Thursday, January 11, 2007

They cannot be serious.....

It is difficult to find words to describe our reaction to today's headline in West Country newspaper, Western Morning News. Many times over the last couple of years, we have described the relocation of badgers - for whatever reason - as 'Tb takeaways'. This mainly because of the total ineffectiveness of the so called 'Brock' blood test, sometimes, but not always, used to identify lurking tb which although fairly good on a positive result, is only 40 per cent accurate on a negative.

We have also written of the dire results of Pauline Kidner's release policy from 'Secret World', in Somerset, where young badgers were chewed up by the indigenous brocks, resulting in Ms. Kidner releasing them elsewhere. Your place or mine? See:

The RSPCA, that veritable bastion of truth and guardian of all things four legged and furry- except cattle - which was found earlier this year to have used 'unsubstantiated and untruthful' ( )information to garner support for its 'Back off Badgers' campaign ( have done just that. Released a group of badgers in a Tb hotspot.

Read where at:

Local farmers seeing vehicles parked up with long antennae, were told that badgers had been released and these operatives were 'tracking them'. They didn't stay put on the few square yards of land authorised by the land owner then? Of course they didn't. They would be disorientated and a certain target for the nearest group to fight with. That's what territorial scrapping is all about. And that spreads Tb.

The more polite among us would say the RSPCA's action was misguided and unwise. Those of us on the receiving end of the Tb problem may be less charitable. Try ... recklessly bloody stupid. And who issued the goddam license ?


Anonymous said...

The RSPCA are obviously entering even further into the realms of a 'Wildlife Trust' type organisation. Badgers protecting their territories and chewing up released badgers (i.e. causing suffering, something the RSPCA is supposed to prevent) seems a pretty obvious consequence to anyone with common sense.

Even some of the wildlife charities are catching on to this; for example when 2006's mildness resulted in second hatches of hedgehogs that were probably destined to starve once the winter came, hedgehog charities stepped in to relocate them to places they were likely to survive the winter. The first questions asked of anyone phoning up showing an interest in providing a home for one of the little fellows? ‘Any badgers in the area? How close to the nearest sett?'. Any badgers in the area and the animals were not relocated – the charities knowing full well that the hedgehogs would not last more than a few days before getting chomped by a hungry badger.

Privately, at least, common sense is prevailing amongst some naturalists. RSPCA should stick to the excellent job they do in preventing cruelty to domestic animals, rather than blundering in with their anthropomorphic view of wild animals and causing more rather than less suffering.

Or could their motives possibly be political?!!

Matthew said...

Didn't know about the hedgehog protection folk's questions. Sensible though - if you happen to be a hedgehog survival specialist.

As for the RSPCA's actions being 'political' ... we couldn't possibly comment! What we would say, is that many of these high profile 'charities', appear to exist purely for the organisation itself, and are in fact a danger and a hinderance to the survival of their targets. In fact the 'species' they seem hell bent on protecting, is themselves.