Page last updated at 07:39 GMT, Sunday, 11 April 2010 08:39 UK

Peanuts to be used as bait in Wales badger cull

A badger
The badger cull aims to combat the bovine TB infection

Peanuts are expected to be used as bait to trap badgers as part of a plan to cull them in areas of mid and south west Wales.

The animals are known to like peanuts and they are commonly used to encourage badgers into people's gardens.

The Welsh Assembly Government said it would use an "appropriate bait" to catch badgers, but it is believed peanuts will be used.

The cull aims to combat the bovine TB infection and could start in May.

It has been strongly opposed by animal charity the Badger Trust.

Last month, it applied to the High Court for a judicial review of the proposed cull. Justice Lloyd Jones is expected to make a ruling next month.

During our planned cull of badgers in the pilot area, the traps will be baited using an appropriate bait that is attractive to badgers
Welsh Assembly Government spokesman

The assembly government said studies indicated that a cull might tackle the infection.

The cull area covers 288 sq km (111 sq mile) of north Pembrokeshire, and a small part of Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire.

The assembly government has said these areas had "endemic" TB infections, with 42% of cattle owners having at least one case of the disease in their herd since 2003.

It is understood that peanuts will be used to entice badgers into traps during the cull.

A Welsh Assembly Government spokesman said: "During our planned cull of badgers in the pilot area, the traps will be baited using an appropriate bait that is attractive to badgers, but we can confirm that it is not peanut butter."

The assembly government refused to reveal the cost of using peanuts or how many kilos or tonnes of peanuts it would be using.

The Badger Trust said peanuts were commonly used by people to encourage badgers into their gardens.

Trust spokesman Jack Reedy said: "It's a perfectly acceptable way of attracting badgers, although we don't approve of the cull.

"Peanuts are commonly used as a way of attracting badgers into gardens."

The trust has enjoyed the support of Brian May - best known as guitarist with the rock group Queen.



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Rock star joins badger cull fight
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'Badger shoot' protest over cull
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13 Jan 10 |  Wales

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South West Business Tough talk from the CLA president to the new Government - 48 hrs ago
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Farmers Guardian Brian May steps up badger cull campaign - 07 Apr 2010


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