Youtube.

Let England's wild beavers be!

Oliver Tickell

1st July 2014

A family of wild of beavers has established on an English river for the first time since Henry VIII. But now the Government has decided to trap them and consign them to captivity in a zoo or wildlife centre. Defenders of wilderness are now demanding: keep our wild beavers free! more...
These cows on the Kerry Ridgeway in Wales are subject to annual TB testing - key to halving TB incidence over 5 years. Photo: John Clift via Flickr.

Bovine TB - biosecurity works, new Defra figures show

Lesley Docksey

18th June 2014

With the 6th International Conference on Bovine TB under way today in Cardiff, Lesley Docksey reports on Defra's latest statistics. BTB in England is falling - and it's falling fastest where the strongest biosecurity measures are in place, confirming the experience of Wales and Scotland. more...
If Europe's farms, like this one near Ludlow, England, provide benefits to wildlife, it's no thanks to the EU's agriculture policies. Photo: Robert Davies via Flickr.

The 'greening' of Europe's farms is a shameful failure

Lynn Dicks & Tim Benton

17th June 2014

The EU's farming policy is being touted as 'greener than ever' - but it's no such thing, write Lynn Dicks & Tim Benton. The 'green reforms' pay farmers for actions (and often inactions) that do not benefit wildlife, and contain no real or effective measures to help. more...
The social structure of badger families is perturbed by the loss of a single member, and this can cause the spread of any TB they may be harbouring. Photo: Tim Brookes via Flickr.

HSI calls on farmers - 'go badger-friendly' to control bovine TB

Lesley Docksey

10th June 2014

Following new research showing that even culling a single badger from a family can cause a 'perturbation' that spreads TB, a new call has gone out on farmers to give up on culling, and 'go badger friendly' to control the disease. more...
The bloodied corpse of badger 200, whisked away before it could be retrieved by cullers and subjected to a post-mortem that showed it had been shot in the wrong place and suffered a slow and painful death.

A night in the life of a badger sett monitor - Chris Tasker's story

Lesley Docksey

5th June 2014

NFU running police control rooms. Violent 'bounty-hunting' badger shooters in the woods at dead of night, none too bothered about the finer points of law. Confused, ill-informed police bearing prejudice against 'protestors' ... It's all a recipe for a big mess, writes Lesley Docksey. more...
Back after going missing for more than a century: the New Guinea big-eared bat. Photo: Julie Broken-Brow.

PNG: 'Lost' bat species rediscovered after 120 years in the wilderness

Luke Leung, Julie Broken-Brow & Catherine Hughes

15th June 2014

A 'microbat' that has remained unrecorded since 1890 has been discovered in Papua New Guinea. But with the country's forests under growing pressure from logging and for conversion to plantations, this and thousands of other biological treasures are at risk. more...
A badger struggles to avoid drowning in the flooded river Saale, 2011. Photo: Margrit via Flickr.com.

Cull could put flood-struck badgers 'at risk of local extinction'

The Ecologist

2nd June 2014

Following last winter's severe flooding in SW England, the Government has refused to assess how badly badgers suffered - even though local populations could have crashed. If the cull goes ahead, badgers could be wiped out of some areas altogether. more...
Tiger skin being processed at Xia Feng. Photo: © EIA.

China's lethal wildlife trade loophole

Vicky Lee

21st May 2014

A little-known licensing scheme allows over 100 Chinese companies to trade in wildlife products like tiger skins, ivory, bear bile and musk deer glands. Vicky Lee shows how the system provides cover for the lucrative illegal wildlife trade to reach wealthy buyers. more...
English Badger, British Wildlife Centre, Newchapel, Surrey. Photo: Peter Trimming via Flickr.com.

Badger culls - who is standing up for public safety?

Lesley Docksey

14th May 2014

Senior Gloucestershire police were questioned this week about the policing of the 2013 pilot cull, writes Lesley Docksey. But the Police Commissioner never asked about the most serious problems - police bias and ignorance of the law, and culler criminality. more...
Badger sniffing daisies. Photo: Sally Longstaff via Flickr.com.

Badger cull - police face public grilling from Commissioner

The Ecologist

9th May 2014

Days after our exposé of a policing disaster at England's 2013 badger culls, the Police Commissioner for Gloucestershire is to question the county's most senior police officers. The event will be video-streamed online. more...
Unscrupulous cull contractors were adding badger roadkill to their bags. But it gets a lot worse than that.  Photo: Victoria Chan via Flickr.com.

Police, Guns, Action - how safe were the pilot badger culls?

Lesley Docksey

7th May 2014

In its report on last year's pilot badger culls, the Independent Expert Panel (IEP) judged that the culls failed the criteria for effectiveness and humaneness, but satisfied those for safety, writes Lesley Docksey. The facts say otherwise. more...

