The figures for cattle slaughtered and herds under restriction from bTb in Great Britain are now released for 2004, and below we put them in context of policies, donations and non-policies of the last 20 years.
Conclusions can be our reader's own.
1986 - 638 cattle slaughtered :
Less than 100 herds under restriction and then the end of the 'Clean ring' stategy.
1987 - 1173 cattle slaughtered.
Maff began their Interim Strategy - it lasted 10 years while they discussed what to do next.
1988 - 782 cattle slaughtered.
1989 - 1098
1990 - 1570
1991 - 1304
1992 - 1626
1993 - 2455
1994 - 2773
1995 - 3451
1996 - 3881
1997 - 3760
£1 million donation to government coffers from PAL = the end of any badger control.
1998 - 6088 cattle slaughtered.
1999 - 6772 cattle slaughtered
2000 - 8353 cattle slaughtered in 2511 breakdowns. 1734 New Herd Incidents out of 105,714 herds registered on database. Herds under Tb2 restriction during the year - 2.38 percent.
2001*- 5916 cattle slaughtered ( FMD stopped routine testing, and Defra warn against using this year* or the following 2 for 'comparative purposes' as they caught up with skin tests)
2002*- 22,886 cattle slaughtered, in 4047 breakdowns. 3157 New Herd incidents out of 100,017 herds registered on database. Herds under Tb2 restriction during the year - 4.05 percent.
2003* - 23,804 cattle slaughtered, in 5501 breakdowns. 3220 New Herd Incidents out of 97,119 herds registered on database. Herds under Tb2 restriction during the year - 5.67 percent.
2004 - 22,975 cattle slaughtered, in 5244 breakdowns. 3313 New Herd Incidents out of 92,289 herds registered on database. Herds under Tb2 restriction during the year - 5.68 percent.
We make no comment on this carnage, but expect the Minister of Conservation and Fisheries to concentrate on the apparent 'drop' in cattle slaughtered compared to years he warned others NOT to use, while ignoring the increase in NHI (New Herd Incidents) and percentage of herds under restriction from a smaller herd base - which has doubled in 4 years.
Quite an achievement.