23 August 2016
3,943 Badgers culled in Somerset, Gloucestershire and Dorset so far at a cost of £7,262.21 per badger.
Jenny Pike, of campaign group Devon and Cornwall Against the Badger Cull, said only 6% of TB cases in cattle came through badgers and the government should focus on curbing cattle-to-cattle transmissions.
"It really is not a good use of taxpayer money, and it's going to cost thousands of badgers their lives for no benefit at all to farmers," she said.
Paul Wilkinson, head of living landscapes at The Wildlife Trusts, said: "The evidence shows that badgers are not the primary culprits in the spread of TB in cattle - the primary route of infection is via cow-to-cow contact. A vaccine for cattle should be a priority.
"Culling has been shown to be more expensive, less effective than other bovine TB control mechanisms and the free-shooting of badgers has been shown to be an inhumane method of killing."
In March hundreds of protestors campaigned against the plans to introduce culling in Devon and a significant policing operation has been planned in case of disorder when culling begins in the new locations in September.
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