Badgers and bTB

The BES’s Journal of Animal Ecology has published a paper that has important implications for the role of badger culling as part of the strategy to control bovine TB in the UK. According to the authors the evidence suggests that movement of individual badgers between groups may be instrumental in driving disease dynamics at the population level, and adds further support to the contention that the social disruption of badger populations, for example by culling, is likely to promote disease spread. Defra recently consulted on whether badgers should be culled to control the spread of bovine TB. A final decision has not yet been announced.