Dear editor

I find it interesting that the Welsh Assembly Government is now using taxpayers’ money to fund advertisements promoting their stance on the badger cull (Western Telegraph, June 16th).

Their advertisement states that “a badger vaccine is not yet widely available”. But, an injectable vaccine has already been licensed and is available for use. Not only that, but vaccinating badgers would be cheaper than culling.

Everybody knows that vaccination does not cure an infected animal, but it does protect healthy animals and will result in a healthy population.

By contrast, culling badgers obviously removes a very high percentage of the badger population, but this causes the remaining animals to rove around the countryside more, and can increase the rates of TB in the badgers that remain.

It is not a question of whether or not we address these difficult issues. The Wildlife Trusts recognise the terrible impact of bovine TB on the farming industry. It is a question of how we do it.

Given the financial constraints we all face in these difficult times, the Welsh Assembly Government should not be spending money pursuing a strategy of culling, when a better solution is already available.

Dr Lizzie Wilberforce
The Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales.