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Bovine Tuberculosis

Environment Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 21st May 2007.

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Photo of David Drew David Drew Labour, Stroud

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

(1) what advice he has received from the Central Science Laboratory on the efficacy of a badger cull to counteract bovine TB;

(2) if he will publish the results of research commissioned by his Department on the relationship between badger numbers and the incidence of bovine TB.

Photo of Ben Bradshaw Ben Bradshaw Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) (Local Environment, Marine and Animal Welfare)

DEFRA publishes the final reports of all its research projects as soon as possible following project completion and review of the project report. Published final reports are available on the DEFRA website at:

http://www.defra.gov.uk/animalh/tb/research/projects.htm.

The Central Science Laboratory (CSL) provided an estimate of trapping efficacy of 20-60 per cent. in the Randomised Badger Culling Trial, based on available data and their expert opinion, for DEFRA's 2006 consultation document on badger culling. The CSL has since revised those estimates upwards to 35-85 per cent. in the light of further data provided by the Independent Scientific Group on Cattle TB. The revised estimates are to be published in a paper in the 26 May issue of the Veterinary Record.

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