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English badgers out in the early evening. Photo: Hugh Warwick / urchin.info.

Britain's vets - it's time to oppose the badger cull!

Lesley Docksey

28th April 2014

You would think vets would take animal welfare seriously, writes Lesley Docksey. So why does the British Veterinary Association (BVA) support England's badger cull - when all the science is telling them it's both cruel, and ineffective against Bovine TB? more...
Hedgehog. Photo: Hugh Warwick.

Should we cull our badgers to save our hedgehogs?

Hugh Warwick

24th April 2014

New scientific research shows that culling badgers can increase local hedgehog numbers. As UK hedgehog populations continue to decline, Hugh Warwick asks - are badgers to blame? Or does the real problem lie elsewhere? more...
Contented cow at Three Cliffs Bay, Penmaen (near Swansea), South Wales. Photo: Mélanie via Flickr.com.

How Wales is defeating bovine TB without killing badgers

Jan Bayley

14th April 2014

Wales has an enviable record of declining BTB in cattle - without having to kill a single badger. Jan Bayley explains how Wales's combination of frequent testing and exacting biosecurity has succeeded - and how England can learn from Wales's experience. more...
Paterson should have listened! Badger Cull Protest outside Parliament, June 8, 2013. Photo: David Clare via Flickr.com.

Lies, damn lies, and Owen Paterson's badger cull

Lesley Docksey

10th April 2014

Paterson's speech to Parliament on the continuation of the badger cull was not so much a masterpiece of deception, writes Lesley Docksey, as a crude botch-up of errors, wrong statistics and a failure to understand the very real problem of TB in cattle. more...
Dominic Dyer addressing a public meeting against the badger cull in Exeter. Photo: Lesley Docksey.

Dominic Dyer, badger champion

Lesley Docksey

9th April 2014

Anyone working to protect badgers from culling will know of Dominic Dyer - wildlife advocate and new director of the Badger Trust. Lesley Docksey met him 'on the hoof' at a recent march - and found out just why the badger campaign is so important to him. more...
Badger sniffing daisies. Photo: Sally Longstaff via Flickr.com.

Paterson's plans for a national badger cull bite the dust

Dominic Dyer

4th April 2014

Owen Paterson's bold plans for a national badger cull rollout are now in tatters, writes Dominic Dyer, as he stands condemned by both sides in the debate. Wales shows the real way forward, with biosecurity, cattle movement control, TB testing and vaccination. more...
Owen Paterson. Photo: Jamie Grey via Flickr.com.

Badger cull will resume - but no new areas

Owen Paterson

3rd April 2014

Environment Secretary Owen Paterson told Parliament today that the badger cull will continue - and with no independent scientific oversight. However it will not move to new areas. Here we reproduce his full statement to the House of Commons. more...
Cat by Anaa Yoo via Flickr.com.

Badger cull will extend to cats, dogs, hamsters

The Ecologist

1st April 2014

A leaked paper from Defra reveals that future badger culls will extend to 'all host species' for bovine TB, including domestic pets, in order to eliminate all disease reservoirs. more...
A badger out hunting for worms. Photo: Andrea via Flickr.com.

Paterson - preparing to ditch the badger cull?

Oliver Tickell

27th March 2013

Owen Paterson answered MPs' questions today about bovine TB and the badger cull. Answers were few, but the emphasis has shifted ... could the revised BTB strategy contain a significant omission - the cull? more...
An English badger. Photo: Fred Dawson via Flickr.com.

The badger cull - something is rotten in the state of England

Lesley Docksey

24th March 2014

Pending the publication of the long-delayed Independent Panel report on the badger cull, Lesley Docksey finds that the fight for England's badgers is part of an even bigger campaign for scientific and political integrity. more...
A Devon badger in the wild. Photo: Jon Bowen via Flickr.com.

BBC says sorry - we got it wrong on Irish badgers

The Ecologist

23rd March 2014

In a ground-breaking decision the BBC has admitted: it was wrong to state that badger culling in the Republic of Ireland had reduced incidences of TB in cattle. Will the decision stop the Government from making the same mistake? more...

Ghost Tour

Lucy Anna Scott

7 February 2014

The Marsh sow-thistle, officially extinct in London, is having a revival after being reintroduced to the Thames Road wetland site and nurtured back to strength. more...
A beaver in Scotland, where they are being re-introduced. Photo: Paul Stevenson via Flickr.com.

Beavers are re-introducing themselves - and we should let them

Jo Cartmell

29th January 2014

Beavers are essential to thriving wetland ecosystems, writes Jo Cartmell, and will help not hinder flood control in densely populated England. We should all welcome their return. more...

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