UFU encourage farmers to participate in Badger Sett Survey work

Tuesday, 24 September, 2013

The Ulster Farmers’ Union would like to encourage farmers in the County Down area to take part in the preliminary Badger Sett Survey.  This is in preparation for the proposed ‘test vaccinate or remove’ (TVR) wildlife intervention research project which will be the first step towards tackling the reservoir of TB in wildlife in Northern Ireland.  The UFU are pleased with the level of co-operation received earlier this year from farmers and landowners in the two selected areas of County Down and is encouraging those who have not yet given their consent for the sett survey work to be carried out to do so now as surveying is scheduled to commence again this winter.

UFU President Harry Sinclair said; “Taking action against TB in wildlife is a crucial step in eradicating TB amongst cattle. We have been urging DARD to address this important issue for some time and we have welcomed the ‘test, vaccinate or remove’ (TVR) wildlife intervention research project pilot, which will be carried out in a specific target area, as a step in the right direction. The TVR project includes the testing of live badgers for TB, vaccinating and releasing the badgers that test negative, and removing the badgers that test positive. This is a positive development in the control of Bovine TB, however, in order for it to get underway the badger sett survey must be completed first. For this reason the support of as many farmers and landowners as possible within the survey area is needed. What is important is that any outstanding permission slips are returned as quickly as possible so that AFBI can carry out the sett survey work. Now that we have seen some action from DARD it is imperative that we keep the momentum going.”