Last Updated on 6 February 2023 by Badger
For years, Badger Protectors has argued that Bovine Tuberculosis (bTB) is a cattle disease that is best address within cattle, and not by killing hundreds of thousands of badgers.
What is bTB?
bTB is primarily an infectious bacterial disease affecting cattle. It’s caused by the bacterium Mycobacterium bovis (M. bovis). Although primarily a cattle respiratory disease, it can also affect many other mammals including deer, pigs. It can even be carried by earthworms.
Non-cattle mammals are considered spillover hosts.
Given that badgers are not the only mammals that can carry bTB, and that most transmission is cattle-to-cattle, it simply makes no sense to cull one (protected) species. The best way to protect cattle is to vaccinate the cattle themselves.
So it’s good to see a glimpse of light at the end of a very dark tunnel, as APHA confirms Bovine Tuberculosis vaccination trials for cattle to move to the next phase.
On 6 February 2023, the Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) put out a press release titled ‘Field trials for bovine TB cattle vaccine and skin test move to next phase‘ and stated that the new phase will assess the safety and performance of the cattle vaccine and skin test for tuberculosis.