In February 2010 a paper, referred to as the Jenkins 2010 et al paper, concluded that there were no long term benefits in culling badgers on the incidence on TB in cattle.
Based on on-going analysis of the Randomised Badger Culling Trials (RBCT) in England, the paper concluded that four years after the RBCT ended, the positive effects of culling badgers in the area had disappeared.
Earlier this month the paper was updated after further analysis of the data that concluded that the positive effects of culling reappeared in the following six months, contradicting the conclusions of the paper published in February 2010.
Dr Christianne Glossop, Chief Veterinary Officer for Wales said:
“Evidence from a number of studies, including the Randomised Badger Culling Trials (RBCT) in England, shows that culling badgers can substantially reduce TB in cattle.
“The recent judicial review of the Welsh TB Eradication Order was comprehensively dismissed by the Judge. Importantly, the judge accepted that culling of badgers can substantially reduce bovine TB in cattle.
“The judge also dismissed the complaint that the Minister for Rural Affairs should have taken into account the Jenkins 2010 et al when she made her final decision about the Intensive Action Pilot Area.
“We are taking a new approach to eradicating the disease in the IAPA, combining cattle controls and biosecurity advice alongside a proactive cull of badgers. It is not a replication of the RBCT.
“It is an approach similar to that which is being successfully implemented in New Zealand which is now close to eradicating bovine TB.
“Bovine TB is a serious animal disease and over the last ten years, the Welsh Assembly Government has spent over £100m in trying to control it, yet it has continued to escalate.
“We are dealing with a bovine TB crisis that is threatening cattle farming across Wales. It cannot be ignored and needs to be dealt with as quickly and effectively as possible."