Sunday, October 01, 2006

Welsh RTA badgers - up to 28 percent infected.

The results of the Welsh road kill badger survey were published last week, and showed an infection rate of up to 28 percent. Counties differed, with the highest proportion of infected carcasses found in Monmouthshire. Overall the figure was around 12 percent for the 459 found-dead badgers collected and submitted for sampling. And this small number were road side kills, not ex farm, ex farm buildings or anywhere else tb infected badgers crawl off to die.

We covered the collection of this small number of carcasses in the second part of our posting; - and sure enough, on September 28th., the results were made available. Although not the spoligotypes. That will drag it out a little longer, and they and the full reports are expected early in 2007. NFU Wales president, Dai Davies said of the initial results: "The results not only vindicate the long held view that TB is present in the wildlife, but that it is there at epidemic levels" and FUW spokesman, Evan Thomas pointed out that if that level of disease was found in children, "it would be the worst disease epidemic in centuries".

Predictably the Badger Trust urged the Welsh Assembly to concentrate on cattle based Tb control measures. Now there's a surprise. But if you think about it, sort out Tb in the badgers, and not only the polemic between so-called conservationists and farmers, but the raison d'etre for the Badger Trust - just disappears...

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