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Last Updated: Tuesday, 23 October 2007, 17:15 GMT 18:15 UK
Badgers 'killed' over TB threat
Badger.  Image: RSPCA
An earlier report said a cull would be ineffective
Some farmers in Shropshire are killing badgers in a bid to prevent their animals becoming infected with TB, it is alleged.

The claims follow calls from the UK's chief scientist for a badger cull in parts of England to stop the spread of the disease amongst cattle.

One farm worker, from Oswestry, said he knew cattle farmers that had killed the protected species on purpose.

The RSPCA has condemned the alleged actions and said it was not the answer.

Roger, who did not want to reveal his full name, told BBC Radio Shropshire that the disease causes farmers a lot of problems.

Culling 'ineffective'

"They are doing it to protect their animals. They have got to protect their animals," he said.

"Nobody realises the hassle they have had with TB."

One woman, who wished to remain anonymous, said she was aware of people getting paid to throw carcasses onto roads.

"A lot of badgers on the road are not killed by vehicles they are thrown on to the roads. We know that for a fact," she said.

"Of course this goes on. There are people who do this for a living and get money for it."

On Monday, scientist Sir David King said that culling could be effective in areas that are contained, for example, by the sea or motorways.

But his report followed a previous study that said culling badgers would be ineffective.

About 2,500 cattle a year get bovine tuberculosis (bTB), and some 30,000 stock are killed every year because of the disease, according to the National Farmers' Union (NFU).

'They must protect their animals'

Q&A: Bovine tuberculosis
22 Oct 07 |  Science/Nature
Science chief urges badger cull
22 Oct 07 |  Science/Nature

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